English Dictionary Word List

  In HP-UX, there is a 'spell' utility and it comes with an American and British dictionary. Howerver, these dictionaries are hashed and are not in the human-readable form. Is it possible to get the unhashed version? Or is there a documentation to the format of the hashed dictionary so that I can make use of it in my own program to judge whether a given word is a vaid english word. I can't use 'spell' directly because the program I am going write is for Ms Windows.

Or alternatively, it will also be helpful if you can tell me where I can find such a word list in plain file format.


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What about creating a filter that would un-hash the database in a plain text file? Quite simple... You could do that in "vi" with a single line command, I think.
sunjAuthor Commented:
EatErnAndSmile: Can you explain how to un-hash the database?
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well, there's already a bunch of freeware spell checkers for Windows/DOS. Can you use one of those (just call it as an external program, or maybe firnd one with source code).

My first rule is to never reinvent teh wheel, when I can do things the lazy way. Who knows, maybe you can even place text on the clipboard & then call a MS Word API function to spell check.

Btw, be aware that you almost certainly won't get a list of all possible variants, just stems. e.g don't expect "amazing" and "amazingly" or "hack" and "hacks".

Why not hunt around Linux sites ?  Btw, is your spell check command "ispell"? The ispell private dictionary is certainly one word per line plain text, don't know about the main one though.
hmm, maybe it would be easier just to port ispell. In fact, there may even exist a port (dos based, of course) which you can incorporate into a windows prog. There is a great page of ispell dictionaries for d/l at http://ficus-www.cs.ucla.edu/project-members/geoff/ispell-dictionaries.html

They are plain text, but with some special characters to indicate that a prefix or suffix is allowed  in- un- re-  -able  , etc.

If you can explain more what you wanyt to do, we can offer advice. I feel that you probably don't want to start from scratch.

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sunjAuthor Commented:
I actually need the dictionary for a word guess game (something like bogus). I understand that there are lots of external tools available (i can even make use of winword's spell check using automation), but I have concerns on speed and self-containment (it's gonna be an COM component). After all, if I have the dictionary, writing a spell checker is trivil - just read in the words, build the hashtable and that's it.

Thanks for the link. I got from there what I need.
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