An interesting dictionary & questions.

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Dinosaur, Jun 1, 2017.

  1. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Marin Gardner used to author an interesting column in Scientific American.

    He once asked readers to consider a special type of dictionary. Computers at that time were neither as fast nor as sophisticated as modern ones.

    His proposed dictionary would list words alphabetized in a different fashion, best indicated by example rather than description.

    Dare, dear, & read would be listed under ader.​

    He asked readers to consider various questions.

    Act is already in alphabetical order: What is the longest such word?

    What entry (if any) would have the most words listed? See above: Ader which has three.

    What is the first word in the B section? Similarly for the C section.

    Note that bubble comes after bubbled in this dictionary.​

    What is the last word in this dictionary?

    I guessed sty. A friend suggested Tutu. Does anyone here know of a word after tutu?​

    There might have been other interesting questions.

    For quite a few decades, computerized dictionaries have been available & such questions could be answered.

    While I do a lot of programming for fun, I do not want to take the time to do the above job.

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  3. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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  5. The God Valued Senior Member

    TV should be expected as complete meaningful word instead of short form of Television.
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  7. The God Valued Senior Member

    Let me try abracadabra...


    Well what do you make out of it.
  8. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Guess I'm not sure of the rules.

    Tutu is not in alphabetical order. A t follows the u.
  9. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 72 years oldl Valued Senior Member

    In not sure Humpty Dumpty would approve of such a dictionary

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  10. Baldeee Valued Senior Member

    The word doesn't need to be in alphabetical order, I think, but the entry for it in the dictionary would be.
    So tutu would come under the entry ttuu.

    My guess for last entry would be uuyz, for the word yuzu - a Japanese citrus fruit.

    For the longest word in alphabetical order: chimps, abhors, begins, almost...
    All 6 letters.
    There may be more of 6, but can't think of any longer.

    1st B word... I can only think of BOBBLED - so BBBDELO.
    1st C word... I was thinking it may be COCCYX (your tailbone) but in trying to find out how it is spelt I came across COCCIC.
    So this would be under the entry CCCCIO

    For entry with most words, I thought it might be AEPRS: Parse, pears, spear, spare, rapes, pares, reaps.
  11. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member


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