How artificial intelligence is helping keep Indigenous languages alive

2MBG96A FILE - Books written in the Quechua Indigenous language sit behind a student during a class on medicinal plants, at a public primary school in Licapa, Peru, Wednesday, Sept. 1, 2021. About 10 million people speak Quechua, but trying to automatically translate emails and text messages into the most widely spoken Indigenous language family in the Americas was nearly impossible before Google introduced it into its digital translation service Wednesday, May 11, 2022. The internet giant says new artificial intelligence technology is enabling it to vastly expand Google Translate?s repertoire of the

Books written in Quechua sit behind a student at a primary school in Licapa, Peru

Associated Press/Alamy

LEARNING a language used to mean sitting in a classroom and memorising hundreds of words. But thanks to apps like Duolingo, you can take a quick French lesson on your phone between meetings. Or you can use Google Translate to help you read French instead. As miraculous as these apps are, they don’t work for everyone – especially if you speak an Indigenous language in regions like North America or New Zealand, where European settlers made …

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