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Tag: Shona


Google Celebrates Zim Culture With Mbira Doodle

It’s a well-established fact (yes fact, not opinion) that Google Doodles are pretty cool. Today’s Doodle is extra cool with the search engine sharing a 4 part-story of the Mbira. The mbira is a Zimbabwean musical instrument consisting of a wooden board with attached staggered metal tines. The wooden soundboard (gwariva) is affixed with a […]


Instant EcoCash App Adds Local Language Support

We’ve talked about Instant EcoCash before. It’s a brilliant application that allows users to ditch the EcoCash app which requires data and gives pretty extensive functionality. Outside of all this existing functionality, Instant EcoCash is adding a new accessibility feature that will instantly make it more appealing to a wide number of users. The newest […]


Google Translate Is Getting Much Better At Translating Shona

Most of Google’s technologies have always been awesome but if you speak a language that’s not as popular as the likes of French, Spanish, Hindi and a bunch of other “significant” languages then you may feel a tad bit left out. We’ve all seen hilarious translations of English to Shona on Google and apart from […]


Enjoy The Web In Shona Using Google Translate

Although a lot of people might not know this Google has had Shona support for years. Support for the Shona language was added to the translate tool just under three years ago back in February of 2016. Back then the tool was the butt of many jokes as its Shona translation was just horrible and […]


Facebook in Shona and Ndebele!

So here I am logging into Facebook to check if there are any updates, guess what I find…? Translate Facebook into Shona Leesa K, thanks for using Facebook. Help us launch Facebook in Shona by translating or voting on translations. Start Now Imagine my excitement! I quickly share with my workmates.And they too are excited. […]


Google Translate adds Shona and 12 other languages to its roster

The good news is that it has added 13 new languages to its roster, including one of Zimbabwe’s own native tongues, Shona. This brings the language total for Google Translate to 103 and according to Google, these languages cover 99% of the online population.


Shona-Ndebele Tutor offers avenue for preserving & promoting local languages

Through the use of a digital whiteboard and Skype, the Shona Ndebele Tutor platform provides online tutoring to any learner in any part of the world. The administrators of the platform pair a teacher of the specific language with a learner who will have signed up for a minimum of a single 1 hour lesson which costs £10 or a US dollar equivalent.


The Shona Language: Is it marginalised or just dying?

  Many people do not know this but Shona is the most spoken L1 Bantu Language; that is as a first language. According to Wikipedia, there are over 535 Bantu Languages spoken from Cameroon, Southeast Africa, Central African countries like the Congo as well as Southern Africa. If these are grouped according to mutually intelligible […]


NatiV: The e-learning app that wants to preserve ethnic language heritage

Every time someone says e-learning in Zimbabwe the talk almost always veers towards the way traditional learning content specific to writing and mathematics has been transferred to digital platforms. That is what we have seen from most local attempts (think EcoSchool, e-Learning Solutions or Big Brain) aimed at servicing this growing market which in all fairness is […]


Mashumba.com will help with English to Shona translations

What is the Shona name for a ‘honey badger’? Or the Shona words for the number 10,000? Or how about the other way; how many Shona speaking people reading this know what a mhumhi is? I bet less than half! It’s even worse if, like me, Shona is not their first language.


We need local books digitized now!

Several times a week I teach Shona to a group of Ordinary Level students and to my surprise sometimes they struggle to get the meanings of words that should be common knowledge to them. It is after all their mother tongue or at least it is supposed to be


Why translation of open source software into local languages has failed

Sometime in 2009, after quenching my thirst with (Ubuntu) Linux for two years I decided it was time to give back to the community. I am not a very talented code writer, I know that much, nor did i see any reason to wast whatever few talents I had on the oversubscribed international Ubuntu Community so I jumped to join the Local Ubuntu team.