The only standard code convention for Lao is Lao Unicode, so whether we like it or not, all new documents should use Lao Unicode fonts, and any documents that continue to be relevant should be converted to use only Unicode fonts. Documents that use older Lao fonts are increasingly going to become difficult or impossible to open or view with new versions of Windows or Windows applications.
Conversion of documents to Unicode fonts with older versions of Lao Script for Windows has not always worked, and is very slow for large documents. The ability of Microsoft® Word 2003 (and later) to save and open documents using XML format (similar to HTML, but more versatile) has made it possible to create a fast and more reliable conversion application.
A new entry in the Lao menu provided by the Lao Script for Windows Add-In for Microsoft® Word To Unicode will convert the entire document to use only Lao Unicode fonts (after first saving a backup copy of the existing document). It does this by saving the document in XML format, passing the XML file to a file converter, then re-opening the converted (XML) document and saving it again with the original file name. Large and complex documents are converted very quickly by this means.
- Since only Microsoft® Word 2003 (and later) include the XML converter, this function is disabled for earlier versions of Word.
- The conversion has not yet been tested with with all possible formatting found in Word documents. So for example, conversion of text in nested tables has not been tested and may not always work correctly.
- Only fonts distributed with Lao Script for Windows are recognized and converted. Later, it will be possible to identify other fonts that should be converted and specify which Lao Unicode font should be used to substitute for each non-Unicode Lao font in the original document.
- Text in embedded pictures or charts will not be converted.
For more information, or if you have a document you are unable to convert, please use the
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