Kiwis learning or already fluent in te reo Maori will be able to immerse themselves in the language while working on their computers, thanks to two new Maori language packs on offer from Microsoft.
Available free from the Microsoft New Zealand website, the Maori Language Packs for Windows 7 and Office 2010 build on previous Maori interpretations of Windows XP and Vista, offering wider vocabulary and greater accuracy, according to translator Wareko Te Angina.
"We found that certain Maori words used in relation to technology didn’t always capture the true spirit of the English word,” Te Angina says, "so we’ve developed and adapted words that are becoming increasingly adopted.”
The local translations are part of Microsoft’s Local Language Programme, a global initiative aiming to preserve indigenous cultures through technology.
Microsoft New Zealand national technology officer, Mark Rees, says technology plays a huge role in the dissemination of culture.
"We believe the new Maori language translations will help to encourage more kiwis to learn our native language.”
The packs are expected to be particularly popular in schools, particularly Maori immersion schools.