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Event to mark lexicographer’s 100th b’day

Event to mark lexicographer’s 100th b’day | Metaglossia: The Translation World |

The Jayarama Seva Mandali is organising a three-day event to mark lexicographer G Venkatasubbaiah’s 100th birthday celebrations this August.

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Metaglossia: The Translation World
News about translation, interpreting, intercultural communication, terminology and lexicography - as it happens
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UN Careers - jobs in this network (Translators, Revisers, Editors, etc.)

UN Careers -  jobs in this network (Translators, Revisers, Editors, etc.) | Metaglossia: The Translation World |

Vacancies in this network: Translators, Revisers, Editors, etc.

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Official Languages Act falling into disuse in the Republic?

Official Languages Act falling into disuse in the Republic? | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Official Languages Act falling into disuse in the Republic?

Mick Fealty on 25 April 2012 , 11:37 am 38 Comments | 13 views
Just getting a language act into legislation does not necessarily help a struggling language like Irish to survive… The Irish Language Commissioner Seán Ó Cuirreáin has noted that even though the legislation exists in the Republic its effectiveness or otherwise is being ignored by a large number of government bodies in the Republic where such an act does actually exist. Lorna Siggins writes:

Even the Government department responsible for the language – the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht – has no updated formal scheme for implementing key elements of the Official Languages Act.

The offices of the President and the Ombudsman are among those public bodies whose language schemes expired more than three years ago, and two-thirds of all public bodies have no scheme, Mr Ó Cuirreáin confirmed in his annual report as An Coimisinéir Teanga, published yesterday in Galway.

And this carelessness extends even into the heart of what’s historically been designated as the Gaeltacht area:

The inquiry was initiated in February 2011 after a native Irish speaker complained he was unable to conduct his business through Irish with gardaí in Gweedore. The inquiry was set aside temporarily when Garda authorities increased to three the number of Irish speakers assigned to the station. However, when no further progress was reported, the inquiry resumed and a formal finding of non-compliance was made by An Coimisinéir Teanga in December 2011.

That’s three up from just one in station staff of nine in the largest and most populous part of the central Gaeltacht in Donegal. The hard core truth though is that it has not been difficult to get by in Gaoth Dobhair for many years now since, unlike the Connamara Gaeltacht, the chosen lingua franca in the public domain has been English now for a couple of generations now.
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LankaWeb – The Issue Of The National Anthem In Both Official Languages Put Into Perspective.

The Issue Of The National Anthem In Both Official Languages Put Into Perspective.
Posted on December 13th, 2010
Insight By Sunil Kumar
Dec.13th 2010  There seems to be some misinformation on the issue of the National Anthem and its Tamil connections as the barkings from all the unwanted sources such as Karunanidhi that age old rabble rouser from Tamil Nadu and a few self styled pundits blasting away with their epithets at the well intended surmissions of the likes of the Hon. Minister of Housing and Construction, Wimal Weerawansa  who has voiced his support towards the Cabinet decision to do away with the Tamil version of the National Anthem although he seems to have overstepped his statutes of limitations where he has even gone as far as suggesting this practice a joke.
A practice which was ingrained into the Sri Lankan Constitution of 1978 perhaps little known to some Sri Lankans but indeed a provision where there is a Tamil version of the National Anthem or its incorporation into it thereof.

While the Minister has been acolladed by some, he has also borne the brunt of a few caustic and contradictory negative comments similar to those of Karunanidhi barking away from Tamil Nadu which constitutes dabbling into the internal affairs of Sri Lanka from his standpoint as though it is any concern of his, where for the record certain realities and truisms need to be put into perspective.

 Firstly the National Anthem of India  if used in an analogical context  perhaps rightly so, needs referential modification that the Minister’s  assumption of the language is erroneous that it is in Hindi whereas it is in Bengali and was composed by one of India’s greatest poet laureates Rabindranath Tagore and has been an accepted norm for generations.

Secondly it needs to be observed that India the largest population in the world has had no need for an alternative language in which the anthem is sung as the issue by itself seems petty in a land of a vast conglomerate of languages and dialects and in this sense what the Minister is saying probably needs to be upheld on the basis of sensibility and rationality as well as practicality that it should be sung in the majority language although constitutionally it  provides for both Languages but unless a constitutional amendment is made to incorporate the use of Sinhala only! it will remain unswayed and a judgement call perhaps relative to  location.

 While there are practicalities involved in the usage of a bilingial anthem towards assuaging the pains of communal conflict  at this time of reconciliation in Sri Lanka and its use as an olive branch to pacify the Tamil minority seemingly of the essence it is a non issue already being in place. Perhaps the Minister in envisioning this as a joke has missed the importance of it all and might have suggested that there are advantages to the Nation if the bilinguality of the Anthem was upheld and applied in situations which demand it such as in the North and East of Sri Lanka where the populace is predominantly Tamil, parochial though it may sound albeit conciliatory. 

 While it is  is a burning issue with certain zealots it seems of the least importance to a Nation  with  far greater needs and priorities  where jokes apart regardless of what language the anthem is sung in, the outstanding panaceas to a Nation’s woes with huge financial dilemmas relative to the cost of living, foreign debt as well as all the other ills of a burdgeoning population cannot be overlooked and will not be resolved by the language of the National Anthem!

 It is also incorrect to suggest as the Hon. Minister has done that “Only in Sri Lanka is this being practiced and it’s a joke. This decision was simply a correction of an error made through the Constitution of 1978,  in no other country is the National Anthem sung in multiple languages including India where the National Anthem is only sung in Hindi despite the hundreds of languages been spoken in the country”  as there’s far more to it than such a misinformed euphemism.

It is  a well know  fact  that Canada is a nation  with a National Anthem which is bilingual and combined with English as well as French lyrics  and there could be others but to even suggest that the Sri Lankan  National Anthem could incorporate both official languages Sinhalese and Tamil synonymously albeit a practical one could result in far greater turmoil at the very thought of it than any of the present ‘storms in teacups’ knowing the volatility of the Sri Lankan Nation over such a concept and the anger it could unleash amongst certain hard line communities. 

Case In point being Sri Lanka should live and let live as far as how the National Anthem is sung the way it is and to each his own!
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Birhanemeskel Abebe Segni:- Top Ten Reasons Why Afan Oromo Should Be the Federal Working Language in Ethiopia

Birhanemeskel Abebe Segni:- Top Ten Reasons Why Afan Oromo Should Be the Federal Working Language in Ethiopia | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
By Birhanemeskel Abebe Segni*

Nowhere in the world has the government of the country refused to speak the language of the majority of its people. It is weird, unthinkable, unjust, undemocratic, immoral, and absolutely unacceptable. Ethiopia is all of these. The Ethiopian Federal Government and two of its largest cities do not speak the language of the majority of the people, Afan Oromo. This is a preliminary outline to say the obvious: make Afan Oromo legally and unconditionally the Working Language of the Federal Government of Ethiopia and the two largest cities of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa.

Here are the top ten reasons why:

1. Demographic reasons: Afan Oromo, the language of the Oromo people, is the single most widely spoken language in Ethiopia and the fourth largest African language in terms of the number and size of speakers. It is spoken in at least three countries outside Ethiopia. Although statistical data may vary, about 50% of the Ethiopian population is estimated to speak Afan Oromo. In comparison, only about 29.1% of the entire population of Ethiopia speaks Amharic, the legally imposed Official Language of the Federal Government, and the two largest cities of Dire Dawa and Addis Ababa. Given this demographic weight, it is unjust, undemocratic, and discriminatory, to say the least, not to use the language of the majority of the people as the Working Language of this multinational and multilingual country.

2. Geographic reasons: All of the segregationist entities, including the Federal Government, the Addis Ababa City Administration and the Dire Dawa City Administration, are based in and hosted in the Afan Oromo-speaking State of Oromia. Yet, due to the discriminatory and exclusionary Amharic only language policy, the federal government institutions and these two large cities do not speak the language of the host people and the host state. These entities, which feel like occupying forces rather than governing forces, cannot continue as an Amharic-speaking island in the middle of the sea of Afan Oromo-speaking population while fully relying on the resources of the Oromo people for their existence, including food, water, electricity, ports, waste disposals and roads – at a very high human, financial and environmental costs to the Oromo people and the State of Oromia.

3. Unity of the country as a reason: The exclusionary Amharic-only language policy is the antithesis of the multilingual and multicultural nature of Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Federal Government and the two segregationist cities under its administration have an urgent civic duty, if they care, to abolish this divisive and dangerous policy that undermines the equality, mutual respect and peaceful coexistence of the people. Ethiopia cannot continue as a united whole with its current segregationist policy – which benefits one segment of the population while fully excluding the other segment of the population.

4. Economic and job opportunities. This segregationist and exclusionary Amharic-only language policy of the federal government and the two largest cities (Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa) have fully and completely excluded Afan Oromo speakers from all federal, municipal, corporate, and private jobs as well as all economic and business opportunities, including the right to do business and live in these jurisdictions unless one speaks Amharic. All employees of the Federal Government and these two largest cities are 100% Amharic speakers. Less than 10% of ethnic Oromos, who have been assimilated into Amharic-speakers, are presently employed both by the federal government institutions and by these two segregationist cities. Even worse, none of the federal government offices and offices of these two cities, including hospitals, businesses and all other service providers, provide translation services for Afan Oromo-speaking customers and users. Yet, Afan Oromo speakers and their State, Oromia, is the economic backbone and major sources of exports and tax-revenues for the Federal Government and the two segregationist cities.

