Giellatekno at UiT The Arctic University of Norway is working with machine translation based on our grammatical analysers for Saami languages, combined with bilingual dictionaries, grammatical transfer rules and a generation component. Giellatekno cooperates on machine translation with Apertium, a free/open-source machine translation platform. Contact us firstname.lastname@example.org
About the translator
The North Saami-Norwegian translation system is under constant development. In its present phase it may be used to understand North Saami better, but it is not able to produce flawless Norwegian. If the Norwegian translation contains something you simply do not expect, you should look critically at result. Please keep in mind the following possible types of errors:
Saami does not distinguish between "he" and "she". If the text says "he" it is then still possible that the text refers to a woman. Sami does not distinguish between definite and indefinite form, if a choice of definiteness would have given another meaning, you may not be sure that the translation is correct. When the program translates unknown compound words it translates the parts separately and put them together. Usually this gives the intended result, but Norwegian may also use a completely different word. You should in other words be cautious when interpreting compounds. All languages have words with more than one meaning. In such cases we try to find the correct meaning from from context, but we do not always succeed. If a particular translation is unexpected, it may thus be that we may have missed. For alternative translations, look up in a dictionary, for example in Neahttadigisánit
Why Giellatekno does not develop a translation program that translates from Norwegian to North Saami
Norwegian and Saami are very different languages, and the quality of such a translated text would be far from what one could use as a publishable translation. Yet we fear that many would use the program in just such a way. The consequences of producing bad quality texts in a minority language are far worse than doing it in the majority language. Fewer persons are able to correct the text, and we run the risk of destroying the North Saami literary landscape. The purpose of the present translation program, from North Saami to Norwegian, is to help those who do not understand Saami. We hope this makes it easier for those who master Saami to write in Saami, now that they know that also Norwegian speakers may read the text using translation software.