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KA-NAADA: ONE KEYBOARD FOR ALL NATIVE LANGUAGE WRITERS

By Ritika Nath . 4th July 2018 12:30pm
KA-NAADA: ONE KEYBOARD FOR ALL NATIVE LANGUAGE WRITERS

Orlando – based simulator Guru Prasad has made a revolutionary keyboard 'Ka-Naada' after hard work of many years. He has made a keyboard that can type in many Indian native languages which we find hard to type with our computers and mobile phones like Kannada, Gujarati, Gurmukhi, Mayalayam, Tulu, Oriya and many more. [caption id="attachment_41479" align="alignnone" width="300"]KaNaada Source[/caption] Currently running 'KaNaada Phonetics Private Limited' in Uttarahali, Bengaluru, Guru Prasad has even got his keyboard patented. It is available as both hardware, connected by a USB cable and software. He has carefully grouped letters according to phonetics making it more intuitive. Its interface works in accordance with Brahmi script. The user can even switch to different languages while typing. Guru Prasad got this innovative idea in 2009 while he was living in Orlando, Florida. He saw children struggling to learn their native language. This is when he came up with the idea of making Ka-Naada which can ease typing native languages for all. Holding a PhD in industrial engineering, Prasad is an expert in simulation, network architecture, distributed systems and system modeling. [caption id="attachment_41480" align="alignnone" width="2048"]Ka-Naada Source[/caption] During the process of making the innovative keyboard, Prasad sought help from many linguistic experts. He worked BVK Sastry, who is a linguistics professor at Yoga-Samskrutham University in Florida. Their unique idea helped them get funds from various associations like Kannada Praadhikaara and ITBT (Department of Information Technology, Biotechnology and Science and Technology of Government of Karnataka). Moreover, they got design assistance from the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), Centre of Excellence, IISc. Guru Prasad says that the response he has got from Ka-Naada users has been extremely overwhelming.

It is highly intuitive for users, right from the get-go. Children, particularly, are thrilled to use it. I have heard comments like, Maine aankhe band karke, type kiya (I was able to type with my eyes closed), from them. For adults, there were some training issues because they are so accustomed to QWERTY. We are trying to work to come closer to that keyboard ergonomically.
Guru Prasad is currently experimenting with the size and qualities of keys and keyboard to make it more user-friendly.

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