Getting Started

Regular users

The best way to start exploring the information provided by Lexvo.org is to head to the main page and start browsing using the example links provided there. By navigating from page to page, you can discover relationships between languages, words, geographical regions, and so on.

Another nice way to use Lexvo.org is via a term lookup bookmarklet. Simply add one or more of the following links as bookmarks to your browser toolbar.

Later on, while browsing the web, select any word on the page and then activate the bookmark to open a page with further information about that word.

For Dataset Providers and Developers

One of the main motivations for the Web of Linked Data is the idea of liberating data from traditional data silos by publishing them on the Web using shared global identifiers rather than database-dependent strings of characters. For instance, instead of having a "language" column in your database that might contain values like "engl.", "grk.", "albn." (or "en", "el", "sq"), you can publish your data on the Web using global identifiers (URIs) like http://lexvo.org/id/iso639-3/eng, http://lexvo.org/id/iso639-3/ell, and http://lexvo.org/id/iso639-3/sqi. Such URIs are part of a common global vocabulary that many different data sets on the Web share. This makes it much easier to see that you and I are referring to the same thing as opposed to when I use "el" and you use "grk.". Additionally, these URIs are also dereferenceable, meaning that humans can open them in their browser (and software tools can download machine-readable data) to find out more information about the entity.

In order to start using Lexvo.org's identifiers in this way, the first step is recognizing where your data refers to specific languages, words, characters, or other language-related entities. For example, you might want to state that a book is written in a particular language, or that a brand name has been trademarked by a particular company. To determine which URIs to use for these language-related entities, you have three options:

To express that your resource is in a specific language, you would have triples of the form
my:resource lvont:language lexvo:eng .
my:resource lvont:language lexvo:fra .
or
my:resource dcterms:language lexvo:eng .
my:resource dcterms:language lexvo:fra .
This approach ensures that languages are identified with unique URIs that are dereferenceable, so additional information is available about them. More information about the "dcterms:language" predicate can be found in the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative's user guide.

The API straightforwardly converts terms and language codes to Lexvo URIs. For example, simply call

Identifiers.getTermURI("hello", "eng")
to obtain the URI for the English term "hello".
Or call
Identifiers.getLanguageURIforISO639P1("fr")
or
Identifiers.getLanguageURIforISO639P3("fra")
to obtain the URI for the French language.

To actually work with the Lexvo data, you may want to download the RDF dump and use an RDF library like JENA or Redland to load it.

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