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Language engineering for the Semantic Web: a digital library for endangered languages. (15 Apr 2004)
Many languages are in serious danger of being lost and if nothing is done to prevent it, half of the world's approximately 6,500 languages will disappear in the next 100 years. Language data are central to the research of a large social science community, including linguists, anthropologists, archeologists, historians, sociologists, and political scientists interested in the culture of indigenous people. The death of a language entails the loss of a community's traditional culture, for the language is a unique vehicle for its traditions and culture. In this paper, we describe the effort undertaken at Wayne State University to preserve endangered languages using the state-of-the-art information technologies. We discuss the issues involved in such an effort, and present the architecture of a distributed digital library which will contain various data of endangered languages in the forms of text, image, video and audio files and include advanced tools for intelligent cataloguing, indexing, searching and browsing information on languages and language analysis. Various Semantic Web technologies such as XML, OLAC, and ontologies are used so that the digital library is developed as a useful linguistic resource on the Semantic Web.
Article URL: http://informationr.net/ir/9-3/paper176.html

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