Minority languages

map of cameroon showing ngong language with 2 speakers

Why do languages die?

If you ask people in the street how many languages they think there are in the world, answers will vary. A joke says that a random sampling of New Yorkers resulted in inspiring answers such as “probably several hundred.” Clearly, this is quite far away from what we know today.  Funny enough, estimates have escalated over time. In 1911, the Encyclopedia Britannica implied a figure somewhere around 1,000 languages around the world at the time. That number escalated during the 20th century. During the course of time, 7,097 distinct languages have been catalogued according to the most extensive catalog of the world’s languages by Ethnologue (published by SIL International), generally accepted to be the authority in the field. Of course the number of languages has not multiplied in 100 years. In fact, languages die. It is our understanding of what a language is and how many languages are actually spoken in areas that previously had not been researched. Although it is hard to […]

Keyboard Layout Creator for Windows

If you deal with multilingual applications or several languages in the office (and we do!), for typing, desktop-publishing or any other purpose, you have perhaps already become stuck when you need to type foreign letters. Traditionally, people have been able to buy physical keyboards for specialist applications over the Internet. However, you can now quickly and easily define your own keyboard layout for a language Microsoft doesn’t officially support. You can also define your own keyboard layout to quickly enter your favorite glyphs or symbols with just a keystroke. That is what the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator does. In short, you can: Create new keyboard layouts from scratch Base a new layout on an existing one Modify an existing keyboard layout and build a new layout from it Multilingual input locales within edit control fields Build keyboard layout DLLs for x86, x64, and IA64 platforms Package the resulting keyboard layouts for […]

Lessons from the best Project Managers

Kirti Vashee, my favorite Twitter lead and MT visionary has published an interesting link showing some tips from the world’s best managers…. all lessons applicable to translation project manager. In short, managers should asks themselves and to concentrate on – Always know whose problem you’re solving – The perfect is the enemy of the deadline. – Make sure you’re talking to the right people. – Ask yourself, “Is this necessary?” These may look like basic skills. Yet we sometimes lose focus on the problems we are trying to solve or worse still, we do not know we are there knowing that managing is solving. Many a time we let the good be in the way of the perfect. A good working version, even if it does not have all the features should go to the market. Bugs can be corrected but missed opportunities seldom come back. A manager with a vision […]