Press release NL-P
OpenOffice.org celebrates International Mother Language Day
Draft - not for publication
Location and Timestamp -- OpenOffice.org celebrates its success in supporting digitally endangered languages on UNESCO's International Mother Language Day
The OpenOffice.org Community encourages you to join in UNESCO's celebration of February 21 as International Mother Language Day. Since 1999, UNESCO has been using February 21st to celebrate the 6,000 or so spoken languages on this planet, over half of which are under threat. In 2006, UNESCO officially recognised the way in which computing was making the situation worse by declaring a year of "languages and cyberspace". If people cannot use computers in their mother language, they suffer digital exclusion, their language becomes devalued, and the language itself becomes digitally endangered.
The OpenOffice.org Community is proud of their work to support digitally endangered languages. With the help mostly of local volunteers, the OpenOffice.org Native Language Confederation has provided translations of and support for the OpenOffice.org office software in over eighty languages. Since the last International Mother Language Day, eleven new projects have started.
Charles-H.Schulz, Lead of the Native-Language Confederation, said: "We are developing a great free and open source office suite that is available in more than 80 languages worldwide. We believe in the OpenDocument Format. We believe in Freedom. We believe in Education. We believe in Human Dignity. We believe in Progress. We believe in Peace. We believe in ourselves. And above all, we believe in you."
Thanks to this work, speakers of all these languages can now use the essential office software tools (word processor, spreadsheet, presentations, graphics, database...) in their own mother language, entirely free of charge. OpenOffice.org actively encourages members of other languages to start translation projects, providing guidance and support over the internet from an international network of enthusiasts.
The OpenOffice.org Community is an international team of volunteer and sponsored contributors who develop, support, and promote the leading open-source office productivity suite, OpenOffice.org®. OpenOffice.org's leading edge software technology (UNO) is also available for developers, systems integrators, etc to use in OpenOffice.org extensions or in their own applications.
OpenOffice.org supports the Open Document Format for Office Applications (OpenDocument) OASIS Standard (ISO/IEC 26300) as well as legacy industry file formats and is available on major computing platforms in over 80 languages. OpenOffice.org software is provided under the GNU Lesser General Public Licence (LGPL) and may be used free of charge for any purpose, private or commercial.
The OpenOffice.org Community acknowledges generous sponsorship from a number of companies, including Sun Microsystems, the founding sponsor and primary contributor.
OpenOffice.org 2.2 may be downloaded free of charge from http://download.openoffice.org/
The OpenOffice.org Community can be found at http://www.openoffice.org/
To learn more about the Community see http://about.openoffice.org/
The Native Language Confederation is at http://projects.openoffice.org/native-lang.html
Further information about OpenOffice.org products:
- the OpenOffice.org office suite for users: http://www.openoffice.org/product/
- OpenOffice.org Universal Network Objects (UNO) for developers: http://udk.openoffice.org/
- OpenOffice.org Software Development Kit (SDK) for developers: http://api.openoffice.org/
Louis Suarez-Potts (UTC -05h00)
OpenOffice.org Community Manager
+1 (416) 625 3843
John McCreesh (UTC +0h00)
OpenOffice.org Marketing Project Lead
+44 (0)7 810 278 540
Cristian Driga (UTC +0200)
OpenOffice.org Marketing Project Co-Lead
+40 7887 000 60