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Wall (5310 threads)

2019-03-09 11:13
I've been a language learner for many years now and I only discovered this site today.

One trouble I'm having when I search for audio files for Arabic nothing comes up.
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2019-03-09 17:07

The site is a volunteer effort, so it has precisely the content someone has happened to add. It seems nobody has added Arabic sentences with voice. The process for adding sentences with voice is more involved than much of other contribution.

Good ways to get contributing to Tatoeba are:

1. Translate sentences to your native language. You can find sentences in a language not translated to another at

2. Adding sentences in your native language.
You can see English vocabulary people are interested in at .
According to your profile you are interested in fitness, so you might want to check if fitness vocabulary is well covered, and if not, add sentences related to that.

2019-03-09 21:12
> One trouble I'm having when I search for audio files for Arabic nothing comes up.

Because there isn't any Arabic audio yet as Thanuir mentioned. OsoHombre, a native Arabic-speaking member, once said he would eventually add audio to his Arabic sentences. He hasn't been active recently (he told me he was busy and didn't have time for voluntary translations), but he may return and add Arabic audio in the future.

You can try to translate these Arabic sentences into English.

Welcome to Tatoeba.
2019-02-09 21:32
I have problems adding Ottoman Turkish sentences written in Latin script. The punctuation order gets corrupted and it looks weird. The system only works properly when using Arabic script with Ottoman Turkish.

Some languages are written in more than one script. Like Azerbaijani (Latin, Arabic and Cyrillic), Kurdish (Latin and Arabic) or Serbian (Latin and Cyrillic).

I guess there are Serbian sentences written in both Latin and Cyrillic scripts on Tatoeba. It isn't a problem when the script direction is same as in Serbian, but if the direction is different, it becomes difficult to use the script other than the 'default' one.

Can't something be done about it?
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2019-02-10 21:14

I've noticed that the 'other language' flag is direction-neutral. It allows both left-to-right and right-to-left scripts. So I think it should be possible to implement this to other languages that can be written in multiple scripts.
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2019-02-11 21:55
Also, it would be really helpful if simplified and traditional Chinese could be somehow separated. A lot of otherwise simple sentences take me a while to translate because I have to change it to simplified chinese on google translate first. Just some kind of tag in advanced search, or a separate category?
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2019-02-12 22:54
That's a different issue, but I agree. It would be useful. When studying a language that can be written in multiple scripts, one may need to view sentences written only in a particular script like Chinese sentences written in traditional Chinese or Berber sentences written in the Tifinagh script. Currently, it's not possible to separate/filter sentences in such a way.
2019-02-16 13:39
Actually we used to automatically generate the sentences in the other script for Chinese.
Like this sentence for instance:

If the sentence is in simplified, it would have the traditional version in grey. If it was in traditional, it would have the simplified version in great.

I don't think we've ever decide to remove this feature so it must have broken at some point...
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2019-02-17 10:19
Hm, when I look up sentences it appears for a couple but not for most. Like maybe one or two out of every ten sentences?
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2019-02-17 13:47
Yea I'm not sure what some have it and some not. But I know for sure that we used to have it on all Chinese sentences, automatically generated.
2019-03-09 18:29
This is fixed now. All the Mandarin Chinese sentences have the alternate script.

Related GitHub issue:
2019-02-17 13:10
As you pointed out, the current implementation assumes that Ottoman Turkish is written right-to-left using Arabic script.

I had a look at the English Wikipedia article about the Ottoman Turkish language, and I am a bit confused because it says that this language switched to the Latin script as it evolved into modern Turkish. Can you elaborate about the contemporary use of Arabic vs. Latin to write Ottoman Turkish?

One way to quickly solve the display problem is to set the direction of Ottoman Turkish to "auto". Another, much more complex way is to implement multiple script support in and auto-convert between, but only if it's worth, that is to say there are actually native speakers using Latin and Arabic, we want to be able find sentences written in Arabic by the searching in Latin and vice-versa, the conversion can be partly or fully automated, etc.

As you found out, the direction of sentences of "unknown" language is set to automatic. That said, this is not a reason to set the language of your Ottoman Turkish sentences written in Latin script to "unknown", just because they look better. I strongly discourage you from doing this because then these sentences are excluded from the Ottoman Turkish corpus, they won't show up in searches and statistics, which is preventing contributors/learners of Ottoman Turkish from finding them. What's worse, since *only you* know their actual language, if for some reason you forget about them or stop contributing, these sentences will never be assigned to the correct language and will be definitely lost.
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2019-02-17 18:28
>I had a look at the English Wikipedia article about the Ottoman Turkish language, and I am a bit confused because it says that this language switched to the Latin script as it evolved into modern Turkish. Can you elaborate about the contemporary use of Arabic vs. Latin to write Ottoman Turkish?

