For full details about who produced Sounds of the Andean Languages, why, who paid for it, and so on,
see our separate page About This Sounds Project
How to Make Our Sounds Pages Load & Play Faster
There are three ways to view these pages: on our website, on one of our cd‑roms, or by saving the whole site to your hard drive. All have identical content, but the sound files and pages load and play more slowly on the web than from the cd‑rom, and much faster still from your hard drive. So if you plan to use these pages a lot, we recommend you copy our whole site to your hard drive. Here’s how to do this…
• If you have a copy of our cd‑rom, create a new folder anywhere on your hard drive and name it as you wish (say ‘soundsoftheandes’). Then find the cd‑rom in ‘My Computer’ (usually drive D), select the entire contents of the cd‑rom, and just drag them into your new ‘soundsoftheandes’ folder.
• If you don’t have a copy of our cd‑rom, then instead you can download our whole site as a single zipped file. This is very big, at 96 MB, so you’ll need a broadband internet connection, and even then it will take a few minutes. Your computer may ask you where you want to save the file. Save it to wherever you wish on your hard drive, and once it has finished downloading there, unzip the soundsoftheandes.zip file (in Windows, right-click on the file and do ‘Extract All…”). This will create a folder called ‘soundsoftheandes’ on your hard drive, alongside the .zip file (which you can then delete if you wish). To start the download process now, click here.
To run the programme from your hard drive, just go into the new ‘soundsoftheandes’ folder and double-click on the start.htm file there.
Keeping Up-To-Date With New Versions
(This is version 2, as of December 2007.)
Saving the whole site to your hard drive or using our cd‑rom has the advantage that these versions work faster, and your computer does not need to be connected to the internet. However, over the coming years we will be expanding Sounds of the Andean Languages, to create new editions that will include many more words and even more regional varieties of Quechua and Aymara. (Edition 2 will appear by about June 2008.) The most up-to-date edition of Sounds of the Andean Languages will always be the one on the internet, but each new edition will also be available for download as a single zipped file (see above). This way you can also update the version stored on your hard disc, or make your own updated cd‑rom.
How Should I Use Sounds of the Andean Languages?
What this cd‑rom and website are for is to let you explore and learn more about the rich diversity of all the varieties of Quechua and Aymara spoken in different regions and countries throughout the Andes. You can do this in four ways, by clicking on the links in the top half of the site contents column, which always appears down the left-hand side of the screen.
• In the word comparisons pages, you can hear exactly how each of fifty common Quechua and Aymara words are pronounced in twenty different regions of the Andes. For more about where our recordings come from, click here.
• In our sections about Quechua and Aymara we explore the origins and diversity of all the different regional varieties of these languages throughout the Andes, and where they and their speakers may have come from. Some regional forms of Quechua come from the Incas, for example, but many others actually go back to Andean cultures that are much older still. If you want to look even deeper into your language, there is a further page with more details on Quechua.
• The regions section gives detailed information about the places where we made our recordings, including photos of the native speakers of Quechua and Aymara whose voices you can hear in our recordings, and of the regions they live in.
• Finally we also have a spelling section. While Sounds of the Andean Languages is not specifically about spelling, it will nonetheless certainly help understand why the official pan-Andean alphabet and spelling system for the language in Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador has been devised in the way that it has. It will also help you understand how and why the official spelling can be different from the pronunciation you use in your home region.
Navigating Around All Pages
To navigate between the many different pages within Sounds of the Andean Languages, use the site contents column down the left-hand side of the screen. The top half shows all the main four sections of the site: you can switch from one to another at any time by just clicking on the corresponding link. That link will then appear in red so that you can always see which section you are now in. For example, you are now in the help section, which is why the help link appears in red in the site contents column.
If you click on word comparisons or regions in the site contents column, immediately underneath it you will also see a list of detailed contents of that section. So if in the top-left you click on word comparisons, in the bottom-left you will see a list of each of the individual words you can look at. You can scroll among them, and click on any word to show the table with all the different regional pronunciations of that word – this will appear in the main frame of the screen.
Does Sounds of the Andean Languages Work on All Computers?
Sounds of the Andean Languages does not require a particularly fast processor nor a large amount of memory. Most computers built after about 1997 should be fine.
This cd‑rom and website have been designed to work on a normal PC computer using Windows Explorer as the webpage browser, for the very good reason that these are what are used in almost all computers available to people in the Andean countries, our main audience. It has not been tested on Apple Macintosh computers, nor on other browsers like Mozilla Firefox; nonetheless, most pages and functions should work well enough on those too.
Be aware that on all computers, particularly on older ones, the sound files do take some time to load so you will have to be a little patient for some of the pages to load. If this is a problem on your computer, see our help section on How to Hear Our Sound Recordings.
How Best To View Our Pages
If it seems like there is not enough space on your screen to show our pages properly – particularly our photo-pages – try one or more of these solutions:
• Maximise your browser window: double-click on the title bar across the top of this window, where the page title 'Sounds of the Andean Languages – Microsoft Internet Explorer' appears.
