This thesis goes into great detail about how the Nastaleeq style of Arabic script works. It is a useful read for anyone interested in implementing support for Nastaleeq.
|Institution||National University of Computer & Emerging Sciences, Lahore|
With the advent of multi-lingual concept in computer systems, different solution has been proposed and implemented. But most of these are not matured enough or has platform barriers. The most promising solutions are OpenType® by Microsoft and Adobe, and Apple Advanced Typography by Apple Inc. The OpenType® specifications are open source, in spite of that the support of OpenType® on different platforms is not mature and even not consistent among Microsoft and Adobe applications.
Two different techniques have been adapted to digitize the Nastaleeq script. One is Ligature based approach and other is character based. Both approaches have their own limitations. The most dominating solution is ligature based Nori Nastaleeq font. But this font can only be run in proprietary software InPage®. And this software can only be run in a MS Windows environment. The other promising solution is character based Nafees Nastaleeq font. This font uses OpenType® technology to generate ligatures. OpenType® solution is very slow for Nastaleeq script and has limitations for proportional spacing and justification.
TeX is a revolutionary typesetting system developed by Donald Knuth in 1980s. It is a defecto standard for many scientific and mathematic publications. TeX was mainly aimed at typesetting mathematics and English text. Omega is an extension of TeX developed by John Plaice and Yannis Haralambous. Its first release, aims primarily at improving TeX's multilingual abilities. Omega allows multiple inputs and output character sets, and uses programmable filters to translate from one encoding to another, to perform contextual analysis. The pixel level control of TeX over glyphs and filtering approach of Omega suits them best for complex scripts like Nastaleeq.