Language Technology

Language technology specialists promote appropriate technology to local language communities, providing access to tools and training that will help them in their language development goals.

Information technology is highly adapted to the world’s major languages, but using majority-world IT tools in many local languages poses special challenges. Language technologists train and advise language community members and language development project teams to effectively use information technology to accomplish their language development goals.

Language Technology Specialist

Language technology specialists provide language technology services and support in many linguistic contexts. They assist language communities and project teams to choose appropriate technologies, and they provide the training and support necessary for them to succeed.  Some of the skills they must master are:

  • advanced computer skills: the ability to quickly learn new software, competently use it, and support others in using computer technology
  • competence in a scripting language such as Python or Perl
  • a detailed understanding of the mechanics of fonts and keyboards in different operating systems

Language Technology Consultant

Language Technology Consultants have the same skills as Language Technology Specialists, but in order to provide users assistance with linguistic software they need additional skills in:

  • Phonetics
  • Phonology
  • Morphology and Syntax 

Language Modeling Consultant

Language Modeling Consultants train users to do automated and manual parsing in specialized language analysis software such as SIL FieldWorks. Language Modeling Consultants must generally have an MA in Linguistics, in addition to computer skills needed by language technology specialists.