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Indirect contribution guide

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(Create catalog resources)
(fix some bad English, delete some stuff I can't even begin to understand, remove assumptions of a mentor -- this is meant to be a '''general''' guide, not for GCI specifically: it's a bit late now!)
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#* If they do, ask them to help you.
 
#* If they do, ask them to help you.
 
#* If you know more than one person who speaks the language, you will finish the job faster and better
 
#* If you know more than one person who speaks the language, you will finish the job faster and better
#** If friend is busy, queue your questions and write them later.
+
#** If your friend is busy, queue your questions and write them later.
 
#Get a textbook for the language that you don't know.
 
#Get a textbook for the language that you don't know.
 
#* For some languages this is not a good idea.
 
#* For some languages this is not a good idea.
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#** They are expensive.
 
#** They are expensive.
 
#* Look on the Internet for textbooks.
 
#* Look on the Internet for textbooks.
#** There are many textbooks and it is a good idea to see more than one.
+
#** There are many textbooks and it is a good idea to look at more than one.
   
 
===Create catalog resources===
 
===Create catalog resources===
   
Your job is to catalogue all the available linguistic resources.
+
The task is to catalogue as many of the available linguistic resources as possible.
   
 
;Lingistic resouces.
 
;Lingistic resouces.
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* papers.
 
* papers.
 
* corpora.
 
* corpora.
* and more ...
+
* and more...
   
;How to do it ?
+
;How to do it?
 
* Use Google of course.
 
* Use Google of course.
 
* And anouther search engines like:
 
* And anouther search engines like:
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** Duck Duck Go.
 
** Duck Duck Go.
   
You can see all search engines [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_search_engine here]
+
See also Wikipedia's article about [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_search_engine search engines].
   
 
===Create translation===
 
===Create translation===
Your job is to translate text to another language.
+
The task is to translate text to another language. You should speak the target language (the language you are translating to) natively or near natively to translate -- if you can't, it's best to leave the translation to someone who does.
To create translation the language must be native to you or you are very good at it.<br />
 
   
;Follow these tips.
+
;Some tips.
* If you don't sure about something ask native speaker or, if it's possible, a specialist.
+
* If you aren't sure about something, ask a native speaker or, if possible, a specialist.
* You must not change the meaning what you translating.
+
* You must not change the meaning of what you translating.
** Follow the meaning not he words.
+
** Follow the meaning, not the words.
* This is write translation:
 
** There is no need to hurry.
 
** More time = better translation.
 
 
* You must pay attention to language nuances.
 
* You must pay attention to language nuances.
 
* You must pay attention to the tenses.
 
* You must pay attention to the tenses.
 
* Follow the original style:
 
* Follow the original style:
** If the text style is wordy,colloquial,funny... follow it.
+
** If the text style is wordy, colloquial, funny... follow it.
** Pay attention to the punctuation marks and what is text for.
+
** Pay attention to the punctuation.
   
 
; Pay attention!
 
; Pay attention!
* Don't make translation if you don't know the language!
+
* Don't translate if you don't know the language!
* Don't take translation task if you know that you can't do it!
+
* Don't take a translation task if you know that you can't do it!
* Don't take translation task if you don't have the time to do it!
+
* Don't take a translation task if you don't have the time to do it!
   
 
===Convert dictionaries===
 
===Convert dictionaries===
Your job is to translate words. <br />
+
Your job is to translate words.
If you translate verbs, look in what tense you must translate them:
+
If you are translating verbs in a language with aspect pairs (i.e., Slavic languages), tag the aspect:
 
*perf = perfective.
 
*perf = perfective.
 
*imperf = imperfective.
 
*imperf = imperfective.
   
;How to do it ?
+
;How to do it?
* It is a good idea to have friends that speak that language.
+
* If you have friends who speak the language, ask for their help.
** You can ask him some words or to check your that you had written before.
+
* Look in a dictionary.
* Look in dictionary.
 
 
** You can buy a dictionary, they are not very expansive.
 
** You can buy a dictionary, they are not very expansive.
** You can search for free dictionary in the web.
+
** You can search for a free dictionary on the web.
** It's a good idea to do the both.
+
** It's a good idea to do both.
* If something is wrote somewhere check it in different place.
+
* Double check: don't rely on a single source.
   
;Where and how to write the words ?
+
<!-- A **good** example is required here. Copy and paste one, don't try to invent junk -->
* Ask your mentor about that, but you can do it in XML and send them file.
 
   
XML markup looks like this:
+
Examples:
 
<pre> <e><p><l>First language<s n="vblex"/><s n="perf/imperf"/><s n="tv"/></l><r>Seccond language<s n="vblex"/><s n="imperf"/></r></p></e> </pre>
 
 
Examples: <br />
 
   
 
Bulgarian&rarr;Russian
 
Bulgarian&rarr;Russian
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** Inform the mentors.
 
** Inform the mentors.
 
** Correct them.
 
** Correct them.
*Ask mentors is there another way to help .
+
*Ask on IRC or the mailing list (or, if you have one, your mentor) if there is another way to help.

Revision as of 22:05, 2 January 2011

Contents

Many people come to us with a question like "I'm not a programmer/linguist/whatever. Is there any way I can contribute?". This document is intended to show how you can make an "indirect" contribution, by documenting language resources, helping us to build bilingual test sets, translating, promoting, etc.

About This Tutorial

This tutorial will teach you:

  • How to create contrastive analyses.
  • How to catalog resources.
  • How to convert dictionaries.
  • How to translate.
  • How to help "Apertium" in other ways .

