"If your God is so mighty, why doesn't He speak my language?"
A Cakchiquel (Guatemala) man to SIL founder William Cameron Townsend
Different tools to serve Cameroon's languages!
SIL Cameroon’s Training Department has a specialized team which focuses on linguistic technology. The courses offered by this department offer a unique opportunity to investigate and share advances in computer software and hardware; they also look at processes used in translation and education in Cameroon. Computer courses covering Bible translation and adaptation, dictionary-making, and other skills have been held across the country for teams working on language development.
Partnering with “Going Kompyuta” workshops, Cameroonian languages are moving not only into schools, but also onto computers and onto the internet. Some programs have been translated and several language groups have even started their own Wikipedia. This year’s advances include a revised version of the Cameroon virtual keyboard on Windows® and Linux systems, and acceptance of this keyboard into future versions of all Linux products.
The Outilingua (language tools) program is a long-term partnership training Africans to do language technology support, further increasing sustainable development across Africa.
Quality and accuracy of Bible translation continues to improve at a staggering pace. Mother-tongue translators are trained to use tools like United Bible Society’s Paratext program. Paratext offers dozens of ways to compare verses to each other, spell-check, as well as find and correct errors and inconsistencies. After learning a new feature of Paratext, a translation consultant recently told a group of translators that they “had come at just the right time in history for Bible translation”.