word up

Word Up may not be the best name for this, but I like the song.

what it is

  • noting an interesting word that you’ve never encountered before
  • noting a word that you’ve seen, the definition of which you can never remember
  • noting a word that you simply like a lot
  • using those words

how it works

  1. you think of a word, and go to the add word page (possibly using a bookmarklet or browser extension…)
  2. you enter the word
  3. the system verifies that the word hasn’t been used already
  4. the system attempts to locate a definition of the word via dict.org or the like
  5. the system presents the definition, which you can edit, OR the system fails to find the definition, and prompts you to type one in
  6. you submit the form, and the system saves the word and definition, then takes you to the word’s view page
  7. from the word’s view page, you can either edit the definition or submit a sentence
  8. when you submit a sentence, the system runs the porter stemming algorithm against the word and attempts to find any variant of the word in your sentence
  9. if a word variant is found, the sentence is posted, OR the system tells you that you didn’t use the word, and asks you if you really want to post the sentence

I think this would be fun. Who knows if anybody else will.

implementation notes

  • definition lookup will probably use the PHP Pear Net_Dict module, but some bugs in it would have to be fixed first Dict.org is too crappy, so definition lookup will probably use wordnet
  • definition lookup can probably be handled via an AJAX call so that a page reload isn’t needed — I’ll probably return the definition as a JSON object and use Mochikit scriptaculous to display the definition
  • sentence checking will probably use AJAX as well
  • this might unnecessarily complicate things, but maybe users could mark their submissions to a word view page as either “sentences” or “comments” — “comments” would forgo the word variant check, and a user could opt to hide them so that only “sentences” were displayed

okay, what else

  • i could write a greasemonkey script that detects when the user is looking at a definition at dictionary.com, answers.com, m-w.com, etc., and pops up a dialog asking if the word should be posted to word up — look at mark pilgrim’s greasemonkey scripts for ideas on how to do it

[ article last updated 2005-11-03 14:18:05 by cobra libre ]