Finno-Ugric Online Phrasebook to Start Being Made Up in Russia

A group of developers from Mari El and Komi has started making up an online Finno-Ugric phrasebook. The initiator and customer of the innovation product is the ministry of national policy of the Komi Republic.

The project is complemented on the bases of the Russian Media Center FINUGOR.RU, the phrasebook will be put in an open access on the website of the Finno-Ugric electronic library FULIB.RU and on the digital providing portal of the Finno-Ugric languages MARLAMUTER.RU.

The goal of the phrasebook developers is to make up the body with more than 1,000 the most frequent words and word-combinations of everyday life of the languages of 11 Finno-Ugric peoples. The list includes the Hungarian, Karelian, Komi, Mansi, Komi-Permyak, Mari, Moksha, Erzya, Udmurt, Finnish, and Khanty languages, as well as international languages: Russian and English. Experienced linguists from different regions of the country participate in the project.

As the minister of national policy Valery Korobov stated, adoption of new information technologies in the developmental sphere of the Komi language is one of the priorities in the ministry activity. “Making up an online phrasebook is a logical continuation of our collaboration with colleagues from Finno-Ugric regions. We are further going to support projects connected with innovation technologies,” the minister noted.

The coordinator of the project Andrey Chemyshev, taking active part in work on adoption the Mari language in the Internet, thinks that making an online phrasebook plays an important role in functioning of the Finno-Ugric languages in new infomedia. “The more such projects appear, the more modern the language will be among young people, the rising generation,” he noted. “To retain any language in the current age of changing the informational civilizations, we need the integrated measures which will allow us to fulfill some tasks. The given project can be considered as one of the step to retain our Finno-Ugric languages. The main thing for this work is not to stop. I think that after this phrasebook has been made, other Finno-Ugric regions should work further on it.”

The project is starting in December 2010. As the editorial staff of the Media Center FINUGOR.RU noted, the online phrasebook will be published under a free license that will allow all volunteers to use and develop it on their own. The body of words and word-combinations will be increased from 1,000 to 1,500 items. The phrase book will be available in three versions: on websites, a short version by the cell phones, and after downloading in off-line mode on the computer.

For detailed information consult:
Yuriy Popov, editor-in-chief of the Media Center FINUGOR.RU
Tel/Fax: +7 8212 216 711, Mob. + 7 922 272 49 90
E-mail: popov@komionline.ru

Finno-Ugric Media Centre

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