The Inuit language and Ubuntu

Corey Burger corey.burger at
Tue May 3 23:21:41 UTC 2005

On 5/3/05, Ryan Thiessen <ryan at> wrote:
> On Mon, 2 May 2005, Corey Burger wrote:
> > Hey All,
> >
> > Currently, there is not much support for Inuktitut in any computer
> > software. Thus it occured to me that we should remedy this. The plan
> > has several facets, some of which are very ambitious.
> >
> > So here is where we need to go for this to work:
> >
> > 1. Determine what is already translated and get as much of that into
> > Ubuntu as we can. This google search might be a good start:
> >
> > 2. Identify key people to help us move forward. This would be mostly
> > university people and other translators working in this space.
> > 3. Acquire funding to further translation work, with the goal of 100%
> > translation. This should primarily from the federal gov.
> > 4. Work with Nunavut and NWT local charities to place computers in
> > small communities and provide some training.
> > 5. Set up a framework to allow the maintenance translation work to continue.
> >
> > All of this will work within the framework of Ubuntu, without really
> > needed to create a deriv.
> >
> > Thoughts?
> >
> > Corey
> This seems like a good task for Rosetta, the Canonical developed tool to
> translate applications into various languages.
> if you want to check it out.  Right
> now there aren't even many English Canadian translations (though, I'm note
> entirely clear myself how english-ca is different from english-gb).
> Maybe that would be a good project to start with, getting some of the
> Canadian spellings into the various applications in Rosetta, and then we
> would have the required experience to show people how it is done.
> A good starter application might be AbiWord, since that is a good
> user-focused application that can be used on windows and Ubuntu, and it's
> also in Rosetta.  If we could get AbiWord working completely in Inuktitut,
> we could have something practical to get more Inuktitut speakers excited
> and contributing to a larger Ubuntu translation project.  Does anyone know
> of an Inuktitut speaker who might be willing to work on that translation
> project?
> Otherwise, I have no better ideas than Cory -- you could probably get a
> grant from the federal government to do it.  Maybe Inuktitut speakers
> already have some experience with this process, I have no idea how to go
> about that myself.  To be honest I don't even know where to start looking
> for this.

This project has 2 major components:
1. Get Ubuntu translated
2. Get Ubuntu out there

For the first, we need some specific things:
1. A GPL-ed font. This font (, we need
to find out if we can get  a gpl-ed version.
2. Start contacting university language departments. We can probably
get some profs to make this a phd for a student.
3. Start contacting existing translators.
( This google search
will lead us to some emails.

Once we start building the community and we see what we have, we can
start figuring out what we need a grant for.


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