You can Register Here ,   OR

Bias in Dictionaries

Bias regarding language occurs in many forms beyond outright bigotry. Kamusi is affected by at least four kinds:
  1. The soft bigotry of low expectations. Most people do not expect high-quality resources for languages that do not have big economic footprints. Many feel that speakers of non-lucrative languages should darn-tootin' learn a language like English or French, or make do with any crumbs that fall their way. Why should we worry about Zapotec, for example, when the path to success in Mexico involves getting jobs in Spanish? This attitude is pervasive among policy-makers and foundations, many average citizens of the wealthy world who would gladly donate to eradicate other inequities, and even sometimes held by less-resourced language speakers themselves who do not have reason to hope that they will ever find their languages viable in technological or global economic domains. If nobody expects that great things are possible, then nobody demands them - and it is therefore impossible to rouse the funds to bring them into existence.
  2. Concept bias. Kamusi is seeded by many open datasets, so our terms reflect the interests of their compilers. For example, WordNet includes Captain James Cook, but not Hawaii's King Kalaniʻōpuʻu who Cook died trying to seize. We are working toward including as many indigenous ideas as possible, but you have to know a concept exists in order to include it in the dictionary, and such terms are often absent from our seed data.
  3. Definition bias. The people of Hawaii would be surprised to hear that James Cook "discovered" them, but that view of history was what guided the author of the WordNet definition. We welcome your help finding and fixing questionable definitions.
  4. Ranking bias. People tend to assume that their top search result is the most relevant. If we have three meanings for "draw" (draw a picture, draw a sword, draw water), we have to list one first, but that arbitrary ranking has no relationship to your needs at a given moment. Teachers often complain that their students use the wrong term because it was listed first on Kamusi. Our response is to try to flesh out each sense with definitions and usage examples that make clear to the user whether they have the right term - a task that will take years, and needs your help.

Kamusi GOLD

These are the languages for which we have datasets that we are actively working toward putting online. Languages that are Active for you to search are marked with "A" in the list below.


•A = Active language, aligned and searchable
•c = Data 🔢 elicited through the Comparative African Word List
•d = Data from independent sources that Kamusi participants align playing 🐥📊 DUCKS
•e = Data from the 🎮 games you can play on 😂🌎🤖 EmojiWorldBot
•P = Pending language, data in queue for alignment
•w = Data from 🔠🕸 WordNet teams

Software and Systems

We are actively creating new software for you to make use of and contribute to the 🎓 knowledge we are bringing together. Learn about software that is ready for you to download or in development, and the unique data systems we are putting in place for advanced language learning and technology:

Articles and Information

Kamusi has many elements. With these articles, you can read the details that interest you:

Videos and Slideshows

Some of what you need to know about Kamusi can best be understood visually. Our 📽 videos are not professional, but we hope you find them useful:


Our partners - past, present, and future - include:

Hack Kamusi

Here are some of the work elements on our task list that you can help do or fund:

Theory of Kamusi

Select a link below to learn about the principles that guide the project's unique approach to lexicography and public service.

Contact Us

We welcome your comments and questions, and will try to respond quickly. To get in touch, please visit our contact page. You must use a real email address if you want to get a real reply!

© Copyright ©

The Kamusi Project dictionaries and the Kamusi Project databases are intellectual property protected by international copyright law, ©2007 through ©2018, under the joint ownership of Kamusi Project International and Kamusi Project USA. Further explanation may be found on our © Copyright page.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.


Discussion items about language, technology, and society, from the Kamusi editor and others. This box is growing. To help develop or fund the project, please contact us!

Our biggest struggle is keeping Kamusi online and keeping it free. We cannot charge money for our services because that would block access to the very people we most want to benefit, the students and speakers of languages around the world that are almost always excluded from information technology. So, we ask, request, beseech, beg you, to please support our work by donating as generously as you can to help build and maintain this unique public resource.


Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to general questions you might have about Kamusi services.

We are building this page around real questions from members of the Kamusi community. Send us a question that you think will help other visitors to the site, and frequently we will place the answer here.

Try it : Ask a "FAQ"!

Press Coverage

Kamusi in the news: Reports by journalists and bloggers about our work in newspapers, television, radio, and online.

Sponsor Search:
Who Do You Know?

To keep Kamusi growing as a "free" knowledge resource for the world's languages, we need major contributions from philanthropists and organizations. Do you have any connections with a generous person, corporation, foundation, or family office that might wish to make a long term impact on educational outcomes and economic opportunity for speakers of excluded languages around the world? If you can help us reach out to a potential 💛😇 GOLD Angel, please contact us!