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Communication and Information Activities

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Initiative B@bel

Giving access to information by promoting linguistic and cultural diversity in Cyberspace

This strategy intends to support a selected number of concrete activities aimed at widening access to the use of information in all languages on the Internet.
It has the following objectives:
  • Supporting specific language projects that increase the number of national languages and scripts on-line (as today computer language identification systems can address only some 400 out of some 6000 languages in use worldwide and 36 of at least 50 unique scripts); these can be based on initial research (i.e. Universal Network language (UNL) of the UN University Institute of Advanced Languages; the Summer Institute of Languages (SIL International); the EU; etc.) on smart fonts, rendering systems, keyboard and conversion utilities;

  • Participating in core technology development projects for the non-Roman scripts to make information accessible at a more affordable price in a wider range of languages;

  • Assisting existing libraries, archives and museums in networking, site conception, digitization, etc. in order to make their collections freely accessible in several languages on the global information networks;

  • Supporting projects that develop and promote the use of interoperable multilingual resources enhancing affordable access to information on the Internet: online dictionaries, virtual terminology network (i.e. TDCNet of MLIS), multilingual search engines, multilingual indexing of contents, multilingual voice searching that aim to aid in enhancing online translation capabilities, describing and promoting minority, lesser used and endangered languages (especially those whose unity can be strengthened through informatics);

  • Assisting Member States in developing language educational materials freely accessible on-line.