One of the three pillars of TLA consists of tools (programs and web-applications) that are developed and maintained by us. The tools are:
- To manage the archive and integrate it with the emerging infrastructures.
- To create, search, access and enrich languages resources.
During the last decades the developers and archive managers created a bundle of state-of-the-art tools, the LAT software suite for these two main dimensions following open source principles. Almost all tools and components support open standards and best practices.
In contrast to standardized formats and encoding principles, tools in general have a shorter life cycle. Nevertheless a continuity of major software components needs to be maintained to guarantee a proper functioning of the archive and the accessibility of its data. In contrast to other archiving software projects the LAT software suite was designed as a set of loosely coupled components that allows easy replacements by new and improved modules. The major software engineering principle at TLA must be the continuation of a modular component based approach which is completely in line with what is currently described as service oriented architecture.
Special attention will also be given to integrate more advanced computational principles into the LAT software suite. Traditional methods are relying on manual annotation due to the nature of the field and experiment recordings, however, these do not scale and there is no way to easily test scientific hypothesis based on statistical evidence. Libraries with these new advanced components are currently being integrated into easy-to-use tools, such as ELAN, to allow researchers to operate with complex pattern recognition technologies. TLA will continue this line of work and look for collaborations with external projects and experts.
Of great relevance for the maintenance and further development of the LAT software suite is the continuation of participation in external projects at a high and competitive level. In particular the development of new functionality needs to be preferably ensured in general via external funding sources as was done during the last decade. All such participations must be directed towards improving the infrastructure for data management or improved methods for data creation, access, analysis and enrichment.
All Software developed by TLA may be used free of charge (freeware). It is also ‘open source’: the source code is available upon request under the Gnu Public License 2 (in some cases GPL 3).