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Dictionary Design

Customization needs?

WinDi ® Specialized Encoding Module
(Module for lexicon development).


This program can be provided to you if you intend to develop a specialized dictionary dedicated to your own field of activities. This program is different from the standard WinDi Tools - Encoding program that allows you to modify the existing WinDi database installed in your PC. The WinDi Specialized Encoding Module (WinDi SEM) allows you to integrate your own existing lexicon inside the WinDi database before installation of the package. This way, we can create for you a customized WinDi version.

What can you achieve with your customized version of WinDi?

If you are the owner of technical vocabulary (all fields are concerned) in the languages supported by WinDi, there are 2 possibilities :
1) If you want to commercialize your work, we can realize together a specialized WinDi version dedicated to a market niche.
2) If you want to share your work with other people, we can integrate your vocabulary in the standard database used by the Handy Services Site which is a free service (available only on the Internet) we collaborate with. The number of languages available on this site can increase in order to add new language pairs.

How to create/integrate your own lexicon?

First of all, your project should be discussed with us to see how we can assist you in integrating or creating your lexicon. As soon as your dictionary is ready, we can create your specialized version of WinDi. Please call for more information Tel: (intl)+32-10-454.226, Fax: (intl)+32-10-454.995 or send us an E-mail at in order to describe your project.

The next section presents the complete user's manual of WinDi SEM :

1. First screen of the program.

This is the application's main screen.

1.1. Selection of the Dictionary File.

In the 'Opened file' field, enter the letter of the file you want to review, and WinDi will load it. It will dynamically sort it on basis of the chosen source language (see point 1.2 below).

1.2. Selection of the source language.

Click on one of the 7 language flags in the lower right corner of the screen. If you click on the 'Eng' flag, for example, you will be presented with the English dictionary, correctly sorted by alphabetical order.

You may receive the following comment: 'WARNING: GRAMMAR MISSING', informing you that no grammatical comment has been added to this word (see also point 3.1.).

1.3. 'Type the word' field.

In this field, you can type the word you are looking for. The dictionary will locate it. Beware: the dictionary only looks up the first word you entered. If you entered a compound word, you will have to use the vertical scroll bar in the words list to find the word you need. Please note, if you close the application and then reopen it, the dictionary will automatically scroll to the first word for which the grammar is missing, if any (see point 3.1.).

1.4. 'Find missing grammar' button.

This button checks whether the dictionary, opened from any given language, still contains words having no grammatical comment (see point 3.1.). This button must be used on each file in the chosen language, in order to make sure that there are no more missing comments.

1.5. Open the dictionary.

This button opens the dictionary to the words selected in the list box. You also can click twice (see 1.6) on a word in the list box to open the dictionary (see § 2)

1.6. Dictionary list box.

This list displays all the words contained in the opened file. You can click twice on a word in this list box to open the dictionary (see § 2).

1.7. Setup button.

This button opens the following screen:

By changing the dialog language, all grammatical comments will appear in the language of your choice. We advise you to adapt the user interface to the language you will be working on, for reasons of comfort of use and fastness. Select the dialog language when opening the application for the first time, and this parameter will be saved for further sessions.

1.8. 'Door' icon.

Click with the left button of the mouse to minimize the application, or with the right button to completely unload it from the memory (or click on the 'X' icon at the upper right corner of the application).

2. Second screen of the program.

This is the application's second screen. It has been opened from French (red frame) and the chosen dialog language is English. The current (active) encoding field is English (see the 'pen' icon).

2.1. Red frame.

When you open the dictionary, this red frame surrounds the source language you selected in the first screen.

2.2. 'Pen' icon.

Click in the language field (word field) where you are going to work. The 'pen' icon will appear in the chosen field, indicating that the grammatical comments (see point 2.3) are adapted to the selected language field. For example, if you click in the German field/word, you will automatically gain access to all German grammatical comments (der-die-das for a noun, etc.) as described in point 2.3 below.

2.3. Grammatical comments.

After having positioned the 'pen' icon on the language/word you want to work, you can select the grammatical comment of the word according to the other languages. For example, if you select the 'noun' category for the German encoding field, the following sub-list will appear:

When this sub-list appears, you must define the accurate grammatical comment, with the definite article if necessary.

2.4. Characters counter.

This field informs you about the number of characters contained in the word, in the different languages. This counter does not always correspond to the number of characters really written in the field, because different grammatical comments (for example: plural noun) add hidden control characters to the word.

The maximum number of characters is 60, and when you exceed this number you will hear a 'beep' message. Characters above 60 are ignored!

2.5. '<<<' button (undo).

This button returns the word to its original status in all languages, in case you made a mistake. Beware: you will lose all your modifications on the entry.

2.6. '<>' button (modify).

