User:Slowking4/Mobile audio upload app grant

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Mobile audio upload app draft

  • proposal
  • mission aligned
  • new ground
  • qualitative difference


many languages may well be lost, if not transcribed and translated, before elder speakers pass on. many programs exist, but are proprietary, and less portable.


1 - phone app to record indigenous languages, which links each file to a wikipedia article, for community use

2 - process to upload of recordings to commons, with links to wikipedia articles

3 - process to link to recordings in commons, with a link from each file


5 year clock is ticking - elders passing


Similar initiatives[edit]

Grant award of $101,501 (US) to a similar project, Aug. 2012[edit]

"Mark Liberman of the University of Pennsylvania is piloting a project to use mobile telephones to collect larger amounts of data on undocumented endangered languages than would ever be possible through usual fieldwork."
"NEH and NSF Award $4.5 Million to Preserve Languages Threatened With Extinction". National Endowment for the Humanities. 2012-08-09. Retrieved 2012-08-29. 

2013 Android application, Aikuma, for Internet Archive, described as a "Digital Rosetta Stone"[edit]

This project aims to collect for the Internet Archive.[1] "Aikuma, an Android app for preserving the last words of the world’s endangered languages, has won a team of researchers at the University of Melbourne the Grand Prize in the Open Source Software World Challenge 2013."[2] Sponsors:

  • The Australian Research Council, the US National Science Foundation, and the Swiss National Science Foundation.


  • speech analysis, translation algorithms, and user interface design

Measures of success / how it works[edit]

  • Works with Android and iPhone
  • Records .mp3 (possible audio)
  • Pull up Wikipedia article on phone, click "Record audio about this article", enter "Name of language"
  • Click "Upload this article"
  • Appears on article page, "Audio and video links associated with this article"

Google Endangered Languages Collaboration[edit]

Google Endangered Languages Collaboration[edit]

Hello Amqui! We could certainly contribute links to Wikipedias, Wiktionaries, Wikisources, Wikinews, Wikiquote in endangered languages.

Another thing we might be able to do would be provide an opportunity for crowdsourcing transcriptions of documents or audio files. This was under discussion at Wikimania 2012 as a GLAM collaboration with Old Weather, and in the sessions on collaborations with libraries.

It's interesting to see that First Voices is involved in the Google collaboration. We might be able to provide images for some of the digital language archives so they don't all have to create their own illustrations, or develop a core set of photos to illustrate teaching materials.

Wikiquote could be a good way to help develop conversational materials. Then the young folks asking grandma to say something can make the project more fun and engaging for everybody. People don't sit around all day speaking pattern sentences like "This dog is running. That dog is running fast. One dog is running. Two dogs are running fast." They say things like, "Hey, is that your cat sitting over there under the chair?" "Well, actually, you could pound the acorns with a rock, but me, I just pop my acorns in the blender ..." "You need to reach under the girth and tickle that horse so he stops holding his breath, then cinch the saddle up tight." (No point in teaching people how to be boring and just say boring stuff, is there?) I've noticed that the Kutenai and Blackfoot seem to have a fair number of entertaining conversational phrases ... We could use Wikiquote as a way to help people find examples of everyday things to say, and come up with some interesting material for elicitation.

Had some discussions about using Wikipedia and Wiktionary as a resource for endangered languages at Wikimania, as I was trying to find out what would need to happen to make mobile audio upload easy.

My idea was that we could pull up a Wiktionary definition or a Wikipedia article on a mobile phone (possibly an offline Wikipedia article), click a "record button" at the top of the definition or article, and then use the mobile phone to record an audio or video clip of an elder / native speaker. The clip would then appear at the bottom of the Wiktionary or Wikipedia page with a name like "Wiktionary definition native speaker phone upload audio link number 1." (You could edit the name later as needed). Seems to me that Google should be able to provide this functionality pretty easily with the Android operating system ...

Anything you've been interested in suggesting? How do we submit these things? Djembayz (talk) 03:47, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

Potential contacts from Wikimania 2012[edit]

Existing sound archiving examples[edit]

Potential partner organizations[edit]

United States[edit]


Do-it-yourself language documentation[edit]


  1. "Preserving Endangered Languages using Aikuma Android App". 2013-06-05. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  2. Rahilly, Annie (2013-12-09). "Digital Rosetta Stone wins software challenge". Retrieved 2013-12-21. 

See also[edit]