yutustanaat Mandy Jones (Snuneymuxw First Nation) sharing her Hul’q’umi’num’ language with UVic anthropologist Brian Thom (not in frame) for the “Celebrating Indigenous Languages” Google Earth Voyager project. (Brian Thom/Mandy Jones/Submitted)

yutustanaat Mandy Jones (Snuneymuxw First Nation) sharing her Hul’q’umi’num’ language with UVic anthropologist Brian Thom (not in frame) for the “Celebrating Indigenous Languages” Google Earth Voyager project. (Brian Thom/Mandy Jones/Submitted)

Google Earth features B.C. Indigenous language in new audio series

The feature 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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Abbotsford’s Tradex has been transformed into a volleyball and basketball facility with Open Court. (Instagram photo)
Abbotsford’s Tradex transforms into sports facility

Open Court program hosting volleyball and basketball teams for practices and possibly games

Abbotsford’s Skully White (left), who donated his kidney in December, has started a campaign to find other recipients and donors. The first candidate is retired police officer Gavin Quon. White owns and operates a hotdog stand, Lullys Food Experience, out of the Abbotsford Canadian Tire parking lot. (Facebook photo)
Abbotsford hotdog-stand owner starts campaign to find kidney donors and recipients

Skully White donated his kidney to customer Tim Hiscock in December

The Harrison Hot Springs Resort. Visitors to the resort currently pay a three per cent “hotel tax,” which is brought back to the district to help fund tourism initiatives. (Grace Kennedy/The Observer)
Harrison hoping to expand hotel tax to Kent, parts of Fraser Valley

The expanded area would bring in more money for Tourism Harrison marketing

Dallas Lajimodiere is wanted by the Abbotsford Police Department.
Man wanted by Abbotsford Police domestic violence unit

Dallas Lajimodiere has three arrest warrants, including for assault with a weapon

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Jan. 21 marks the 21st day of the 21st year of the 21st century, according to some. (Black Press Media file photo)
The 21st day of the 21st year of the 21st century is upon us

Milestone won’t be back for another 100 years

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

The top part of the fossil burrow, seen from the side, with feathery lines from the disturbance of the soil – thought to be caused by the worm pulling prey into the burrow. (Paleoenvironntal Sediment Laboratory/National Taiwan University)
PHOTOS: SFU researchers find evidence of ‘giant’ predatory worms on ocean floor

Fossils found the prove the existence of an ancient Taiwanese worm as long as two metres

Most Read