Re: problem seems to be solved: unreadable .hash files (dictionaries)

Subject: Re: problem seems to be solved: unreadable .hash files (dictionaries)
From: Paul Rohr (
Date: Fri Mar 16 2001 - 17:27:57 CST

At 05:35 PM 3/16/01 -0500, Dom Lachowicz wrote:
>I have a RFP that's really simple to implement for whomever wants it:
>We need to abandon "american.hash" - we need something more robust. What I
>think we want is en_US.hash, de_DE.hash, etc... If we do this, we can
>dynamically load dictionaries based on our current locale or even with the
>"lang" attribute like my hack last night.

Definitely. Vlad has a nice workaround with the locale-specific
system.profile trick, but this would be a lot cleaner over the long run.

Note that if people want to keep using their pre-installed dictionaries that
shipped with their Linux distro, they can probably just keep using the
existing mechanisms, or set up the appropriate symlink. In fact, this
sounds like the kind of thing that a clever install script could
automatically do.

One nit-pick, though. Can we please, please use

  - dashes (en-US, du-DE) instead of
  - underscores (en_US, du_DE)

both here and in the file format? I know that the Unix/C locale mechanism
likes underscores, but everywhere else (internet protocols, HTML, XML, etc)
people use dashes.

>So I guess my suggested plan of action is this:
>1) Rename the dictionaries (and start housing (*not necessarily shipping*)
>some known working ones on the website)

Do we want the same verification process as we use for binaries, or do we
just post any submissions as is? Also, if people are going to build new
dictionaries, I'd hope that they'd be kind enough to include a few proper
nouns in there while they're at it (like AbiWord and Abi). ;-)

>2) And Either:
>a) Change ispell's SpellCheckInit() function to take a string of the form
>'en_US' and have *it* create the proper .hash name so we can share 100% code
>with Pspell
>b) Keep passing the full path to the dictionary, and have that 1 ifdef in
>our code for ispell/pspell

This is probably an installer issue, so you might want to check with our
downstream packagers. The current mechanism allows dictionaries to be
located anywhere (I think) in case distros want to point to a set of
dictionaries they've installed elsehere.

>Whaddya think?

You've got my vote. :-)


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