MIT2 Strategic Partner POLDERLAND develops Papiamentu spellchecker for Microsoft® Word
June 13, 2001
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Polderland Language & Speech Technology, Nijmegen, The Netherlands, has developed a spellchecker for Papiamentu, a language widely spoken on Bonaire and Curaçao in the Dutch Caribbean. Even though Dutch is the official primary language, Papiamentu is widely used on the Leeward Islands of the Dutch Caribbean. The software, called "SpèlChèk", can be used within the world's most popular word processor, Microsoft® Word.
SpèlChèk was developed for the foundation Fundashon pa Planifikashon di Idioma (FPI). The Curaçao-based foundation, together with De ComputerClub and Traducciones Joubert, also provided the wordlist. With the spellchecker, FPI aims to support native language education in Papiamentu and also to establish a spelling standard for Papiamentu.
The spellchecker for Papiamentu utilizes a dictionary of more than 35,000 words. This ensures that the software knows virtually all of the frequently used words in Papiamentu. In case a word is unknown or misspelled, the spellchecker can give smart suggestions, thanks to a set of well chosen linguistic rules which use phonological knowledge. These rules have been designed to be able to tackle common mistakes. For example, when the spellchecker encounters the word 'konentji', an analysis yields the suggestion 'konènchi' (rabbit). Or suppose someone types the Spanish word 'arquitecto'. That poses no problem for the spellchecker either: it can deal with this and suggest the correct form 'arkitekto' (architect).
Polderland Language & Speech Technology is a leading developer of linguistic software. Polderland has developed the spellchecker for Dutch for use in Microsoft® Office. The Polderland spellchecker for Dutch is incorporated in the Benelux edition of Microsoft® Word. In 1999, Polderland developed a Frisian spelling checker for use in Microsoft® Office. The District council of the Dutch Province of Friesland is one of the users of this tool. A year ago, Polderland delivered a spelling checker and hyphenator for Afrikaans, for a publisher in Cape Town. Coinciding with the release of the Papiamentu spellchecker, Polderland has released a Dutch grammar checker which is used within the new version of the world's most popular word processor, Microsoft® Word, part of Microsoft® Office XP. The grammar and style checker enables the user to check texts for errors that go beyond word boundaries and which elude spell checking.
In May 2001, Polderland and the US based language technology company MIT2 decided to enter a strategic alliance. MIT2 is a specialist in the area of Creole languages.
The spelling project for the Dutch Antilles has been co-financed by several organizations in the Dutch Carribean: Sede Antia, the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds Nederlandse Antillen en Aruba, Girobank, the Antilles Banking Corporation NV, Banco di Caribe NV, Traducciones Joubert NV, De ComputerClub and FPI. More information on the Papiamentu spellchecker can be obtained on the FPI website: http://www.fpi.an.
More information on this press release:
Polderland Language & Speech Technology
6525 EC NIJMEGEN
tel. (++31 24) 352 28 66
fax. (++31 24) 352 28 60
Placing an order:
Fundashon pa Planifikashon di Idioma (FPI)
Jan Noorduynweg 32B
Curaçao, Dutch Antilles
tel. (+599) 9 8691166
fax. (+599) 9 8696685
POLDERLAND develops Papiamentu spellchecker for MS® Word
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