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Wednesday, February 15, 2023

3D-Printed Models Help Preserve Endangered Languages

Quite surprising work.  Can you 3D Print Languages to preserve them?  

Researchers' 3D-Printed Models Help Preserve Endangered Languages

Interesting Engineering, Nergis Firtina, February 10, 2023

Researchers at the U.K.'s University College London (UCL) have leveraged three-dimensional (3D) printing to preserve ancient and endangered languages. Their method of producing 3D-printed objects is based on language patterns and syntax, with a focus on the evidential grammatical system. The researchers concentrated on the Amazonian language Tariana, in which speakers must explain the type of evidence being transmitted, with a hierarchy ranging from direct observation to information repeated from another person. To create a 3D shape, the researchers plotted the numerical values derived from evidential on the Z axis, the number of syllables on the Y axis, and the timeline on the X axis. Said UCL's Alex Pillen, "By producing the geometry of grammar in 3D, we allow people to have an immediate intuitive relationship to these languages that are under threat — or that might disappear." .... 

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