5. Representational reasons: The Ethiopian Federal Government institutions and its bureaucracies, and the two major cities of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa, have legally excluded Afan Oromo speakers by adopting Amharic as their only Working Language. Under this condition, it is very hard to either say Afan Oromo speakers are represented in the Federal Government and these two cities, or to say that the Federal Government and these two cities represent the Afan Oromo speakers. The ruthless Amharic-speaking ethnic Oromo political appointees the government and these two cities flag as representatives of the Afan Oromo speakers are outlaws who don’t even represent themselves. Even the percentage of the assimilated, i.e. culturally and linguistically disconnected, ethnic Oromos employees in Ethiopian federal institutions, and the institutions of these two major cities, as a whole is less than 10%. This is in a country where the Oromo people constitute more than 40% of the total population.

6. Legitimacy reasons: The government that does not speak the language of the people it claims to govern neither it does speak for that people nor it does legitimately represent the interests of that people. For the Ethiopian government to be considered a legitimate representative of the Afan Oromo-speaking population, it must speak Afan Oromo and be the representatives of the interests of the Afan Oromo speakers at all levels of its institutions, not just in nominal political appointee positions and portfolios.

7. Justice, Equality, Equity and Fairness reasons: Justice, equality, equity and fairness demand equal opportunity and equal treatment of Afan Oromo speakers on the same basis as the Amharic-speaking segment of the population. The Amharic-only language policy of the federal government and the two segregationist cities have completely left the Afan Oromo-speaking population outside all economic, social, religious and educational institutional frameworks – creating a country where close to half of its population lives in subhuman situations, without any single institution of their own. The Ethiopian Federal Government and these two largest cities must not only immediately abolish this unjust, discriminatory and apartheid language policy, but also invest financial and human resources to create Afan Oromo economic, religious, cultural and educational institutions; and adopt economic empowerment policies that will remedy and address the historical injustice Afan Oromo speakers had passed through and are passing through right now.

8. Multilingualism to create bond among various nations and nationalities: The Amharic-only policy – that was intended to assimilate over 80% of the Ethiopian population into the Amharic-speaking few or exclude them from the political, economic, religious, and social structure and institutional fabrics of the Ethiopian state – has created a very racist and hateful group which does not accept and respect the equality of various nations, nationalities, languages, and various ethnic identities. This dangerous policy has now lent legitimacy to the development of racist and hate groups which claim to struggle for the ‘unity of Ethiopia in the name of this Amharic-only language policy’ to openly discriminate, propagate hatred towards non-Amharic speakers, and even issue racist political manifestos in a way that will destroy the social bond among various nations and nationalities of Ethiopia. The main targets of these hate and racist groups – which have been incubated and developed through this Amharic-only racist and bigotry policy – are the Afan Oromo-speaking population of Ethiopia.

9. One language and one ethnic hegemony policies will kill Ethiopia: Diverse and pluralistic Ethiopia can only stand on the acceptance of the policy of unity through diversity. The two most important challenges that work against this most important policy presumption to keep diverse and united Ethiopia are the effort to create one ethnic hegemonic country and the Amharic-only language policies. These are two equally cancerous and terminal policies that will kill Ethiopia. Ethiopia will only continue to exist on the multinational and multilingual federal structure – where mutual respect and peaceful coexistence of its multiple nations and nationalities are protected and respected by institutionalizing constitutional system of governance where fair economic power- and political power-sharing mechanism are legally established. Making Afan Oromo the Working Language of the federal government and the two largest cities will open the door to save this sick and disabled country that now operates with less than one third of its potentials.

10. Language as a core factor in Human Development: The only means and avenue through which any human society could produce, develop, exchange and disseminate knowledge and information for self-actualization, economic and social development is language. The Ethiopian Federal Government and the two segregationist cities of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa have denied the Afan Oromo-speaking population of Ethiopia this fundamental, inalienable and basic right through their Amharic-only policy. No wonder Ethiopia is the tail of the world and at the very bottom in the Human Development Index of the United Nations.

As a conscientious member of the Afan Oromo- speaking society, and because of the above listed reasons and so many others, I call upon the Ethiopian government to immediately and unconditionally abolish the Amharic-only language policy and make Afan Oromo the Working Language of the Ethiopian Federal Government and the two largest cities of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa.

* Birhanemeskel Abebe Segni is an Attorney & Counselor at Law, and a former Legal Affairs Advisor in the Permanent Mission of Ethiopia to the United Nations.
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Fair dinkum, Oxford Online Dictionary adds 500 Aussie slang words

Fair dinkum, Oxford Online Dictionary adds 500 Aussie slang words | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Bonza mate - believe it or not, those old folks at the Oxford Online Dictionary have only gone and entered a whole bunch of Aussie-isms into their accepted list of lingo - at last, we have concrete proof that we’re not speaking a whole spectrum of absolute bloody nonsense. 
Five hundred words and phrases have made the final cut, reflecting a particularly broad spectrum of relevance. How about a:

- ‘Lolly Water’ - a non-boozy beverage.

- ‘Plonko’ - one whom is partial to many a boozy beverage.

- ‘Sausage Sizzle’ - a charity drive or social event at which hot-dogs are the order of the day.

- ‘Lamington Drive’ - a similar event, this time involving a packet of Lamingtons.

- ‘Mugaccino’ - a cappuccino enjoyed from a mug.

- ‘Littley’ - a young one (child)

It has also been officially acknowledged that those who shorten and suffix words with endings such as -o, -ie, or -y appear a bit more relaxed, encouraging a culture of openness and approachability. Said terms include:

- ‘Shornie’ - a shorn sheep

- ‘Saltie’ - a saltwater crocodile

- ‘Trammie’ - a tram driver or conductor

- ‘Ochy’ - an octopus

- ‘Nasho’ - one undergoing compulsory military training

- ‘S’arvo’ - this afternoon, obviously. 

How about it then: the folks at the OOD are painting a glorious portrait of Aussie lingo. She’ll be right...
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NETS contributes to global road safety with free employer guide available in 21 languages | Business Wire

NETS contributes to global road safety with free employer guide available in 21 languages | Business Wire | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
NETS has launched its global Comprehensive Guide to Road Safety in 20 additional languages, available free to employers with fleets of all sizes and i
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David Ciccarelli: When Creating an Online Marketplace, Start Local and Think Global

David Ciccarelli: When Creating an Online Marketplace, Start Local and Think Global | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Building a startup around freelancers is near and dear to me — it’s at the core of what we’ve done at over the past decade. Are you thinking about building a marketplace of independent contractors? Here are four rules that will help prepare you for success.

Pick a niche market that you’re intimately familiar with. We can spot opportunities for connecting buyers and sellers online, be it web developers, graphic designers or voice-over talent. But if you’re considering entering one of these markets, first ask if this is an area where you have firsthand experience or expertise.

Ten years ago I opened a recording studio after graduating from an audio engineering school. Soon after that, I met my wife and now co-founder Stephanie, who is a musician and voice major. Our combination of technical and artistic skills has served us well. For example, we understand the industry lingo. We write blog articles, record podcasts and shoot videos that speak to a community that we know well.

Read what other startup mentors have to say about building a business around independent contractors.

If you grew up on a family farm, look for ways you can leverage your knowledge of farming and agriculture to help build your startup. If you grew up with a father who worked in the automotive industry or a mother who was nurse (as mine was), perhaps those are areas ripe for disruption. In short, tap into your background, education and life experiences to create an online marketplace where you are uniquely qualified to lead and transform the industry.

Start local, go global. began because we received a few calls in response to an article in our local newspaper. Small business owners were looking to hire a female voice for their radio commercials and phone systems. Soon, other freelance voice talent found our original brochure-style website and offered their services in the event we needed a male voice or had a request for a French speaker. Before we knew it, we had several dozen names listed on our website with links to download sample recordings of their voices.

These humble beginnings point to a simple truth: You can start locally and eventually build a marketplace that serves the needs of your users globally.

Your first goal is to build a community of buyers and sellers who provide a specific service in your geographic region.  If you’re not in a major center and the service provided can be done electronically (such copywriting, photo editing or voice-overs), consider expanding across a very broad region or even your entire country.

When the time is right, it could make sense to go global. Translate your marketplace to be available in other languages, such as Spanish, French or Japanese. At, it wasn’t until we reached 250,000 users that this need became obvious. As we expand into new geographic markets, we’re finding it just as challenging as starting up again.

Understand the complexities of two-sided marketplaces. I’ve been told that running a successful marketplace online is one of the hardest businesses to build (perhaps other than starting a restaurant!). Why is it so hard? Consider the age-old question: which came first, the chicken or the egg? Those same mental gymnastics need to be applied when formulating your go-to-market strategy for your marketplace built around independent contractors.

To start, you’ll need an active community of freelancers who are passionate about their space. Whatever your tribe, treat them well. Your entire operation will rest upon their success through your platform.

With a deep pool of talent available, the real challenge is attracting demand — in other words, the buyers of the services you’re selling. In our space, those are the people who post jobs, listen to auditions and ultimately hire the perfect voice for their project.

Stay laser focused on your market. Distractions are everywhere. Once you’ve tasted a bit of success in your initial market, you’ll likely start thinking about which other markets you could expand into. If your mind isn’t turning on these ideas already, it won’t be long before a well-meaning consultant or advisor suggests that you “leverage your platform” and “white label” it for other industries. Frankly, I find this to be terrible advice.

We’ve been told we should branch out from providing a platform for voice-overs into a platform for video production or even graphic design. There are fundamental flaws in this line of thinking. Consider our first rule, to find a niche market you’re intimately familiar with. Yes, you’ve built a marketplace that’s gaining traction, but what do you know about those adjacent markets? Are they really that similar that you can simply add a few more available skills to the profiles of your freelancers? Likely not. If you do pursue this route, you’ll be faced with the challenges around marketing these new services. Marketing something you know little about or don’t have a passion for is difficult. Most concerning is the brand dilution you’ll face — you’re at the risk of turning into a generic marketplace that lacks meaning and focus. Your once passionate group of freelancers will find somewhere else where they’ll get the attention and promotion they seek.

