This is ispell version 3.3, an interactive spelling checker. Contents of this README file: What Is Ispell and Why Do I Want It? What's New in This Version? Where Can I Get Ispell? OK, How Do I Install It? Who Wrote Ispell? Where Do I Send Bug Reports? How Do I Reference Ispell in Scholarly Papers? Where Do I Get Dictionaries? How Long Does It Take to Make Dictionaries? Special Installation Notes for Certain Machines What About Ispell for MS-DOS? Note: this README file might not contain the latest information about ispell. For that information, visit the ispell Web page: http://www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/ispell.html ------------------------------------------------------------------------ What Is Ispell and Why Do I Want It? Ispell is a fast screen-oriented spelling checker that shows you your errors in the context of the original file, and suggests possible corrections when it can figure them out. Compared to UNIX spell, it is faster and much easier to use. Ispell can also handle languages other than English. What's New in This Version? Ispell 3.3 offers improved support for international languages, improved deformatting, and better support for compilation on Windows systems. All known security holes have been closed. A number of small bugs are also fixed. Where Can I Get Ispell? Point your Web browser at the ispell home page: http://www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/ispell.html The current version of ispell is available for Web download from www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu using the following URL: http://www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/tars The latest version is always named "ispell-3.3.xx.tar.gz", where "xx" is the patch level. There are also sometimes files named "README-patchxx", which contain notes specific to a given version. A number of ftp mirror sites also store ispell. Check your favorite search engine for "ispell-3.3" to find a site near you. Ispell comes with English dictionaries. For other languages, visit the ispell dictionaries Web page at: http://www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/ispell-dictionaries.html OK, How Do I Install It? Quick installation instructions for American English: 1) Download Ispell from http://www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/ispell.html 2) gunzip ispell-3.3.xx.tar.gz 3) tar -xvf ispell-3.3.xx.tar 4) cd ispell-3.3.xx 5) Copy one of the sample local.h files to local.h: cp local.h.bsd local.h cp local.h.cygwin local.h cp local.h.linux local.h cp local.h.macos local.h cp local.h.solaris local.h or cp local.h.generic local.h 6) If you used the generic local.h file and are using a USG-style system (Linux, IRIX, HP-UX, Solaris, etc): Edit local.h and change: #undef USG to: #define USG 7) make all If you get compile errors in term.c, do step 6 (or undo it if you already did it). 8) make install Long installation instructions: (For installation on MS-DOS, see the section about MS-DOS at the end of this file.) Ispell is quite portable (thanks to many people). If you speak American English and have one of the pre-configured systems, follow the instructions above. For more complex installations, you will have to create a fancier local.h file. All customization of ispell, even for the Makefile, is done by creating or editing the file "local.h" to override the default definitions of certain variables. The most common change is to add or remove "#define USG" so that term.c will compile. The next most common changes will be to the LANGUAGES variable (to set the languages; see also the Makefiles in the various language subdirectories), CC (to choose gcc), and BINDIR through MAN45DIR (to control where ispell is installed). There are many other configuration parameters; see config.X for the complete list and further instructions. *DO NOT* make changes to config.X or to any of the Makefiles. Anything you define in "local.h" will override definitions in those files. The English-language dictionary comes in four sizes: small, medium, large, and extra-large. I recommend using the medium dictionary unless you are very short on space. The small and medium dictionaries have been hand-checked against a paper dictionary to improve their accuracy. This is not true of the two larger ones. The large and extra-large dictionaries contain less-frequently-used words and are known to have misspelling in them. Also, even a correct large dictionary can hide misspellings of short words because there is some similar word that nobody uses. (For example, the crossword-puzzle favorite "ort" can keep you from finding a place where you mistyped "or".) If you have a list of extra words (such as /usr/share/dict/words on some commercial Unixes), you can also choose to make a "plus" version, named by adding a plus sign to the size indication, to include that list in your dictionary. Because many modern computers don't have /usr/share/dict/words, the default dictionary is the "non-plus" version. After all edits, you are ready to compile ispell. Simply type "make all" to compile all the programs, put the dictionaries together, and build the hash file. If you get errors while compiling term.c, change the setting of "#define USG" in your local.h file and try again. After your first make completes, you are ready to install ispell. The standard "make install" will install ispell, the auxiliary programs and scripts, the manual page, and the dictionary hash file, all in the directories