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MegaDots and Support for BANA Braille Codes Update 2007

MegaDots contains tools to comply with the new rules in BANA Braille Codes Update 2007.

To be consistent in an assignment, do not change in the middle of a book from MegaDots 2.3, which supports the braille rules prior to this braille codes update, over to MegaDots 2.5.

Here are highlights of the BANA 2007 Codes Update, with notes about how the MegaDots software, or the MegaDots user, deals with these changes.

English Braille American Edition Portion

Special Symbols

There are new symbols included in the list of available special symbols. We have added or updated support for the symbols for copyright, registered trademark, trademark, euro, ampersand, at sign, and crosshatch. When you import a file with any of these symbols, MegaDots will handle them appropriately. when viewing your document on the print side in MegaDots you will see these symbols as follows:

Symbolin MegaDotsdescriptionbraille
copyright©c with dot above^c
crosshatch#number sign_?
registered trademark®r with dot above^r
trademarkt with dot above^t
  • Symbol: in MegaDots; braille dots.
  • ampersand: ampersand; dots 4, 12346.
  • at: @; dots 4, 1.
  • copyright: c with dot above; dots 45, 14.
  • crosshatch: number sign; dots 456, 1456.
  • euro: schwa; dots 4, 15.
  • registered trademark: r with dot above; dots 45, 1235.
  • trademark: t with dot above; dots 45, 2345.
  • To enter the new symbols directly in MegaDots, press Alt+period followed by c, r, or t for the copyright, registered trademark, and trademark respectively. To enter the euro symbol, press Alt+asterisk for the diacritics menu followed by e.

    We have also added better support for some other special symbols. When you press Control-Insert S P to insert a paragraph sign, MegaDots now uses the letter p followed by the ar sign in braille. When print copy uses ' and " for feet and inches, precede them in MegaDots with the Require special symbol marker, by pressing Control-R S. When print copy uses ' and " for minutes and seconds of arc, precede them in MegaDots with two Require special symbol markers, by pressing Control-R S twice.


    We have updated MegaDots so that it no longer inserts apostrophes that do not follow print copy. This change affects plural numbers such as "60s," capitalized words terminated with a lowercase letter such as "POs," and the utterance "hm."


    We have updated MegaDots' handling of the slash. MegaDots now translates the slash into braille as dots 456, 34, regardless of the style sheet. The slash no longer terminates the effect of the number sign. A single letter next to a slash no longer gets a letter sign. When a slash occurs within a phrase within italics or other emphasis markup, MegaDots now treats the slash as a word separator.

    Rule VII, Section 28.c now makes a distinction between the slash and the fraction line. While the slash is brailled as dots 456, 34, the fraction line is brailled as dots 34. In MegaDots, when you really need a fraction line, use Require special symbol (Control-R S) followed by slash. MegaDots translates that as dots 34.

    Transcriber's Notes

    Lower cell word signs, for the words "in," "be," etc., are now allowed next to the transcriber's note mark, which begins and terminates a transcriber's note. We have updated MegaDots to allow this.

    Formats: Principles of Print to Braille Transcription Portion

    Alphabetic Page Numbers

    We have added a new style called Alphabetic pn to support alphabetic page numbers as described in Rule 1: Section 13f. When using alphabetic page numbers in a transcription, create a separate paragraph in the style Alphabetic pn. In this paragraph place the MegaDots print page marker followed by the print page number written in words. MegaDots inserts the initial six hyphens in the braille output. This support does not facilitate continuing a paragraph across a print page change. In particular, if the new print page starts in the middle of a paragraph, you need to take steps to ensure that the material which follows the Alphabetic pn paragraph starts in the proper cell. For example, if the new print page starts with the continuation of an ordinary text paragraph, you can assign this continuation paragraph the style Left flush instead of Body text.

    Print Page Indicators

    Rule 1: Section 13 includes a new rule regarding the print page indicator for a range of pages like R1-R4. In MegaDots you create the print page indicator for a page range like this by pressing Control-Enter followed by R1~R4 followed by Enter. Section 13 now calls for the initial print page indicator to suppress the capital letter after the hyphen, but to display it on the continuation pages. We have updated MegaDots to do that. When you have entered an inkprint page marker of R1~R4 in MegaDots, MegaDots shows R1-4 (,r#a-d) on the initial page, but aR4 (a,r#d), bR4 (b,r#d), etc. on the continuation pages.

    Boxed material

    Rule 6: Section 3h describes a new format for boxes within boxes. To use this format, begin and end the outer box with MegaDots' double box line (Control-Insert L D).

    Lxisted table format

    In Rule 8 a new option for presenting tabular material, called the Listed table format, is made available. MegaDots does not support creation of this format automatically. However, in the examples subfolder of the MegaDots program folder, we have included the file f22.meg, which shows a table prepared manually in this format with the Directions and Exercise styles.

    Pictures in Exercises

    Rule 13, Section 8g describes how to handle pictures used as items within an exercise. "When items in an exercise are shown as pictures, or as pictures with text, insert the transcriber's note symbol (6, 3) before the word Pictures. Place the closing transcriber's note symbol after the last entry." In MegaDots use Require dot 6 (Control-R D) followed by apostrophe for both the opening transcriber's note symbol and the closing transcriber's note symbol. If you are using the Nemeth style sheet, you can use the item called Transcriber's grouping mark instead.

    The Nemeth Code for Mathematics and Science Notation portion

    Keystroke Indicator

    In Rule I the keystroke indicator has been added to the list of shape indicators. In the Nemeth style sheet, select the entry "Keystroke indicator" from the Math items list. When you do so, MegaDots inserts the keystroke indicator followed by the termination indicator. To enter the key label, press LeftArrow first to position the cursor before the termination indicator. Where you need to suppress a space within a key cap indicator, use the item called Suppress space from the Math items list.

    Stem-and-Leaf Plots

    Rule XXV, Section 196 describes how to transcribe stem-and-leaf plots. We have added a way to do this transcription on the print side in MegaDots. Use Related columns style, and start the table with two Suppress number sign markers (which you enter with Control-S N). In each row, enter the dots 456 vertical separation line in a separte column as the tally mark, found on the Math items list. See Chapter 11 for more details. Also see the file comments.meg and the new examples called n18.meg, n20.meg, and n21.meg in the examples subfolder of your MegaDots subfolder.