Thanks Nithya! for the great Birthday Gift

Feb 18, was my birthday. Myself and Nithya dont celebrate each others birthday, as all of the days are very precious for us.

I never gifted her anything. She also did not. But, for this time, she wondered me with a great gift.

Yes. It is a Free Software 🙂

She wrote a grammar checker (Conjunction Checker) for Tamil and released on Feb 18, with a nice blog post. It is here in Tamil

It was my decade dream to create a great spell checker for Tamil as a Free Software. Conjunction Checker is one of the big parts of it.

It has too many rules and she read them all, understood, converted as Python code.

It is the awesome birthday gift.

Nithya! You are my best gift. Thanks, is a simple word. It cant express what es I mean.

She is improving it a lot with more rules and testing.

Here is the code –

She made a video about this tool –

Today, She spoke about this in “ILUGC – Indian Linux Users Group – Chennai” Meet. So happy to see her giving a talk in my homeland.

I am working on making it as web application, so that anyone can use it.

Thanks to open-tamil python library for its all great features of handling tamil text easily.

I am seeing Nithya as avid reader, writer, dancer, home maker and now a programmer.

You can read all her books here –

Hoping to see more women contributors like Nithya in the upcoming days.




Project-Idea : How can I pay some money for the pirated movies I watch?

pirated movies க்கான பட முடிவு

I try to watch movies in theaters most of the times. But when some good movies come, they go out of theaters, when I decide to watch. In Chennai, most moves wind up in 2 weeks.

Last week, Myself and Nithya watched the movie “Mayavan“, which I got from a friend, which was downloaded from internet. The movie is really interesting and the concept, acting, direction, cinematography, direction all are really nice. Never expected such things from a tamil movie. The next day, when we had a discussion about the film “Anbe Sivam“. Immediately, watched the movie on YouTube.  Yes, the full movie is available there.

We worried that we missed to watch the movie “Mayavan” on theater. We both are not active on social media and news sites. We get the info about good movies by word of mouth only. When friends praise a movie, we try to book in a nearby theater. Most of the times, it would gone away. We wait for few more weeks to get good HD pirated digital copy of the movie and watch it.

Piracy is evil. It is killing the cini industry. But it is non-stoppable.

Yes. I agree that. But, what we have to do when there is no screening of movies near us? Do we have to cross cities to watch a  movie ?

When I was a kind, in my native kanchipuram, there was Indira Theater. it will screen good movies for second time. When a movie go out of first time screens, in a month, Indira theater will screen it again. There was Pandiyan Theater, which screens for third and fourth times of good movies. Nowadays, those two theaters were closed. Cant see such theater in kanchipuram or in chennai.

Discussed a system with Nithya to pay for the movies we see in pirated copies or youtube like websites. She told that she can pay 100 Rs for each movie she sees from home.

Here is a concept.

1. A mobile app or web site to get donations.

2. It will list all the movies

3. User can select a movie

4. Producers Bank details are displayed here. User can add in own bank and transfer money or donate via our app/site.

5. Users enters “Donate” Button

6. It asks for amount and redirects to payment gateway

7. Payment should be done via Credit card, debit card, net banking, PayTM like systems etc

8. Once the payment is done, the amount should be credited to Producer’s account.


If such system is available, most of will be donate money for the movies we like. We can start with tamil movies, then we can expand to other languages.

The alternate solution now available is “Amazon Prime Movies”. I am still not a prime member. Never experience it. Dont know it will be a hit in country like India where broadband is still a dream in most of the places.

Offline watching is still the usual thing here. Most of the people, who travel in train or bus, are watching a movie. For them, offline sharing is the easiest way to watch the movies. I think, amazon prime can not reach them, as traveling wont get  good internet connection here.

I believe that such donation system will workout, if done properly and marketed by all the movie stars.

We need the following systems to build such donation system.

1. servers to run the application

2. mobile apps for android/iOS

3. Web site/ web application

4. Movies list

5. Producer’s account details


Need to discuss with the producer’s and get their account details.

We can expand the same idea to software industry, music industry and ebook industry too.

Comment here if you are agreeing/non-agreeing/interested to do this a project/etc

Promote this idea to the startups and investors. If someone can do, thats a happy news. if no one does, we can do it.



Image source –





Openstreetmaps Mapping Party at kanchipuram, Dec 25,2017, 10-1

At kanchilug, we planned to have a openstreetmaps mapping party.

Date : Dec 25 2017,10 am – 1 pm

Starting place : 10c,csm street, pilliyar palayam, kanchipuram.

We can have some intro to osm,, osm contributor android apps.

Then, we can roam around the city to add Point Of Interest (significant places) to osm using those apps.

