When IT meets the Welsh language

From: TH Events Ltd t/a Them Ltd.
Published: Mon Apr 25 2005

The Welsh Language Board will sponsor the Breakfast Launch at Technology Wales, on 13th May 2005, at the Cardiff International Arena (CIA). The breakfast seminar will focus on the use of the Welsh Language in IT.

The breakfast seminar will start at 7:30 am. Michael Eaton, director, Broadband Wales Unit, Welsh Assembly Government, is expected to discuss alongside John Coulthard, head of small business, Microsoft UK, how to improve business practises by embracing the newest and latest technology available.

Alan John Butler, development officer at the Welsh Language Board, says: "Getting involved in TW05 is an ideal opportunity to showcase the exciting developments in language technology in Wales."

The Welsh Language Board was established to promote and facilitate the use of Welsh. It aims to encourage Welsh speakers to use their language in their everyday lives, including when using their computers.

It has recently worked in partnership with Microsoft on the launch of Welsh Windows XP and the Welsh Language Interface Pack (LIP) kit.

The Microsoft Office 2003 LIP is particularly interesting as it allows users to switch easily between Welsh and English while the Windows XP Welsh language pack is not switchable.

For those who want to fully experience the Welsh language, the installation of both programmes is highly recommended. You can download them for free from the Welsh Language Board (http://www.bwrdd-yr-iaith.org.uk) or Microsoft (http://www.microsoft.com) websites. You can also give your feedback on the use of the Welsh language in the IT field through a series of consultation documents which are part of the Board’s IT strategy.

Welsh Language Board Chair, Meri Huws, comments: "Information Technology influences all our daily lives nowadays and it's important that we increase the use of Welsh in that area if the language is to thrive."

"The demand for technology through the medium of Welsh was clearly demonstrated by the thousands who already use Welsh on their computers and the demand generated as a result of our partnership with Microsoft and publishing Welsh language interface packs for Office 2003 and Windows XP."

Microsoft and the Welsh Language Board contracted Cymen, a translation company based in Caernarfon, and Draig Technology, a software development and IT management provider based in Bangor, to undertake the language and technical aspects of the translation respectively.

Draig is well-known for its free To Bach software programme for Welsh-speaking people. The software utility defines seven simple key sequences for the most common Welsh characters that are otherwise awkward to type. This makes the Welsh language more accessible and easy to use while improving keyboard efficiency.

Draig Technology will take part in TW05 for the first time and mainly expects to increase its presence in the South Wales market while exhibiting its latest products.

Trisha Howard, from TW05 organisers Howard Events, says: "As the largest IT event in Wales, it is natural we focus on the Welsh language and the importance of its use in the IT field. Language technology has tremendously developed in the last few months and now Welsh speakers can use their computers in Welsh. This is all very exciting and TW05 couldn’t but showcase those recent developments."
Entry to the Technology Wales 2005 exhibition, seminar and awards is FREE.

If you want:
To book your place at the breakfast, or dinner (LUNCH IS SOLD OUT)
To set up an appointment with a business advisor
To book your exhibition stand
To register for free entry to the exhibition and seminar

Visit www.technologywales.co.uk or contact the TW05 team by phone on 01633 876204 or by e-mail at events@themltd.co.uk

ENDS (598 words)

Notes to editors
Speakers on the day will include:
Michael Eaton, Director of the Welsh Assembly Government's Broadband  Wales initiative,
Dr. Peter Waggett, IMB UK Emerging Technology Programme Leader
Linda Young, SME Director, IBM Wales.
John Coulthard, Head of Small Business, Microsoft.
Andy Mulholland, Global CTO, Capgemini
Richard Baker, Managing Director of Sequence,
Peter Harman, Deputy Chief Executive of UK Business Incubation, and
Dr. Colin Lucas of Xenos, the Welsh business angels network.

 Exhibitors and sponsors include: NESTA, BT, Capgemini, O2, HSBC, LogicaCMG, the @Wales Digital Media Initiative, Net Regs, the Welsh Automotive Forum, Wales Trade International, The Welsh Assembly Government, Mistral, WDA, Hugh James Solicitors and Morgan Cole.
For interview requests, logos or images, contact
Beverly Francis
Tel: 01633 876 204
E-Mail: bfrancis@themltd.co.uk

Company: TH Events Ltd t/a Them Ltd.
Contact Name: Marjorie Delwarde
Contact Email: marjorie@pingmedia.ltd.uk
Contact Phone: 01792429835

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