To combat this, consider the discipline of focus. Stay focused like a laser on your core market. From my perspective, if you choose an industry that is big enough, you have no need to diversify into other areas. Avoid the temptation by reminding yourself how huge your market is. Find research and supporting data to quantify that you are tackling a billion dollar market.

Mr. Ciccarelli is founder and CEO of, an online marketplace that connects businesses with voice-over talent.
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Presentados los últimos avances en los sistemas de traducción de voz a lengua de signos española — Salamanca rtv al día: El periódico digital de toda Salamanca

Presentados los últimos avances en los sistemas de traducción de voz a lengua de signos española — Salamanca rtv al día: El periódico digital de toda Salamanca | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Jornada de Discapacidad Auditiva organizada por el CRMF (GALERÍA DE FOTOS)

Numerosa presencia de público en la jornada del CRMF. Fotos: Sergio Morán

El Centro de Recuperación de Personas con Discapacidad Física (CRMF) ha inaugurado hoy la VII Jornada  Discapacidad Auditiva, que organiza este centro dependiente del Ministerio de Sanidad, Servicios Sociales e Igualdad.

El subdelegado del Gobierno, Javier Galán, y la concejala de Familia e Igualdad de Oportunidades, Cristina Klimowitz, han asistido a la jornada en la que se han presentado estrategias para la formación e integración laboral de personas con discapacidad auditiva. En el encuentro, con prestigiosos especialistas del ámbito nacional, se ha analizado la inserción de personas con discapacidad auditiva desde distintas perspectivas.

Esta VII Jornada sirve también de plataforma para  presentar los últimos avances en los sistemas de traducción de voz a lengua de signos española.  El obstáculo del sonido, la falta de estas herramientas y la ausencia de formación especializada hacen que el acceso de las personas con discapacidad auditiva a nuestros servicios públicos sea más difícil, especialmente en el ámbito del empleo. Esta jornada pretende aportar, mediante la colaboración de profesionales del mundo de la formación, el empleo y la discapacidad auditiva, un espacio en el que se informa sobre las nuevas estrategias que se están desarrollando para la integración laboral de las personas sordas, así como la formación necesaria para poder evitar la exclusión laboral.

Fotos: Sergio Morán
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Times of Zambia | Holy Bible translation to local languages on course

Times of Zambia | Holy Bible translation to local languages on course | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
By Austin Kaluba -
Since the publications of the original manuscripts of the Bible, originally written in Hebrew and Greek (with a few sections in Aramaic), the holy book has gone through several translations.
As the Christian movement grew after operating underground as a cult for some time, both Old and New Testaments were translated into other languages, including Coptic, Syriac, Ethiopic, and Armenian.
Because of the Roman Empire’s influence, a Latin translation (called the Vulgate) became the most widely used version of the Bible for the next thousand years.
After the fall of the Roman Empire, the radical translation of the Bible came in the fourteenth century when John Wycliffe produced the first complete English translation (translated from the Latin Vulgate, not from the original Hebrew and Greek writings).

In the seventeenth century, the King of England authorised scholars from Oxford and Cambridge to produce a new and official English translation from the original Greek and Hebrew languages, which became known as the King James Version (KJV) or Authorised Version (AV).
The King James Version remains popular among many English-speaking people. Nonetheless, a variety of English translations have appeared in recent years for several reasons.
The main reason for translations has been that the English language itself has evolved in the last four hundred years.
While the Shakespearean prose of the King James Version may feel more traditional, eloquent, and sacred, it does not represent the way people communicate today (nor in Jesus’ day).
Now there are numerous English versions today simply because different teams of scholars take different approaches to translating the texts.
These approaches are generally described on a scale of formal equivalence (word-for-word translations) to functional equivalence (thought-for-thought or meaning-for-meaning translations).
In order to be accurate and communicate well to their target audiences, translations have to mix formal and dynamic elements.
This is no easy task and is time-consuming and tedious work. For example, there are some words and expressions in Hebrew and Greek that
simply don’t have English equivalents.
Therefore, every translation team must be creative in their endeavour to convey the Bible’s meaning across cultural and linguistic distance.
It is this consideration that calls for the best scholars in the world to produce accurate and readable versions of the Bible with great
caution taken to check and recheck their translations with various experts.
In Zambia, like elsewhere, translation of the Bible from English to local languages has posed the same contextual and linguistic
Foremost among these challenges is the growth of a population that cannot understand the original vernacular translations of the Bible.
Fortunately, the Bible Society of Zambia (BSZ) is addressing these challenges by translating the Bible in understandable vernacular
The society has translated several vernacular languages in comprehensible versions which are more reader-friendly than original adaptations.
The society’s computer assistant publishing officer Reverend Gremfriday Kapakasa said currently they were translating three local languages ci-Tumbuka, ki-Kaonde and ci-Nyanja.
He said the original translation in ci-Cewa called Buuku Lopatilika –The Holy Bible done by Dr Robert Laws who was a pioneer missionary cum medical doctor at Livingstonia in Malawi in the 1920s is incomprehensible to many ci-Nyanja speakers.
‘The language in the Bible is difficult to an average ci-Nyanja speaker both in rural and urban areas thus calling for some changes to make it accessible,’ he said.
To address this problem, the Bible Society of Zambia has come up with more reader-friendly ci-Nyanja Holy Bible versions called Buuku Loyela and Cipangano cha Tsopano cha ci-Nyanja.
Reverend Kapakasa said the new Bibles are being widely used by both Ngonis and Chewas in Zambia though the original book Buuku Lopatilika is still used by some Chewa-speaking Malawians.
The clergyman said even in Malawi the Bible is becoming unpopular especially with the younger generation.
The stages of translating the Bible in understandable vernacular versions include translators making translations which are taken to congregations where a particular language is spoken for assessment.
So far the ci-Nyanja new Bible versions are being used in the Reformed Church of Zambia, Church of Central Africa Presybeterian and United Church of Zambia.
The society has done the same with translations in ki-Kaonde to enable congregants of churches where the language is spoken access it.
These include churches in North-Western province like the Evangelical Church of Zambia (ECZ) and Christian Missions in Many Lands (CMML).
In the ci-Tumbuka translation project, headways have been made to rid the linguistic challenges that the original ci-Tumbuka version Magzo agh Chiuta-Holy Bible posed.
‘The original version also translated by Dr Laws has a blend of Henga and Ngoni which poses a lot of difficulties for Tumbuka readers,’ observed Reverend Kapakasa.
The Livinstonia Mission which was a citadel of missionary work regionally contributed a lot to ecclesiastical work in Central Africa.
Newly-trained African clergymen like the first republican president Kenneth Kaunda’s father David snr pioneered church work in places like Lubwa in Chinsali-then called Mirongo.
Many white missionaries like Dr Laws doubled as linguists and were responsible for early translations of the Bible in popular local languages.
Reverend Kapakasa said translation is a tedious and pain staking work that calls for  translators to be familiar with the King James version which is linked to Hebrew and Greek.
‘When translators are stuck they consult the King James version or Revised standards because they are benchmarks of Bible translations that help with user-friendly versions.’
The requirement for translators at the Bible Society of Zambia is a degree in Theology with a a clear understanding of Hebrew and Greek.
The society also conducts workshops to train translators and familiarise them with the use of the partext, a training software that makes translations easier.
So far the society has done tremendous work in translating vernacular Bibles in understandable versions considering the rapid changes languages are undergoing.
As a result many readers of vernacular Bibles can now buy reader-friendly versions from the Bible Society of Zambia shop along
Freedom Way in Lusaka.
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3 bonnes raisons pour ne pas faire confiance au correcteur orthographique de Word

3 bonnes raisons pour ne pas faire confiance au correcteur orthographique de Word | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Microsoft Word fait partie des traitements de texte les plus utilisés dans le monde. Facile à prendre en main, il offre de nombreuses possibilités aux utilisateurs aussi bien en matière d’écriture, qu’en matière de mise en page. Mais malgré son leadership, ce logiciel est loin d’être parfait. Il comprend même un gros bémol : son correcteur orthographique. Intégré directement à la base du programme, ce dernier souligne en rouge les fautes d’orthographe, et en vert les fautes d’accord et de conjugaison. Mais malheureusement, il n’est pas toujours au point. Certaines fautes persistent, pendant que d'autres mots bien orthographiés sont signalés comme erreur. De nombreux quiproquos donc, qui peuvent amener les utilisateurs à commettre encore plus de fautes qu’ils ne l’auraient fait sans l’outil. Vous ne me croyez pas ? Et bien regardez les exemples ci-dessous vous n’allez pas être déçu !


Le premier problème du correcteur orthographique de Microsoft Word est son incapacité à distinguer deux mots similaires. De ce fait, en prenant l’un pour l’autre, il peut laisser passer des fautes sans que l’utilisateur ne s'en rende compte.

Ici, la phrase comporte une faute. Le verbe "rester" a pour sujet le mot "installation" et devrait être écrit sans "ent" à la fin. Le correcteur orthographique ne détecte rien, tout simplement parce que pour lui le sujet du verbe est le mot qui le précède, à savoir "logiciels". Mais reprenons la même phrase en corrigeant la faute, et en ajoutant un "e" à la fin du mot "vu".

Et bien le logiciel ne détecte toujours aucune faute, alors qu'il y en a toujours une. Dans l’expression "au vu de", "vu" ne prend pas de "e", alors que dans l’expression "en vue de", c’est l’inverse. Mais Word ne fait aucune différence entre les deux, tout simplement parce que pour lui les deux existent. Idem avec le verbe "rester". Qu'on écrive "restent" ou "reste", cela ne change rien pour ce dernier. Ils considèrent les deux possibilités comme correctes.


