It’s been awhile since we’ve posted but that does not mean we haven’t been active. I’ve added a new task to collect words by semantic domains. There is substantial evidence that we organize words in our minds in a network of relationships. Words tend to cluster in groups that we call semantic domains. People can rapidly jump from word to word along the mental pathways within a semantic domain. If you ask someone to think of words that describe the surface of water, they can quickly give you a number of words such as “turbulent”, “rippled”, “calm”, “still”, “rough”, “choppy”, and “glassy”.

Thinking of words by semantic domains is used to jump start the dictionary creation process. For each domain, a set of elicitation questions prompt users to think of the words that belong to that domain. For instance, the domain “Fish with net” contains the questions,

  • What words refer to fishing with a net?
  • What equipment is used to fish with a net?
  • What words refer to the fish that are caught?

When the user enters a word, it is inserted into the dictionary and automatically classified by that domain.
Collect Words by Semantic Domains tab

The semantic domain task can use any template of semantic domains and questions, but WeSay ships with the semantic domain template from Ron Moe’s Dictionary Development Process.