If you are new to openstreetmaps, see the video in tamil by prasanna of puduvailug.

Created a telegram group for tomorrow’s mapping party.

Join there.

We can discuss for any quick questions on party.

For those who don’t have smartphone like me,

You can join the telegram using web browser in your laptop/desktop


Login with your mobile number and join the group mentioned above.

You can read all the discussions any time.

See you there on the party.

Project Idea – Mobile app to add POI using openstreetmaps

My friend David Rajamani is looking for an android app to be developed as a module to be used with other application being developed.

User should login with oauth from another app.

Then he should point a place the map displayed and add details about that place.

The data should be sent to and their own database. android app can be taken as example and can be converted as module or pluggable into another app.

If you are interested in doing this project, mail me on


Project Idea – Location aware mobile apps to explain historical places

Last week, met my old friend siva, of Tamil Heritage Trust, after few years. Their group is serving the community, by explaining all the history of great places of tamilnadu.

He explained me about a requirement of new mobile app.

Location aware app to explain on historic places.

Imagine, you goto tiger cave, near mahabalipuram. While wondering what is that, how it will be an app displays all the history about that place, when you go near or search for it.

Like that we can give details about all the monuments at mahabalipuram.

We can extend that to all the temples at kanchipuram or all around tamil Nadu.

The app should be released as free/open source software.

It can be a native or react native or hybrid app.

If you are interested in contributing for this, reply, comment here or mail me on


Installation script for Tamil Text to speech System

The Tamil TTS system provided by IITM and SSN College of Engineering, has a lengthy installation process.

I have written them here.

It may not be easy to follow and you may find some issues. To make the life easier, I have created shell script, to automate the entire process.

Here it is –

System requirements:

Ubuntu 16.04

How to execute:

git clone

cd tamil-tts-install

Edit the file,

Fill the following details.

DOWNLOAD_PATH=/home/ubuntu/tts/packages #to download the required packages

COMPILE_PATH=/home/ubuntu/tts/compiled # to place the compiled files and folders

Register here and get a username and password



Then, execute the file as


How to convert a text to audio?

export FESTDIR=/usr

cd COMPLIE_PATH ssn_hts_demo/scripts/complete “தமிழ் வாழ்க” linux

This will convert the text and store as wav in


you can play it with any audio player.

The full details of what is on the compile process is explained here.

To hear a demo on how the tamil TTS system sounds, click here

Thanks for IITM Team – Prof Hema  and Anju for their great support on helping us to get installed the tamil TTS system.


How to compile Tamil TTS engine from source?

IITMadras and SSN College of Engineering team have released a Open Source Text to speech conversion engine for Tamil and other indian languages.

Check their efforts at

In this blog post, let us see how can we compile and install the tamil tts system in a ubuntu 16.04 machine.


Go to this link

It will ask for Signup.
Register by giving username and email address.

Soon, you will get an email with the password to login.

If you dont’ get any password, send an email to


Once you got a password, login to the same link.

Now, you will get two select drop down lists.

Select Language = Tamil
Select Voice type = HTS-2.3

Click “Agree & Download”

It will download a file ssn_hts_demo_tamil_male.tgz


gunzip ssn_hts_demo_tamil_male.tgz
tar xvf ssn_hts_demo_tamil_male.tar

cd ssn_hts_demo

Read the README.txt

as step 1, it says as
Step 1: Configure the folder
./configure –with-fest-search-path=/$FESTDIR/examples/ –with-sptk-search-path=/usr/local/SPTK/bin/ –with-hts-search-path=/usr/local/HTS-2.2beta/bin/ –with-hts-engine-search-path=/PATH TO hts_engine_API-1.06/bin/


It requires, following software

1. Festival – we can install it using apt-get
3. HTS
4. hts_engine_api

2,3, and 4 should be downloaded from respective sites as source and they should be compiled.


1. To install festival, run the below command

sudo apt-get install festival


Install few required packages

sudo wget festival libx11-dev build-essential g++-4.7 csh gawk bc sox tcsh default-jre -y

2. Download SPTK source from


tar xvzf SPTK-3.10.tar.gz

cd SPTK-3.10
./configure –prefix=/home/ubuntu/tts/sptk
make install



Download from


mkdir hts-htk
cd hts-htk

tar xvjf HTS-2.3_for_HTK-3.4.1.tar.bz2

The INSTALL file says few things to do.

let us do them

Download HTK from

it requires to register with username, email, organization and address.
Once registered, you will get password in mail.

using that you can download the packages


wget –user=htkuserchennai –password=sgqY=t=M


download HDecode from

wget –user=htkuserchennai –password=sgqY=t=M

tar -zxvf HTK-3.4.1.tar.gz
tar -zxvf HDecode-3.4.1.tar.gz

cd htk

patch -p1 -d . < ../hts-htk/HTS-2.3_for_HTK-3.4.1.patch

./configure –prefix=/home/ubuntu/tts/hts



Now, I got the following error.


