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Old 12-09-2011, 11:13 AM   #1
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Dictionary for ST

I have had the ST for two weeks now and am thoroughly enjoying it. One of the things I love most about reading on the Nook is the built in dictionary which makes it so simple to look up words. I'm ashamed to say that since I do not have a dictionary at home, I often skipped or guess at words when reading books. The plan was to check dictionaries on line but getting on the computer usually distracted me from reading.

Well, no more. I am going to be diligent about using a dictionary when reading pbooks. At first I was going to pick up a hardcover dictionary but thought wouldn't an ebook work better? Doesn't take up space in my small apartment and I can use it outside of home. I wish the ST's dictionary could be accessed as a stand-alone book but alas it is what it is.

The problem is that there isn't a good edictionary to buy on BN and Kobo. Amazon has a very well reviewed Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 11th Edition. I've read about using Calibre to turn Kindle books into epub friendly formatting for Nook. As I understand it, the process is easy and formatting is rarely lost. My concern is that with a dictionary, I'm afraid there may be some rare formatting issues that may not translate well. For example, the ability to search for a word. I'd rather not have to go through hundreds/thousands of pages to find a word.

Thanks in advance for any advice you may have.
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Old 12-09-2011, 04:57 PM   #2
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Yes, I agree that after conversion the search options in a dictionary might no longer work properly.

Concerning a computer dictionary, a very nice thesaurus/dictionary is Wordweb:

http://wordweb.info/

there is a free version and a "Pro" version. You can add extra dictionaries to the Pro version. For example, I added the New Oxford American Dictionary. It works great.
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Old 12-09-2011, 06:16 PM   #3
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Hmmm....sounds like if I want a fully functional and good dictionary on my Nook, I may need to root it.

Or just buy a pDictionary for when I read pBooks.

Or have my laptop on.

I'd like to avoid the last option as one of the big reasons for the Nook was to cut down my internet usage by increasing old fashion reading (it's working but still need to get better about being online). It's hard to resist noodling online once the laptop powers up. It's a huge reason why I didn't get a tablet....need less ways to get online.
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Old 12-09-2011, 06:20 PM   #4
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BTW, I've thought of an awesome makeshift solution and if someone can make this happen, you can take credit for it.

How about having an epub 'book' of words...just a list of words in alphabetical order. How many entries are in a standard college dictionary nowadays? 250K? When you need a definition of a word, you simply open up this book, find the word and then use the Nook dictionary to do the work like you would if you were reading a regular book.
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Old 12-09-2011, 08:06 PM   #5
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So you can't enter your own random word to look up in the Nook? Interesting. Kobo you have open a book to get the dictionary, but you can enter a random word.

One thought on your workaround solution: do a search for an e-pub Scrabble dictionary/word list. Not sure if it exists and I don't play Scrabble at that level, but I think they would have word lists of some sort that may fit the bill for you. Actually I guess if you could find a word list in whatever format and convert it via Calibre.
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Old 12-09-2011, 09:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robko View Post
So you can't enter your own random word to look up in the Nook? Interesting. Kobo you have open a book to get the dictionary, but you can enter a random word.
I've only had the Nook ST for two weeks but yeah, as far as I know the built in dictionary can't be used for random words.

Quote:
Originally Posted by robko View Post
One thought on your workaround solution: do a search for an e-pub Scrabble dictionary/word list.
Excellent suggestion. I just found a list of 170,000 words. Now I'm going to acquaint myself with Calibre.
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Old 12-09-2011, 09:39 PM   #7
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Good idea guys!
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Old 12-09-2011, 10:28 PM   #8
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Hmm...so how long does it take Calibre to convert?

I saved the 170,000 word list to a TXT file. I uploaded to Calibre and then moved it to device. Calibre asked if I wanted to convert it and I clicked on Yes. That was over 30 minutes ago and I'm still on 1% on converting for job progress. The txt file is 1.6M.
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Old 12-10-2011, 10:05 AM   #9
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From your description of what you did, it sounds like you moved it to the device as a txt file and as part of the move Calibre asked you if you wanted it to be converted. This is not a good way to do it, IMHO.

I think you should do any conversion BEFORE you send it to the device. - i.e. you'll then have the txt file and the epub file on your PC. Then transfer the epub file to the Nook either using Calibre or copying it with Windows Explorer.

This whole idea, which sounds like a really good one, may flounder if the resulting epub file is really large. But you'll know that after the conversion.
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Old 12-12-2011, 04:53 PM   #10
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The just-released 1.4 update for the Color Nook apparently adds the ability to do dictionary searches by typing in a word. They just did an update to the Touch and didn't include that. Don't these 2 groups talk to each other??
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:42 PM   #11
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To keep a long story short. I did indeed download this list of 170,000 words. I then saved it as a RTF file and converted it to EPUB with Calibre. I did run into a glitch which is explained here.

After sorting out the conversion issue, I had a 2.2M EPUB file. The file though lagged and crashed on my Nook. I'm now redoing the EPUB file and splitting it up into much smaller files. So far I have A-B, C-D, E-H and I-L on my Nook. It could probably be done in one sitting but it's a little tedious and because of weekend plans, I didn't have time to finish it. I found that if I broke up the words into smaller paragraphs, it helps with the lagging.

In short, yes, it works. I open up the file with the starting letter, type the word in "find" and then put the Nook dictionary to work. There still seems to be about 1 or 2 second lag but the files do not crash my Nook.

I did a few test runs and there were some words missing from the list. But that's understandable for a list with only 170K entries. There are also words on the list that the Nook dictionary couldn't cover. Meh, for now this works as a makeshift dictionary to look up random words. I'll be happy to pay for a fully functional EPUB dictionary (can't believe it's not available for sale!) or if/when Nook allows us to access the built-in dictionary freely.
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:52 PM   #12
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Merriam-Webster's Dictionary 1913 ePub edition?

Have you already tried the free MR ePub edition of Webster's Dictionary?
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Old 02-15-2012, 09:31 AM   #13
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For conversion times, 2-3MB PDFs take roughly 30 seconds on my old core 2 duo machine in Calibre. AZW to EPUB conversions take about 10 seconds or so for standard size books. The only TXT to EPUB conversion I did only took about 5-6s for a novel length text file (my guess is 80k-100k words).
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:03 PM   #14
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I'm planning in buying a NST for ebook reading and thinking in using Aldiko as epub reader, can anyone tell me if there's a way to hook up a context sensitive English dictionary to Aldiko? According to what I've read so far over the net, the default context sensitive dictionary that came with NST is not very helpful. I understand that for me to install Aldiko I'll need first to root it, right?
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Old 02-21-2012, 08:13 AM   #15
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I do not know about installing another dictionary, but I do not agree with what you have read about the Touch's dictionary being unhelpful. I find it to be very complete, with entries for even very obscure terms. For example, I've been reading a lot of classic novels from Gutenberg lately, and often have to look up very old words that you hardly ever seen in modern prose. It seems to always have an entry, even for British terms.

So I think you should give the plain dictionary a try before you look for something else.

The big complaint about the current Touch dictionary is the stupid fact that you cannot look up a word that is not in a book - i.e. you cannot just type in a word and get a definition. You used to be able to do this on the Classic Nook, and whoever decided to remove this feature should be taken out and shot!

Last edited by RAH; 02-21-2012 at 08:16 AM.
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