Public Domain work of Shri Ram Narain Lal


We started off the dictionary with help from the dictionary compiled by Shri Ram Narain Lal, “Student’s Practical Dictionary”, published in 1936. This work is now in public domain and is also available for download from this website and several other places on the internet.

A lot of interesting analysis and processing had to be done to make the dictionary usable in the computer database. The steps involved creation of software to convert the text from Roman alphabet based encoding to Unicode. This was probably the first time that an online dictionary was published in the then new encoding scheme. The Unicode standard allowed for storage, processing, transmission and display of the numerous scripts and languages of the world. For the first time, Indian language scripts got really broad support for word processing using computers.

We picked up on this trend for the first time in 2003 and since then, a number of other sites and resources have come up. It is great to be leading and showing the way!