(cd HTKLib && make HTKLib.a) \
|| case “” in *k*) fail=yes;; *) exit 1;; esac;
make[1]: Entering directory ‘/home/ubuntu/htk/HTKLib’
gcc -Wall -Wno-switch -g -O2 -I. -DPHNALG -c -o HGraf.o HGraf.c
HGraf.c:118:77: fatal error: X11/Xlib.h: No such file or directory
compilation terminated.
<builtin>: recipe for target ‘HGraf.o’ failed
make[1]: *** [HGraf.o] Error 1
make[1]: Leaving directory ‘/home/ubuntu/htk/HTKLib’
Makefile:141: recipe for target ‘HTKLib/HTKLib.a’ failed
make: *** [HTKLib/HTKLib.a] Error 1

To solve this, run the below command

sudo apt-get install libx11-dev

Thanks to the s.t.o community for the answer.


run make again


Got another error as below.


gcc -Wall -Wno-switch -g -O2 -I. -DPHNALG -c -o esignal.o esignal.c
In file included from /usr/include/string.h:630:0,
from esignal.h:34,
from esignal.c:29:
esignal.c: In function ‘ReadHeader’:
esignal.c:974:29: error: ‘ARCH’ undeclared (first use in this function)
if (strcmp(architecture, ARCH) == 0) /* native architecture */
esignal.c:974:29: note: each undeclared identifier is reported only once for each function it appears in
esignal.c: In function ‘WriteHeader’:
esignal.c:1184:25: error: ‘ARCH’ undeclared (first use in this function)
architecture = ARCH;
esignal.c: In function ‘GetLine’:
esignal.c:1760:4: warning: ignoring return value of ‘fgets’, declared with attribute warn_unused_result [-Wunused-result]
fgets(buf, len+1, file);
esignal.c: In function ‘GetLong’:
esignal.c:1808:4: warning: ignoring return value of ‘fgets’, declared with attribute warn_unused_result [-Wunused-result]
fgets(buf, len+1, file);
<builtin>: recipe for target ‘esignal.o’ failed
make[1]: *** [esignal.o] Error 1
make[1]: Leaving directory ‘/home/ubuntu/htk/HTKLib’
Makefile:141: recipe for target ‘HTKLib/HTKLib.a’ failed
make: *** [HTKLib/HTKLib.a] Error 1

Again s.t.o helped.

Run the below commands

sudo apt-get install g++-4.7
export CC=gcc-4.7 CXX=g++-4.7
./configure CFLAGS=”-DARCH=linux” –prefix=/home/ubuntu/tts/hts
make install


Next is hts_engine_API

download from


tar xvzf hts_engine_API-1.10.tar.gz
cd hts_engine_API-1.10
./configure –prefix=/home/ubuntu/tts/hts_engine_api
make install


Then, few more commands.

cd /usr/share/doc/festival/examples/
sudo gunzip dumpfeats.gz

sudo gunzip
sudo chmod a+rx /usr/share/doc/festival/examples/dumpfeats

Thats all. We install all the dependancies of ssn_hts_demo.
Let us install it now.

cd ssn_hts_demo

./configure –with-fest-search-path=/usr/share/doc/festival/examples –with-sptk-search-path=/home/ubuntu/tts/sptk/bin/ –with-hts-search-path=/home/ubuntu/tts/hts/bin/ –with-hts-engine-search-path=/home/ubuntu/tts/hts_engine_api/bin/

sudo mv /usr/share/festival/radio_phones.scm /usr/share/festival/radio_phones.scm-old

sudo cp ~/ssn_hts_demo/radio_phones.scm /usr/share/festival/

sudo cp ~/ssn_hts_demo/ /usr/share/perl5/File/

gcc scripts/tamil_trans.c -o scripts/tamil_trans


Thats all. Done with all the compilation works.

Let us invoke the command to make the tamil text to audio.

export FESTDIR=/usr
ssn_hts_demo/scripts/complete “தமிழ் வாழ்க” linux

This will make audio file as ssn_hts_demo/wav/1.wav

I can now play the file with any audio player and hear a good voice of the text in tamil.