Le second souci du correcteur orthographique de ce traitement de texte c’est qu’il ne tient pas compte du contexte de la phrase. Le contexte est essentiel pour l’orthographe et la grammaire. Un mot peut être considéré comme faux dans un contexte et complètement bon dans un autre. C’est pourquoi cet élément ne devrait pas être dissocié du correcteur lui-même. Mais comme vous allez le voir dans phrase suivante, ce n’est pas du tout le cas :

Dans cette phrase, Word détecte une faute mais pas au bon endroit. En effet, il propose ici de mettre le verbe "aller", écrit à l’infinitif, au participe passé, alors que la faute est l’absence du "t" à la fin du verbe pouvoir, "Ma fille peut". Mais Word ne prenant pas en compte le contexte de la phrase, ne fait pas la différence entre le verbe "peut" et l’adjectif "peu", qui n'ont pas du tout le même sens. Pire encore, il crée des fautes, puisqu’en acceptant la modification de Word, on se retrouve avec une phrase comportant deux fautes au lieu d’une. Pas tip top !


Troisième et dernier petit hic que l’on peut noter sur ce correcteur orthographique, c’est l’obsolescence de son dictionnaire. En effet, beaucoup de mots ne sont pas reconnus par le logiciel alors qu’ils existent pourtant bien. Il peut s’agir de noms propres, mais aussi et surtout de noms communs entrés dans le dictionnaire, il y a un certain temps déjà. Preuve en est avec l’exemple suivant :

Le verbe "comater", entré dans le dictionnaire en 2012, et qui signifie "être dans un état de somnolence", n’est pas connu par le correcteur orthographique de Word, qui le souligne donc en rouge. Il propose plusieurs corrections comme "colmater" ou "compter", qui n’ont strictement rien à voir avec le mot de base. Néanmoins, l’utilisateur a la possibilité de rajouter n’importe quel mot au dictionnaire, ce qui n’est déjà pas si mal que ça !


Vous l’aurez compris, le traitement de texte de Microsoft ne comprend pas un correcteur orthographique très performant. Alors si vous souhaitez améliorer votre orthographe, votre grammaire et votre conjugaison, mieux vaut opter pour un logiciel complémentaire. Trois correcteurs orthographiques et grammaticaux se tirent ainsi la bourre actuellement : Antidote, Cordial et Le Robert Correcteur.


Disponible sous Windows, Mac, Linux, et maintenant sur iPhone, Antidote est sans doute le plus performant des trois. Il corrige de manière ultra rapide l’intégralité de votre texte, en prenant en compte le contexte de la phrase. Ainsi, orthographe, grammaire, conjugaison, syntaxe et typographie sont remis en ordre, en deux temps trois mouvements. Intégré directement au logiciel Word et à votre messagerie, ce dernier vous aide dans toutes vos tâches de rédaction. Il met à votre disposition plus de 30 dictionnaires différents ainsi que des guides linguistiques. Très pratique !


Concurrent direct d’Antidote, on retrouve Cordial. Disponible sur Mac, PC, iOS et Android, ce correcteur orthographique s’intègre parfaitement à tous vos logiciels préférés, et autres navigateurs. Vous pouvez ainsi l’utiliser à n’importe quel moment de la journée, lors de vos navigation Web ou la rédaction de vos e-mails. Il corrige tous vos écrits, tout en vous permettant d’améliorer votre syntaxe et votre vocabulaire. Comme Antidote, ce dernier comprend de nombreux dictionnaires et guides linguistiques. Cependant, si Antidote reste plus performant dans la correction pure et dure, Cordial se distingue par l’intégration d’un outil de traduction performant.

Le Robert Correcteur

Enfin, troisième sur le podium des meilleurs correcteurs orthographiques, le logiciel Le Robert Correcteur. Ce dernier utilise une méthode pédagogique pour aider les utilisateurs à progresser en français. Ainsi, il corrige toutes les fautes possibles et inimaginables, des fautes d’orthographe, aux fautes de grammaire, en passant par les fautes de ponctuation. En trois clics seulement, le logiciel vous garantit un texte impeccablement bien écrit. Huit dictionnaires sont d’ailleurs à votre disposition, dont un dictionnaire classique, un dictionnaire de synonymes, et un dictionnaire de citations françaises et étrangères, rien que ça !
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Living or existing

Living or existing | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Living or existing
Thursday, 05 March 2015
By Chaplain (Capt.) Sharon Browne-Burrell
Special to GUIDON

Are you living or existing?  

That is the question that arose as I spoke with a friend recently.  It was the same question I pondered as I reflected upon that brief conversation.  


As I think briefly about the many ways we can define living, I struggle with the reality that my definition of living gravitates toward the material things in life. Sometimes, I think about living in terms of the square footage of my house, the make and model of my vehicle and the amount of money I have saved for retirement. I find however, that when my thoughts revolve around the acquisition of things and status that I am not living but merely existing. I realized that ‘living’ made me sufficient but ‘existing’ left me bankrupt.

Jesus said in John 10:10 (KJV) “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” The Good New Translation (GNT) translation says “I have come in order that you might have life — life in all its fullness” But what does that mean?  

Living life to the fullest is revealed in the many ways that we take the opportunities to learn new things about ourselves and others. It is shown in the ways that we display acts of kindness in a world of hate and contention. Living life to the fullest is reflected in the ways we deal with the unpleasant things in life like sudden illness, divorce or death just to name a few.

Living life to the fullest means getting up and experiencing all that this life has to offer. It is not sitting in a state of hopelessness as life passes by outside your window. Living life is about experiencing reality and not watching reality TV and living your life vicariously through them.  

So I encourage you today to live your life. Spend time with the people you love. Plant a garden.  Read a new book. Try a new sport. Cook a new and exciting meal. Go for a walk and gaze at the beauty of God’s creation. Existing is not enough. God has called you to live.  

(Editor’s note: Browne-Burrell is the 169th Engineer Battalion chaplain.)
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The Key to Delivering Brand Strategy: The Internal Audience

The Key to Delivering Brand Strategy: The Internal Audience | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
There’s an African proverb that begins: “If you want to go fast, go alone.” In this day and age, fast seems the way, doesn’t it? Timelines shrink, production goes faster and solutions come quicker. This is the world of real-time.

But it then follows on: “If you want to go far, go together.”

As marketers, we can create stellar strategy that persuades customers to buy what we sell. But just as important is your internal audience – the people who make our brands living and breathing.

Many are experienced in scoping and delivering brand campaigns. But unless you can take people on that journey, what is the point? This is key if your brand wants to make a genuine business change.

Unlocking this audience – inspiring and creating momentum – is inherent to success. So why is this audience seen as an after thought and a lesser creative field?

More often than not, there is more disconnection within a company than out. Many are interested in taking employees with the company and the brand; however, they don’t have a set strategy. One reason for this can be the disconnect between human resources and marketing, or the fact that marketing is not leading the charge. A survey from research firm Altimeter Group found that HR leads employee engagement initiatives at 41 percent of companies, while marketing leads these efforts at only 11 percent.

This leadership is often what has an effect on making change, and even the extent of what change is possible – from creative to the brand, to change in the product and the essence of a business.

We can see two examples where companies have worked with the internal structure, or essence, of their business to make business change happen:

Staff-first Strategy: Aviva Bank
The 300-year-old UK bank, Norwich Union, changed its name to Aviva in 2009 as part of a strategy to bring its brands together under one roof. Part of that strategy was to grow and transform as it competed globally. This was far from an easy process and involved engaging more than 50,000 employees across 28 countries. For some, the fact that they would no longer be working for a much-loved Norwich Union became an emotional issue. That’s why Aviva management dedicated much time and effort to getting staff buy-in. The rebrand was announced more than a year before the change was actually made, and all that time was spent consulting employees and taking their opinions on board.

Genuine Change: Domino’s Pizza and Its Recipe
In a 2009 consumer survey, Domino’s ranked first among major pizzeria chains in convenience and price, but it tied last on taste. Domino’s needed to rework their pizza recipe. But more than a mere tweak, the company overhauled its signature dish as part of a two-year charge to revamp the company’s menu and the brand itself (which has been falling by the wayside for several years).

Patrick Doyle, CEO, said there was only one way a chain of Domino’s size, with more than 5,000 units in the United States, could pull off so many drastic changes in such a short time span.

“There was significant support from our franchisees for launching the lines that we launched last year, and moving very quickly on getting sandwiches out and American Legends out, and all of those new platforms that we launched,” Doyle says. “They supported the pace that we were moving on those.”

If we want to make genuine business change happen and make those transformations go the distance, we need to go together. Uniting the organization should be the first and most important task for a brand (and creativity).
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WV Lawmakers Tricked into Passing "English as the Official Language"

WV Lawmakers Tricked into Passing "English as the Official Language" | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -  Two days after the end of the legislative session, state lawmakers are discovering something few were aware of: They voted to make English the official language of West Virginia.
The language amendment was quietly inserted into a bill addressing the number of members that cities can appoint to boards of parks and recreation. Among mundane details about record-keeping, the amendment adds the provision that "English shall be the official language of the State of West Virginia."

Senate Majority Whip Billy Wayne Bailey successfully offered that change to House Bill 2782 amid a flurry of bills moving back and forth between the House and Senate on Saturday, the last night of the 60-day legislative session.
"I just told the members that the amendment clarifies the way in which documents are produced," Bailey, a Democrat, said Monday.

House Majority Leader Rick Staton recommended that his chamber agree with the Senate's changes. But Staton, also a Democrat, said he was unaware of the substance of the amendment until asked about it by The Associated Press Monday evening.

Efforts to make English the state's official language have been introduced annually since the late 1990s. A group called U.S. English has championed the cause.

"I think it's wrong that's something like that was snuck into that bill in the last minute," said House Judiciary Chairman Jon Amores, who helped kill an earlier proposal to forbid any state or local agency from having to print documents in any language but English.

