Communities developing resources and competencies for using their languages
Foundational understanding for language development work of all kinds
Publications, fonts and computer tools for language development, translation and research
SIL offers training in disciplines relevant to sustainable language development.
7,105 languages are spoken or signed. CLICK for map of world languages & regional websites.
SIL's dedication to language development past and present
SIL's Language Technology team supports language development by providing specialized software and fonts. Developing standards allows smooth integration between software products SIL produces. This includes submitting proposals to the Unicode character encoding standard when new characters are needed for local languages, and serving on other international standards committees.
The Language Software Development staff work with users to improve or create software that supports language development activities (for example, language and culture research, literacy materials or dictionary development). In response to user feedback, staff may design software, such as SayMore or Bloom, work on feature enhancement, or recommend existing software to meet user’s needs. Most of the software applications multiple language interfaces, for example FieldWorks Language Explorer (FLEx) provides interfaces in French, Chinese, Spanish and 8 other languages.
The Non-Roman Script Initiative (NRSI) staff is exclusively dedicated to meeting complex script needs so language communities to use their preferred writing system on their computers. The team does research, provides help and develops solutions to support language development, in these communities. They also support extended Roman and Cyrillic. They design fonts and keyboards which specifically support language development activities. For example, the Andika font is specially designed for literacy.
NRSI also promotes worldwide collaboration through ScriptSource, a dynamic, collaborative reference to the writing systems of the world, with detailed information on scripts, characters, languages - and the remaining needs for supporting them in the computing realm.
Visit Resources to find and download SIL's language software, fonts and font-related technologies.
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