Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Department of Electronics & Information Technology Launches Localization Portal http://localization.gov.in

Department of Electronics & Information Technology Launches Localization Portal http://localization.gov.in and Vikaspedia Multilingual Portal www.vikaspedia.in and Mobile Apps

            The Department of Electronics & Information Technology (DeitY), Ministry of Communications & IT, here today launched a portal http://localization.gov.in and also a multilingual portal – www.vikaspedia.gov.in / www.vikaspedia.in
            The multilingual portal – www.vikaspedia.gov.in / www.vikaspedia.in is aimed at creating a versatile collective knowledge repository with a specific focus on domains relevant to social and economic development. It will serve as a collaborative content creation, sharing and utilization platform for a rainbow of stakeholders – NGOs, government, community based organizations, knowledge networks, CSRs, spread across the country.
Vikaspedia is presently available in five languages – Hindi, Assamese, Marathi, Telugu and English. It is to be made available in 22 Indian official languages in phases in the near future. Information services related to key livelihood sectors (initially the six sectors of Agriculture, Education, Health, Social welfare, Energy and e-Governance) are currently available in the portal. To ensure dissemination of information to the underserved communities across the country, a multiple information delivery model that includes mobile based services, apps, offline products, publications, etc is being followed. The portal is also made mobile compliant, thereby enhancing the access and dissemination of information through mobiles.
The portal will be an effective mechanism to strengthen the first level service providers to discharge services more effectively and educate the actual end user on various issues related to livelihoods. The multi-lingual mobile Apps such as – KVK Khoj (Krishi Vigyan Kendra locator), CSC Finder (Helps provide information on Common Service Centres), SHELTOR (Locates nearby Government Hostels for students), Ask-An-Expert (mobile based expert services delivery application) and MOTHER (Mobile based maternal health alerts for pregnant women) have relevant information packaged so as maximize the benefits of ongoing schemes to the citizens.
Localization Portal http://localization.gov.in has been developed for dissemination of information and providing basic localization tools and services. The National e-Governance Plan (NeGP) of the Government of India strives to make all government services available to the citizens through the use of ICT applications. It comprises of 31 Mission Mode Projects (MMPs), which are further classified as state, central or integrated projects. Each MMP has several web based applications that are meant to directly or indirectly deliver information and/or services to the citizens. Hence, there is a need to make these applications and services available in the official language of the state apart from English.
To meet this goal, the Department of Electronics & Information Technology (DeitY) has entrusted Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) with the responsibility of assisting various ministries and departments in localization of various applications envisaged under their respective MMP.

C-DAC is implementing this project through the use of Localization Projects Management Framework (LPMF) being designed and developed over a Cloud platform. This framework will help the MMPs in two ways:
         i.            Surface localization of the user interface and static information on a given website.
       ii.            Internal localization of online applications including linked databases.
Currently, the LPMF supports 6 Indian languages (Bangla, Gujarati, Hindi, Marathi, Malayalam and Punjabi). Gradually, other languages will be included in a phased manner to facilitate support for all the 22 official languages in the country.
To facilitate the implementation of this project and to involve all the stakeholders, a portal “http://localization.gov.in” has been developed for dissemination of information and providing basic localization tools and services as follows:
         i.            Basic information on surface & internal localization as well as technical documents on standards, guidelines and best practices.
       ii.            Localization tools such as a local language floating keyboard for integration with a website/web application, code converter APIs for converting legacy data to Unicode, etc.
      iii.            Web services for transliteration (English to Indian language), legacy code to Unicode conversions, JavaScript based on-screen keyboard, Sakal Bharati Open Type font, etc.
     iv.            A dashboard illustrating progress of localization processes across MMPs with the help of LPMF.
The portal is expected to serve all MMPs as an online facilitation centre for access to information on language technology standards, essentials of the localization processes and training being conducted by C-DAC on these topics. It will also serve as a resource centre for essential technical documents, localization tools and web services to help developers in localization of various applications planned under their respective Mission Mode Project.


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