A spokeswoman for Gov. Joe Manchin could not immediately be reached for comment.

Andrew Schneider, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia, said English-only laws are based on the false premise that immigrants will not learn English without government coercion.

"And English-only laws do nothing constructive to increase English proficiency. They simply discriminate and punish those who have not yet learned English," Schneider said.

Originally posted to WildRice on Tue Apr 12, 2005 at 02:46 PM PDT.
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Language Magazine » Indigenous Languages

Language Magazine » Indigenous Languages | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Nunavut Official Languages Act Comes into Force
The Nunavut Official Languages Act came into force this month — a milestone in the history of this young and vast Canadian territory. The new act maintains the rights and privileges of English and French, while the Inuit language will be elevated to equal status. This level of statutory protection for an aboriginal language is unprecedented in Canada. The Inuit languages Inuktitut and Inuinnaqtun are the native tongues of 83% of the population of the territory.
“I am proud that Inuit in Nunavut now have a clear statement of their inherent right to the use of the Inuit language in full equality with English and French,” said James Arreak, Minister of Languages. “The act further recognizes the important cultural contributions of Anglophones and Francophones in our territory and affirms our commitment to deliver programs and services to the public in all three official languages.”
All three official languages will enjoy equality of status and equal rights and privileges as to their use in territorial institutions — namely in the Legislative Assembly, the courts, and the departments of the government of Nunavut — and public agencies. The legislation that OLA replaced, the Northwest Territories Official Languages Act, made the official language of the Inuit second only to French and English in terms of status. The same lesser position was assigned to six other aboriginal languages. It took five years to pass the act as law. Now, the residents of Nunavut may access various services of the government in Inuktitut and Inuinnaqtun.

The comprehensive Uqausivut Comprehensive Plan, tabled during the sitting of the Legislative Assembly last fall, will help departments and public agencies to improve their delivery of services to the public in all official languages. To support departments and public agencies in meeting their legal obligations, the Department of Culture and Heritage will centrally administer territorial and federal language funds established for that purpose, which which comprise of CAN$5 million for Inuit language initiatives and approximately $1.45 million for French language initiatives.

Preserving Nahuatl
Laura Nuñez describes how Global Citizens Network is helping indigenous Mexicans retain their culture and language
Vicki Contreras wakes up early every morning in Xiloxochico (pronounced Shee-lo-show-sheek-o) to catch the bus to her job at the Hotel Taselotzin in the neighboring town of Cuetzalan, three hours north of Puebla, Mexico. As the sun rises over the Sierra Norte hills, the hotel’s kitchen warms and is filled with delicious smells as Vicki prepares the morning’s fresh coffee, hot chocolate with cinnamon, huevos revueltos, and frijoles that await the guests.

Vicki belongs to a women’s cooperative that manages the Hotel Taselotzin, an eco-lodge, with 44 other women from five Nahua communities. Over a decade ago, the women invested their own money and labor to construct this beautiful hotel. In exchange for their work at the hotel, they benefit from the profits of the business to support their families with food, clothing, and soap. The women take what they need and share the rest: the Nahua society maintains a strong sense of cooperation.
The Hotel Taselotzin overwhelmingly welcomes Mexican national tourists seeking an escape from the bustle of the cities, as well as many international visitors who enjoy the packed market days on Cuetzalan’s cobblestone streets and the nearby caves and Totonac ruins. The lush gardens on the hotel grounds grow herbs for the restaurant’s menu, rose petals for the handmade soap, and orange blossoms that Vicki handpicks for tea. Staff are careful to recycle goods and separate organic and inorganic waste to lessen their impact on the land. Caring for the earth is an important Nahua custom.

Each year, Global Citizens Network (GCN), a Minneapolis-based nonprofit organization, sends volunteers to partner with other villagers from Vicki’s community of Xiloxochico on locally initiated, grassroots development projects. This self-sufficient community works together to provide a practical service that makes it easier for people to stay in their village — and preserve their Nahua way of life, including the rich Nahuatl language.

Nahuatl is the language of the Aztecs, Toltcec, and others. (The words avocado, tomato, chili, coyote, and chocolate have Nahuatl roots.) Nahuatl comes from the root Nahua, meaning “a dance done with the hands entwined, a concordance, to move in cadence,” and is also known as the turquoise smoke, a harmonious speech that is pleasing to the ear. At one time, Nahuatl was spoken all over present-day Mexico, and it is still one of the most important indigenous languages in the country, with 1.5 million speakers — making it the most widely spoken indigenous language in Mexico. An estimated 190,000 people speak only Nahuatl.

In 2012, Xiloxochico requested that GCN partner directly with the parent and teacher committee of a bilingual Spanish-Nahuatl school for youth. The primary school, Chayojkila Xiloxochico, was founded in 1999 and historically used in-kind space in various locations. The school was founded by a group of dedicated parents and teachers who sought support from CONAFE, Mexico’s National Council on Educational Development. Last year, they successfully sought and received a land grant to build a permanent space for their school. GCN has since sent two teams to work side by side with villagers, directed by local leadership, to enhance the school by excavating land, painting, and installing windows. Future teams of volunteers will build additional classrooms, bathrooms, and a creative playground space.

While 10% of Mexico’s population is indigenous, only 6% speaks an indigenous language. Chayojkila Xiloxochico promotes the education of children in the community both in Spanish and the Nahuatl languages. National laws support bilingualism and original language preservation — a protected indigenous right in Mexico — but indigenous-language speakers still face discrimination in their own communities. The Chayojkila Xiloxochico bilingual school creates a safe environment for children to learn both languages, keeping the Nahua culture, traditions, and Nahuatl language alive. The GCN-Chayojkila Xiloxochico partnership allows for both volunteers and villagers alike to honor and promote the importance of preserving the Nahuatl language and sense of cultural pride in the community.
A recent volunteer reflected:

“It was a day of magic moments. The GCN team arrived at the school site to see members of the community already there. Work was being done, mostly painting, and families were coming little by little to share in celebration of the week’s accomplishments. Professor Valentine spoke on behalf of the community, thanking us for the support. He expressed his pride in the Nahua people and the school they are working so hard to build so that they can maintain the Nahuatl language and culture among their children.”

No sooner did GCN’s team return home to the U.S. than Professor Valentine Contreras Coyota (Vicki’s brother) sent this message of gratitude and solidarity:

“At Nicolás Bravo Elementary School, parents of the students gathered in one of the classrooms to share their perspectives regarding to the visit of the Global Citizens Network team from Minnesota in the U.S. The visit was an enjoyable experience for the parents to witness the organization’s good intensions to support the project, specifically the school bathroom project that was done during this visit.

“I wanted to share with you that the parents are in agreement, we would like to welcome other GCN groups. The parents expressed that all who visit are always welcome. Our school community and association will always welcome GCN visits so we may continue to share experiences, impart our indigenous culture, and share our customs. The students are excited about another visit.”

GCN is equally enthusiastic about a return visit and looks forward to many future volunteer teams participating in this partnership. The organization fosters the belief that culture and language preservation is possible with a global commitment to supporting indigenous communities.

Laura Nuñez is academic partnerships manager at Global Citizens Network. To learn more about how you and/or your students can get involved, visit
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Bing Adds Klingon to Language Translator

Bing Adds Klingon to Language Translator | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
It's time to brush up on your Klingon, Star Trek fans. Search engine Bing has just added the official language of the series to its language translator.

Now, you can translate words from English into Klingon — or the other way around. The addition comes just days before the arrival of J.J. Abram's Star Trek Into Darkness sequel movie hits theaters.

"Although the new film is coming out soon, this is an idea we were kicking around for awhile," Matt Wallaert, behavioral scientist at Bing, told Mashable. "Star Trek has always looked at the future of technology and it is the most widely spoken constructed language, even though only a handful of people are actually fluent."

Bing users can also translate entire websites to Klingon. Check out the Mashable homepage decked out in Star Trek speak below.
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How Will You Measure the Name of Your Company?

How Will You Measure the Name of Your Company? | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Brands we recognize by their symbols and letters alone are many when the brand is well established or has been around for years. When establishing a new brand, names need to be easy to remember and recall in conversations and in times of recommendation. As a result, many businesses have opted to choose single words that describe why they exist or what they do. The difficulties lie when we attempt to measure the effects of marketing and PR on the brand in question – how is owned and earned media having an impact on the brand.

Let’s talk about an example, Mumble. Mumble is a very simplistic company – it provides a service much like Skype – voice chat for gamers. The data and analytics that Mumble can pull about its website using its analytics software is a data point that can’t be disputed because of the noise of the search inside other tools. However, when we start doing the research that measures the effect of a media hit or a marketing program and we search “Mumble,” we’re going to get a lot of false positives.

Take a look at the chart below. It has a search for the word “mumble” in English for the last 30 days. These are tweets alone in which the word has been used.

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Doing research for any company using a common word as its name will run into this problem. Now that isn’t to say that we can’t use qualifiers – other words to help pull relevant results – and it doesn’t mean that the company is doomed to lose data. It just instantly makes it more difficult for any business who wants to rely on data-driven decisions as a key aspect of their business.

Imagine the issues that Apple runs into trying to track true coverage from people talking about eating apples. (It’s likely they’ve gotten very good at filtering at this point in the game, but it does take some extra work.)

There are some great upsides to using a single word or a well known word as a company name. We won’t deny that. Eventually the service will be well known enough to pop up in search, easy to find in voice search and when tracking down the company on the different social channels. Take Google, for instance. It’s now a household name AND it’s easy to search. When you search for Google, almost all of the results will be about the company or people using their services. Made up names work…when they take off.

So, what should you do when you are ready to name your shiny new business? Shoot for something memorable. Once you’ve narrowed down your list, try using commonly used measurement tools to find out how difficult it’ll be to filter out the noise. Use Siri, Google Now or Cortana to check how well the search is understood when you and others search for it. Use Google or other data sources to find words that aren’t commonly used anymore, like valor.

