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Where in the world did all those languages come from!?

If you have ever wondered where the list of languages users can choose from on SITO came from, here is the answer. Not long after we choose to attempt to offer pages (once translated -- no small process) in multiple languages, we realized we would have to choose which language we would offer.

First off, we should say we by no means restrict language possibilities to the ones we have listed. By all means, let us know and we will add your language. Keep in mind how these documents would actually show up on SITO in your language, and maybe even consider helping us by translating!

That said, we still had to chose some languages to put in the list to let people choose from -- get them fired up about. So, how many? 10? 20? Seemed too small. I can even think of that many off the top of my head. We decided in the range of 50-100. But which?

So we did what any good armchair linguist would do: search the net! Lo and behold, we ran into a wonderful document called the Ethnologue. Deciding not to fight numbers, we chose to select languages ranked by population which spoke it. Just such data was available (in handy tab-delimited format!) from the Ethnologue! It was our lucky day.

The results are our list. We have to say, it is quite humbling to this English-centric SITO programming crew, to say the least. Thus, our language list is made up of the top 100 languages of the world by number of people who speak them. Wow! And any more thrown in upon request.

Now, all we (all!) have to do is get to work translating stuff! Does anyone speak Yoruba? (C'mon! It's tied with Dutch!)


The Ethnologue data file actually lists a whopping total of 6783 languages! Talk about a pulldown menu! Bringing up the rear are some African and Hawaiian Sign Languages.
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