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Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|Subject:||Consistency-checking manual transcriptions|
|Question:||For languages with no writing system or no very standardized writing system, are there any tools that support consistency- checking of manually created transcriptions? For example, I was reading a text in a grammar for an endangered language, and the writer had glossed and translated both uwE and iwE as ''2SG/you''; and I wasn't sure if that was intentional or a typo (iwE was much more frequent in the text than uwE). If not, how do linguists working with languages without standardized orthographies achieve transcription consistency, for approximately phonemic transcriptions? Thanks.|
|Reply:||What you read may be a typo, or may be a variant form of you/singular (and what triggers that variation may need to be learned or recorded). Transcription systems for non-written languages may be developed for either - creating orthographies for ordinary speakers (writing systems), or - creating and standardizing transcription conventions for technical specialists (linguists, language policy developers, school officials, etc.) Hard to know from your example which audience is intended and whether you've indeed found a typo.|
|Reply From:||Nancy J. Frishberg click here to access email|