Finally, think about incorporating a function into the company name you choose. It’ll be longer but it will make it more clear to the customer what you do. A few good examples: Kentucky Fried Chicken, International Business Machines, and United Parcel Service. Each of these incorporate something that tells the user what they do and then get narrowed down to letters that everyone recognizes.

Choosing a name for a company in this day and age isn’t easy. Think beyond the way it sounds. If the domain is available now, think about how hard or easy it’ll make measuring success for your company down the road.

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El primer hijo bastardo del castellano, el de Alfonso XI

El primer hijo bastardo del castellano, el de Alfonso XI | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Aunque en sentido figurado, hace referencia al individuo ruin que degenera de su origen y naturaleza, la ofensa más generalizada guarda relación con el rechazo del parentesco

Tumba del Rey Alfonso XI, en la iglesia de san Hipólito, en Córdoba
Si una cosa ha quedado plasmada a lo largo de la historia, es la gran cantidad de hijos no reconocidos que han ido surgiendo entre sus páginas. Reyes, nobles, plebeyos, famosos, anónimos... no importa la condición social del individuo a la hora de entrar en este menester. Aunque el Diccionario de la Real Academia Española define el término bastardo en su primera acepción como un sujeto «que degenera de su origen o naturaleza», la ofensa más generalizada guarda relación con el rechazo del parentesco.

Pancracio Celdrán, en «El Gran Libro de los Insultos», publicado por la editorial La Esfera, explica que en primer lugar se alude al hijo ilegítimo o borde, pero en sentido figurado, hace referencia a la persona baja, ruin y villana, que no es auténtica ni fetén. «Sujeto vil, de mala inclinación y natural avieso capaz de cualquier traición o trastada ya que no guarda la fe debida a otro».

A mediados el siglo XIV surge este calificativo estableciendo que los hijos ilegítimos de noble cuna eran bastardos y los de baja cuna hi(jos)deputa. «Comenzó a utilizarse en castellano en tiempos de Pedro I apareciendo como aposición a nombre propio en la Crónica de Pedro el Cruel para referirse al hijo bastardo de Alfonso XI, Enrique (II) el de las Mercedes».

Celdrán menciona al escritor español Sebastián de Covarrubias, quien en su Tesoro (1611) otorga a la la ofensa el valor semántico de 'grosero y no hecho con orden, razón y regla', y, en relación a su etimología, alude al arabista de su tiempo, Padre Guadix, para quien el origen de la palabra es arábigo: «De baxtaridu, es decir, hijo de quien se quiera, ya que no se sabe de cierto quién sea el padre».

El sainetista madrileño del siglo XVIII Ramón de la Cruz emplea así el término:

Ésa es una presunción

hija de un bastardo pecho.

El vocablo posee procedencia francesa. «Deriva del francés antiguo bastart», apunta el autor aunque incide en que no hay seguridad en cuanto al significado de esa raíz: «Algunos piensan que acaso proceda del alemán bankert: hecho sobre un banco, ya que estos individuos no eran hijos de matrimonio legítimo y por ello no se los engendraba en la cama; otros opinan que pudo derivar del escandinavo arcaico hormung: generado en un rincón. En la lengua occitánica se decía sebenc: engendrado junto a un seto. Mientras que los griegos llamaban a los nacidos en cópula ilegítima lazremaios: hecho en la oscuridad y por los rincones».

En gallego se dio a los bastardos e hijos de puta fillo de palleiru: hijo del pajar, engendrado en un almiar: hijo ilegítimo.
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Make Language Learning a National Priority

Make Language Learning a National Priority | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
New technologies and resourceful school districts will only get us so far. We need policymakers to prioritize language education so that America's students -- and our entire economy -- can reach their full potential....
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Protecting Nigerian languages from extinction | National Mirror

Protecting Nigerian languages from extinction | National Mirror | Metaglossia: The Translation World |

Language as a major cultural attribute is dynamic and continues to give a community the sense of dignity, continuity and security. However, globalisation seems to be threatening the sustainability of this important heritage.

How do you identify and differentiate citizens of other countries from one another? Through the culture and more interestingly, their language!

Language represents an integral part of a nation’s identity and cultural heritage and any alteration. Today, the world is moving towards the extinction of a rich and varied cultural and symbolic life and emerging in the global language. And quite untoward to note is that Nigerian indigenous languages are facing serious danger of extinction.

Mr Olugboyega Adebanjo, the lead translator at XML Language Services Limited, a language translation and preservation firm said Nigerians particularly the elites have declared a ceaseless war against their own language as if it is their common enemy.

“Nigerians still speak in tongues, but no more in their mother tongues. No thanks to globalisation and its after effects, many Yoruba adults and young elements – wittingly or unwittingly – have declared a ceaseless war against their own language as if it is their common enemy, or a dreadful affliction that burdens them. From one urban center to another, many educated elites who are supposed to be the repository of their cultural heritage have reduced themselves to aliens in their own land – alien to their language, history and culture.

Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow, an international journalist and tourism enthusiast has also observed that a language is considered endangered when it is not longer spoken by children, moribund by only handful of elderly speaker and left to extinct when it is no longer spoken.

This is the case of Nigeria according to the findings of a study carried out in 2007 in Imo and Lagos states to test Igbo competency level of three age groups, aged 1-5, 6-11, and adults. Seventy percent of children between 6-11 years and ninety percent of children aged five years and below were unable to speak Igbo language. In another study conducted the same year, fifty percent of Igbo parents in Imo State and eighty percent in Lagos State spoke mostly English or a mixture of English and Igbo with their children. Many other studies measuring indigenous language competencies among children in Igbo land and beyond established that alarming number of children could not speak their mother tongue.

Also in 2011, the findings of a survey conducted in all the six geo-political zones of Nigeria by a team of linguists led by Prof. Ahmed Amfani, on the average, twenty-five percent of Nigerian children of nursery and primary school ages (that is, 11 years and below) do not speak their parents’ language!

Apart from the pressure imposed by pidgin, which is a popular medium of communication among the teeming masses, the use of English has forced many native speakers of Igbo to water down the essence of the language through code-switching. Affirming the report of UNESCO that Igbo is among the beleaguered league of Nigeria’s endangered languages, Prof Chinyere Ohiri-Aniche of the University of Lagos, who is the President of Linguistics Association of Nigeria, said it may not even take up to fifty years before the Igbo and other Nigerian languages may be dead, hinging her position on a plethora of empirical studies she and her colleagues in the linguistics world have conducted to gauge competency level of native speakers.

Likewise, many children born and raised in the cities by elite Yoruba parents cannot even utter one word in their mother tongue. Nowadays, especially in homes of educated elites, it is increasingly becoming normal for children to have their first tongue in English, the language of Nigeria’s former colonisers. And it looks like English Language which is emerging as global language, is no longer under the control of its original owners but under the control of everyone including Nigerian children.

From Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Osun, from Ondo, Ekiti, and parts of Kwara and Kogi where Yoruba is spoken natively, ominous signs stab the mother tongue in the face, a phenomenon worsened by the fad of sending children to private primary and secondary schools where pupils are not taught in any of Nigeria’s languages, but in English, thus subtly conditioning the children to value foreign language above their mother tongue. In some elite private schools in Lagos and Ibadan, majority of pupils cannot even salute in Yoruba, it has become a punishable offence to communicate with ‘vernacular’ within the school premises.

Unconsciously, the seed for the mortification of the languages were sown early in the day. Pupils, especially in the rural settings were forbidden from speaking their local languages derogatorily branded as vernacular while in the class rooms. Ability to speak the Queen’s English thus became a social status-indicator.

As at today, several Nigerian children, especially in urban centres are only able to speak the English Language. What that means is that with a generation of Nigerians barely able to speak their mother tongue, such languages face strong threat of generational transfer.

Recently, efforts have been made to ameliorate the menace. In Anambra State, the government has tried in making Igbo language regain its pride of place which has led to an initiative called ‘Suwakwa Igbo Initiative’, where scholarships are available to students who excel in Igbo language studies. Already, the government has signed into law a bill to enforce the speaking and writing of Igbo language among Ndigbo in Anambra and Diaspora. Also, at the National Institute of Cultural Orientation, headed by Dr. Barclays Ayakoroma, the curriculum has also been expanded to accommodate the teaching of local languages during the holidays for students who do not have the ability to speak the language. If this feat are being repeated in government schools all over the nation, then the Nigerian language are sure to be preserved.

Furthermore, in a bid to preserve our native languages, parents must begin to bring up their children speaking the local languages. Domestic communication should be done in the mother tongues, while the English Langauge is reserved as the language of business and officialdom. This will deepen the acquisition and promotion of the local languages.

Curriculum developers must also begin to broaden research into developing the languages of even smaller ethnic groups with a view to making them study-friendly, since they are far more prone to quicker extinction. The media must also deliberately design programmes that can encourage local language culture.

Nigerian languages must not be allowed to die. Everyone has a key role in preserving this important aspect of our cultural heritage.
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Turkish TV Dramas Make Further Inroads Into U.S. Market

Turkish TV Dramas Make Further Inroads Into U.S. Market | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
Turkish TV dramas are making inroads into the U.S. market where hit historical romancer “Kurt Seyit & Sura” will air to Spanish-language audiences via MundoFox and revenge drama skein “Kacak” (The Fugitive) will go out via Spanish-lingo Azteca America.

Both deals were brokered by Eccho Rights, the rights management company based in Stockholm, Istanbul and Hong Kong. Eccho Rights sealed the two deals in cooperation with Miami-based Somos TV.

