Arts, Culture & Media

iPhone App Helps With Incomprehensible Dialect

Wigan_Pier300.jpg

Wigan Pier (Photo: Dave Green)

We're testing your knowledge of English in the Geo Quiz — not your standard, Queen's English. We're zeroing in on the dialect spoken in a certain part of Lancashire, England. It's a town only about 30 miles from Manchester, yet the town's local dialect can be incomprehensible to the folks in Manchester. That prompted a manager at an IT company there to develop an iPhone translation app.

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Other than its dialect, the former coal-mining town we want you to name is famous for its rugby league, a Heinz baked beans factory, and a Hollywood celebrity who spent his early childhood there, Sir Ian McKellen.

So, which town in Lancashire are we talking about? Answer: Wigan!

Anchor Marco Werman talks to Martin Bradley of the British IT company Athernet Web Solutions. Bradley hails from Wigan himself. He and his colleagues have developed a mobile phone app to translate the dialect of "Wiganese" into plain English.