Language Technology at UiT The Arctic University of Norway

The Divvun and Giellatekno teams build language technology aimed at minority and indigenous languages

View GiellaLT on GitHub divvungiellatekno/

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Meeting setup


  1. Opening, agenda review
  2. Reviewing the task list from two weeks ago
  3. Documentation -
  4. Corpus gathering
  5. Corpus infrastructure
  6. Linguistics
  7. name lexicon infrastructure
  8. Other issues
  9. Summary, task lists
  10. Closing

1. Opening, agenda review, participants

Opened at 09:45.

Present: Børre, Sjur, Trond

Absent: Maaren, Saara, Thomas, Tomi (sick leave until Jan. 17th)

Main secretary: Børre

Agenda accepted as is.

2. Reviewing the task list from the last meeting






Sick leave.


Sick leave.


3. Documentation


Sjur: What is the reasoning for moving the documents around? Børre: Some documents sitting in the gt/doc tree seemed to fit best in the xtdoc/giellatekno tree.

Add documentation on our corpus infrastructure and our corpus work in general (Børre, Tomi, Trond). For the basic corpora, we need 2 additional types of documentation, or doc for 2 target groups:

  1. For the users/linguists: What corpus are found, how do I use them (this info is now scattered) (Part of the HOWTO USE is documented in the catxml docu, what documents are found where etc + an overall documentation is not written, since the corpus is so sparsely populated)
    1. catxml done, which is what is needed mostly. Do we need more?
    2. Review: Thomas, Maaren, Linda, Ilona, Trond

Saara has installed ccat. It is ready for a first round of reviews.

Findings so far: Basic text presentation works fine, but the text-type options does not.

4. Corpus gathering


Next step:

  1. wait for comments from the lawyers - remind them of the task
    1. Trond is done (no comments, ok by UiT), Sjur still to do it
  2. possibly update contracts with remarks from lawyers
  3. start using them!


Nothing new, now hampered by the lawyers checking the final version of the contracts.

We want both parallell and errouneous (unproofed) text files. What we need is a direct contact with Odin, in order to have as good coverage as possible.

TODO: Trond, and then Børre to call Ove Sæth to re-establish contact.

Bible texts

We have received Norwegian texts and a contract draft from Bibelselskapet, in essence requiring a separate contract for internet use of extracts of the text. The texts are in the paratext format, an international standard for the bible in electronic form. Most translations are available in this format.

TODO: Trond will accept the contract as is, and then negotiate a separate contract with them for use with the online, searchable parallel corpus when it is ready.

Example of the paratext format

The linebreak in v1 is ours, in the original it is all on one line

\s Gud skaper verda
\v 1 I opphavet skapte Gud himmelen og jorda. \f + \fr 1,1 \fk skapte \ft Det hebr. verbet som vert nytta her,
     står alltid med Gud som subjekt.\f* \x - \xo 1,1 \xt 2,4; Job 38; Sal 8; 33,6; 104; Joh 1,1.3; Kol 1,16\x*
\v 2 Jorda var aud og tom, og mørker låg over havdjupet. Men Guds Ande sveiv over vatnet.
\v 3 Då sa Gud: «Det verte ljos!» Så vart det ljos. \x - \xo 1,3 \xt Sal 33,9; 2 Kor 4,6\x*
\v 4 Og Gud såg at ljoset var godt, og han skilde ljoset frå mørkret.
\v 5 Gud kalla ljoset dag, og mørkret kalla han natt. Og det vart kveld, og det vart morgon, fyrste dagen.

5. Corpus infrastructure

Task list:

  1. Include the xsl files under version control
    1. RCS version control is almost finished, but an issue with access control is still open. Discussed a bit in the meeting, but nothing conclusive. We’ll continue the discussion in the newsgroup.
  2. Incorporate language detection as part of the corpus processing (Saara)
    1. Almost finished. Some heuristics regarding other Sámi languages in the same document to be added.
  3. we need a way to deal with hyphenated documents (documents with (manually) inserted hyphenation marks) in catxml/preprocess.
    1. done, needs review (Saara)
  4. we need to review whether only automatic hyphen detection is good enough, or whether manual post-processing in some form is needed. Delayed until we have some results to base the review on.
    1. Acceptable results: 90% of all real hyphens correctly tagged.
  5. CGI-admin script to add xsl-file to a corpus file that doesn’t have one (Tomi)
    1. Saara will review the existing code, consult Tomi, and try to make a script to help Børre utilize the template and the infra in place.

6. Linguistics

North Sámi

Lule Sámi

Open tasks:


The following North Sámi linguistic issues should be settled before going into the numeral project:

  1. Three-part compounds
  2. Diphthong simplification
  3. Derivation

These issues are recently done in Lule Sámi, and it is more efficient to complete them in North Sámi directly thereafter instead of beginning a new topic

Numeral treatment is on different level in the existing sme and smj parsers, but the issue itself is common to the two langauges, and should therefore be treated in parallel.

Numerals in North Sámi: Inventory is listed elsewhere.

Numerals in Lule Sámi: There are 70 lines of code setting up the structure for case inflection of basic numerals.

7. Name lexicon infrastructure

Complex names

Task list for this issue:

XML format

We had our meeting, and the result was pretty close to the structure of the existing term base. Now the conversion script to xml needs to be updated. The new format is documented in the newsgroup.


  1. make a test lexicon for evaluating the format, set up the editing, and test it (Børre)
  2. update conversion from lexc to xml to reflect new xml format
  3. testing of conversion
  4. continue the discussion of the name lexicon format (Saara, Tomi, Sjur, Trond)
  5. implement a prototype in eXist
  6. eXist as editor:
    1. develop the needed XQueries and interface
    2. synchronisation between and
    3. test whether eXist as editor is actually working well

8. Other


Suggested content for project meeting:

Teaching sessions (list of free thoughts and personal frustrations)

This was as far as we got today, please add to it before or in the next meeting.

Technical issues

   preprocess file_name.txt OK
   cat file_name.txt | preprocess !!
   catxml file_name.xml | preprocess ??

After some heavy investigation, we got no further. There is no difference between different bash versions (2.0x, 3.0x), neither between different locales as long as they are UTF-8, and whether it is stored in LANG or LC_ALL.

One new insight though: both cat and print gives the same errors, thus indicating that the error is NOT strictly reltated to cat.

Bug fixing

29 open bugs (and 25 bugs)

9. Summary, task list








10. Next meeting, closing

16.01.2006 09:30

Closed at 12:31