Transparent Language Contributes to Endangered Language Preservation Program

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BASAbali organizes project to create learning materials for endangered Balinese language.

Every language, however small or far from mainstream society, has people who care about that language.

Transparent Language Inc., a leading provider of language-learning technology for government, education, corporations, libraries, and consumers, has teamed up with BASAbali in support of the first multimedia materials for the teaching of Balinese. The project, launched February 11, 2013, is distributed by BASAbali free of charge to nonprofit organizations and community groups, and sold to individuals at a modest fee ($25 or by donation). The fee will help cover the costs of maintaining and updating the program, as well as an internship program, which will send Balinese university linguistic students into Balinese elementary schools to teach the endangered language. Materials created for this project will also be available to any public library or school that subscribes to the Transparent Language Online system.

“Threatened with decline from nationalism, globalization, and technology, the Balinese are in a unique position to revitalize their language for themselves and as a gift to the rest of the world,” says Alissa Stern, Executive Director at BASAbali. “Transparent Language’s generous donation of their software, their technical expertise, and their support of Balinese is helping this to happen.”

Transparent Language has spent over ten years and millions of dollars developing unique and compelling web, mobile, and social technology for the teaching and learning of LCTLs (Less Commonly Taught Languages). These systems and processes were created to address specialized US Government requirements that revolve around less-common and under-supported languages, as well as specialized language domains.

The tools and technologies developed to meet those requirements are particularly well-suited for the highly-specialized nature of the BASAbali language project. Transparent Language has supported the BASAbali project both through the production of Balinese language-learning materials and by providing technical support and consultation throughout the project. The resulting Balinese learning program consists of 24 dialogue-based videos, language exercises, and grammatical notes that focus on modern, conversational Balinese, plus interactive modules that teach the language’s endangered script.

“Every language, however small or far from mainstream society, has people who care about that language, even if it’s only the few surviving speakers and the worldwide community of advocates of all endangered languages,” says Michael Quinlan, CEO of Transparent Language, Inc. “Transparent is willing to donate the rights to use its tools and technologies to benefit languages that currently attract little or no commercial interest—the earth’s other 6,000 languages.”

To learn more about the Transparent Language Heritage and Endangered Languages Preservation Program, visit http://www.transparent.com/about/endangered-languages.html.

About BASAbali

BASA: Balinese Language Preservation Corp is a 501(c)(3) organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to bring together experts on Balinese language and culture to create the first multimedia language materials for spoken Balinese and the endangered Balinese script and to more generally promote the use and understanding of Balinese. BASAbali will donate all of its materials to nonprofit organizations free of charge.

About Transparent Language, Inc.

At Transparent Language, we leverage our expertise in the research and practice of language learning to build programs for use by many US Government agencies and organizations, as well as thousands of schools, hundreds of public libraries, and millions of individuals. Our mission is to help language learners better communicate and engage with all of the world’s people. We believe that a key to American success and world prosperity is the ability to understand and appreciate one another. Since 1991, we have worked to make this happen, one school, library, organization or person at a time.

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Chuck McGonagle
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