Over the last few weeks I have been contemplating how multi-lingual content could work on sil.org. (I have had several helpful conversations to direct my thinking.)
As I understand the situation there is basically three ways which multi-lingual content could work.
First let me say that there is a difference between, multi-lingual content, multi-lingual taxonomies, and multi-lingual menu structures. We are talking about content here, not menu and navigation structures or taxonimies. Facebook has probably presented the best framework to date for utilizing on the power crowds to translate navigation structures. In just under two years they added over 70 languages to Facebook. However, Facebook has had some bumps along the way as DropBox points out in their post talking about their experience in translating their products and services.
Basically create a subsite for each language and then only show which pages have content in that language. Wikipedia does this. Wikipedia has a menu on the left side with links to articles with this same title in other languages. Only languages which have an article started in them on that title are shown in the menu.
SIL International in English
Other Pages in other languages may not show the same content.
Finally, create a cascading structure for each page or content area. So there is a primary language and a secondary language or a tertiary, or a quaternary language etc. based on the browser language of choice with country IP playing a secondary role. If there is no page for the primary language then the next in preference will show. This last option has been preferred by some because if an organization wants to present content to a user, then obviously, it would be in the users’ primary language. But if the content is not available in the primary language then the organization would want to still let the user know that the content exists in another language.
It would also be good to understand the concepts used in Drupal 7 (and Drupal 8) for multi-lingual content. There are several resources which I have found helpful:
This post is a open draft! It might be updated at any time… But was last updated on at .
In this reviewRegardless of the views expressed here in this review, it should be stated that I have high hopes for Webonary’s future. Some of the people working on Webonary are my colleagues so I attempt hedge my review with the understanding that this is not the final state of Webonary. I am excited that easy to use technology, like WordPress is being used, and that minority language groups around the world have the opportunity to use free software like webonary. I will be looking at the WordPress plugin, Webonary and several associated issues. Continue reading →
I have been looking into some
This post is a open draft! It might be updated at any time… But was last updated on at .
Meta-data is not just for Archives
Bringing the usefulness of meta-data to the language project workflow
It has recently come to my attention that there is a challenge when considering the need for a network accessible file management solution during a language documentation project. This comes with my first introduction to linguistic field experience and my first field setting for a language documentation project.The project I was involved with was documenting 4 Languages in the same language family. The Location was in Mexico. We had high-speed Internet, and a Local Area Network. Stable electric (more than not). The heart of the language communities were a 2-3 hour drive from where we were staying, so we could make trips to different villages in the language community, and there were language consultants coming to us from various villages. Those consultants who came to us were computer literate and were capable of writing in their language. The methods of the documentation project was motivated along the lines of: “we want to know ‘xyz’ so we can write a paper about ‘xyz’ so lets elicit things about ‘xyz'”. In a sense, the project was product oriented rather than (anthropological) framework oriented. We had a recording booth. Our consultants could log into a Google-doc and fill out a paradigm, we could run the list of words given to us through the Google-doc to a word processor and create a list to be recorded. Give that list to the recording technician and then produce a recorded list. Our consultants could also create a story, and often did and then we would help them to revise it and record it. We had Geo-Social data from the Mexican government census. We had Geo-spacial data from our own GPS units. During the corse of the project massive amounts of data were created in a wide variety of formats. Additionally, in the case of this project language description is happening concurrently with language documentation. The result is that additional data is desired and generated. That is, language documentation and language description feed each other in a symbiotic relationship. Description helps us understand why this language is so important to document and which data to get, documenting it gives us the data for doing analysis to describe the language. The challenge has been how do we organize the data in meaningful and useful ways for current work and future work (archiving)?People are evidently doing it, all over the world… maybe I just need to know how they are doing it. In our project there were two opposing needs for the data:
Data organization for archiving.
Data organization for current use in analysis and evaluation of what else to document.It could be argued that a well planned corpus would eliminate, or reduce the need for flexibility to decide what else there is to document. This line of thought does have its merits. But flexibility is needed by those people who do not try to implement detailed plans.
My wife has been tasked to be the Professional Development Coordinator for the company at which we work. Her task has several interesting things about in the area of data tracking. One question needing to be asked is: “what are the experiences and skills of our current employees?” This suggests that a databases with cross sections of professionally related events, people and skills is needed. These data then need to be able to be viewed by various stakeholders so that the data can be read and analyzed and understood; eventually to be acted upon and incorporated into company strategies for doing business.
One of the things that is obvious from the start is that a web based collection system is need for the data. A storage solution is also called for. And finally an web based analysis tool for presenting the data in a variety of manners for final use is needed.
So in an effort to help my wife out I have been looking a OpenSource implementations of Resume databases and CV building Databases. It has been my experience that when it comes to IT solutions that people need unique implementations and have unique criteria to meet but do not have unique problems. I think I even found a service that provides some professional development tracking called Onefile. But for our company it makes sense to approach this problem with an eye to integrate it with other corporate IT infrastructure, rather than silo it as an outsourced the system.
Summaries of Goals
This effort to take a strategic look a professional development of employees is part of an effort to look holistically at the corporation’s pool of human talent. The motivation is to be able to strategically deploy our skills in a manner where there is the largest return on investment. It is also important for us to be able to present our talented people and the products of their efforts to the world; both for credibility and for marketing.
Difficulties in the business world
There are quite a few legal challenges for companies (working in the U.S., Europe, and elsewhere) retaining these kinds of records, let alone sharing them with business partners.
Social networks are notorious for being able (if they are successful networks) pull information from users easily.
http://www.xoops.org/ This is an open source social network which looks interesting but I am not sure how much momentum is behind it.
4.5 out of 5
This social network looks really cool and targets the e-portfolio
The situation though is that everything that goes into a resume or a CV after biographical information is an event in which the person was involved, a skill they have or a resource they have helped to create. So if we could automatically pull information from the events and resources and then organize them according to Who then we would almost be there. (I am not sure how our company is tracking these kinds of information. It is most likely in a MS Word document.)
Events have several attributes one of those is time.
This is course management software: with calendars and DHTML in Video.
So How do we pull data from the container which holds our resources?
Well the container holding our resources is DSpace.
But these options work with wordpress….