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Hemen zaude: Hasiera / Blogak / Ingelesen hilerria / The English Cemetery

English-language version of Luistxo Fernandez's blog

Basque tiles from OpenStreetMap

Luistxo Fernandez 2010/09/30 13:53

A project from my co-workers at Tagzania Services: EuskalMapa, the Basque Map. That is, a free OpenStreetMap based version of OSM showing Basque names for places. There's a similar project with Scottish Gaelic and it's called

Tiles are generated with Basque names on them not fot the whole globe, but according to this logic:

  • The whole planet: zooms 1-9
  • Spain: zooms 10-13 
  • The Basque Country: zooms 13-17


Some examples: | Euskalmapa © cc-by-sa: sustatu | Ezpeleta © cc-by-sa: sustatu | Gasteizko alde zaharra © cc-by-sa: sustatu

Google Realtime in several minority languages

Luistxo Fernandez 2010/09/27 09:04

Google was presenting search results from realtime information flows (Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed...) since some months ago, but it was just some days ago that we realised that it did restrict results to Basque, if you searched those updates from a Basque interface. Then, it came the announcement of Google Realtime, an standalone version of those searches. Basque is included, in a total of 40 languages, but curiously enough, Google doesn't mention which languages are those.
So, with some URL hacking, I could determine that several European minority languages are included, while, to the contrary, some state-languages are not...


Try with a search like Twitter in Welsh, and twist the URL with the language codes for other languages.


You will see that it works with nl, ne or no (Dutch, Nepali and Norwegian) as well as the minority languages listed above, but not with se, dk or ee (Swedish, Danish or Estonian). Basque screenshot here below when searched for Android.

However, none of those languages has the extra options to sea results in threaded conversations or restrict results to a given geographical area, which are only available in English, Japanese, Spanish and Russian so far.


Languishing blog

Luistxo Fernandez 2010/09/11 12:38

Once upon a time the English Cemetery was a lively multilingual blog in three languages... Lately, it's just two languages, and it languishes in Basque the same way as in English.

There are some reasons for this. Well, in my work at CodeSyntax, I was more focused on l10n and i18n issues... Then we launched Tagzania which was an international effort, and I also collaborated with Nestoria, a London-based project. From those viewpoints I had more things to say, and I felt more compelled to comment things, to do marketing as well (why not?). Nowadays, my working hours in CodeSyntax are not so devoted to l10n, the Tagzania team is doing well although I'm not in that taskforce and I see Nestoria from a distance (they keep internationalising, and I am glad to know that they have launched their real estate search machinery in France!).

Then, there's also the Twitter / Facebook thing that has affected many bloggers' posting habits, and also some twists of life that have put me on a rather silent mode.

I could still post about big international news about the Basques, but my political views are rather skeptical lately, and well, I rather comment miscelaneous bits than the other serious issues.

We'll see, there are some projects around at the company right now, and maybe one of those will involve l10n/i18n aspects, or hopefully have international projection. If that's the case, posts may be spotted here again. I hope to see the blossoming happen before spring, really.

Oñati, an evil place that's worth a visit, according to Lonely Planet

Luistxo Fernandez 2010/09/03 17:11

This year, scores of international tourists have come to Oñati, a Basque town, attracted by the following description in a Lonely Planet guide

If your Basque experiences have so tar been limited to a crawl around some San Sebastian bars and Bilbao galleries then you might be wondering what this ETA fuss is all about. If so, the small town of Oñati is a good place to experience the darker side of Euskadi.

On first impressions the town, set in a bowl in the surrounding mountains, is a charmer, but walk down its streets during a grey and drizzly lunchtime when all is shut up tight and you'll quickly see another side to the place. Almost every square centimetre of wall space is covered in Nationalist graffiti calling for independence. With every pass ing step you'll be confronted with a poster graphically revealing Spanish state torture or calling for Basque prisoners to be returned to the Basque Country. Against such a backdrop it's hard to imagine how real, lasting peace can be achieved.

And you know what? The Town Council has protested and asked Lonely Planet to remove that from next year's guide. WTF! According to the very same news item informing about it, there are people that are actually coming to Oñati to experience evil first hand!


Luistxo works in CodeSyntax, tweets as @Luistxo and tries to manage the automated newssite Niagarank. This Cemetery is part of a distributed multilingual blog (?!). These are the Basque and Spanish versions:

Ingelesen hilerria

El cementerio de los ingleses


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