Thanks for your reply, gillux. Have you seen the GitHub issue? I tried to explain this there. Also, there are some other languages being affected from this issue.

The Turkish language reform consists of a script reform and replacing of loanwords. They are different things. Allowing Ottoman Turkish sentences in the Latin script will increase contributions in the old language and its readability. Currently, almost all 'Ottoman Turkish' sentences on Tatoeba are simply transliterations of modern Turkish into the Arabic script. They're not wrong, but they don't truly reflect the old language. If one looked here to compare Ottoman Turkish and modern Turkish, they would assume that the only difference is the alphabet.

>One way to quickly solve the display problem is to set the direction of Ottoman Turkish to "auto".

This sounds good to me. If doing it would display sentences in both Arabic and Latin scripts correctly and wouldn't cause any unintended consequences, why not?

> I strongly discourage you from doing this because then these sentences are excluded from the Ottoman Turkish corpus, they won't show up in searches and statistics

I created only one pair set as 'unknown' for demonstration. I'm adding romanized Ottoman Turkish sentences to Turkish corpus for now. I will change them back to Ottoman Turkish once a solution is found.
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2019-02-18 05:47
> Have you seen the GitHub issue?

Sorry, I didn’t. I commented there too.

> Allowing Ottoman Turkish sentences in the Latin script will increase contributions in the old language and its readability.

I see. Let me try to understand the situation. Can you tell me if the following is correct?
1. Ottoman Turkish is not a living language any more (there are no native speakers alive).
2. Native speakers of Ottoman Turkish used the Arabic script only.
3. Most of the people who understand Ottoman Turkish are native speakers of Turkish.
4. Native speakers of Turkish are unfamiliar with the Arabic script.

If that is correct, I believe it makes sense to convert Ottoman Turkish from Arabic to Latin, but not the other way around, because Latin not is no more than a reading aid for native speakers of Turkish. In other words, I think all Ottoman Turkish sentences should stay in Arabic only, while we only attach Latin as a transcription of them.

> I created only one pair set as 'unknown' for demonstration.

I see. Next time, please use instead for demonstration purposes.
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2019-02-18 18:01
Yes, they're all correct, gillux. Even if there were some very old people using Ottoman Turkish as the primary language today, they, too, would use the Latin script to be understood.

I'm not asking Ottoman Turkish sentences to be converted to Latin anyway. If one wants to add sentences in the Arabic script, it's perfectly fine. I simply want users to be allowed using the Latin script, too. The Arabic script is consonantal. That makes it rather difficult to read and use unknown words and expressions comparing to the Latin script. Perhaps that's why almost all Ottoman Turkish sentences here are transliterations of modern Turkish.
2019-03-05 14:08
I've done some more thinking about the thread about increasing the diversity of proper nouns in our sentences [1], and in particular @Impersonator's comment [2], in which he complained that speakers of minority languages are unable to influence content because their sentences don't get translated. It occurs to me that people who speak more than one language could make it a custom, when writing a sentence in their native language, to put a proposed translation into one of their non-native languages in the comments. Then a native user could add the sentence (after making any necessary changes). Naturally, this would help get sentences in minority languages (and/or sentences with less common names) translated into majority languages. However, it would also work in the reverse direction, and also between majority languages. Aside from increasing diversity, this would also allow people to exercise their skills in other languages without worrying about faulty sentences getting into the corpus. To increase the probability that someone would add the proposed sentences, a contributor could contact a speaker of the language (say, in a private message) with a request to add the proposed translations. To make the sentences easier to find, they could add the source sentences to a list. I'm not sure how this would work out in practice, with a large number of people making such requests, but it would be interesting to give it a try. As a courtesy, it would be nice if anyone doing this made an effort to avoid sentences that are near-duplicates of sentences that already exist in the target language.

I'll try doing this myself and see how it goes. I'll also make an effort to try to add sentences containing proper nouns appropriate to the target language.


[2] Impersonator's comment:
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2019-03-05 14:20
I'll add the following easy and less radical things to do:

1. Add sentences with varied names of people and places. The names need not be from your native language even when the sentence is.
2. Add other sentences characteristic of less present cultures - food, clothes, politics, idioms, nature, etc. The culture need not match the language.
3. When you see sentences that reflect less represented cultures in other languages, translate them.
4. When you see someone discouraging others from adding sentences with varied names, for example, reply with a list of reasons why adding varied names is good and desirable.
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2019-03-05 19:02
I really liked that idea but I wonder if that would work.

