Unicode vs Zawgyi Discussion

location Phandeeyar: Myanmar Innovation Lab | 10 AM-12 AM Wednesday 31 August 2016 (+0630)

ICT4D working group will be hosting a discussion on Unicode vs Zawgyi: Future of Myanmar Font. The aim is to discuss and share current Myanmar font's challenges and ways forward. Everyone is welcome. No rsvp.


  • Michael Suantak

    Michael Suantak is a civic-minded social innovator in Myanmar. He is from the Jungle of Chin state, one of the least developed states, located in the NorthWest of Myanmar closed to India and Bangladesh. His primary initiative was building a community wireless network, connecting 20 of the jungle villages with MESH in Chin state, where no internet, mobile network and, basic infrastructure were available. The network serves educational contents including Khant Academy video contents such as from Rachel PI project and other local news, infotainment from local open source servers. Before, he was a digital security trainer and raised digital security and digital rights awareness together with local and international experts. Apart from that he was one of the founders of BIT, stand for Burma Information Technology based in New Delhi, India which served ICTs services and training to the exile Myanmar communities in India, Thailand and, China borders regions for more than 10 years. He frequently participates in the panel discussion on community media development and shares the current trend of technology landscape in Myanmar, laws' enforcement and future opportunities. He is currently working with Phandeeyar, the Myanmar innovation lab in Yangon as a program manager for civil society organization and independent media. He is interesting to focus on cyber policy, laws development and enforcement in Myanmar in the future.

  • Han-teng Liao

    Han-Teng Liao (DPhil, 2014, Oxford) works at UNU-CS in the areas of small data and HCI researchfor civic and cross-cultural engagement. He is a research professional with combined information science, media/communication and open source/open data working experience. Liao’s research focuses on ICTs and HCI for human and political development, with the use of webometrics, user-generated data and social network analysis. In particular he studies how geographic and linguistic factors influence mobile and Internet-enabled services and their potentials in cross-cultural and/or transnational growth/dynamics/exchanges, including the industry practices in software/website internationalization (i18n) and Localization (L10n). Han will be discussing early findings from a national web study: how the success of Zawgyi may impede the leapfrogging potentials of digital Myanmar

  • YoeYar

    A filmmaker, animator and currently running a film production house, Electronic Pictures. I was interested in Unicode and it's technology in 2008. And since, I have promoted the standard and published "Myanmar Unicode" book in 2013.

  • Justin Watkins

    I have been teaching Burmese and Linguistics at SOAS, University of London since 1999 though Burmese has been taught at SOAS for 100 years this year. I'm interested in Burmese language, Burma's relationship with English and also in the linguistics of other languages in Burma. The transition from lead type print to Unicode has taken just a few decades. In a few years' time, the 'Zawgyi problem' will be behind us. My brief talk will focus on the reasons why we really should stop Zawgyi in its tracks as soon as possible, both for the harm it does and the rewards it denies us.


Phandeeyar: Myanmar Innovation Lab

11th Floor of MAC Tower, 561, Merchant Road, Merchant Rd, Yangon 11181, Myanmar (Burma)

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