UVic anthropologist Brian Thom working with one of the Grade 12 students from Ladysmith Secondary School while making recordings of Hul’q’umi’num’ language speaker yutustanaat Mandy Jones (Snuneymuxw First Nation) for this Google Earth Voyager project. (William Taylor/Ladysmith Secondary School)

Google Earth features B.C. Indigenous language in new Voyager story

New story plays sound clips of Indigenous speakers, including voice of Snuneymuxw elder

Google Earth will release a new Voyager story on Aug. 9 that plays sound clips of Indigenous speakers, including the voice of a Snuneymuxw elder.

Voyager is an application that combines visualization with geospatial storytelling. The Celebrating Indigenous Languages story, unveiled on the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, is available in 10 languages internationally and encompasses 55 Indigenous languages in 27 countries, from Australia, India, Ecuador and Chile to Cameroon, Pakistan, Turkey and Finland.

The story highlights an initiative led by University of Victoria (UVic) anthropologist Brian Thom and Indigenous languages teacher yutustanaat Mandy Jones, of the Snuneymuxw First Nation, including words, phrases, a proverb and songs in the Hul’q’umi’num’ language.

READ MORE: The world’s Indigenous speakers gather in B.C.’s capital to revitalize languages

The Hul’q’umi’num’ language is spoken by Island First Nations between Nanoose Bay and Mill Bay, including Snaw-naw-as First Nation, Snuneymuxw First Nation, Cowichan Tribes, Stz’uminus First Nation, Penelakut Tribe, Lyackson First Nation, Halalt First Nation and Malahat First Nation.

“It is critical to value and treasure the wisdom that comes from Hul’q’umi’num’ teachings like this,” Thom said in a UVic release.

“It is an honour and privilege to facilitate long-term research collaborations that celebrate and foreground Indigenous knowledge and relationships to land.”

READ MORE: 60 per cent of all Canadian Indigenous languages are in BC

According to the release, Thom was part of a small team that advised Google in the development of Google Earth’s capacity to play audio clips, a feature he often heard requested by Indigenous communities.

He has been collaborating with yutustanaat and the Hul’q’umi’num’ communities since the early 1990s.

To create the Voyager story, they worked with students from Ladysmith Secondary School to create audio recordings of yutustanaat.

The new Voyager story will be highlighted on the main international Google desktop search page around the world.

READ MORE: NHL called in Cree helps revive, sustain Indigenous language: hockey analyst



karissa.gall@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

UVic anthropologist Brian Thom at Hwsaaqw’um (Holland Creek) after the Hul’q’umi’num’ language recordings with yutustanaat Mandy Jones (Snuneymuxw First Nation). Hwsaaqw’um is an important place in the Coast Salish cultural landscape near Ladysmith, B.C. (Brian Thom/Submitted)

Just Posted

UPDATED: Police raid 23-year-old cannabis compassion club in Victoria

Supporters gather outside the Cannabis Buyers Club on Johnson Street

Father of murdered Realtor writes letter, pleading for help from Saanich mayor

Lindsay Buziak was stabbed to death on Feb. 2, 2008, her case remains open

Vancouver Island family reunited with Silver Cross medal after 40 years

‘It’s very moving’: Cilka LaTrace and siblings reflect on uncle’s military service medal

VIDEO: Frequent closures on Tofino-Ucluelet highway expected to continue until summer

“We’ve had 400 blasts to date and moved nearly 90,000 cubic metres of material.”

B.C. to restrict nicotine content, bring in 20% tax on vaping products

Province will also restrict candy and fruit flavoured vaping products to adult-only stores

Adoption centre closes despite effort to save it; B.C. left with two agencies

Choices Adoption and Pregnancy Counselling in Victoria was set to close in April

Renowned Island carver Simon Charlie remembered for his art and teaching

Cowichan Tribes’ carver’s birthday is Thursday

Yelling at your dog might hurt its long-term mental health: study

Researchers find dogs trained using negative reinforcement are more ‘pessimistic’

Use of force deemed justifiable in arrest of suspect after snowy chase near Nanaimo

Independent Investigation Office of B.C. reports on incident from late last winter

Man and dog safe as crews handle house fire in Nanaimo’s Old City Quarter

Firefighters were called to 400 block of Machleary Street at 11:30 p.m. Tuesday

ALLAN REID: A good time for Thai in Estevan Village

Plenty of pride on display, from food to hospitality, at Norah Thai Kitchen

Criminal injustices come alive on stage in Secret/e

Criminalization of HIV among themes in Rick Waines’ story, opening Nov. 27 at Intrepid Theatre Club

Victoria artist Blu Smith’s art evolves as he does

From pop art to realism to abstract and more, successful artist follows his muse

Most Read