Post eqY9Afp5Ubb

Lúthien Merilin Dec 17, 2012 (13:33)

I also should introduce myself: I'm Maike Luthien (incidentally, both are my real christian names) and somehow the link to this circle (?) popped up, but whether that was by email, Elfling list, facebook or otherwise - I've got no idea. I've been a (admittedly not very active) Elfling list member since 2008 and, together with Tuilinde (Susan Edwards) I run a small forum dedicated to elvish languages at .
I am interested mainly in Sindarin and have studied that using Skype etc. ever since I found a study partner on Elfling almost five years ago. I'm interested in writing and speaking Sindarin; I've written some poems in Sindarin, both translations of English originals and some by myself. 

I also like creating Tolkien Legendarium-related artwork, mostly based on the Silmarillion or the Lost Tales. I had some of that on display at last summer's Return of the Ring. 

And lastly, I'm still working on a Sindarin dictionary application. That's become a bit of a long winding project but I still hope to produce a usable version of that in the not all too distant future :)


Fiona Jallings Dec 17, 2012 (23:59)

Wow, a Sindarin-dictionary App sounds like a fantastic project! That would be hugely helpful! I definitely want to hear more about this!

Lúthien Merilin Dec 18, 2012 (00:15)

It started as an upgrade of Hesperides (a dictionary application by Didier Willis) but eventually I switched to using a more recent vocabulary (including the PE17 words and some more) - that was being put together by (I hope I remember it right, I should look it up) Roman of the forum.

It's great to hear someone is interested, because that does help my motivation to get back on it :)

If you like you can download a test version to try out, I'll see if it's still available on our web host. If you want to read more about it, there is a topic on about it.

Tamas Ferencz Dec 18, 2012 (09:01)

That'll be Roman Rausch, or Aran as he is known on Eldarin-related fora.
What platform is it going to run on?

Lúthien Merilin Dec 18, 2012 (09:47)

Ah yes indeed thanks!

Some technical details: it is written Java and uses a SQLite database, so it runs on all desktop & laptop computers.
For ease of installing I might provide platform specific installers though (I still have to investigate that).

It can also run inside a browser (it's using javafx2), but I need to do a bit more research on the details. I was also thinking of creating a portable platform version to run on devices such as the ipad, iphone, android etc. but I have no idea how much work it is to port a java app to those platforms.

Using a database for storage is the largest difference from Hesperides, which used a large XML file.
The advantage of using a database is that it is much easier to update the contents, add your own annotations or newly constructed words - this would of course only be stored in your local instance.

But it also opens up interesting possibilities for either updating the "main" vocabulary or people submitting corrections or newly constructed words that might be interesting for other users.

One possibility is to create a "submit" function with which people could send their local update to a central location. We would of course then need some sort of (knowledgeable) validation before it would be entered into the main vocabulary.

In order to keep the purist happy it should be possible to turn displaying this additional content on or off.

We've already talked about these issues and there's even a proposal how to realise it, but because of 'being busy with all sorts of other things' the whole thing could use a new impulse: so any input, be it technical, linguistic or just from a user perspective is very welcome.

We've been discussing this on (mostly in German) and also on (in English) so maybe it is easier to use one of those locations for that?

Tamas Ferencz Dec 18, 2012 (10:09)

Hi +Lúthien Merilin making it cross-platform is a good choice; I am looking forward to trying it. I also think SQLite will work better than XML.
Having NeoSindarin words in it could be a good idea if they are clearly distinguished from the attested vocabulary and there are frequent reminders popping up to warn the unsuspecting newbie.
Peer review before incorporatign the word into the dictionary is also an excellent idea - where you do it, on, or Elfing, or other places, is really up to you, wherever you feel comfortable:)

Come visit Aglardh some day, which is my site - postings are infrequent these days but there are some good discussions and texts there.

Lúthien Merilin Dec 24, 2012 (00:59)

@Tamas, will do, thank you!

Lúthien Merilin Dec 24, 2012 (01:11)

@Erica: I started by listening and (trying to) speak, because I've noticed before that this sort of immersion works very well for me. For the listening part I used a couple of Sindarin readings that I found on YouTube (mostly), though later it turned out that some of them weren't all that good.
For the reading part, I printed out some Sindarin texts (poems), studied the pronunciation rules and then just read them out as often as I could (when walking alone, for instance). At first I did not even know the grammar.
The idea is that after a while you get used to the general sounds of the language which makes it easier to learn the formal grammar. I started on that as soon as I found a study partner, which was not long afterwards (maybe two months).

It basically works as with learning any other foreign language. It does take effort and time, and occasions to use the language written and (I think) also in speech. It helps a great deal to have a study partner with whom you can practice.

Hope this helps!