Simultaneous visualization of language endangerment and language description

Harald Hammarström, T.H.A. Castermans, Robert Forkel, Kevin Verbeek, Michel A. Westenberg, Bettina Speckmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
338 Downloads (Pure)


The world harbors a diversity of some 6,500 mutually unintelligible languages. As has been increasingly observed by linguists, many minority languages are becoming endangered and will be lost forever if not documented. Urgently indeed, many efforts are being launched to document and describe languages. This undertaking naturally has the priority toward the most endangered and least described languages. For the first time, we combine world-wide databases on language description (Glottolog) and language endangerment (ElCat, Ethnologue, UNESCO) and provide two online interfaces, GlottoScope and GlottoVis, to visualize these together. The interfaces are capable of browsing, filtering, zooming, basic statistics, and different ways of combining the two measures on a world map background. GlottoVis provides advanced techniques for combining cluttered dots on a map. With the tools and databases described we seek to increase the overall knowledge of the actual state language endangerment and description worldwide.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)359-392
Number of pages34
JournalLanguage Documentation & Conservation
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2018


Dive into the research topics of 'Simultaneous visualization of language endangerment and language description'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this