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Re: Methods or software for creating grammars and dictionaries

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  • Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets
    ... Thanks for the compliment :) . I must say I have no idea how the export or dictionary-making options of FLEx are like. I might install it on my Linux
    Message 1 of 14 , Mar 15, 2013
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      On 15 March 2013 11:15, James Kane <kanejam@...> wrote:

      > Thanks for the replies.
      >
      > I have decided to download both Toolbox and FLEx as while FLEx sounds
      > like the better program, I am very impressed with the look of the
      > Moten dictionary. I will try out both and see which one I prefer.
      >
      >
      Thanks for the compliment :) . I must say I have no idea how the export or
      dictionary-making options of FLEx are like. I might install it on my Linux
      computer just to check. It seems to be able to import Toolbox MDF datafiles
      without a problem, which means I should be fine with my Moten dictionary,
      which uses that format.

      Getting the dictionary to look like it does was hard work! :/ I had to make
      a lot of modifications of the document template used by Toolbox, and had to
      delve into the arcane and frustrating depths of Word master documents. I'd
      rather have an export system that doesn't want me to use Word and allows me
      to automate more work. But that's a long term goal...

      On 15 March 2013 11:45, Jyri Lehtinen <lehtinen.jyri@...> wrote:

      > I'm also just reactivated in conlanging myself so much of my documentation
      > is handwritten on loose leaf and notebooks. I've also started to clean up
      > the documentation and write it on my computer. Those documents I've
      > compiled using xelatex. LaTeX often looks a bit daunting for new users but
      > it creates beautiful output once you get used to it. Then again, it's just
      > a way to format your output and you can get the same structuring of your
      > contents using any of your favourite word processors. For me LaTeX is a
      > natural choice since I already use it extensively in my work.
      >
      >
      Yeah, my long term goal is to have my dictionary made in XeLaTeX. But
      that'll be hard work as I miss the export tools needed for Toolbox.


      > I don't have so much lexicon at the moment that I would need a special tool
      > for it. I might try the Linux versions of the SIL software or just take the
      > chance to learn to do some database work myself. One desired goal would be
      > to have the ability to create reverse word lists (natlang > conlang) from a
      > database that has word items in the conlang and more thorough descriptions
      > of them in the natlang (several possible translations, example phrases
      > etc.). And of course, being able to export into LaTeX format to get good
      > publishable output would be nice.
      >
      >
      Toolbox (and I hope FLEx, which is after all a descendant of Toolbox) does
      reverse word list export, as you can see in my dictionary (which combines a
      Moten-English dictionary and an English-Moten reverse word list).
      Unfortunately, it lacks the ability to export to a format usable by LaTeX.
      That's my big stumbling block at the moment. That's why I'm curious about
      FLEx's export capabilities...
      --
      Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.

      http://christophoronomicon.blogspot.com/
      http://www.christophoronomicon.nl/
    • Herman Miller
      ... I just use Word documents for my lexicons. I use bold for the English glosses for easy searching. I have vocabulary organized into categories (colors,
      Message 2 of 14 , Mar 15, 2013
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        On 3/15/2013 2:10 AM, James Kane wrote:
        > Hi all
        >
        > I am newish to conlanging and so far my attempts are all recorded in
        > either (very) unorganised paper form or on Microsoft Excel which isn't
        > the best way to store a lexicon. Most of the grammars of the languages
        > exist mostly in my head.
        >
        > I was wondering what people's methods were for documenting their
        > conlangs; what specific programs or software do you find very useful?
        > How do you structure dictionary entries or grammar points? Is there a
        > link to a resource that could help in this aspect?

        I just use Word documents for my lexicons. I use bold for the English
        glosses for easy searching. I have vocabulary organized into categories
        (colors, parts of the body, kinds of musical instruments, etc.)

        > For people with conscripts, how do you store those on the computer? I
        > have a fair computer and internet literacy.

