(image source - Pixabay)
Hive has incredible linguistic potential, mostly because of its users.
Collection of human voices of Hive users
Additional goals and motivation
Logic behind the name
There’s a huge amount of different linguistic materials/activities happening on Hive already, and the purpose of LinguaHills is to help to organize them.
There’re (were) 3 main aspects of LinguaHills initiative:
- Collection of human voices of Hive users
- Translation service
- Virtual cultures
Now, the 3rd one is similar to what the Hive user whatamidoing recently introduced with “Language Exchange!” (now rebranded as "Hive Cross Culture ! Community") community.
As I mentioned under one of his posts, I don’t see a reason to create something similar from scratch/reinvent the wheel, and LinguaHills will most likely try to collaborate on this matter with that community. Just want to mention some thoughts on this Virtual cultures thing. The idea was that what all of us (no matter who we are) have is our language knowledge. The thinking process itself happens with the help of images and words. And everyone could monetize their language skills (unless you have some problems with vocal apparatus or some other conditions like short sight) just by talking in your native language with language learners and sharing information about your culture.
The "Hive Cross Culture ! Community" community can be much effective than books when it comes to language learning, because our culture sort of keeps us up-to-date in our language knowledge, while the books usually become outdated very quickly. Seems like LinguaHills and “Hive Cross Culture ! Community” could complement each other. Possibly, though, it would be even better to unite them and create just one linguistic ecosystem.
Anyway, I’d like to share my vision on how linguistic ecosystem on Hive could look like and get some feedback on this from Hive users.
Before talking about the first 2 aspects, I’d like to mention that users are the gold for this initiative (well, not just this one, of course).
Without the users initiatives like LinguaHills will not exist/will be worthless.
Collection of human voices of Hive users
Well, this is what has already been created to some extent on Hive with the help of dTube, dSound, 3Speek and some other apps. But all those human voices records are kind of disorganized and there’s a lack of some specific materials (videos/audio-records on how to pronounce the sound of our languages). This is where dLingua comes in to play. I’m just an amateur programmer and built this dLingua prototype during StemGeek’s Hackathon held almost 1 week ago. Prior to It, I’ve never dealt with blockchains or Vue.js/Nuxt.js. So, don’t judge me. There’s a lot of work to do with it, but it already has some basic functionalities (like Log in/Log out, searching for posts with specific tags, voting) and will help to show you what I’m talking about here. You can find more details about it in my entry post for that Hackathon.
(STEMGeek's Hackathon #1. dLingua. Making progress with linguistic ecosystem on Hive)
In a nutshell, you click on the country you’re interested in (I made some test posts from my second account (wti18n) for Russia and Brazil (you will not see posts for any for other countries because they don’t exist yet (this is where Hive users come into play))), and you would get presented with windows which help you to find posts published on Hive with
a) texts in different languages (possibly even bilingual posts) accompanied by audio-versions of those texts created by the authors. This audio-versions are incredibly useful for language learners (‘cause you can read and listen to what you’re reading simultaneously).
b) phonetics. Well, the idea is to collect materials created by Hive users about all the sounds mentioned in International Phonetic Alphabet
a standardized representation of the sounds of spoken language
and create tables with sounds for each language so that we could click on a particular sound and get audio/video and text information on how to pronounce it, its history and more. It will require a lot of work but I guess it’d cool to have this on Hive.
Note that the sounds are accompanied with their codes in Unicode. This is because for the dLingua to pick up specific posts we need to provide specific tags (Unicode codes for sounds in this case). Seems like Peakd and other interfaces don’t allow to use special characters as tags, so it will not be possible to search for some sounds, and the usage of Unicode codes helps to overcome this problem (they can be used as tags).
(for more info => Phonetic symbols for English, with Unicode hex numbers)
So, you click on a sound or its code, and you get presented with posts about this specific sound.
Just to give you an idea of what phonetic materials I'm talking about
(Short Vowel. Pronunciation Tips)
c) users who could either create audio-versions for your posts in different languages (and for this we may need translation service), or could be a language partner for you to learn the language you’re interested in (this is where dLingua could help “Language Exchange!” initiative).
We have initiatives like Librivox, where volunteers from around the world help to create audiobooks
They are volunteers who get nothing except that their names are mentioned in the audio-records. And Hive being a blockchain could provide them and Hive users an opportunity to be rewarded for their language skills.
dLingua ultimately could turn into text-to-speech service provider as for Hive users, as for clients outside of Hive ecosystem.
I’ll provide detailed examples of how a post for each aforementioned category could look like in a few days.
Well, there’s not much I could talk about yet. Possibly there will be an additional option on dLingua where you could also choose translators for your posts or a separate app, I don’t know yet.
I just would like to mention that there’s a big problem with language barrier in science. A lot of scientific knowledge (which could benefit all of us) presented in papers/articles gets lost because of it. Well, translation service is important for Hive ecosystem (not just scientific posts) as well, of course.
Also we could try to set a service for subtitles creation.
Additional goals and motivation
Aside from what I described above, LinguaHills (or similar initiatives) could help with
Yes, I think that some users may turn into plagiarists not because they are evil in their core, but because they can’t present information in English, and their native (not popular) language will not allow them to get rewards they deserve. Translation service may help with this problem a little I guess.
Now, there’re drawbacks with this translation service.
Well, to be fair, this is what is happening on Hive without any linguistic communities. Every time you publish your post on Hive (and other social platforms) you help to preserve your language.
In a nutshell, language preservation is important because according to linguistic relativity (Sapir–Whorf) hypothesis different languages differently shape the way we think.
Languages are “living things” which die quite quickly
We're losing about one language a week, and by some estimates, half of the world's languages will be gone in the next hundred years.
Lera Boroditsky 
And there’re more than 7,110 languages spoken across the world .
To get more details, you can read my post
(TranslateMe (or Decentralization meets Translation industry). Introduction) (“Why would we even need to somehow preserve languages? (Why not just let them die, if all that we need is just to have a reliable way of communication?)" section).
or you can watch Lera Boroditsky
So, if we publish and translate posts only in/into English and don’t encourage Hive users publishing in their native languages, we help to eliminate those “living things”.
Possibly, it would make sense to find a way (maybe even with the help of Hive Proposal system) to incentivize users (raising fund for them) publishing their posts in their native languages (even if they are very unpopular).
Logic behind the name
Well, LinguaHills originates from
lingua + anthills (nests in the form of a mound built by ants or termites (Oxford Dictionary of English, 3rd Edition))
Anthills could serve as metaphor for different aspects of LinguaHills ecosystem to tell a story/narrative about this initiative and help to remember it. Just like ants unite their efforts to build the anthills, LinguaHills contributors (“ants”) will (possibly) unite and collaborate to collect linguistic materials and help to build LinguaHills (a separate hill for each aspect of the ecosystem).
If you for some reasons don’t like the name, feel free to make suggestions.
I’ll provide details on what you could publish to LinguaHills community a little later with some examples of posts for each category of dLingua.
Note that this is the work in progress. A lot can be changed in the future. Consider this post as a draft intro to LinguaHills community mostly to get some feedback.
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