Welcome to the Ethnoblog!

This is the first of many posts to this blog in which we hope to discuss topics of interest to lovers of language.  We’ll also use this venue as a place to discuss features of the Ethnologue website, new Ethnologue publications as they appear, and just about anything that comes up that is language-related.

For this first time out, however, I’d like to welcome you not only to the blog but to the new www.ethnologue.com, our redesigned and updated website. Along with a brand new look, we are adding some significant, and useful features.  A brief overview is in order.

Our New Home

The home page provides you with useful new ways to navigate the site.  The tabs organize the information so that you can get to it quickly and easily. The index links in the footer are another way to quickly find things. The world map is still there and still serves as a handy way to get to a particular region but has a new cleaner colorful look. You'll also want to take a look at the introduction and background pages as they explain the history of the Ethnologue, the way the data is organized, and some signficant  tutorial type information on language identification,  language endangerment, and language development.

The Statistics tab provides you with summaries of language counts by size, status, language family, world region, and other categories that are useful to the researcher or just plain interesting to the passing web surfer.

The World Languages tab takes you to the core of the Ethnologue with the listings of the 7,105 living languages that we currently track and report on. As you drill down through world areas and UN regions to find specific countries, the pop-ups will give you an overview of the situation of language development and language endangerment in each area, region, and country.

By far, my favorite is the amazing collection of maps.  Painstakingly developed and revised by our team of cartographers, these colorful displays help us locate the languages we are interested in.  This edition of the Ethnologue has increased the number of countries for which we have maps by 4 with India providing a whole new set of maps for your use.

As in all previous editions, we have, a table of abbreviations, several different useful indexes and a list of all of the sources that have been cited along with a long list of acknowledgments of contributors and a shorter list of all of the SIL staff who have been involved in the production of this edition.

But that's not all!

The other exciting additions to this edition are the new features that can be accessed directly from the Home page. Check out (subscribe to the RSS feed!) the Language of the Day feature.  Each day one of the languages of the world is highlighted and reported on.  Included in that is a scatter plot display showing where the language is situated with respect to all world languages in terms of its population and its ethnolinguistic vitality using the EGIDS (another new feature we'll describe in a future blog).

And then, we have the Ethnoblog.  You have just read the very first one.  We hope you'll return and join in the conversation.