New feature in The CAT now supports expanded character/alphabet search

January 11, 2010

University Park, Pa. — Penn State University Libraries now offer a search feature through The CAT, the libraries' online catalog, that supports the retrieval and display of information in all of the world's languages and scripts beyond the most common alphabets. The new system enables searches in languages and scripts appropriate to wide-ranging research and instructional needs and correctly displays all of the characters in those languages and scripts. Characters in languages such as Chinese, Japanese and Korean, for example, are now searchable.

The search feature uses Unicode, the international standard for encoding characters for use by computers, and it includes virtually every character in every language and script, as well as symbols (e.g. numbers, punctuation, mathematical and musical symbols). Use of Unicode characters supports the worldwide exchange, processing and display of the written texts of the diverse languages and technical disciplines of the modern world.

On most computers Unicode displays correctly without additional setup. The many search options permit cutting and pasting of non-Latin alphabets, simplification of diacritics to regular characters and the selection of items in a particular language, among other features. For non-Latin scripts, the transliterated and non-Latin information will display on adjacent lines. For Arabic and Hebrew scripts, users' computers will need additional configuration.

Full details and instructions for using the foreign language search feature are available at http://cat.libraries.psu.edu/iBistro_helps/English/ibistro_overview.html online. Additional questions can be submitted at http://ask.libraries.psu.edu/ online.

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated February 02, 2010