LINGUIST List 2.119

Saturday, 6 Apr 1991

Disc: Fonts; Shoebox; IT; Body-Part Borrowings

Editor for this issue: <>


  1. THE GAR, Re: Wordperfect
  2. "Bruce E. Nevin", shoebox
  3. , Responses to my query about IT
  4. John E. Koontz, Conerting Macintosh Postscript Fonts to PC Postscript Fonts
  5. John E. Koontz, Re: Borrowing words for parts of the body

Message 1: Re: Wordperfect

Date: Tue, 02 Apr 91 07:51:43 CST
Subject: Re: Wordperfect
FFJAL1 mentioned:
> My problem with the WordPerfect fonts is that to get all the
>combinations of characters and diacritics you are forced either to
>use Compose or else code in a complicated sequence of Advance commands.
>The problem with Compose is that it is IMPOSSIBLE to search for a given
>Compose combination, which means it is impossible to do a global
>search and replace for a given Compose combination if you want to change
>it to something else. I even wrote a letter to WordPerfect Corp. a couple
>years back, and they didn't know of any way around that limitation.

It has been my experience that there is no problem Word Perfect cannot
overcome. Those interested in using special characters frequently (as
most of us seem to be) should NOT use the Compose feature. What you
need to do is use the KEYBOARD MAPPING feature. This will allow you
to do your searches, and make using special characters painless.

I have two alternate keyboard maps that I use for correspondence. One
is for Esperanto, and the other for Spanish. If I wish to type a special
character in either of these languages it is quite simple, since they are
"based" on a common English character. In Spanish, I need an n/tilde, and
each of the vowels/accent. I have assigned CTRL-Letter to be Capital-whatever,
and ALT-Letter to be Lowercase-whatever. (I use ll for elle, which is close

So now I need to search for man~ana.
I simply strike F2 (search) and enter maALT-nana. Because I cannot tell WP
that n~ and N~ are the same letter shifted, I do have to do case sensitive

To map the keyboard, refer to your WP5.1 manual p.342 and following.
It will be useful to have a printout of the Character sets handy.

Anyone needing help with this process can contact me for step-by-step
directions. I can send you the instruction document that was provided me
for Esperanto mapping by Andrew Wollert, to whom I am most grateful.
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Message 2: shoebox

Date: Tue, 2 Apr 91 12:55:50 EST
From: "Bruce E. Nevin" <>
Subject: shoebox
If Shoebox is alphabetizing your *text* file, then you are not using it
as intended. The index and sort functions should not be run on the text
file, only the numbering function. As I recall, it was confusing to
keep straight when I was converting an existing text database to Shoebox
by putting in all the field markers with a word processor, but it's
straightforward when you start de novo with plain text.

This has probably been said, and I am sure you know this, but it might
be helpful to others to say that Shoebox is designed for the linguist in
the field: the model is that you enter some text, use the numbering
function to assign a number to each sentence (or clause, if you set it
up that way), then use the interlinearizing function iteratively to
accumulate and verify entries in lexicon and parse databases. You use
Shoebox to interlinearize text in a file. If it does not find the
current string in the parse database and/or lexicon database, it asks
you if you want to add a new entry, and in this way you build these
databases up over time. You can go back at any time and
re-interlinearize a text drawing on changed parse and lexicon databases.
(The interlinearizing process itself is very fast.) To say it is for
creating lexicons is incorrect and misleading. You can use the lexicon
database to create varieties of dictionaries. You can use Shoebox to
build and maintain other related databases, for phonological analysis,
for grammatical and semantic analysis, for ethnographic information, and
so on.

Where I have found it crufty is in handling stem vowel alternations
conditioned by affixes. This clears up as the underlying forms become
apparent and you use them rather than the surface forms in the lexicon
database, but getting there often requires making multiple entries, one
for each alternant, and later merging them with an annotation about the
rules and environments effecting the alternation.

I know the SIL folks in New Mexico have a big text database project
going on and have written some guidelines for using Shoebox and related
tools. You might want to get in touch with them through SIL in Texas or
Waxhaw, NC, wherever your present contacts are. Sorry, my records and
correspondence with them are at home, and I'm at my office now. John
Wimbish was here in the US this Fall, but I believe was going back to

I have been using Shoebox to work up my field materials on Achumawi.
I'll be in a position to chat more about Shoebox (and would enjoy doing
so) in about a month. I'm afraid I must be pretty much incommunicado
until then.

 Bruce Nevin
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Message 3: Responses to my query about IT

Date: Wed, 3 Apr 1991 20:13:00 -0500
From: <BELMOREVax2.Concordia.CA>
Subject: Responses to my query about IT
Many thanks for the helpful replies. It seems that it's best to proceed
with caution when considering using IT or SHOEBOX (or any software). As
Snoopy said, "Life is full of rude awakenings."
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Message 4: Conerting Macintosh Postscript Fonts to PC Postscript Fonts

Date: Thu, 4 Apr 91 15:23:46 MST
From: John E. Koontz <>
Subject: Conerting Macintosh Postscript Fonts to PC Postscript Fonts
I previously reposted to this list some instructions on using the expensive
Corel graphics package to convert Macintosh Postscript files to PC
Postscript files. That generated some response, so the following may also
be of interest. Here is a less expensive tool for making the conversion. 

Note that I am not the developer of the process, and have not tested it. I
am simply reposting it so that it will reach a wider audience.

The attraction of this process to PC using linguists and humanists is that
there are a considerable number of third party Postscript fonts available in
Macintosh format only, including some that support languages with non-Roman
scripts, or extended Roman scripts. I believe that this conversion process
makes them available to PC users, though I have not tested the assumption. 

Forwarded message follows:

[The full text of the message is too long to post to the entire list.
Those interested in seeing it should send the message:
 get mac-to-dos
to the address:
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Message 5: Re: Borrowing words for parts of the body

Date: Fri, 5 Apr 91 12:26:16 BST
From: John E. Koontz <>
Subject: Re: Borrowing words for parts of the body
The following Welsh words are Latin borrowings:
braich - arm; coes - leg; boch - cheek; barf - beard;
corun - top of the head; palf - palm.
There may be others. All except the last are the normal
words for those meanings. The Welsh word 'brest' is an
old borrowing from English and is the normal word for
the chest.

[End Linguist List, Vol. 2, No. 119]
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