the user interface
T÷lvuorabˇkin is an electronic
dictionary for the Windows operating system. It is currently available in four separate
packages: a bilingual English-Icelandic and Icelandic-English package, a Danish-Icelandic
package, a French-Icelandic package and an Icelandic-Icelandic package.
All the lexicons are made in Iceland, by
The program can easily share screen space
with a word processing document or an Internet browser. Search is either done by typing
the word or phrase into the search text box and pressing the Search (Leita) button, or by
selecting a word or phrase in a different program (for example a word processor or
Internet browser) and pressing the Read (Lesa) button, thereby letting it copy the
selected term and search for it in a single operation.
The image below shows that the Icelandic
word "brot" has been typed into the search text box (in the leftmost window),
and has produced several definitions, which are displayed in the window in the middle. The
listbox window on the right allows the user to click on similar words and see their
meanings in the middle window.
Market history and facts
The electronic dictionary was first
introduced in Iceland in 1993 and was an immediate success. In 1996 the publishing firm
Mal og menning acquired the publishing rights in Iceland. Copies sold to date run into the
Current version number: 3.0 (as of May 1999).
Next version number and date: Not available.
Advantages from a business point of
Various thank-you letters and countless
conversations with users have confirmed that:
- Users actually want to buy updates (to have
the latest thing).
- Users feel relieved to be rid of printed
dictionaries and are very appreciative of the technical merits of an electronic
- Companies, especially the big ones, want to
empower their employees with good and practical language tools and many of them are
investing in our dictionary in a serious way, preferring it to printed dictionaries, for
the present and for the future.
- Through the Internet and e-mail, contact can
be established and maintained between the publisher and the user. In the latest versions
of the electronic dictionary there is even a feature that activates the user's web browser
to open the part of our web site that has been specially designed to anticipate such
- People with disabilites are literally
- Superfast lookups.
- Looks up words from other programs (very
convenient when browsing the Internet in a foreign language).
- The program only takes up a fraction of the
total screen space, so it can very easily be used along with other programs, such as a
word processor or e-mail program. It is therefore ideal for looking up words when writing
business letters in a foreign language.
- The user can find entries that he or she
doesn't know exactly how to spell, by putting the wildcards * or ? into the search string
or only typing the first few letters of the word.
- The program lets the user assemble
information that would be very impractical to try to gather from a printed dictionary, for
example if the user wants a list of all words that end in "wood".
- Students can create glossaries with utter
ease, simply by looking up the word and adding it to his or her glossary with the press of
a button. The glossary contains a list of the entry words, plus their definitions (or the
part of the definition that the user selected prior to pressing the glossary button).
- The program maintains a list of recently
visited entries, which can be invaluable when the user is translating sentences with
several difficult words.
- It can contain any number of lexicons. When
a user has already bought the package before, and then installs a new one, the new
lexicons are added to the existing ones, and the user goes on using the same software
program as before.
- The user can change any definition or add
new entries. Those changes are saved to a separate database file. When searching for these
entries later the dictionary only shows the modified entry, not the original one.
- If inflection information has been built
into the respective lexicon, the program can show all inflections of the selected word.
Then the program can also accept search words in any inflection. The English-Icelandic and
Icelandic-English lexicons have inflection information.
- The user can search for phrases, which the
dictionary searches for in its definitions.
- A new copy-protection scheme is included
in version 3.0, which means that the user can install the program on three different
computers or three times on the same computer.
Operating system: Windows 95, Windows 98,
Windows NT 4.0 and higher.
Minimum RAM: 8 MB.
Disk space: 15 MB for 2 lexicons (given that the lexicons are 45.000 entries each).