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Press release – Pictorial dictionairies for a slightly better world

Hamburg, Germany – The Team of (, and their fellow contributors had an idea: As pictorial (visual) dictionairies are the easieist way to learn a language, we put one into the internet. For virtually every language. For free. As simple as that.

The big picture:

Simple cave paintings were the first concept to educate and communicate. Thousands of years later, 1 billion people speak Mandarin, 400 million people speak English, 100 million speak German, 7 million speak Shona in Zimbabwe – and 24 people in Nevada speak the endangered language of Washoe. There are 7,000 languages worldwide, thereof 800 are from Papua New Guinea alone. The number of dialects based on all languages is unknown, but it probably exceeds the number of languages by far. Mankind is still to communicate, but the majority of people do not speak at least one common language. For this reason, we need a modern cave! And we have made some moves to create one. In doing so, we chose a simple internet-based application, as the internet is the cave which fits us all. In order to educate, preserve and save languages and to enable communication, we provide babadada based on the most well-established concept: visual icons. And name it after the first two words of mankind: Baba and dada.

How we work: lives from the ideas and the help of its contributors. Karina created the first set of pictures. Bart was the programmer of our first simple database. Matthew translated the first set of words in english. And so we went on… language by language, device by device, dialect by dialect.

Why we do this:

First: We want to provide easy acess to learn the basics of a language for the less-fortunate all over the world. Because learning a language (for example english) means a better live in many cases. Especially within the education of children but over all for virtually everybody. As the costs of being online will further decrease sharply, being online also becomes a chance for merely everybody to learn a language – and a chance for you and us to help. We want to take this opportunity with our very easy to use and free approach – especially in places where books and other tools are unaffordable. Because learning a language often means a better life.

Second: is a platform wich can very easily be exctended by every language and every dialect. Thus preserving a language or dialect is preserving a culture, can become a kind of treasure chest for languages, dialects and nearly forgotten words your grandparents knew. Everyone who contributes a language by even just translating some words can keep its basics accessable for the next generations.

Third: can also be used by third parties or businesses to provide a visual dictionairy within a corporate website (e.g. travel agency, touristic organisations), to use a visual dictionairy to increase the awareness of a brand while using own imaging (merchandising, reach, advertising) or to create any kind of application on the basis of a constantly enhanced and reviewed set of vocabulary, pictures, themes and languages. At the end of the day, this approach leads to more free pictorial dictionairies and additional funding to provide easy acess to learn the basics of a language for the less-fortunate. (virtous circle)

After all this is just a very simple easy-to-use tool for basic communication and learning, for travelling to foreign countries or educate children in a playful manner.

What has this got to do with you?

Did you ever forgot your toothbrush while travelling in france? How did you ask for one?
Do you have children who are learning a language? Do they like picture books?
Does your grandmother speak a fancy dialect you hardly know? Wich is about to vanish away?
Can you imagine less fortunate people, for whome just a some basic english skills could mean a better life?
Can you imageine children in less fortunate countires, who do not have proper acess to education but access to at least one cheap internet device?
Could you imagine to use, share or support

…join our team of contributors!

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