[sword-devel] Why Sword?

Trevor Jenkins sword-devel@crosswire.org
Sun, 10 Feb 2002 15:26:18 +0000 (GMT)

On Sun, 10 Feb 2002, Joachim Ansorg <jansorg@gmx.de> wrote:

> > (1) Searching in Sword is slow.
> Yes, I think this is right. Sadly Trevor has not time (or whatever the reason
> is) to do this, although he seemed to be the one with the most knowledge of
> searching and it's optimisations.

I'm still here but ... whereas I was ill (ME/CFS) I'm now very busy with
work. I've not forgotten that I volunteered to help here and every so
often get gentle reminders (on and off list).

For those who don't know or have forgotten I proposed an inverted file
search system. Every word to be indexed and its position recorded. The
position pointers should be of two forms. For a Bible search program the
obvious one is position as book, chapter, verse, word within verse.
However, there are enough examples in the scriptures where the position
should be book, chapter, sentence, word within sentence because sentences
cross verse (even chapter boundaries). Actually it should include
translation too.

The book information depends upon whether the deutro-canconical books are
included. Although I don't use them I think provision should be made for
their inclusion.

An inverted file system will increase the storage requirements of the
bible modules. There being one more file (the inverted list) to store. But
with appropriate compression in the pointer chains the overhead can be

Other issues with (any search system) are some translations move passages
around. The NEB does this. Also the CJB (Complete Jewish Bible). Both
following Hebrew precendents for that. Some do not have identifiable
breaks between verses. The Message does this, JBP (J B Phillips) to some
extent. The CEV (Contemporary English Version), my favourite translation)
frequently runs several verses together.

A final feature that I've just thought about is variant readings. Those
familar with the NET version are aware of the full set of variants
offeres. Likewise the GNT especially if one has a comlete edition of NA27.

> Maybe the restructered API will offer better possibilities for this.

With all the work piling in I've not been tracking these changes too

Regards, Trevor

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<>< Re: deemed!