When you have made modifications, you can save them by clicking on this button. Read also point 2.10., if you check the grammatical comments one word after another in long work sessions in order to save 'mouse clicks' and time. If you have modified something, and if you click on the 'modify' button, the following dialog appears. Click on 'V' to confirm your modification, or on 'X' to return to the original situation.

2.7. '+' button (add).

This button allows you to add a new entry into the dictionary.

2.8. '-' button (remove).

This button allows you to remove one entry from the dictionary.

2.9. 'N.' button (new).

This button allows you to create a new entry in the dictionary.

2.10. Up and Down arrows and words counter.

The arrows allow you to go up and down in the dictionary (one word at a time, avoid double clicks otherwise you will skip a word. This is why we suggest to check the missing grammar on the first screen, see point 1.4).

In a long session, you can modify one word and directly click on the 'down' arrow. A message will appear, asking you if you want to modify the entry (see point 2.6. above). After confirmation in the 'modify' dialog, you will get to the following word (if you clicked on the down arrow).

2.11. Clipboard icons.

The clipboard icon in the lower left corner is the 'copy into the clipboard' function. The clipboard icon beside each language field is the 'paste from the clipboard' icon.

How to use these clipboard functions: first, position the cursor in the chosen language field, for example Italian. Click on the 'copy into the clipboard' icon in the lower left corner of the screen. In this example, the Italian field is copied into the clipboard. Afterwards, click on the clipboard icon beside the language field where you want to paste the Italian word in our example. This function is useful when encoding a proper noun that doesn't have to be translated.

2.12. 'Help' button.

This function accesses the 'standard' WinDi Help, listing the different contexts in order to help you select the same abbreviation (if you have to add a contextual information) as the one already used in WinDi.

3. Remarks.

3.1. Missing grammar.

When opening a file (a dictionary file) on a given language, you will get the following screen if all grammatical comments haven't been reviewed.

In order to look for other 'missing grammar' entries, click on the 'find missing grammar' button (see point 1.4). When no 'warning: grammar missing' messages are to be found in a file (A, for example), then you can start working on the next file (B, for example), and so on. Why is this so important? Because, if an entry has no grammatical comment, then the WinDi Direct Translation (sentence translation) / WinDi Grammar programs will NOT be able to use it properly!

3.2. 'Sorting' character '@' in the second screen.

You will notice that each entry contains one @ character, either at the beginning of the first word (after the definite article if any) or at the beginning of another word in case of compound words.

If the @ character is at the beginning of the first word, then in the 'final' dictionary, this entry will be sorted on the first letter of this word. For example, the entry 'the @gate' exists. In this case, this entry will be put in the 'g' dictionary.

If the @ character is placed at the beginning of a word inside a compound word, then the entry will be put, in the 'final' dictionary, in two different places: once on the first letter of the first word of the coumpound entry, and once on the first letter of the word following the @ character. For example, the entry 'the machine room @access (T.)' will be sorted once on 'Machine' and once on 'Access'.

This function allows the users of the dictionary to retrieve all words more easily. However, in the context of this specialized encoding program, each entry is present only once in the database you are working on, because this program is only a development tool and not the final product/database. Also, you won't have to work twice on the same entry!

3.3. Technical remarks.

To enjoy a maximum comfort of use, we advise to use this program on a Pentium. However, it has also been tested on a PC 483 33Mhz and, while some functions are a bit slow (sorting and loading of the dictionary), it is quite acceptable.

At the end of each file, you will find these three lines:

Number of words:
Number of @:
Number of words + @:

This is simple 'maintenance' information giving the total number of words and the total number of entries when holding the @ character into account. (a word as 'motor @terminal' counts as two entries, because it will be found twice in the dictionary, once on 'motor' and once on 'terminal'. See point 3.2).

3.4. Contexts.

If necessary, entries can be followed by a general comment first (for example: 'T.' meaning 'Technology').

In addition to these comments, sometimes a more accurate context can be added between brackets. If you find an ambiguous term in the language you are working on, you could add a comment between brackets, as soon as the comment is consistent with the lexicon. The 'Help' button (see point 2.) gives access to a list of the abbreviations currently used in WinDi.

3.5. Grammatical comments.

All entries, in the seven languages, must belong to the same grammatical category! Otherwise, there will be mistakes in the WinDi Direct Translation program.

In the case of a verb, you must add the right grammatical comment : regular, irregular, separable, inseparable, etc. as available in the sub-list (see point 2.3.).

Concerning nouns, you must choose the right definite article from the sub-list (see point 2.3.). Each sub-list begins with a series of grammatical comments without any definite article. Uncountable English nouns provide many examples of this, such as 'plastic' and not 'the plastic'. All possibilities have been previewed, for example, in Spanish, a feminine noun with the 'el' article (el agua). After having selected the grammatical comment of a word, you will have a 'perfect' entry with the right definite article, the right gender etc.


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