you have chosen for them. This usually has to be done as root, and on some systems you will not be able to redirect the output to a file. (If you're the careful sort, you'll check the output of "make -n install" first to be sure there are no hidden surprises.) If you don't want to install the dictionary-building tools, you can type "make partial-install" to install just the files needed to use ispell itself. As well as the standard "make clean" and "make realclean" targets, there is also a "make dictclean" target which will get rid of constructed dictionary files such as "english.med+". This is a separate target because of the time it takes to build dictionaries. Finally, there is a directory named "addons", which contains shar kits for ispell helper programs that were generously written by other people. These are not copyrighted or supported by the ispell maintainer. Contact the original authors (listed in README files in the kits) for more information. Who Wrote Ispell? Ispell is a very old program. The original was written in PDP-10 assembly in 1971, by R. E. Gorin. The C version was written by Pace Willisson of MIT. Walt Buehring of Texas Instruments added the emacs interface and posted it to the net. Geoff Kuenning added the international support and created the current release. Ken Stevens has maintained the Emacs interface (ispell.el) for many years. Many, many other people contributed to the current version; a partial list (with a much more detailed history) can be found in the file "Contributors". Where Do I Send Bug Reports? Most ispell bug reports, except bugs related to the emacs-lisp interface, should be sent to "firstname.lastname@example.org". Bugs in the emacs interface (ispell.el) should be sent to "email@example.com". If you're not sure which address to use, send your report to "firstname.lastname@example.org" and I'll sort it out from there. Note that the bug aliases are not discussion lists; membership is limited. Bugs in add-on packages (found in the "addons" subdirectory) should not be sent to itcorp.com. Instead, send reports to the developers of those packages (see the README file for the package you are using). How Do I Reference Ispell in Scholarly Papers? There is no published paper on ispell, so if you make use of ispell in a fashion that requires a reference (e.g., using the dictionary as a word list in a research project), you are limited to an Internet reference. The full proper title is printed by "ispell -v": "International Ispell Version x.y.z". Please include the full version number in your reference so that people can discover the exact variant that you used; sometimes it's important. If you're feeling really nice, you can also credit me, Geoff Kuenning, as the author. Usually, you should also include a link to the ispell Web page: http://www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/ispell.html so that readers of your paper can locate a copy of ispell if they wish. Where Do I Get Dictionaries? Ispell comes with American and British dictionaries. American-style spellings are the default. To get British spellings, copy the LANGUAGES and MASTERHASH definitions from config.X into your local.h, and then globally replace "american" with "british". For other languages, consult the file "languages/Where", which lists everything I know about. You can also check the ispell dictionaries page: http://www.lasr.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/ispell-dictionaries.html which contains pointers to all known dictionaries. As a general rule, if you use a dictionary that was not intended for ispell, or if you combine multiple dictionaries, you should use munchlist to reduce the size of the dictionary. If you create a dictionary of your own and make it available for ftp, please send a notification to email@example.com so that I can add your dictionary to the ftp list. How Long Does It Take to Make Dictionaries? Long ago, making a big dictionary took hours. But on a modern machine, it should only take a few minutes. Special Installation Notes for Certain Machines: Although I have tried to avoid putting in specific machine dependencies as a general rule, some machine-specific #defines will be found at the end of config.X. If you get lots of warnings when compiling term.c, check to be sure that you have correctly defined SIGNAL_TYPE in your local.h. Some recent "internationalized" Unixes (such as HP, and anything using the GNU tools, such as Linux) vary the behavior of sort(1) based on an environment variable such as LANG, LOCALE, or LC_xxx. The symptom is that munchlist does not produce an optimal dictionary. The shell scripts try to protect against this by setting all of these variables to "C", but if your system uses different environment variables, you may have to do this by hand. If you get core dumps from the sort command (reported on HP systems building large German dictionaries), try adding the "-y" flag to the appropriate invocation of sort in the Makefile or in munchlist. This flag is only available on some systems. Some BSDI systems have a screwy sort command that uses -T to specify the record (as opposed to field) delimiter. You'll have to disable SORTTMP and enable MAKE_SORTTMP. What About Ispell for MS-DOS? Although the ispell maintainer does not support MS-DOS and Windows, a generous contributor, Eli Zaretskii, has added MS-DOS support. You can build ispell for MS-DOS with either EMX/GCC or DJGPP. See the file pc/README for compilation instructions.