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ARAB 101-102: Elementary Arabic: Home

Welcome!

Welcome to the Technology Guide for ARAB 101-102. This guide is a work in progress and I welcome your suggestions for additions.

Feel free to contact me if you need additional help (see sidebar on the right).

Quick Tips

Enable the on-screen keyboard

Sharing your documents typed in Arabic

When in doubt, Save As PDF or RTF from Google Docs or Mellel.

  • PDF is an image snapshot of your document. It will stay stable and look perfect, but it is difficult to edit.
  • RTF will be easy to edit and remain legible, but does not hold on to complex formatting.
  • If you are submitting assignments to professor Aadnani from Mellel (Mac) or Word (Windows), you may use the original file format.

Presentations in Arabic

PowerPoint slides with Arabic text don't transfer well between different versions of PowerPoint or different platforms (Mac & Windows). Don't risk it.

  • Save your original PowerPoint as a PowerPoint file.
  • Save a copy as images. This will save each slide as a .jpg file. You can display them to run like a slide show.
  • or Bring your laptop to class. If you have a Mac, you will need an adapter to plug in to the classroom projector.

Are your websites stuck in Arabic?

Try emptying the cache and clearing the cookies. If you don't know how, search for instructions using your web browser's help menu.

Missing the Sherezade font for Mac?

 
 

Table of Contents

Enabling the Arabic Keyboard:  Mac OS X  |  Windows 7

Recommended Software:  Mac  (simple formatting, more complex formatting) | Windows

Arabic in Google Docs

Arabic Diacritics

Enabling the Arabic Keyboard

Windows 7

  1. Click on the Start button. Select Control Panel.
  2. Under the Clock, Language, and Region area, choose Change keyboards or other input methods
    • Note: If you are in the Control Panel Classic View, then double-click on Regional and Language Options icon and click on the tab keyboard and languages.
  3. Click on the Change keyboards… button then click on Add… button.
  4. Click the Plus sign next to Arabic (Egypt) to expand it, then the one next to Keyboard. Check the box next to Arabic (101).
  5. Click the OK button in the Add Input Language window to add the selected keyboards to the Installed Services.
  6. Click the OK button in the Text Services and Input Languages window to confirm and apply your new language settings. 

Use the Language Bar menu at the top of the screen to change the keyboard language to AR Arabic (Egypt)

 

Enable the on-screen Keyboard

The onscreen keyboard displays a keyboard map. This is a useful reminder of which English key types which Arabic letter.

To turn it on, 

  1. Go to the Start menu. Select Programs > Accessories >Ease of Access> On-Screen Keyboard.
  2. Use the Language Bar menu at the top of the screen to change the keyboard language to AR Arabic (Egypt)
If the on screen keyboard is closed, repeat these steps. 
 

Mac OS X

  1. Go to the Apple menu. Select System Preferences
  2. Choose Language & Text on the top row.
  3. Go to the Input Sources tab
  4. Check the box next to Arabic - PC
  5. Close the window.

On the upper right portion of the screen, click on the American flag icon (U.S. Flag Icon). Use the dropdown menu to select Arabic-PC.

This keyboard matches the one set for Windows computers. It will make it easier to switch back and forth. If you spend most of your time on a Mac, you may prefer the Arabic QWERTY keyboard. Repeat the steps above, selecting Arabic - QWERTY if you would like to use it. 

 

Enable the on-screen Keyboard

The onscreen keyboard displays a keyboard map. This is a useful reminder of which English key types which Arabic letter.

To turn it on, 

  1. Go to the Apple menu. Select System Preferences
  2. Choose Language & Text on the top row.
  3. Go to the Input Sources tab
  4. Check the box next to Keyboard & Character Viewer

On the upper right portion of the screen, click on the American flag icon (U.S. Flag Icon). Use the dropdown menu to select Show Keyboard Viewer.

Arabic-QWERTY

 

** Slightly adapted from the excellent documentation at Haverford College  

Recommended Software for Arabic on Mac

Certain Mac applications do not support Right-to-Left scripts like Hebrew and Arabic.

When using these applications, Hebrew fonts will appear garbled, disconnected or reversed. 

  • Apple Works
  • MS Office (except for PowerPoint)
  • Adobe

Mac applications that DO support Hebrew input:

  • TextEdit
  • Mellel
  • Open Office and NeoOffice
  • PowerPoint
  • Mail and Address Book
  • iChat, iTunes, iMovie 6, Skype
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Pages, Keynote, iWeb (to a limited extent

Google Docs also support Hebrew input


Typing and Printing Simple Documents on a Mac

When typing and printing simple documents on a Mac, you will can to use TextEdit (equivalent to Notepad on a PC).