        I use a really old copy of Macromedia Fontographer from 1996 to create
        TrueType fonts. These days there are probably better options, but it's
        what I'm familiar with.
      • Jyri Lehtinen
        ... I took a look at your dictionary and its format indeed looks like something very usable and something I d aim at. I was wondering how readable the database
        Message 3 of 14 , Mar 16, 2013
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          >
          > Toolbox (and I hope FLEx, which is after all a descendant of Toolbox) does
          > reverse word list export, as you can see in my dictionary (which combines a
          > Moten-English dictionary and an English-Moten reverse word list).
          > Unfortunately, it lacks the ability to export to a format usable by LaTeX.
          > That's my big stumbling block at the moment. That's why I'm curious about
          > FLEx's export capabilities...
          > --
          > Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.
          >

          I took a look at your dictionary and its format indeed looks like
          something very usable and something I'd aim at. I was wondering how
          readable the database format of the SIL software is. If it's easily done,
          there's always the possibility of writing your own script that reads the
          database in and parses dictionary items in LaTeX format into a tex file. It
          might require a bit of research but apart from that should be pretty
          straight forward.

          -Jyri
        • George Marques
          ... AFAIK Toolbox format is pure text and easily parseable, so it shouldn t be hard to write such a script. FLEx can export to the same format.
          Message 4 of 14 , Mar 16, 2013
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            >> Toolbox (and I hope FLEx, which is after all a descendant of Toolbox) does
            >> reverse word list export, as you can see in my dictionary (which combines a
            >> Moten-English dictionary and an English-Moten reverse word list).
            >> Unfortunately, it lacks the ability to export to a format usable by LaTeX.
            >> That's my big stumbling block at the moment. That's why I'm curious about
            >> FLEx's export capabilities...
            >> --
            >> Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.
            >>
            >
            > I took a look at your dictionary and its format indeed looks like
            > something very usable and something I'd aim at. I was wondering how
            > readable the database format of the SIL software is. If it's easily done,
            > there's always the possibility of writing your own script that reads the
            > database in and parses dictionary items in LaTeX format into a tex file. It
            > might require a bit of research but apart from that should be pretty
            > straight forward.
            >
            > -Jyri

            AFAIK Toolbox format is pure text and easily parseable, so it shouldn't be hard to write such a script. FLEx can export to the same format.

            :. George Marques
            :. http://georgemarques.com.br
          • Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets
            ... Thanks! Most of it was just getting the right format for the entries in the Toolbox database. The export system did most of the rest. SIL software is well
            Message 5 of 14 , Mar 16, 2013
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              On 16 March 2013 10:26, Jyri Lehtinen <lehtinen.jyri@...> wrote:

              > >
              >
              > I took a look at your dictionary and its format indeed looks like
              > something very usable and something I'd aim at.


              Thanks! Most of it was just getting the right format for the entries in the
              Toolbox database. The export system did most of the rest. SIL software is
              well known to be quite good, if sometimes a bit quirky :) .


              > I was wondering how
              > readable the database format of the SIL software is. If it's easily done,
              > there's always the possibility of writing your own script that reads the
              > database in and parses dictionary items in LaTeX format into a tex file. It
              > might require a bit of research but apart from that should be pretty
              > straight forward.
              >
              >
              On 16 March 2013 14:55, George Marques <georgemjesus@...> wrote:

              >
              > AFAIK Toolbox format is pure text and easily parseable, so it shouldn't be
              > hard to write such a script. FLEx can export to the same format.
              >
              >
              Correct. The Toolbox database is just a plain text file with a bunch of
              TeX-like tags (i.e. starting with \). It *should* be relatively easy to
              parse. The problem is: I've never written parsing scripts, not even small
              ones. There are some Toolbox format parsers out there, but most of them are
              outdated and/or buggy. Writing a parser *should* be within my abilities,
              but it requires a lot of time and effort for me, which I just don't have
              available right now. But in the long term: sure! :)
              --
              Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.

              http://christophoronomicon.blogspot.com/
              http://www.christophoronomicon.nl/
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