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Re: Lexicon Making

From:Jim Henry <jimhenry1973@...>
Date:Monday, April 24, 2006, 16:45
On 4/24/06, Henrik Theiling <theiling@...> wrote:

> veritosproject@GMAIL.COM writes: > > When you make vocabulary, do you get a text and make what words you > > need or make the words first and then translate? > > Hmm? I think I don't understand. For translating a text I *must* make > the vocab first, otherwise I cannot translate! :-)
> OTOH, when I translate a text, I also do make new words as needed, but > I think everyone does that unless the lexicon is defined to be fixed.
Well, I guess you could either read over the text and note what new vocabulary you're going to need, and coin all those words at once before you start writing. Or you could start translating with the first sentence and pause to coin a new word whenever you need one. I've used a mix of both approaches in developing gzb -- e.g. before I started on the Babel text I coined root words for "tar" and figured out compounds for "mortar" and "brick" and so forth. In original writing (mostly my journal) I occasionally find I need a new word, in which case (if I am not near the computer with the lexicon file) I'll coin something and use it, and do a squiggly underline under it with an arrow mark in the margin. Then periodically go through recent journal entries looking arrow marks and then double-check those words for possible conflicts or near-conflicts, and make an entry for them -- sometimes, if I decide the permanent word should have a different form, or if I realize I already had a word for the concept which I couldn't recall when writing, I mark the entry as "nonce" and give a cross-reference to the permanent word. But every word used even once in the journal gets a lexicon entry. If when writing I am not sure I'm remembering an existing word correctly I'll underline it and put a question mark in the margin, and check it later, making an "erroneous form of X" entry in the lexicon if necessary. (The HTML lexicon on the website filters these out, but you can see them in the tab-delimited text lexicon it's generated from.) -- Jim Henry


Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>