TextEdit is a simple editor with limited formatting options. Follow these steps to write Arabic in TextEdit:

  • Make sure you are typing in Rich Text mode. Click on the TextEdit pull-down menu, then Preferences. Select Rich Text if it is not already selected.
  • Click on Format, then Text, then Writing Direction. Click on Right-to-Left to change the setting.
  • Finally, click on Format, then Align Right to begin typing on the right side of the page.

To create documents with more complex formatting, consider the following options: 

  Google Docs

  Mellel

  • Installed on Macs in labs across campus
  • Fully-featured word processing software for Arabic language
  • Videos & Tutorials for Mellel are available on Mellel's website. Scroll down to the Tutorials & Guides section
  • To set Mellel to type in Arabic:
    1. Change the language keyboard to Arabic
    2. Launch Mellel
    3. Go to the Character menu and select New Character Style
    4. In the window which appears, 
      • In the Style Name field, type Arabic
      • Set the Script field to Arabic
      • Set both the Main Font and Secondary Font to Sheherezade
      • Set the Size to 16
      • Set Direction to Right to Left
      • Click OK
  • Mac-only and can't install it on personal computers yet. 

Other Freeware Options for Mac

If you have problems typing in Arabic, try the following phonetic transliteration services:

Adapted from documentation at Georgetown University

Recommended Software for Arabic on Windows

Microsoft Office Word:

   Quick tips:

  • Make sure you have selected an Arabic keyboard from the Language Bar at the top of your screen. Add an Arabic Keyboard
  • Follow the directions below to set up Right-to-Left typing in Word. Do not use right justify instead. NoRightJustify Your words will type in the correct direction, but the letters might be reversed.
  • Use the Traditional Arabic or Simplified Arabic font. If you can't find them, Tahoma might be an acceptable substitute.
  • Use a font size no smaller than 16pt.
  • Follow the directions below to set up Right-to-Left typing in Word. Using Right Justify will type in the correct direction, but the letters may appear reversed. Also, your period punctuation will appear on the right side of the line instead of where it belongs - at the end of the sentence.

Switch to Right-to-Left writing mode (Word 2007 and 2010):

  1. Right click anywhere on the toolbar at the top of the screen.
  2. Click Customize Quick Access Toolbar
  3. From the drop box for Choose Commands From on the top left of the screen, click Home tab
  4. From the list of commands on the left-hand pane, click Left-to-Right Text Direction
  5. Click the Add button between the left and right panes to add this function to theQuick Access Toolbar
  6. Click Right-to-Left Text Direction from the left pane and then click Add
  7. Click Ok

Office 2003

  1. Open a new document in Microsoft Word.
  2. Right Click on the "File" menu at the top left of the "toolbar."
  3. Click "Customize" on the bottom of the drop-down menu.
  4. Click on the "Commands" tab, then Click on "Format" in the "Categories" menu on the left-hand side.
  5. In the "Commands" menu on the right-hand side, Click and Drag the "Left-to-Right" and "Right-to-Left" icons and place them on the toolbar.
  6. The "Right-to-Left" and "Left-to-Right" buttons will allow you to switch text directions as you navigate between English and Arabic in your Word documents.

Spell-check in Word 2010:

  1. Select the text you want to spell-check.
  2. In the Review tab, in the Language group, click Language, and then click Set Proofing Langugage
  3. In the Language dialog box, verify that the correct language is associated with the text. If it is not, select the language you want to use for the dictionary and other proofing tools.

Other free Word Processing software for Windows: (both of these support right-to-left script)

If you have problems typing in Arabic, try the following phonetic transliteration services:

 

Arabic in Google Documents

Creating a document in Arabic using Google Docs

Make sure the Arabic keyboard is enabled on your computer.

  • Create a new blank document in your Google Drive.
  • Click on Settings, then Document Settings in the top right corner of the window.
  • Check the box next to "Show right-to-left controls in the editor," then click Save
  • This will add two small ¶ symbols to the right side of the document's toolbar.
  • Click on the symbol with an arrow pointing left. This will switch your document's typing direction.

Advantages: Available on all computers at any time. Can do footnotes (Insert > Footnotes)
Disadvantages: Can't do autonumbering or other ongoing maintenance of footnotes. Can't do endnotes, or bibliographies 

Arabic Diacritics

The On-Screen Keyboard can a be a really helpful reference for Diacritics. Check it while holding down Shift, Option, and Control

Squished Diacritics

Use shift+j to expand the letter to make room for a diacritic

If you have to fit a few diacritic accents around a letter, you could place one diacritic on its own in a space before or after the letter to make room.

Subject Technologist

Rebecca Darling
Contact:
Research and Instruction Technologist

Office: Clapp Library Room 219A

Phone: x2882