1st. The user who will translate the sentence would have two speak at least two languages (the native one and the one in "the list";)

2nd The same user would be have to willing - and have time - to translate such sentences

I don't even translations for sentences I added in a list I use to study languages - and most of these sentences is in English.

Who'd be willing to translate these sentences? Or sentences from a list of Portuguese sentence I'll create?
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2019-03-09 16:41
Yes, Ricardo, you're right: in order to write proposed translations as comments, a person needs to speak the second language and have the time to come up with the translations. This is not for everyone, or every situation, but it does address the frustration that @Impersonator expressed: he can speak a second language, but feels that he is being discouraged from contributing translations in that language. My point is that he can contribute these translations as comments, and a native speaker can come along and contribute them (or corrected versions of them) as sentences in their own right. The basic assumption is that between the two of them, they'll be able to contribute a good sentence that is also a good translation.

As for your second question, you mentioned a list of 280 sentences, many of which are already translated into various languages. I'm not sure I understand your request. Are you asking for volunteers to go through the entire list and fill in the gaps? In which languages? In my experience, such requests are more likely to be fulfilled if you can (a) explain what makes these sentences more worthy of being translated than others (for instance, "These sentences contain vocabulary that isn't translated in existing sentences" or "These sentences contain grammatical constructions that I want to learn"), (b) limit the length of the list (280 is very long), (c) choose a particular language that you want them translated into, and (d) make it easy for people to measure their progress by distinguishing between the sentences that have already been translated and the ones that haven't.
2019-03-09 15:55
I agree that Thanuir's four guidelines are worth following. I'm not sure that I'd characterize following them as necessarily easy, since they require more effort than writing about what is already familiar, but what I'm proposing would take effort, too.
2019-03-05 21:00
I've proposed something similar before, but instead of writing comments, members would write their translations in a different section. I still think this is better than leaving a comment. Or perhaps we could just create a prefix, like the current @ prefix, to specify that such a comment is a translation written by a non-native speaker.
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2019-03-06 03:16
Yes, having this infrastructure would certainly be a good thing. My suggestion was meant to be something that people could do right now, without any software changes. And just to be clear: I'm not saying that everyone should leave translations as comments, or that people who do it should always do it. I'm saying that those people who are currently willing and able to translate their sentences into their non-native languages, but don't do it because there's no precedent, should feel free to start a new convention.
2019-03-09 13:41
I've thought a similar way before, but I faced an issue: when checking a French sentence, I can correct its structure, grammar, etc. but I can never be sure that the translation is correct, and that makes me uncomfortable. What are your thoughts about this point?
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2019-03-09 15:50
I want to be sure that I understand your question correctly. You are a native speaker of French with a good command of English. You are talking about checking French sentences that are contributed as translations of English sentences. Are you talking about sentences contributed *as sentences*, or sentences contributed *as comments*, as I'm proposing? It seems to me that the same considerations apply. In both cases, we are relying on your superior knowledge of French to judge the sentence on its own merits, and we are hoping you know English well enough to judge it as a translation. If anything, I think that the case where the sentence is contributed as a comment should be easier for you to deal with because you're able to see immediately that it was contributed as a translation of the English, whereas you'd have to dig into the log to figure out which sentence a French sentence contributed as a sentence was intending to translate (if any). Also, there's less time pressure because as long as the sentence is only a comment, it's not in the corpus, where people might mistakenly treat it as a trustworthy sentence before any errors have been corrected.

As for feeling uncomfortable about not being sure that the translation is correct, that's where the community aspect of Tatoeba comes in. Maybe your strength is in recognizing and fixing awkwardly worded French, while someone else's is in judging the quality of the match between the French and the English. (Or maybe you're good at both and are just a harsh judge of your own abilities in English. :->) Then that second person can come along and say "This doesn't really match. I propose X instead." The basic assumption is that we are all imperfect, but as a collaborative community, our strengths are added together, while our weaknesses are cancelled out.

Did that address your question?
2019-03-08 16:24
Happy International Women's Day!
Bonne Journée internationale des femmes !
Buona Giornata Internazionale della Donna!
Feliz Dia Internacional da Mulher!
¡Feliz Día Internacional de la Mujer!
2019-03-08 05:29
Hey everyone! Saluton al ĉiuj! o toki tawa ale!

I was very excited to discover this site a few days ago. Thank you all for all you guys are doing! I hope to contribute as much as I am able. Conlangs are my primary speciality, especially Esperanto and Toki Pona, al most of my contributions will be for those two.

