Input and Conversion Amongst Various Encoding
ITRANS is the Sanskrit input technology developed around the software known as Itranslator. The Itranslator Software is available for free download from the Site of Omkarananda Ashram. There two main versions of this software, one has Unicode based input and output (newer), and other Balaram based (older). Itranslator is an effective tool, which assists in the painless Sanskrit imputing, and also allows reverse conversion between ITRANS, Diacritics and Devanagari (older version also allows to convert texts from Balaram family of fonts into ITRANS encoding , which can be used for the further conversion into Devanagari-Diacritics).
By now, there are thousands of Sanskrit documents in ITRANS format are available on line for free download, and this tool makes their conversion into Devanagari, Diacritics or both encoding together in few seconds. There lot of websites, which offer various documents in ITTANS format, but The Site Sanskrit Documents has best collection of documents in ITRANS encoding.
Tips: if you have text which is only in Devanagari encoding or in Diacritics, you can change them into joint format Devanagari (original Sanskrit encoding) + Diacritics (its phonetic interpretation in the Latin characters). In some cases, it would be wise to perform some editing of the text before converting, so that final output would look fine, and wouldn't require any further editing. The Notepad facility to find and replace is very good for this purpose. Also it is good to use notepad formatted text (without word wrap) for Itranslator converting. To make Diacritics follow Devanagari verse by verse, paragraph mark (enter) could be required between separate verses.
Another useful converter of Balaram encoding into Unicode Diacritics is here. Its advantage over Itransaltor that it allows convert mixed texts, having few words encoded in Balaram into Unicode Diacritics encoding, without affecting adversely the formatting of the text. Besides, it allows to completely remove Unicode or Balaram encoding and replace it with variety formats, or with plain text.
One more e-text converter
One more e-text converter
Free OCR for Sanskrit by Dr. Oliver Hellwig, with user guide (accurate up to 85% in some cases, depends on resolution and font).
Monier Williams Sanskrit Dictionary on line. Amongst the variety of Sanskrit dictionaries available on line and as software, the complete Monier Wilyams Sanskrit Dictionary in Unicode Diacritics, is the best, at my personal opinion.
Tips: Use find option inbuilt in browser (edit-find) for fast navigation through the content. Just copy and paste the word, meaning of which you want to know.
Some pages are quite huge (up to 4 mb), and require long time to load. To solve this issue, you can download the complete dictionary (from index page) for offline browsing, with help of some offline browser (I used Offline Explorer), which creates the exact copy for browsing offline.
The dictionary has inverted ṁ letter, which should be replaced with ṃ while searching for word meaning.
While translating Sanskrit Texts, the splitting of sandhis can be an issue for a person, whose knowledge of Sanskrit is far from being complete. There simple online solutions for this purposes, which make this process more easy:
The Sanskrit Reader Companion allows to split complicate sandhis. The page has also few other tools related to Sanskrit reading.
Sanskrit Sandhi Splitter is another effective tool for splitting sandhis.
Tip: try to use different words combinations to make them work effectively, it seems that some endings are causing problems in conversion. (replace ṁ with m, or remove it).
Use Google for difficult words (Diacritics or Devanagari input), to find analogy.
Some Learning Resources
The Site Sanskrit & Sanscrito has lot of Sanskrit texts, mostly related to Shaivism, in the word by word translation, which by itself good resource assisting in learning and understanding Sanskrit. Along with this, the site has good section on Sanskrit grammar, and few useful software for download.