Monday, January 15, 2007

Destinazione Italia

Destinazione Italia is a project of the University of Bamberg. It provides training for people learning an advanced level of Italian. Bamberg is a German University and many of its students are German. Many of the students do have a different mother tongue. Learning a third language based on the knowledge of a second language is less effective than learning based on the knowledge of the mother tongue.

I am really proud to announce that OmegaWiki has been selected by the University of Bamberg as the platform that will host the lexicological information for "Destinazione Italia". The initial phase of the project will create a lot of Italian based DefinedMeanings. In the second phase we will translate these words to English, German and Spanish. The third phase is to find translations in as many other languages as we can get.

Research done by Zdenek Broz learned, that when the combination of quality translations of German, English and Spanish is found, it will allow the inclusion of translations of other languages when these translations are shared in a different resource. According to Zdenek's figures this will get us an accuracy of around, probably better than 95%.

There is a budget to get us many translations in other languages. The sweet thing is, when we are able to provide quality translations, the budget can be used for other things. This can be to improve the OmegaWiki usability, it can also be to spend money on a language that is not part of the initial list of languages "Destinazione Italia" supports.

The challenge is therefore, how much can we do with a limited budget. What will be the added value of creating content in a Wiki environment. When will OmegaWiki reach the tipping point where collaboration in OmegaWiki is the obvious thing to do, "Destinazione Italia" will help us reach that point. :)


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