Re: Salish-Kootenay keyboards

From: William J Poser (
Date: Tue Sep 19 2006 - 10:43:03 CDT

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    >You seemtohave just demonstrated that these rare languages won't be
    >supported by a lot of native people. So the use will be mostly academic,
    >and nothing demonstrates that English will be the primary language known
    >by those studying old languages. The academic community will use various
    >international keyboards, and they may have documents in the public
    >libraries of various European countries, even if they know English.

    I was thinking, in the short term, of the tribal members involved
    in language work, who are English-speakers. As it happens the
    linguists who have done extensive work on Flathead and Kootenai
    are also English-speakers. In the longer term it is true that
    it will most likely be scholars who work with such materials and
    we don't know what their first languages will be, though Chinese
    and Hindi are likely candidates. On the other hand, I don't know
    how much future scholars will engage in extensive typing in extinct
    languages. One does that for entering material in the first place,
    but once it is entered, it either gets transformed en masse or
    little bits are typed to be commented upon.

    Incidentally, the lexical databases for Flathead and for Montana
    Kootenai use pure ASCII. They are Shoebox-style flat files
    that are transformed by software (which I wrote, that is how I
    know this) into TeX to be printed. I don't know what representation
    is used in the text collections.


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