See you around!
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2019-03-08 12:15
Bonvenon en Tatoeba, Petro!
2019-03-06 11:52
* Tatoeba Top 30 Languages Interactive Graphs*

Tatoeba Top 30 Languages Interactive Graphs have been updated:
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2019-03-06 17:01
Thank you so much! :D
2019-03-07 09:38
2019-03-05 07:28
** Stats & Graphs **

Tatoeba Stats, Graphs & Charts have been updated:
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2019-03-05 07:48
2019-03-03 02:51 - 2019-03-05 06:23
** Stats - 2019-03-02 - Number of Comments by Members **

Someone reported that the link above gave a security warning.

If the other link gets some kind of security warning, try this one instead.

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2019-03-05 06:28
Can you check how many links everyone has created? (Ĉu vi povas ekzameni, kiom da frazoj ĉiu ligis? Kannst Du überprüfen, wie viele Verknüpfungen jeder hergestellt hat?)
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2019-03-05 06:38 - 2019-03-05 07:37
** Number of Links Created and Deleted **

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2019-03-05 07:05
Can you create a statistics of the form “User X: n links” from it? (Ĉu vi povas krei statistikon de la formo „uzanto X: n ligoj“ per tio?)
2019-03-02 15:23 - 2019-03-02 20:40

When you post a comment on a sentence, I believe it's better to be specific:

- "the school" -> "school"
- "You need to say 'have learned' in this sentence because the process of learning is continuing."

than general:

- "This sentence needs to be changed."

The reasons:

(1) If the author didn't know that the sentence was wrong to begin with, they likely won't know how to fix it. If they try, it's likely that the correction will be wrong or incomplete. This makes the process more painful for everyone.

(2) If the author does not correct the sentence within two weeks, a corpus maintainer will need to fix it. If a correction is already spelled out in the comment, any corpus maintainer can do it, not just one with the matching native language.

(3) An explicit correction gives the author the opportunity to learn, and to assess their own abilities accurately and objectively.

General comments are especially common on sentences written by someone who has written a large number of incorrect sentences. These comments are usually along the lines of "You should only contribute sentences in your strongest language." I speculate that the people leaving the comments:

(a) are too frustrated to take the time to suggest an explicit suggestion
(b) feel that their time is wasted by providing feedback to someone who is far from being able to contribute good sentences in that language
(c) think that by giving the author feedback, they are encouraging them to continue to contribute in the non-native language, which will overwhelm the community's ability to correct the sentences

While I think that those beliefs should not be dismissed, I still feel uneasy when I see such a comment unaccompanied by constructive criticism. I think it is likely to be perceived as a challenge or insult, and may well result in the author either rebelling by adding more faulty sentences, or leaving the community altogether. I think this is a bad outcome not just for the site, but for the world: people who visit the site won't think it's a very friendly place, and one more person out there is going away with bad feelings. It is my belief that if someone tells me not just that a sentence is wrong, but HOW it is wrong, I am more likely to make my own decisions, including the decision not to contribute sentences in that language until I have gotten stronger in it.

In general, it's also good psychology to find something to praise (such as someone's willingness to contribute) at the same time that you're finding something to criticize. However, this can easily be read as patronizing. Furthermore, when all you know about someone is that they've contributed bad sentences in your language, and you can't judge sentences they've contributed in their own language, it's hard to find something to praise. But even if you can't find something positive to say, being constructive and objective is still better than simply telling someone to stop doing something.
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2019-03-02 15:33
One more thing: If people start fixing their sentences, we should thank them, especially if they've previously been receiving a lot of criticism.
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2019-03-05 02:30
2019-03-02 19:55
I agree: precise feedback and suggestions are superior and should be encouraged.
2019-03-04 11:12
CK recently brought to my attention that Tatoeba’s Twitter and Facebook accounts are not used. Does anybody would like to write news about Tatoeba? I’m thinking about having somebody in our community whose role would be to write "good news" or "updates" about Tatoeba in the Twitter and Facebook account, and maybe the blog.

Whenever a member has some valuable information (new audio contributions (CK), new stats (sharptoothed), new feature available (me or Trang), for example, he/she could pass it on to the news writer. The news writer could also just pick information from the Wall on his/her own.
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2019-03-04 11:31
A related suggestion: we ought to also get an account on or another Fediverse instance.
2019-03-04 16:57 - 2019-03-04 16:59
I'm one of the admins of Tatoeba’s Facebook account, together with Trang and Ricardo. Until now my only task was accepting members and blocking spammers. Of course I can also publish „good news”. I will try to follow the wall a bit closer and publish interesting information.

I don't know who is responsible for the Twitter account. Probably Trang?

2019-03-05 02:28
I'd like to do so. I frequently use them. I even suggested Trang to create a page on Facebook to attract both users and -who knows - developers :)