Glossary of terms used for electronic dictionaries and translators

AC Adapter The high-value translators with the touch screens, speech output, and rechargeable batteries need to be charged daily. That's why the adapter comes with them.

AC is generally the preferred source when it's available. If you are going to use your translator from a desk, then just plug it in. Think of how you use any battery-powered device, and this becomes clear.

Advanced search This feature works exactly like the "autofill" you find in many commonly used programs, such as Outlook and Internet Explore. As you start entering the letters for a given word, all of the words that begin with those letters appear below. This offers two advantages:
  1. You can select from a list rather than type the whole thing in.
  2. You don't have to get the spelling exactly right.
Advanced word recognition While you are typing the word, the word closest in spelling to the word you type appears on the screen.
Bonus & demo software It's basically adware. It has nothing to do with your translator.
Calibration Every touch screen device needs to know what you mean when you tap the stylus on the screen. When you calibrate the screen, you are telling the device how to adapt to your particular style of tapping and to your hand/eye coordination.

If, for example, you tend to tap things a bit to the left then the screen will adjust to that. When you would otherwise miss a screen element by tapping too far to the left, the device recognizes what you meant and acts as though you had actually tapped that element. Without this feature, you would go nuts trying to tap exactly on a target every time.

Conjugation Modification from a verb from its basic form. In English, there are over 7,000 conjugated verbs. The topic of conjugation is fairly complex.
Dictionary The "look up table" that resides inside the translator. This table allows comparison of the native word (e.g., English) to the target language (e.g. Russian).
Flashcards Remember those flashcards you used as a kid to help you study math and spelling? This feature is the electronic equivalent for learning words and phrases. This useful feature, included as a game, allows you to create your personal sets of entries copied from the Main Dictionary, Phrasebook, or SAT 5000.

This feature will help you quickly develop your vocabulary and considerably advance in learning new words. The face of a card shows the source word translation/explanation, and the reverse side shows the source word. The player browses the cards and, whenever necessary, uses a hint.

There are 20 pre-defined card sets in this game and you can create your own sets. The goal is to learn all cards in the set. You will be prompted to proceed to the next set once you have finished the current one. The game statistics are stored in the device memory ,so you can resume playing from where you left off.

Idiom A special combination of words particular to a given language, but not amenable to transliteration. Some words change meaning when combined.
Instant reverse translation Immediately after receipt of results, any of the translation options can be highlighted and entered in for translation to find more exact results.

For the Ectaco TL-2 and 800 touchscreen devices, you can obtain instant reverse translation of a word or phrase within the displayed translations by highlighting the desired item with the stylus and then tapping it. You can make up to 5 reverse translations in succession (without closing windows).

More translator definitions, below....

Irregular verbs
General: These are verbs that fall outside the standard patterns of conjugation. The number varies by language. In English, for example, there are 283. In Italian, there are "over 400" with only 110 being considered common. Spanish has only 46. Several languages have only 1.

As implemented by Ectaco: One of the 6 icons on the translator desktop is "irregular verbs." This brings up a list of irregular verbs in English. If your unit has a dual interface (available for a handful of languages, such as Spanish and Russian), this will still be in English.

Tap the irregular verb of your choice, and you get its equivalent in the target language (per linguistic conventions, for highest accuracy). You will see not just the translated word, but also:

  • The various forms in the target language, if there's more than one.
  • An example of how its used, for each form.

If dictionary voice is available for that particular language, the unit will also pronounce the translated variations if you tap the speaker icon or push the speaker button.

Media Player This is a program that allows you to play various files, such as MP3 and WAV. Most people use this to play music. But you can also use it to play audio books or other recorded items.
Morpho Finder

The MorphoFinder function helps you find source words for English past participles, gerunds and plural forms. For example, if you enter "distributes" you will get "distribute" as there is no translation or explanation for "distributes" because it is a form of "distribute."

Phonetic transcription This is an English dictionary feature that provides a visual representation of how the English word sounds. It is not a phonetic output of the translation. It probably won't be useful to you as an English speaker, but the other person may find it quite handy.
Phrase A combination of words to convey an idea. Traditionally, it meant doing so without forming a complete sentence. Today, complete sentences are the norm in phrasebooks. Phrases greatly aid the speed of the user and of the device itself
Phrase book Think of this as a dictionary of phrases. The phrase book is separate from the main dictionary. In some translators, the phrase book may have voice recognition while the main unit does not. Additionally, it may have a language or voice the main dictionary does not.
Pockets This is a traditional game targeting in-depth word learning. In this game, the same cards as those used in the Flash Cards game are divided into 4 groups (4 pockets).

At the beginning of the game all cards are located in the first pocket. You turn the cards one by one and, if you know the hidden source word, put the card in the second pocket. Keep browsing until all the cards from the first pocket are moved to the second pocket.

At the second stage, you move the cards to the third pocket and, again, if you know the hidden source word, put the card in the next pocket. If you cannot recall the hidden source word, move the card back to the first pocket.

The goal is to move all cards to the fourth pocket. You will aim most of your efforts at learning difficult words, while simple words will shortly jump to the fourth pocket. The game statistics is stored in the device memory so you can resume playing from where you left off.

Secure Digital Card (SD) This is another removable storage medium. They are generally interchangeable with MMCs. SD cards cost more and are higher-performance than MMCs.
Slang lock This allows you to "lock out" slang terms or to allow them.
Software Offer You do not need any additional software to run your translator. The software offer is a promotional item that you can run separately on your PC.
Speech recognition Just as we don't yet have starships with transporters beaming people up, we don't yet have pocket devices that translate free-form spoken input. And for pretty much the same reasons. This feature is just an additional way to access the phrasebook. All iTravl units have speech recognition in English, many have it in the target language also.
Spell-checker Vector Ultima When you are unsure of a word's spelling, Vector Ultima allows you to enter the word as you hear it and choose a spelling version from the list.

For example, you can type the word "board" as you hear it: "bord." Follow that by tapping the down arrow icon (or the SHIFT key plus either up or down arrow on the keyboard). A list of suggested similar words will appear on the screen. Select the word "board" to see its translations.

The multilingual spell-checker Vector Ultima is one of the most advanced on the market. It's helpful if you are listening to another person in a language you don't understand. But an even better approach is to change the translation direction (simple icon tap) and let that person select a word from the dictionary. You just tap the "Translate" icon or the Enter button to see the English translation.

"Spell It" game In this game, special attention is paid to the correct spelling of words. The program displays the cards one by one with the source word hidden. This game is similar to Flash Cards, but this time you should type the source word yourself.

As in all other games, you can view the source word at any time. The game statistics is stored in the device memory so you can resume playing from where you left off.

TOEFL Teaching Of English as a Foreign Language.
Translation A conversion of an idea, word, sentence, or meaning from one language to another. See "transliteration," below.
"Translation Test" game In this game, you should choose a source word which best corresponds to the given description. You will be offered four choices, and you should select the correct one. If your choice is incorrect, you will be prompted to answer the given question later.

The game statistics is stored in the device memory so you can resume playing from where you left off.

Translation direction toggle This helps two people of different languages communicate with one device. Just tap the language pair text in the toolbar to switch between languages.

Please note that this has nothing to do with dual interface. Dual interface exists on some translators, but not on the iTravl. This feature toggles the entire interface between English and the target language. This allows the other person to operate the unit completely in his/her own language--settings and everything. Without this feature, you can still toggle the translation direction back and forth with a simple icon click.

Transliteration A conversion of the exact text from one language to another. This does not necessarily mean a translation.
Vocabulary The number of words in the dictionary.