National Post | News

For generations, the language of Tseshaht Nuu-chah-nulth has been spoken by the Hupacasath and Tseshaht First Nations of Vancouver Island. But today, there are believed to be only five people alive who can speak it fluently. Indeed, it is one of dozens of endangered languages and dialects spoken by the indigenous people of North America that are in danger of disappearing.

Globally, nearly half of the world’s estimated 7,000 languages are believed to be at risk of disappearing over the next century as cultural norms shift and younger generations turn away from the languages of their elders.

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Now, thanks to a new project from Google.org — the philanthropic wing of Silicon Valley technology giant Google Inc. — scholars and educators from around the world are hoping to come together and harness the power of the Internet to collect and share data on endangered languages in an effort to preserve…

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