The Next Language 13, “Inside the Digital Track”

While at the International Council Meetings in Thailand last month, I was given the job of defining projects that could make things easier for the recording technician working in field conditions to record new languages and upload them back to the GRN servers to be shared worldwide.  It is not a simple task.  Please pray for the technical support that is necessary for our recording projects.

Let me tell you about our IT support (technology that makes it easier to share needed information).  IT support is needed both before and after recordings are made.

Before recording Biblical and evangelistic messages a recording technician will need:

  • Information on the languages, dialects, and language families spoken in a general area, and how they relate to one another linguistically and socially.
  • Specific location information for the people who are speaking different but related languages and whether or not GRN has recorded messages in those languages.
  • Information on existing GRN recordings—including which scripts were recorded in each language or sub-language.
  • Suggestions for additional scripts that will compliment what has already been recorded in nearby or similar dialects.
  • Easy access to our database to retrieve original information from old recordings—including old word lists that help define the language.
  • Probably another form to collect more information from the Language Helper such as the mother tongue of both mother and father and other speech varieties spoken.

After recording Biblical and evangelistic messages a recording technician will need:

  • A simple and efficient way to document and share the information they have gathered about a people group and their language and the recordings made for that people group.
  • Ideally, we would like the information gathered for one form to automatically appear on other forms related to that specific language or recorded program.
  • We also need to create templates for major script series such as the Good News and Look, Listen, & Live, and Scripture passages. This will simplify and speed up the plugging in, editing, and sharing of information on people groups, languages, and recordings.

Greater efficiency in this area will cut in half the time a recording technician spends on research, final editing, and uploading of recordings.  Ultimately that means that those who need to HEAR the gospel in their language will receive it more quickly.

At present, the complexity of the final stages of editing and documenting a recording is so daunting that the unfinished work piles up and the recording technician can be tempted to move onto another recording project rather than face the hours of editing and programming.

We are also considering expanding our studio services so that some of the final editing and paperwork can be done by others not out recording on the field.

⇒ Please pray for wisdom in implementing efficient practices and also for more recording technicians and skilled IT workers.