[sword-devel] genbook lexicons - example problem and potential solutions

Daniel Owens dcowens76 at gmail.com
Thu Oct 11 18:39:40 MST 2012

I am still working on the Abbott-Smith markup project (over 300 entries 
and counting). We have four contributors right now, so the pace is 
picking up. Creating a module is another story. Chris made a lexicon 
module after the first release, but . . .

I would like the module to look like this: 
To do that in SWORD, it needs to be a genbook in order to support:
- front- and backmatter
- page numbers
- a hierarchical structure (In the original TEI it has at least one 
superEntry, but it is also divided into <div>'s by letter heading [Α, Β, 
Γ, Δ, Ε, Ζ, Η, Θ, etc.])

The good news is that an OSIS genbook supports the bare-bones essentials 
of entries. And thankfully BPBible and BibleTime both display entries 
together in the same view, thanks to BPBible's continuous scrolling and 
*perhaps* BibleTime not recognizing <div type="x-entry">.

Unfortunately various features of valid OSIS genbooks are inconsistently 
supported by front-ends. I created a module for testing. You can find it 
including a valid OSIS file. Issues include:
- Some front-ends recognize <lb/>, others <p>, but the lexicon uses both 
(and both are valid OSIS) in various contexts.
- Tables are inconsistently supported (mostly not)
- Titles should be centered, but there is no way to do that in OSIS, as 
far as I can tell. I wonder if this is a great example use case of 
per-module CSS...
- Parts of speech should be green and page numbers red, but you can't do 
color in OSIS (another use case of per-module CSS?)

Some of these like <p>, <lb>, and tables should just work, I think. 
Perhaps I will file bug reports. But the other display issues cannot be 
resolved by OSIS alone.

Should TEI be a supported genbook format? I would think the TEI filter 
(as it evolves) could be pressed into use for genbooks. If that were 
done, certain lexicon-specific features as well as real book features 
such as page numbers could be consistently supported and displayed. On 
the other hand, I could see the value of having per-module CSS in the 
conf file so that the module developer could have some control over 

Any thoughts?


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