In Linguistic Issues in Encoding Sanskrit, Scharf and Hyman examine fundamental issues in the coding of natural language texts. The over-arching issue concerns the relation information selected for encoding bears to natural language structure. Should written characters or speech sounds be encoded? What criteria should be used to contrast items selected for encoded? What criteria should be used to contrast items selected for encoding? The book stems from the recognition that current uses of information technology demand higher standards of encoding than the inherited systems in current use. Guided by visual factors, current encoding systems reproduce deficiencies inherent in traditional writing systems. Scharf and Hyman consider more relevant information-processing principles suitable for the contemporary use of computers for the manipulation of linguistic and textual data. The book focuses on Sanskrit, which is characterized by an extensive oral tradition, a highly phonetic orthography, and a copious literature.