I am having trouble with the term, "platform", in the sense of an information technology infrastructure.

Plena Ilustrita Vortaro de Esperanto / PIV gives us four meanings, none of them close to IT.

Glosbe is skeletique.

All this hints at a "false friend": [EN] platform = [EO] platformo.

Here is what I am trying to say:

"Tatoeba is a fantastic platform for creating linguistic projects."

Your thoughts please.


In my opinion, platformo can be used to mean that kind of platform, too.

The "komputada leksikono" defines it as

Kombino de komputilo (aparataro) kaj operaciumo.

which, while IT-related, is probably too narrow to include your intended usage. But "komputada leksikono" is a bit dated now and komputeko seems to use platformo in as wide a sense as "platform" is used in an IT context in English nowadays, too. (I.e., including web platforms, development platforms, publishing platforms, etc.)

  • Apple platform (s) — Apple-platformo
  • closed platform (walled garden, closed ecosystem) (s) — fermita platformo
  • cross platform (cross-platform) (a) — plursistema
  • crowdfunding platform (s) — amasfinanciga platformo
  • graphics platform (s) — grafika platformo
  • platform (s) — platformo KompLeks ; soklo [FF]
  • publishing platform (s) — publikiga platformo

I think the definitions for platformo in PIV

  1. Plialtigita ebena maso el teraĵoj, roko, cemento ks, sur kiu oni starigas baterion de kanonoj.
  2. Plata ebena parto de ŝipkonstruaĵo, sur kiu oni starigas la kanonturetojn, aŭ sur kiu oni aranĝas alteriĝan areon.
  3. Plata parto de vagono, aŭtobuso aŭ tramveturilo, kie la pasaĝeroj restas stare.
  4. Deklaraĵo, prezentanta la politikan programon de partio, okaze de balotado.

are much too narrow, and this might even be the reason why PIV needs so many of them: The first three have in common that they all describe (probably artificial) flat, level surfaces. All four have in common that they can support something, that one can either stand on them or build upon them. Like the direct meaning of the English word "platform" they're a kind of fundament that is mostly independent of what you put on top of it. (And the ones building or standing on top of it, might be others than the ones who provide or built the platform.)

As a metaphor, this works for all kinds of "platforms" in IT, business and other fields. And the entries in komputeko indicate that this metaphor is indeed used also in Esperanto.

By the way, the German word "Plattform" is also used that way (with mostly the same direct and metaphorical meanings) and I guess similar corresponding words in other related languages are used similarly, too. Note though that the German word "Plattform", other than the English one, cannot mean a train station platform (the area from which passengers board the trains). That'd be a "Bahnsteig". (Or a "Perron" (probably taken from French) in Swiss German.)


PIV, ReVo and Glosbe are general-purpose dictionaries, which cannot cover branch-specific vocabulary.

For computer related words we have the somewhat outdated Komputada leksiono and the maintained Komputeko (the latest update is from May this year). Where the former gives a definition, the latter only lists translations.

The definition of the English term "platform" is not unambiguous, but is generally considered referring to a collection of hardware and software that form an environment, a foundation, where other software can be run. The Wikipedia article "Computing platform" lists both hardware and software examples.

Given those (and my experience on the branch) I would not classify Tatoeba as "a platform for creating linguistic projects". Rather Tatoeba is a linguistic project which has a database of phrases and their translations. For accessing this database there is a website or a web application. Thus

  • Tatoeba estas retejo/retaplikaĵo por frazoj kaj (ĉi) ties tradukoj.

Having said that, you can consider that Tatoeba is a translation platform, where the term "platform" is used in non-computer specific, but in a wider sense.

  • Tatoeba estas platformo por traduki frazojn.

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