“Kurt Seyit & Sura” (pictured) is an epic love story adapted from a bestselling novel set in early 20th century in Russia and Turkey. It is produced by local drama powerhouse Ay Yapim. MundoFox, which is a joint venture of Fox and Colombia’s RCN, will broadcast the 46-episode series in the U.S. on a weekly basis starting this month under the title ‘”Sura y Seyit, Amor de Guerra.”

Last month ABC picked up a pilot of “Runner,” a remake of Turkish skein “The End,” also from Ay Yapim. “The End” is another Eccho Rights-represented format.

Azteca America, which is backed by Mexico’s TV Azteca, has picked up “Kacak,” centered around an ex-policeman who killed a famous gangster’s son, from Surec Films. Azteca America has licenced the U.S. Hispanic rights and will start to air the 126-episode series later this spring.

FILED UNDER: Azteca AmericaMundoFoxTurkish TV
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Group pushes indigenous language at National Assembly - The Nation

Group pushes indigenous language at National Assembly
Posted by: Oluwatoyin Adeleye in Education 17 hours ago

The use of Nigerian languages as means of communication at the National Assembly and other official meetings and conferences will promote the country’s diverse cultures.
A socio-cultural group, Egbe Akomolede ati Asa Yoruba (Association of Teachers of Yoruba Language and Culture of Nigeria), Lagos State Chapter, made this known at the  UNESCO’s World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development.
Guest speaker at the event, Dr Ayinde Abimbola of the Faculty of Education, University of Lagos (UNILAG), emphasised that writing minutes of official meetings in indigenous languages would resurrect the dwindling beauty of Nigeria’s cultural diversity.
His words: “English must not always stand as lingua franca; government should make Yoruba language one of the languages to be used to write minutes at national meetings and conferences. Whoever wants to know the meaning of what is said or written in our local dialects should ask for a translation and provision would be made for that, just as the Kenyan writer, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, had done.”
The educationist faulted governments for the gradual depletion of Nigerian local dialects, advocating teaching of cultural values and norms of one’s dialect in schools as a criterion for gaining admission into tertiary institutions.
“How can indigenous language not be a compulsory subject in secondary schools? Even foreigners come into the country to learn our languages, which invariably include our culture and they also teach them in higher institutions abroad; yet they are not compulsory here. This is bad,” Abimbola lamented.
Abimbola also advised teachers of local languages and those who speak their dialect to learn more about their identity and top same with professional degrees to place themselves above others.
Another speaker, Mr Olasunkanmi Tela, wanted families to speak and embrace Yoruba language in their homes in order to pass the cultural values to their children. He advocated teaching culture and good character with Yoruba folklores and rhymes for language sustainability.
Chairperson of the Lagos State chapter of the Akomolede ati Asa Yoruba Association, Mrs Adebola Lawal, said: “People without language are animals, so we are happy that God has given us this language to train, educate, achieve and accomplish feats. For government to suddenly make the indigenous languages no longer compulsory for school certificate examinations, it means they do not see it as relevant anymore.
“It is the importance of the language that led to foreigners coming over to learn the language. Government is trying, but their best is not enough. So we want it to be used in public gatherings and official meetings so that our culture, which is our pride, would not die.”
Chairman of the Association for Alimosho Local Government, Lagos State, Mrs Rafikat Yusuf, said once a child understands his mother’s tongue, learning a second language becomes a lot easier.
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Se burlan del gobernador Alejandro García Padilla a través de Google

Se burlan del gobernador Alejandro García Padilla a través de Google | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
El primer mandatario es víctima de una tendencia para engañar el sistema de búsqueda de la popular página.
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Hoy, si decides ir al buscador Google, y colocas las palabras "moron governor", el sistema te enviará directamente a la biografía en Wikipedia de nuestro gobernador, Alejandro García Padilla, con foto incluida, por supuesto.
Por ninguna parte del texto publicado en Wikipedia aparece el término "moron", ni en inglés ni en español. 
El asunto ya se ha convertido en un tema caliente en las redes sociales y las teorías de conspiración son la orden del día. Algunos ciudadanos han comenzado a recibir una imagen tipo meme, que lee: "1. Entra a Google 2. Escribe 'moron governor' 3. Pavera time".
Se ha especulado, incluso, que los posibles autores de la burla cibernética pueden ser adversarios políticos,  un "hacker" molesto con el primer mandatario –tal vez por el asunto del Impuesto al Valor Añadido (IVA) o "la crudita"– o, simplemente, alguien que estaba bastante aburrido y no tenía nada mejor que hacer con su vida. 
Algunos se preguntan si alguien engañó a Google o el popular buscador está parcializado en contra de García Padilla.
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Oxford University Press to Sponsor National Literacy Conference in Cape Town

Oxford University Press Southern Africa will sponsor the ninth Pan-African Literacy for All and 10th Reading Association of South Africa (RASA) National Literacy Conference this year.

The conference will take place from 2 to 5 September in Cape Town, and the theme for this year’s event is Imagination and Literacy: Theory and Practice.
Keynote speakers will include International Literacy Association director Marcie Craig Post, Gcina Mhlophe, research professors Barbara Comber (Australia), Viv Edwards (UK) and Kieran Egan (Canada), as well as principal of the St Mary’s Junior School in Waverley, Johannesburg, Desiree Hugo.
The conference programme will be finalised by the 15 April, and the Saturday programme will be finalised by 1 August.
Press release
Oxford University Press to sponsor major African Literacy Conference
Oxford University Press Southern Africa today announced that it will sponsor a major African literacy conference in 2015. The 9th Pan-African Literacy for All and 10th Reading Association of South Africa (RASA) National Literacy Conference will host some of the leading thinkers on literacy in Cape Town from 2-5 September.
The conference theme is Imagination and Literacy: Theory and Practice. It will provide a forum for teachers, teacher educators, writers, librarians, researchers, academics, publishers, parents, children, and local and international development workers to showcase research, practice and innovative literacy strategies that imaginatively engage literacy development across Africa.
The event will begin with three days of talks, academic papers, and workshops on classroom practice. The final day will be open to the public and aimed at community involvement through a series of events including stalls, installations and practical sessions around the theme of igniting imagination.
Keynote speakers will include International Literacy Association Director Marcie Craig Post, South African activist and storyteller Gcina Mhlophe, research professors Barbara Comber (Australia), Viv Edwards (UK) and Kieran Egan (Canada), as well as principal of the St Mary’s Junior School in Waverley, Johannesburg, Desiree Hugo.
Oxford University Press Southern Africa is sponsoring the event in line with its commitment to education in Africa. The South African branch of OUP is celebrating its centenary this year – a 100 years of publishing for Southern Africa – through support to initiatives like this conference.
Steve Cilliers, Managing Director of Oxford University Press Southern Africa notes that: “South Africa’s continued challenge to turn the corner in improving literacy rates requires a redoubled commitment from all role-players which include curriculum developers, teachers and publishers. The challenge of preparing most South African learners for English as the language of learning while they are still mastering their mother tongue makes this particularly challenging. OUP is a global leader in emerging literacy and commit ourselves to sharing this expertise as widely as we can.”
Pan-African Literacy for All conferences, are important literacy events in Africa, providing a platform for literacy professionals and researchers to interface with policy makers in government and the donor community. They have taken place every two years since 1999 in countries including Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Swaziland and Uganda.
This year’s event will be run in association with the International Literacy Association (ILA) and the International Development Committee-Africa (IDC-A). It will be organised by RASA — a leading South African literacy organisation which regularly organises conferences that draw together most of the South African experts on literacy.
Associate Professor Karin Murris, Chair of the RASA/Pan-African 2015 Literacy Conference Committee, said: “To raise standards worldwide it is essential that everyone involved in teaching literacy learns how to engage the imagination systematically and to its full potential. The imagination is tied up with feelings and images, with wonder and excitement. From making learning engaging to making it possible to comprehend and critique a text, the imagination is an educational tool that needs to be nurtured, nourished and invested in. The conference will provide the theoretical and practical ideas to bring more imagination into your teaching, whether in school or at university.”
For further information about the conference go to
Some Oxford University book details
William and Dorothy Wordsworth: All in Each Other by Lucy Newlyn
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English for Academic Purposes by Robert R Jordan
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Born Free and Equal?: A Philosophical Inquiry Into the Nature of Discrimination by Lippert-Rasmussen Kasper
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A New University Anthology of English Poetry by M Anderson, edited by E Pereira, MC Andersen and SG Kossick
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Richard II: The Oxford Shakespeare by William Shakespeare
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Postcolonial Ecologies: Literatures of the Environment by Elizabeth DeLoughrey and George Handley
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Daily Exchange - Posting

If You Can't Listen, You Will Become Irrelevant: Nine Career-Damaging Bad Listening Habits and What You Can Do About Them

Listening is the single most important job skill you can have in the 21st century. by Ed Hess

New York, NY - Today, it seems "busyness" is the measure of success. We power through our emails, conference calls, and business lunches at breakneck speed. Unfortunately, all this frantic activity has taken a toll on our patience. The result is that we no longer stop to listen to one another—how can we when we're all so busy and important? The trouble, says Ed Hess, is that the ability that's getting lost in the shuffle is the very one MUST HAVE to be a viable player in today's workforce—the ability to truly listen.

"It used to be that the smartest guy in the room was the one who was constantly talking," says Hess, a professor at the University of Virginia's Darden Graduate School of Business and author of the new book Learn or Die: Using Science to Build a Leading-Edge Learning Organization. "Not anymore. Now, the smartest guy or gal in the room is the one who asks the right questions and then truly listens to what others have to say."

In other words, the ability to truly listen is the most important 21st century job skill. As Hess explains in Learn or Die, it's the core skill needed for the critical thinking, innovative thinking, collaboration, and real-time diagnosis and problem solving that only humans can do. And that's important because it allows you to stay employed as technology takes over more and more jobs that people used to perform.

