A golden mean? Compromises between quantity of information and user-friendliness in the bidirectional Norwegian-Lithuanian Dictionary

By November 17, 2016,
Page648-653
AuthorAurelija Griškevičiene, Sturla Berg-Olsen
TitleA golden mean? Compromises between quantity of information and user-friendliness in the bidirectional Norwegian-Lithuanian Dictionary
AbstractThis paper explores the concept of user-friendliness in the context of bidirectional bilingual dictionaries, presenting and discussing some of the choices taken by the editors of the Norwegian-Lithuanian Dictionary (NLD). The NLD is a medium-sized paper dictionary compiled by a joint group of lexicographers from the Universities of Vilnius and Oslo. The dictionary is intended both for native speakers of Norwegian and of Lithuanian. Designing a user-friendly bidirectional dictionary necessarily involves making compromises between the needs of different target groups. User-friendliness in lexicography is a problematic concept, because a feature that enhances the user-friendliness of a dictionary for one group of users often reduces it correspondingly for other groups. This is especially acute in the case of bidirectional dictionaries. The amount of information given and the degree of linguistic precision must be balanced against the danger of information overload. Thus, designing the structure of a dictionary is largely a matter of seeking compromises between quantity of information, precision and user-friendliness. The paper shows concrete examples of how the editors of the NLD have tried to maintain this balance. Many elements in the NLD are based on another bilingual dictionary (Berkov et al. 2003), but the system for information on the target language, Lithuanian, is designed by the editors of the NLD. The paper shows the steps taken to make the dictionary user-friendly from two angles: 1) adapting and improving the lemma list and information on the source language and 2) designing the system for providing information on the target language. In this context it also discusses problems arising from the wish to re-use data from one bilingual dictionary when compiling another dictionary with a different target language.
SessionDictionary use, pedagogical lexicography
Keywordsbilingual lexicography, user-friendliness, bidirectional dictionaries, Norwegian, Lithuanian
BibTex
@InProceedings{ELX12-055,
author = {Aurelija Griškevičiene and Sturla Berg-Olsen},
title = {A golden mean? Compromises between quantity of information and user-friendliness in the bidirectional Norwegian-Lithuanian Dictionary},
pages = {648--653},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the 15th EURALEX International Congress},
year = {2012},
month = {aug},
date = {7-11},
address = {Oslo,Norway},
editor = {Ruth Vatvedt Fjeld and Julie Matilde Torjusen},
publisher = {Department of Linguistics and Scandinavian Studies, University of Oslo},
isbn = {978-82-303-2228-4},
}
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