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TECH: conlang definition tool

From:Tony Jebson <jebbo@...>
Date:Wednesday, April 27, 2005, 17:37
Well, my tool for defining conlangs has progressed a bit.

The syntax I'm using can be seen at

Hopefully, this description is easier to read than last time I posted,
but it is still very fragmentary.  Any comments on the syntax /
semantics gratefully accepted . . .

Right now, the tool can:
-  define feature structures for arbitrary phonetic systems
-  define alphabets based on a phonetic system
-  assign an ascii representation to each phoneme (primitive right now)
-  generate syllables / words from a set of rules
-  add generated words to a lexicon (primitive right now)
-  generate text from a set of rules

-  no named variables yet, only $1 through $n (scope within a
-  the syntax highlighting editor has a performance problem
-  only a wizard for number-systems.  Need to do gender, case, etc
-  the parser is more robust but still
-  sound changes don't work yet
-  no upper ontology or lexical selection stuff for text generation

For now I'm just after comments on the syntax.  Later, I'll post a
binary (no source for quite a while as it needs serious clean-up and is
also in C# so only runs on M$ Windoze anyway - I may eventually convert
it to J# but beyond that, I lose too much UI automation . . .)

--- Tony Jebson

Snippet of lexicon source format:
assoc #dog.1 : <word <stem "dog"> <pronunciation "dog">>;
assoc #dog.1 : <part_of_speech noun>;
assoc #dog.1 : <ontology +animate>;
assoc #dog.1 : <related {#hound, #corgi, #labrador.1}>;