"Whether you have a 'blue-collar' or a 'white-collar' job, the result is the same," notes Hess. "If what you do can be transformed into a software algorithm, technology will be able to do it faster and better than you. What technology won't be able to do in the near future is think critically and innovatively and emotionally relate to other humans. These abilities all require open-minded, non-judgmental, and non-defensive listening."

Unfortunately, many of us are terrible listeners who've picked up bad habits in order to stay afloat in today's fast-paced business environment. Read on to learn more about our worst listening habits and what can be done to fix them.

Thinking about your response before the speaker is finished. Most of us operate on autopilot much of the time. Our natural way of thinking is to confirm what we already believe, while our knee-jerk emotional reaction to new information is to engage in the three "Ds": to deny, defend, and deflect in order to protect our egos. When it comes to listening, here too our natural tendency is to confirm and defend; we focus more on ourselves than the person with whom we are speaking.

"Before the conversation begins, put yourself in a listening frame of mind with calmed emotions and a quiet ego," advises Hess. "Listening requires concentration: Be present, in the moment, with an open mind. Take two minutes to get into the right frame of mind by taking some deep breaths and saying to yourself, Listening is not about me and Slow down. Don't rush to conclusions. Seek to understand."

Finishing the speaker's sentence out loud or in your head. Today, we live in a constant state of "on to the next thing." Our schedules are jam-packed, and as a result, we slip into survival mode, trying to move things along as quickly as possible, regardless of how important the interaction is. We stop listening and instead finish our conversation partner's sentences in our heads. Of course, the downside is we don't always get it right.

"Again, we humans prefer to simply confirm what we already think," says Hess. "And trying to complete someone's sentences is one way of doing that. We start to think, Well, I've heard this a thousand times before. I know what he's going to say. And then we zone out. But you will miss important details when you allow yourself to do this. Good listeners are people who actively listen with the goal of truly trying to understand what the other person is saying. Only after understanding and reflecting does a good listener thoughtfully respond. Be aware that you're making assumptions and inferences. And fight it by using exploratory questions to gain a deeper understanding of what the person is saying."

Interrupting the speaker. Hess tells how when he was in school he would wave his hand ferociously while his teacher was still talking. He'd wave so ferociously that eventually she'd stop talking just to call on him. He learned to interrupt his teachers in order to be the first to give the right answer. He explains that it was his way of showing others how smart he was.

"Of course, we interrupt one another for a lot of reasons," says Hess. "But many of them can be boiled down to our need to show how smart we are. Either we're interrupting to correct the speaker or we're interrupting to get to a key point before the speaker can. I had to work hard to change my behavior. I learned that others would not think less of me if I listened, waited until they were through talking, and reflected on what they said before responding. To the contrary, by listening, inquiring, and reflecting before responding, people saw that I respected them by listening. That made my meetings more productive and my relationships stronger."

Letting your mind wander to think about something you think is more important. Multitasking has become a way of life for many of today's professionals. But more and more studies are showing just how ineffective and unproductive multitasking makes us. So, remember that the next time you're trying to think through one problem while you're in a conversation about another one.

"Go slow and reflect," advises Hess. "Intentionally think about what the other person is saying. Do you really understand? What did he or she really mean? Ask her if what you believe you heard is what she meant. Listening is not a competitive process; it is a relational one. It requires exploring another's thinking with an open mind."

Interpreting the speaker's message in a way that makes you feel comfortable or smart. Remember the three Ds—deny, defend, and deflect. Here again, they rear their ugly head. Good listening is not about you—it is about the speaker and trying to understand and relate to him or her.

"Let me reiterate," says Hess. "Listening is not about YOU! It is not a competition. It is not about you showing how smart you are. It is not about you winning. And in fact, when you do make it about you, I think you'll find you achieve the opposite. Instead of people thinking you're smart, they think you're rude, inconsiderate, and pompous. Listening is about you showing you care enough about the speaker to focus on trying to understand his or her view or situation."

Offering advice before being asked. You might try to convince yourself that giving other people advice is a great way to show that you've heard them out and want to help them. But deep down you know that's not true. Giving advice is really another way for you to validate your own opinions and make yourself feel smart.

"Maybe you think that a colleague or friend is sharing a story with you precisely because they want your advice," says Hess. "Well, that might be the case, but chances are what they need more is for someone to hear them out, to truly listen to what they have to say. Never, ever offer advice before being asked."

Sharing your own experience before fully exploring the speaker's experience. Your experiences are your experiences. They do not match up to everyone's reality. And in fact, in many cases, your view of the world will not even be accurate. It will be skewed by your preconceived notions and everything that you don't know that you don't know.

"This is another situation where well-timed questions will serve you much better than talking over someone or trying to interject your way into the conversation," notes Hess. "An effective rule to follow for breaking this habit is to always inquire before advocating and to always inquire much more than you advocate."

Defending yourself when receiving feedback. In his book, Hess writes about "Mr. Feedback," one of his early mentors. Mr. Feedback taught Hess how essential negative feedback is if you want to become the best in your field and the importance of pausing and reflecting rather than automatically defending, deflecting, or denying when you receive negative feedback. Hess writes that as he moved forward in his career, he realized how difficult it can be to get this kind of constructive feedback.

"Rather than getting the kind of specific, constructive feedback that can help us improve our skills, most of us will receive guarded or politically correct feedback that is fairly useless in practice," notes Hess. "Thoughtful and constructive feedback is a valuable thing, especially when you can foster your mindset to absorb and not deflect it, and it will only become more valuable as our workplaces become dominated by technology."

Critiquing the speaker instead of their idea. Here's another reaction we use to try to make ourselves look smarter rather than give the other person their moment in the sun. By critiquing a speaker instead of their idea, we're really seeking to discredit them in order to invalidate their idea—hoping our own idea will, then, rise to the top. "Of course, this can also be a natural defensive reaction," says Hess. "If someone disagrees with us, we attack them to try to even the playing field. But it's important that you always critique the idea, not the person giving it. Listening in a business context should focus on the merit of the idea and the credibility of the data provided to support it. The person presenting the idea should never be on trial."

"Learning to listen well takes practice—lots of practice," says Hess. "Grade yourself daily. Hold yourself accountable. If you are stuck on a bad behavior, seek out a good friend and ask them to help you uncover why you are having difficulty changing. When you work hard to improve your listening skills, you'll become a better collaborator—a necessary skill for critical and innovative thinking and being successful in the 21st century."

Edward D. Hess is a professor of business administration and Batten Executive-in-Residence at the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business and the author of 11 books, including Learn or Die: Using Science to Build a Leading-Edge Learning Organization, by Columbia Business School Publishing (September 2014).
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Russian startup helps users learn European languages in just one minute a day | Russia Beyond The Headlines

Russian startup helps users learn European languages in just one minute a day | Russia Beyond The Headlines | Metaglossia: The Translation World |
The Easy Ten Russian startup helps people learn any major European language in a short period of time.

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Easy Ten app employs an algorithm that helps the user determine thematic interests and create an individualized learning trajectory. Source: Alamy/Legion Media
According to Facebook statistics there are more than two million Anglophones in Brazil that would like to learn Portuguese. In Mexico there are almost 2.5 million Anglophones that would like to learn Spanish. In the U.S. there are more than 1.6 million Spanish speakers that need English and almost three million people that would like to learn Russian.
The Easy Ten Russian startup, whose application has been downloaded from the App Store 700,000 times (650,000 of these were in Russia), intends to enter the world market in spring 2015.
"We intend to become the only entry point for those wishing to learn foreign languages, as well as an instrument that could help teachers find new students and teach the ones they already have," says the company's founder Dmitri Zaryuta.

Test your Russian! Test 2
In Zaryuta's words, in comparison to other educational applications available on the market, Easy Ten's unique feature is the simplicity of its interface, as well as the clarity of its study process. Moreover, in using a single method for all languages, which is based on learning separate words, it allows one users to add new languages relatively quickly.
Currently, the application contains seven languages: Russian, English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German and French. It also has several interface languages including Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Turkish, which at present are not available for learning.
Altogether there are currently 70 language pairs. For example, a Chinese speaker can learn Portuguese, a German speaker can learn French and everyone can learn Russian.
Easy Ten's founder says that since launching the first version of the application some users have been able to learn more than 6,000 words. This is why Zaryuta believes that the potential for users is limitless. "Our dictionaries are at the same level for all languages, which is why there are no differences," he says.
Repetition, gamification and selection
The method of memorizing words in the application consists of four components: repetition, presenting the material in small portions, game models and the possibility to select what you want to learn.
Zaryuta says that to learn a word it must be repeated a certain number of times: "The intervals must be as long as possible in order to minimize the frequency of repetitions and create the effect of emptiness, but they must also be rather short so that the user will not completely forget the word."
Interval repetition minimizes forgetting and saves time, since the application optimizes this process. The first two repetitions take place in the course of the first day. The third is on the second day and the fourth is on the fourth day. The fifth is on the eighth day and the seventh repetition is introduced on the 30th day.
The presentation of the material in small portions (from one to 20 words per day) is based on a statistic computed by, an authoritative service that analyzes mobile applications. According to this statistic, users of educational applications can add vocabulary in as little as 56 seconds per day.

Why do you need to learn Russian?
The gamification process has the user competing with themselves: they take exams that test their knowledge of words and either receive or lose points. After each "circle" they are given a choice: either to go ahead or to beat their own record. With each exam the application suggests new tests, increases the user's involvement and exercises all aspects of their memory.
As for personalization, the user is provided with choices regarding the theme, course and selection of words from the teacher. Alternatively, the application can also make its own recommendations.
Easy Ten employs an algorithm that helps the user determine thematic interests and create an individualized learning trajectory.
"The application takes into consideration the content region that each unique student uses,” says Zaryuta. “For example does the user want vocabulary related to domestic animals, cars or Elvis Presley? No one has ever produced such a mobile gadget."
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