Proof of 18 January 2001
WARNING: THIS IS AN EXPERIMENTAL AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED LAY-OUT.Problems in printing
1. Arabic not yet supported, an automatic ad-hoc transcription in brackets is used.2. Tables can come out far too wide.3. Marginal notes are printed in the text, in a smaller type in brackets.4. Vulgar fractions appear as a division.5. The material has not yet been proof read!
Alberuni’s India Abu Al-Rahain Muhammad Ibn Ahmad Alberuni, 973?–1048 Edward C. Sachau, 1845–1930(Translator and Editor) 2 vols. (50 + 408 + 431 p = 889 p) 1910, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co. Ltd.,LondonCopyright status: U.S. Expired. E.U. Expired 1 Jan 1981, revived 1995, will expire again 1 Jan 2001. BerneConv. Expired 1 Jan 1981.Approximate size: 1.6 MegabyteIntroduction to the electronic editionThe Indika of Alberuni gives us a rare insight to the habits, customs, and beliefs of Hindu India as a thewriter saw it in 1030 A.D.An electronic edition of this work oﬀers a lot of beneﬁts. First of all, it enables fast searching through thetext, and quickly jumping to notes and the sources of quoted texts (when these become available in electronicformat). Second, it can be distributed at a much lower cost than the printed version, which, although stillsometimes reprinted in India, can be quite diﬃcult to obtain.A further beneﬁt, for modern readers, is that the numerous Arabic and Greek quotations can be automaticallytransliterated, using a single toggle on the reading software, and that imperial units of measurement can beconverted to their metric equivalents with the same ease.ProductionThe electronic edition of Sachau’s translation of Alberuni’s Indica poses several challenges to the encoder.First of all, the large size of the work and the large number of diacritics make it diﬃcult to process the workon ordinary word processers. The fragments in Greek, Arabic, Syriac, and Hebrew script, the large numberof complicated tables, as well as the occasional mathematical formula further complicate this task.The main body of the text was scanned, and converted to a computer readable format using Omnipage 8.0on a Macintosh computer. Using the proofread feature of the software, the text was corrected, accentedwords and the occasional word in a foreign script entered with special tags. The tables (of which no currentOCR software can make any sense) were entered by hand in a simple word processor. The larger Greekquotations and Arabic fragments were also typed that way.After this primary stage, the entire ﬁle, about 1.6 megabytes large, was further processed in word on botha Mac and a PC, adding TEI tags to it, and correcting a large number of mistakes introduced by the OCRprocess.After processing the ﬁle, it is converted to an ASCII ﬁle, and, using a set of custom macros in TeX, ahard-print copy was made for proofreading. After this, all corrections have been entered into the ﬁle. Whereerrors in the source text are encountered, they have been tagged with
tags, such that the orginaltext can always be reconstructed if so desired.In further stages, the following additions can be made:
linking cross references
linking notes with the pages they refer to, and vice versa.
tagging measures with their metric equivalent
tagging dates with their Gregorian equivalent
tagging names with their normalised formSpecial characters usedThe various incarnations of apostrophe: