A program for transliterating English into Hieroglyphs

In this program we will transliterate English words into Egyptian hieroglyphs. Transliteration is the translation of the sounds of one language into another but not the meaning. We take the sound of an English letter and draw the hieroglyph with the closest corresponding sound. As a simple example if we took the Spanish Jose and wrote it as Hozay we would be rewriting it so that a native English speaker would pronounce it in a manner closer to the original. Another example from Spanish would be writing La Hoya for La Jolla. One problem with this process for our purposes is the English pronunciation is far from regular. We have two sounds for C and for G and every vowel has three or more.

This program will have multiple levels of sophistication. The simple level will do a simple substitution version. The more sophisticated level will allow the student to choose to implement some additional optional rules.

The elementary level project

The basic input is a name or word using the English alphabet. The output is the word spelled in a graphics window using the provided glyphs. Egyptian is a semitic language like Hebrew, Aramaic or Arabic and thus has no letter for vowels. Also, certain sounds in english have no equivalent in Egyptian. So the first step is convert to upper case and to remove all letters, punctuation etc except: B D F G H J K L M N P R S T V W Y and Z. (i.e. remove A C E I O Q U and X). Semitic languages tend to be written right to left, so you should reverse the word before proceeding. Following these rules Wartburg would become WARTBURG then WRTBRG and then GRBTRW.

Once we have GRBTRW we can proceed with a simple substitution using the following table:

Englishhieroglyph file

Using the values in the table GRBTRW is displayed as:
oops oops oops oops oops oops

Optional replacement rules

The student may choose to implement all or some of the following rules for additional credit. The basic project outlined above will earn up to an 80%. The student will need to implement some or all of these to earn full credit.

THEORY - Collier, Mark & Manley, Bill. How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs. University of California Press, 1998.
GLYPHS - www.kidzone.ws/cultures/egypt/hieroglyphs. read: July 2011.