• If your browser window has any column appearing on the far left-hand side of the screen, such as Folders, History or Search, hide it by clicking on the ý x in the top right corner of that column.
• If your browser window has any toolbars at the top that you do not need, hide them: right-click on any toolbar and click on the name of any of them that has a tick against it but which you do not need (but best not to un-tick the one called 'Standard Buttons').
• If your screen still seems too small, increase its 'resolution': Start > Control Panel > Display > Settings, and there set the Screen Resolution higher. To view this website well, you will need a resolution of 1024 x 768 (more is not really necessary). [These are the steps in Windows XP: they may be slightly different in other versions of Windows.]
How to Listen to Our Sound Recordings
Wherever on these pages you see a word , it is there to show that there is a sound recording for you to hear. (The word in blue may be either the name of a region of the Andes, or a word written in letters and/or some phonetic symbols.)
You can choose between two different ways to play the sounds, depending how you want to listen to them, and on how your computer is set up.
• Hover to hear. All you need do is move your mouse to move the cursor on top of the (this is called ‘hovering’ over the link), and the sound plays automatically. You do not even have to click on the link at all, so this is the easiest or the fastest way to listen to our recordings.
However, this ‘hover to hear’ system only works if your computer is using a fairly recent version of Windows and Internet Explorer.
• Click to hear. If hovering doesn’t work on your computer, then you will have to actually click on a in order to hear it. This should play the sound in a tiny sound player frame in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen, though if your computer is set to play .mp3 files by default in a different player such as Windows Media Player, it may open a new window and play the sound recording there instead. (If so, you’ll probably want to switch this off, so see the help section below on How to Get ‘Hover Sounds’ to Work). Unfortunately, clicking to play a sound can sometimes cut the first part of the recording as it plays, but to repeat it properly you can just click again, or press the play button in the tiny sound player frame.
This ‘click to hear’ system should work on almost all computers, including those using older versions of Windows such as 98, and even 95.
To test now which system(s) your computer can use, try just moving your mouse cursor over . If you can’t hear a confirmation recording, then try actually clicking on the . If you still can’t hear anything, you may have a problem with the sound system on your computer, so see the next help section below.
In Sounds of the Andean Languages, on most pages the sound links actually work in both ways. These pages need to load sound files into memory so that you can hear our recordings, and this can be a fairly slow process. So even on a fast computer, it may take a minute or so for a page to load! Please be patient!
For our full word comparison pages, we offer you the choice of the click or hover systems: hover is easier to use, but if your computer is too slow you can use click only.
If You Can’t Hear Any Sounds at All…
If you can’t hear any sounds at all, first please be patient! Wait for each page to appear fully on your screen – some pages need to load many sound files into memory too, and even on a fast computer, it may take a minute or so for a page to load!
Once a page has loaded in full on your screen, the sounds should work. So try moving your mouse cursor over , and if that doesn’t work then try clicking on . If you still cannot hear anything, you may have a problem with the sound system on your computer. Some of the possible solutions are easy ones: try these!
• Check that the sound volume on your computer is turned up high enough to hear it.
• Check that the sound on your computer has not been set to mute or silent mode: Start > Control Panel > Sounds and Audio Devices.
• If your computer sound output is connected to external loudspeakers, check that they are switched on.
• Check whether your computer sound output is connected to external earphones, and if so put them on and check that they are switched on too, if necessary.
• Check that your computer has a sound card and that is working properly: Start > Control Panel > Sounds and Audio Devices.
• Check that your internet browser (i.e. Internet Explorer, Mozilla, etc.) is set to play sounds. Within your browser, look under: Tools > Internet Options > Advanced > Multimedia > Play Sounds, and make sure the box is ticked.
• Your internet browser may also need to be configured to work properly with a sound player. Within your browser, look under: Tools > Internet Options > Programs > Manage Add-Ons.
How to Get ‘Hover Sounds’ to Work
If you would prefer to use ‘hover to hear’ but can only get ‘click to hear’ to work on your computer, and/or if clicking always opens a new window to play the sound, there may be a simple way to fix this. You have to make sure that the sound player on your computer (most often, Windows Media Player) is not set as the default sound player for .mp3 files. To do this for Windows Media Player, open it and do: Tools – Options – File Types, then untick the box opposite the entry “mp3 audio files (mp3)”. (If your Windows Media Player does not offer you this option, it’s probably because your user account on that computer does not have rights to change this setting, so you’ll have to get someone with an Administrator user account to change it.)
• The simplest solution is to make sure you have a recent version of an internet browser, such as Microsoft Internet Explorer version 6 or later. This is free and easily available for download on the internet, or included with many cd‑roms. To check which version you are using now, do Help > About Internet Explorer.
• If you have an old operating system like Windows 95 or 98, you may have to upgrade to a more recent one such as XP, 2000 or Millennium, but beware that if you have an old computer you may not have enough memory to use it.