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Peter, Welcome and thanks for the questions. In 2001 I did a short descriptive piece for Balancing Act's News Update on how African languages were handled - see http://balancingact- africa.com/news/back/balancing-act_69.html . Although it could use an update and rewrite, the typology of approaches still holds. What that means is that unfortunately there does not seem to be a great change in practice with regard to Latin-based orthographies with extended characters. Lack of fonts, lack of keyboard layouts facilitating input (and the larger question about standardizing layouts for multilingual input), problems with processing e-mail with unicode characters, and above all a lack of information on what is possible now with Unicode, have hobbled progress in this. Two other factors bear mentioning: the relatively low emphasis on teaching African languages in most countries of the region which means that educated people using ICT may not be very familiar with the orthographies of their first languages, and the fact that there has until recently been relatively little attention to multilingual computing issues by computer companies, commercial operators, and foreign ICT for development programs. In the specific case of Hausa, I’m not aware of a great shift to the "correct" orthography incorporating the extended characters, in web content. Often what has been used is ASCII only (2f in my typology). Contrast this with printed literature that uses the hooked-letters and even local practice where people are literate in Hausa (thinking here of, among other things, village name signs in a roadside village in Niger where the “k” in the community’s name had been carefully hand-corrected with the hook on top). I’ll cc this to H-Hausa in case anyone there has more comments. Personally I think that the agencies you’re working for (and the other translators) have an obligation to get it right – and it’s easiest to do that from the start with technology currently available. It wasn’t that long ago that we couldn’t use French or Spanish with accents on computers or e-mail, and if we continued to limit ourselves to ASCII we’d still be typing and reading these languages in make-do approximations now. At the same time there needs to be a greater effort to disseminate knowledge about Unicode - what it is, how to use it, etc. - in those parts of Africa that use extended Latin scripts. Hope this helps. Don Don Osborn, Ph.D. firstname.lastname@example.org *Bisharat! A language, technology & development initiative *Bisharat! Initiative langues - technologie - développement http://www.bisharat.net