It is estimated that half of the languages spoken today will disappear by 2100 if nothing is done to prevent it. There is a need of new tools and services to reverse this trend and keep all languages alive, especially those unwritten and still undocumented -and at higher risk of becoming extinct in the near future.
We worked with Google.org and the Alliance for Linguistic Diversity in the development of this project to facilitate collaboration of linguists and volunteers from all over the world in the documentation of endangered languages.
How we helped:
- Interaction and visual design
- Front-end and back-end development
- Map design and development
This video tries to explain why documenting and preserving endangered languages is important.
We faced several challenges with this project:
- Design a user-friendly tool considering different kinds of users and their respective needs: From expert linguists to language speakers and volunteers.
- Edit and display the almost-raw academic documentation in an attractive and meaningful way while preserving its rigor.
- Support linguistic standards like OLAC to describe language metadata.
We used a modular design approach to accommodate all the information on 3,000 languages that is already available. An important effort was made to make visible the user activity and the submitted content so participants can meet each other and collaborate.
On the technical side, the site is built using Open Source technologies like Django and runs on Google infrastructure.
A robust, scalable site for browsing information on more than 3,000 endangered languages. Registered users can suggest corrections on any entry, provide new samples and documents, and collaborate with other users to improve the site.
The Endangered Languages project promotes a full collaboration between linguistics and the general public to empower the documentation and preservation of endangered languages. We are very proud to be part of this great effort.
An objective we fully support
The project matches perfectly our claim: "Great experiences for stories that matter".
We put a lot of love in designing and building a map to explore languages around the world and allowing the filtering by family, vitality or number of speakers.
Working on a Google project means having to handle many requests in short periods of time. Caching and coding efficiently is a critical factor.
We take enjoyment in being a small and productive company that delivers great user experiences for stories that matter
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