Archiving Comparative Data
Presented by:          Joseph E. Grimes,
SIL International and University of Hawai`i at Manoa
Project / Software Title :       Wordcorr  
Project / Software URL:  
Access / Availability:       This software is available for free download at  
Access to project archives:      
On SourceForge, you can browse CVS as an anonymous user and view and submit bug reports and feature requests -- even enroll as a Developer in order to receive change notices.

Some metadata for linguistics are fairly simple. Metadata for collections of many word lists and their analyses, however, are not so simple.

Wordcorr is a computational tool for managing word list data for comparative phonology, in both research and teaching. It also takes in annotations that reflect linguists' or students' judgments about the data, and from them tabulates and organizes all the correspondence sets implied by those judgments. It provides for different views of the same data to permit investigating conflicting hypotheses.

The metadata that Wordcorr delivers to an archive comes from four sources within the program:
  • Information about the user
  • Information about the collection
  • Information about each speech variety in the collection
  • Information to identify each view of the data
Members of the Wordcorr community will soon be interacting with each other by emailing files with the aid of the Web site. Currently they email them without help from the site, and also interact through the Wordcorr forum on SourceForge and personal messages. Since analyses are in continual flux, and data get expanded or corrected from time to time, the actual data sets are distributed rather than centralized, and are in the hands of the originator of each collection. But the metadata for each collection that has been made public will be on the Web site and can be searched through regular OLAC protocols.

The content of the Wordcorr metadata will meet these tentative and abridged specifications, though the current release does not yet:

Papers and Handouts
Instructions for Participants
Working Groups
Local Arrangements
E-MELD 2001 E-MELD 2002 E-MELD 2003 E-MELD Homepage