Last updates

Over the last month, we have had several meetings in which we had to take some important decisions concerning both the interface and the internal architecture of the app.

During the last meetings, we realised that the number of functionalities to be included in the app was increasing sharply, which could have a negative impact in the usability of the app. Additionally, we would like to keep the interface as user-friendly as possible and not fill the small screen of the smartphone with too much information. However, we also wanted to offer the user the possibility to customize his search as much as possible. This led us to introduce two different modes to use the app, a basic mode and an advanced mode. While the first will work in an implicit and simple way, the latter will allow the user to customize the search formula in order to obtain a certain kind of results. Some of the possible options that we talked about are:

  • Select a particular set of keywords.
  • Decide the language of the keywords.
  • Choose between including the full name of a language (e.g. German/Deutsche) or the code (e.g. de).

Regarding the interface, we also discussed what options should the user have once the results are presented. Although we still have to decide whether the link will be opened by creating a new tab within the app or by launching the default browser, we already came up with some ideas that we wish to include in the results screen:

  • Order results by a property (date, star-ranking…)
  • E-mail results
  • History of results
  • Download results (?)
  • Meta-tagging
  • Star-ranking

As regards the internal architecture, our testers reported back on the keywords and search engines (results available in the wiki, at the bottom!). All tests seem to confirm that the most suitable set of keywords is group 2: dictionary, glossary, thesaurus. In all cases, the least useful was group 3: term bank, term base, word bank, wordlist. As for the search engines, according to the testers, Bing and DuckDuckGo did not return appropriate results, so Google remains the best option.

A table of languages has been automatically generated by means of a tool that used Google Translator to perform a great number of consecutive translations (63×63 = 3.969 translations o.0). Additionally, it contains the translation of the keywords that will be included in the search formula. A Google doc has been created so that anyone can revise the spelling of the words (please do!). This will save us some time and will also allow us to include languages that could not have been covered otherwise.

Next year we will have to go into more detail in order to define more precisely the workflow and send our plan to the IT department. Let’s do it!

On track – Defining the search options

The last meetings have been quite fruitful and it seems that we have come to define more clearly the functions that the app is going to perform. The workflow of the team is proving to be satisfactory! So, we are happy to announce that TermSeeker will probably have features such as a relatively simple and intuitive interface -that we expect it could harbour more functionalities in the future-, as well as a fairly extensive language list -around 43- to which all the keywords will be translated.

Some interesting ideas and improvements have also been proposed and, for the moment, they remain in a “wishlist” that we hope it could be implemented at some point. These include:

-Star ranking and meta-tagging (suggested by the IT department)
-Creation a direct link for the source page, or even integrating the view of the browser and its results into the app.
-Switching automatically to another search engine if the app gets to surpass the daily search allowance.
-Possibility to save terms previously browsed for off-line view.

However, we have decided not to be too ambitious for the moment whilst the app is taking shape.

The team is right now working on the development of the searching method. We have come up with a list of keywords that will refine the search and we are testing their effectivity in different search engines, although it will be probably based on Google. These keywords will likely be divided in thematically related groups, so that three different searches can be done depending on the scope of the search:

-A group for the keywords “vocabulary”, “terminology” and “jargon”
-A group for “word list”, “word bank”, “term base” and “term bank”
-A group for “dictionary”, “glossary”, “thesaurus” and “lexicon”.

The user could choose one of these groups to produce a more specific and accurate search. We have to hear soon from our testers so that we can decide whether to keep or improve this division.

Although everything is on track, there is still a lot of work to do!