I tried with a little huge text.

here is the demo

The text I gave is

என் சரித்திரம், உ. வே. சாமிநாதையர் எழுதிய தன்வரலாறு ஆகும். இதில் 1855ஆம் ஆண்டு முதல் 1898ஆம் ஆண்டு வரை அவருடைய வாழ்வில் நிகழ்ந்தவை பதியப்பட்டுள்ளன. இதில் அவர் தமிழ் கற்ற வரலாறு, தமிழ் நூல்களைப் பதிப்பித்த வரலாறும் பதிவுசெய்யப்பட்டு உள்ளன.தமிழ்த்தாத்தா டாக்டர் உ.வே.சா. அவர்கள் எழுதிய தன் வரலாற்று நூல் இது. இந்நூலைக் கற்றால் ‘பெருக்கத்து வேண்டும் பணிதல்’ என்ற இலக்கணத்துக்கு இதுதான் சரியான இலக்கியம் என்ற உண்மை தெளிவாகும். பேதங்களுக்கு அப்பாற்பட்ட போதம்தான் தமிழ்ஞானம் என்பது இந்நூலின் தொகுமொத்தப் பொருள் என்றால் அது மிகையாகாது. ’நன்றிக்கு வித்தாகும் நல்லொழுக்கம்’ என்ற தொடரை விளக்குவதற்காக இவர் மண்ணுலகில் பிறந்தார் என்று கொள்ள வேண்டி இருக்கிறது. டாக்டர் உ.வே.சா. அவர்களின் என் சரித்திரமும் மகாத்மா காந்திஜி அவர்களின் சத்திய சோதனையும் ஒரேதரம் உடையவை. இவற்றின் ஒவ்வோரெழுத்தும் வாய்மை நிரம்பிய வைர எழுத்துக்கள்.என் சரித்திரம் கற்றால் தமிழார்வம் வரும். வந்த தமிழார்வம் வளரும். பத்துப்பாட்டும், எட்டுத்தொகையுள் ஐந்தும், மூன்று பெரும் காப்பியங்களும், ஐம்பதிற்கும் மேற்பட்ட பிற இலக்கியங்களும், இலக்கண நூல்களும் நின்று நிலவுவதற்குக் காரணம், டாக்டர் உ.வே.சா. அவர்களின் அயரா உழைப்பே என்பதை, இந்த மன்பதை அறியும். அந்த நூல்களைக் கற்கும் முன், ’என் சரித்திரம்’ என்னும் இந்த நூலைக் கற்க வேண்டும். இதனைக் கற்றால் தமிழ் நூல்களை அச்சுக்குக் கொண்டுவர அவர்பட்ட இன்னல்கள் புரியும்.1. எங்கள் ஊர்சற்றேறக்குறைய இருநூறு வருஷங்களுக்கு முன்பு தஞ்சாவூர் ஸமஸ்தானத்தை ஆண்டு வந்த அரசர் ஒருவர் தம்முடைய பரிவாரங்களுடன் நாடு முழுவதையும் சுற்றிப் பார்க்கும் பொருட்டு ஒருமுறை தஞ்சாவூரிலிருந்து புறப்பட்டார். அங்கங்கே உள்ள இயற்கைக் காட்சிகளை யெல்லாம் கண்டு களித்தும், ஸ்தலங்களைத் தரிசித்துக்கொண்டும் சென்றார். இடையில், தஞ்சைக்குக் கிழக்கே பதினைந்து மைல் தூரத்திலுள்ள பாபநாசத்திற்கு அருகில் ஓரிடத்தில் தங்கினார். வழக்கம்போல் அங்கே போஜனம் முடித்துக்கொண்ட பிறகு தாம்பூலம் போட்டுக்கொண்டு சிறிது நேரம் சிரம பரிகாரம் செய்திருந்தார்; தம்முடன் வந்தவர்களோடு பேசிக்கொண்டு பொழுதுபோக்குகையில் பேச்சுக்கிடையே அன்று ஏகாதசி யென்று தெரிய வந்தது. அரசர் ஏகாதசியன்று ஒரு வேளை மாத்திரம் உணவுகொள்ளும் விரதமுடையவர்; விரத தினத்தன்று தாம்பூலம் தரித்துக்கொள்வதும் வழக்கமில்லை. அப்படியிருக்க, அவர் ஏகாதசி யென்று தெரியாமல் அன்று தாம்பூலம் தரித்துக்கொண்டார். தஞ்சாவூராக இருந்தால் அரண்மனை ஜோதிஷர் ஒவ்வொரு நாளும் காலையில் வந்து அன்றன்று திதி, வார, நக்ஷத்திர, யோக, கரண விசேக்ஷங்கள் இன்னவையென்று பஞ்சாங்கத்திலிருந்து வாசித்துச் சொல்வார். அதற்காகவே அவருக்கு மான்யங்களும் இருந்தன.அரசருடைய பிரயாணத்தில் ஜோதிஷர் உடன் வரவில்லை. அதனால் ஏகாதசியை அரசர் தெரிந்துகொள்ள முடியவில்லை. எதிர்பாராதபடி விரதத்திற்கு ஒரு பங்கம் நேர்ந்ததைப் பற்றி வருந்திய அரசர் அதற்கு என்ன பரிகாரம் செய்யலாமென்று சில பெரியோர்களைக் கேட்கத் தொடங்கினர்.(மேலும் படிக்க…)


Here the audio now.



