Can you imagine tackling an unwritten language by amassing its vocabulary, as well as anthropological observations, on index cards and storing them in a shoebox? Forty years ago, some translators even categorized the cards by punching holes along the sides and then used a knitting needle to thread through a category and pull out its cards for study.

In some locales, a tropical environment or critters could ruin them—and there was only one copy! The index card system was used for many years before computers and language translation software were developed.

Today, over 70 different kinds of software have been developed to support Bible translation, resulting in well-resourced, quality, backed-up translations completed in less time.

Software is not just about translation. There are business applications and back-end applications that keep organizations’ administrative tasks functioning smoothly and websites running well.

There are challenges, such as:

  • questions generated by distributed user collaboration: Who has the final editing rights? Do different sets of information merge?
  • software development needed for multiple platforms
  • knowing which device (cell phones, tablets, and other devices) will be most effective for work with specific people groups

Explore these pages.