Interdisciplinary Centre for Social and Language Documentation in Portugal

The Centro Interdisciplinar de Documentação Linguística e Social (CIDLeS) is an interdisciplinary non-profit centre dedicated to the documentation and preservation of the linguistic (and cultural) heritage in Europe. It was founded in January 2010 as a result of the work of a number of researchers at the Institute of General Linguistics and Language Typology at the University of Munich and at the Department of Portuguese Studies at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Its roots go back to a DOBES language documentation project about Minderico, an endangered language in Portugal. Minderico, also known as Piação do Ninhou (the language of Minde), was originally a sociolect or a secret language spoken by textile producers and traders in the freguesia (civil parish) of Minde (Alcanena, Portugal). Besides its focus on the documentation and preservation of endangered languages in Europe, CIDLeS also develops Language Technologies for Lesser-Used Languages.

The main software development project of the research center is Poio, a collection of software tools for linguists working in language documentation, descriptive linguistics and/or language typology. It allows linguists to manage and analyze their data. The Poio Interlinear Editor allows to add morpho-syntactic annotations to transcriptions. Right now it only supports Elan's .eaf file format. The Poio Analyzer is a tool to search and analyze annotated data from language documentation projects. It supports Elan's .eaf file format and Toolbox files. You can open a list of .eaf or .txt file and search on different tiers (utterance, word, gloss, translation) within all files. Both software tools are based on PyAnnotation, a Python Library to access and manipulate linguistically annotated corpus files. Supported file format are currently Elan XML, Kura XML and Toolbox files. PyAnnotation provides a Corpus Reader API to support statistical analysis within the Natural Language Toolkit.

You may find screen videos of the basic functionality and download packages for both tools on the websites of the project. Please send any comments, questions, or suggestions for improvement to Peter Bouda at pbouda [at]


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