Yes. This is the best open source text to speech engine for tamil, so far.

Tons of thanks for IITM team and SSN College of Engineering for making the TTS engine and releasing as open source and for free.

Working on making the installation easier with a shell script.

Will share once done.



Build your own Story Books for kids in your Language with Story Weaver

Last week, I got an opportunity to attend a workshop on building story books for Children using

Storyweaver beta

This portal is developed by Pratham Books, a Not-for-profit organization, which is helping Indian kids to get more story books in their own languages. They started with creating story books, print, sell them, but with Creative Commons CC-By license. Anyone can copy their books, print, share and sell.

Pratham books

Now, with story weaver platform, they enable any one to create stories for kids. We can build stories or translate existing stories to our language.

I knew this platform few months ago. But did not explored much. Suddenly, received an email from Pratham Books from their blog, as they organize a workshop on storyweaver platform in Chennai. Registered immediately.

On the event day, reached the venue at T.Nagar. It was a good meeting hall with projector. We got around 50 participants. Except me, most of them are directly with children as teacher/trainer/StoryTeller.

We got participants from many organizations like Vazhai, Isha Vidhya, Katha & Ratha, Teach for India, Vidyarambam and more. Got a bunch of people from Villupuram Coimbatore too. Most of them are using books by Pratham books on their class rooms and activities.

The workshop was to explore the storyweaver platfrom. They explored the platform. We can read 4700 stories available. They support 84 languages. The portal has 7461 images to make wonderlands.

After the demo, tasks were given to create a story book or translate. I got to translate. We formed a team and translated a book. At the end of the event, the demo session was interesting. With a small introduction, people made stunning stories.

The images uploaded should be self made. We should not upload other’s work. As all the works, text and images are released in creative Commons CC-By license, any one use it for any purpose, including selling them. Hence, they are very keen on ensuring about the license of the works, text and illusions/images.

But, with available 7000 images, we can make wonderlands for our kids easily.

I invite you to explore the site, read few books and share it with the children you know. I made few books, flashcards and wordless stories to check how my kid Viyan likes them. He enjoyed them. He started to create his own stories on seeing the images. He even understood (or made his own stories) for the books on other languages too.

I was searching for books for kids in Tamil for many years. We dont get much much even in TamilNadu. All the bookshops have only many English books. One or two books only available in Tamil. Check in your nearby shop and look for the books that introduce alphabets, numbers, vegetables, vehicles, climate, animals, flowers etc. You can get all in english. Only alphabets and numbers are available in Tamil. I think the same will be for other languages too. The globalization kills all the native languages. To give new life to our languages, it is our duty to introduce the world of books to our kids in our language. Story books, flashcards are best vehicles to bring languages to kids.

StoryWeaver makes this possible to all the languages.

Let us weave more stories for our kids.

Thanks to pratham books for the wonderful platform and great workshop. Will contribute for Tamil Books. Planning to make a screencast on how to use storyweaver in Tamil. Will make it soon and conduct events to introduce it to local communities of parents, teachers and kids lovers.


Happy 4th birthday for

Happy Birthday

source :

Today, our completes 4 years and enters into 5th year.

303 ebooks, 48 lakh downloads, thousands of readers, hundreds of writers, more new contributors are the wonders of the projects.

We are planning for 5th year, to bring more new ebooks, competition,prizes for writers, contributors, and new action plans etc.

Stay tuned for the announcements.

Thanks for being with us.

Share your thoughts in our discussion forum.!forum/freetamilebooksforum





Released 300 Ebooks at

Happy to release our 300th Ebook in Tamil Language at

For new readers, this is a portal to release DRM free Tamil Ebooks with Creative Commons license.

Read more about the project here –

It is around 4 years journey with the ebooks. Yes. We are completing 4 years next month. All these years gave great happy moments.

Tons of thanks for all writers, contributors and readers. With all your support only, we are going forward to provide even better services for Tamil Language.

Nothing is happier than to see the dreams come true. Thanks for seeing a big dream together and making it real.