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To save endangered languages, tribes turn to tech

LAS VEGAS (AP) – American Indian tribes trying to bring back their languages from the brink of extinction are increasingly turning to tech for help.

Lewis “Bleu” St. Cyr runs a Facebook page and put together a mock version of the “Who Wants to Be A Millionaire?” game show to help young people learn the Ho-Chunk language. And he took a trip to Las Vegas earlier this year to scope out the possibility of developing a language-learning smartphone app for the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska.

Tribal members who are part of a growing language revitalization movement say they’re trying to engage younger generations who will carry on the languages.

An estimated 200 tribal languages still exist in North America, but many are spoken by only a handful of people in their 70s or 80s.

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