Southern Africa

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Special Interest Group: Language & Speech Technology Development

  • Background

The Special Interest Group for Language and Speech Technology Development was founded in July 1999 after a pre-conference tutorial on African Language Engineering in the next Millennium. This tutorial which was partially sponsored by PanSALB, preceded the 10th Biennial International Conference of the African Language Association of Southern Africa (ALASA).

  • Aims
  1. To introduce linguists working in the African languages to the challenges in the fast developing field of HLT;
  2. To act as catalyst for the development of language and speech technology in South Africa;
  3. To facilitate short term capacity building by identifying interested individuals and expertise in this field with a view to organising informal training sessions in HLT at different venues across the country;
  4. To facilitate long term capacity building through research into the restructuring of curricula at tertiary levels.

SU-ClaST (Centre for Language and Speech Technology at the University of Stellenbosch)


SU-CLaST is a new interdisciplinary research centre of the Faculties of Arts and Engineering at the University of Stellenbosch (US), South Africa. It is the result of active collaboration in the field of language and speech processing over a period of more than twenty years between the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering and the Department of African Languages at the University of Stellenbosch.

The eXe-Files Team


The eXe-Files Team is based in the Xhosa Department of the University of the Western Cape (UWC), in Bellville (Cape Town), South Africa. The aim of this research group is to build the very first balanced electronic corpus for the Xhosa language, with which to support a plethora of linguistics and language studies and products.

AfLaT users: 

Online Publications Involving TshwaneDJe Members


A collection of articles and papers on corpus and dictionary topics for the African languages, as well as on language-independent lexicography and terminology software.

BUKANTSWE: Electronic Sesotho-English Dictionary


BUKANTSWE is a downloadable electronic Sesotho-English dictionary available only from this site. The dictionary consists of over 8000 entries.

Description: is a project involved in localizing open source software in all of the 11 official South African languages.

Tshivenḓa (Venda) characters


Information on displaying Tshivenḓa special characters in word processors, on web pages, ... Includes links to specialized font sets.

Online Explanatory Northern Sotho Dictionary


An on-line explanatory dictionary for Northern Sotho.

Zulu - English dictionary


An on-line Zulu-English English-Zulu translation dictionary.

Birds and Trees List: English - Northern Sotho


An on-line Northern Sotho-English English-Northern Sotho translation dictionary, focussing on birds and trees terminology.

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