Basics

When in doubt, ask!

If you are participating as part of a programme such as Google Summer of Code, or Google Code-In, ask your mentor. Otherwise, ask for help on the IRC channel, or on the mailing list. Use the talk pages on the wiki -- leave your questions there, so you don't need to remember them later!

Create contrastive analyses

A 'contrastive analysis' is a set of example sentences which show the differences and similarities between a pair of languages. In a sense, it's a 'feature corpus' which we can use to develop and test rule hypotheses: if we see that the pattern noun + adjective becomes adjective + noun, then we have a good basis for building a rule. Think of it as 'raw input to a linguist': when we have a good enough idea of what a pair of languages look like, we later use these analyses to build translation rules.

One thing to note is that, when we see that something happens 9/10 times, or 8/10 times, etc., then we need to expand that exceptional part of the analysis, to get a better idea of what's happening: is it a certain class of words, or just a pure exception?

What you must do.

Your task is to make a set of test sentences in the first language, and translate them to the other. A translation in a third language may be useful in enlisting help, but is not required.

A sample sentence in wiki markup looks like this:

* {{test|First language abbreviation|First language.|Second language.|Other translation.}}

Examples:

* {{test|ru|Чашка большая.|Чашата е голямата.|The cup is big.}}

* {{test|el|Τι γίνεσαι?|как си?|How are you?}}

* {{test|bg|Вера се оглежда в огледалото.|Вера смотрит на себя в зеркало.|Vera is looking at herself in the mirror.}}

The following is a suggested list of features to provide coverage for. All language pairs have slightly different needs, but this list should provide a good general guideline.

  1. Simple syntax
    • Copula
    • Reported speech
    • Clitic placement
  2. Pronouns
    • Personal
    • Demonstrative
    • Relative
    • Possesive
    • Reflexive
    • Interrogative
  3. Nouns
    • General
    • Indefinite and definite forms
    • 1 Noun phrases
    • Indefinite (a, some)
    • Definite (the)
    • Demonstrative (this, that)
    • Quantified (a few, no, all)
  4. Numerals
    • Cardinal
    • Ordinal
  5. Adjective
    • Comparative
    • Superlative
  6. Adverbs
  7. Verbs
    • To be
    • General
    • Indicative mood
      • Present tense
      • Imperfect tense
      • Aorist tense
      • Perfect tense
      • Pluperfect tense
      • Future tense
    • Conditional mood
    • Imperative mood
  8. Questions

If you want you can also add

  1. Interjections
  2. Punctuation marks

You can find some examples here: Bulgarian and Russian, Bulgarian and Greek.

How can you do it ?

This is quite an easy task if you know both languages. However, if you only know one language well, concentrate on translating to that language. We can always find help with the other direction later, and it helps to know what we need to find help with.

That said, if you know people who can help, ask them to help you!

Some tips:

  1. Ask your friends if they know the language you don't know.
    • If they do, ask them to help you.
    • If you know more than one person who speaks the language, you will finish the job faster and better
      • If your friend is busy, queue your questions and write them later.
  2. Get a textbook for the language that you don't know.
    • For some languages this is not a good idea.
      • They are hard to find.
      • They are expensive.
    • Look on the Internet for textbooks.
      • There are many textbooks and it is a good idea to look at more than one.

Create catalog resources

The task is to catalogue as many of the available linguistic resources as possible.

Lingistic resouces.
  • wordlists.
  • grammatical descriptions.
  • wordlists.
  • dictionaries.
  • spellcheckers.
  • papers.
  • corpora.
  • and more...
How to do it?
  • Use Google of course.
  • And anouther search engines like:
    • ScienceDirect.
    • JSTOR.
    • Duck Duck Go.

See also Wikipedia's article about search engines.

Create translation

The task is to translate text to another language. You should speak the target language (the language you are translating to) natively or near natively to translate -- if you can't, it's best to leave the translation to someone who does.

Some tips.
  • If you aren't sure about something, ask a native speaker or, if possible, a specialist.
  • You must not change the meaning of what you translating.
    • Follow the meaning, not the words.
  • You must pay attention to language nuances.
  • You must pay attention to the tenses.
  • Follow the original style:
    • If the text style is wordy, colloquial, funny... follow it.
    • Pay attention to the punctuation.
Pay attention!
  • Don't translate if you don't know the language!
  • Don't take a translation task if you know that you can't do it!
  • Don't take a translation task if you don't have the time to do it!

Convert dictionaries

Your job is to translate words. If you are translating verbs in a language with aspect pairs (i.e., Slavic languages), tag the aspect:

  • perf = perfective.
  • imperf = imperfective.
How to do it?
  • If you have friends who speak the language, ask for their help.
  • Look in a dictionary.
    • You can buy a dictionary, they are not very expansive.
    • You can search for a free dictionary on the web.
    • It's a good idea to do both.
  • Double check: don't rely on a single source.


Examples:

Bulgarian→Russian

<e><p><l>обяснява<s n="vblex"/><s n="imperf"/><s n="tv"/></l><r>обяснять<s n="vblex"/><s n="imperf"/></r></p></e>

<e><p><l>напише<s n="vblex"/><s n="perf"/><s n="tv"/></l><r>написать<s n="vblex"/><s n="perf"/></r></p></e>

Other

Other ways to help.
  • If you find mistakes in translation or pending test.
    • Inform the mentors.
    • Correct them.
  • Ask on IRC or the mailing list (or, if you have one, your mentor) if there is another way to help.
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