By the end of this century, linguists expect more than half of the languages in the world to die. It’s a bleak statistic, especially given how deeply language and cultural identity are bound together. But linguists, language activists and the people who speak endangered languages are fighting back.
Want to save an endangered language? There might be an app for that! There are apps to teach endangered languages to people who don’t speak them. Alternately, some apps make it easy to record native speakers of any endangered language, translate what they’re saying, and share it with linguists and language preservationists.
If you’re interested in learning or preserving an endangered language, here are 6 apps for endangered languages that might interest you:
Language: Iwaidja, an indigenous Australian language. There are only about 150 Iwaidja speakers left, although children are still learning it. This app serves two purposes:
- It teaches the language, with a dictionary, a phrasebook and a “Wordmaker” that lets users experiment with phrases and sentences to see how different elements of Iwaidga grammar and syntax work together.
- It allows anyone working with Iwaidja speakers to input new words, phrases, and translations.