|How do I find a Chinese expression?|
Click "Search" in the dictionary menu (titled "Menu" on the left of the screen) and enter the term you are looking for. You can use either simplified or traditional Chinese characters or Pinyin. The asterisk (*) can be used as a wildcard that matches any string, including the empty string. If you are looking for the German translation of 绿茶/綠茶 (lǜchá), you can find it using any of the following expressions:
- 绿茶, 綠茶, lücha, lǜchá, lv4cha2, lu: cha, 绿*, *茶, lü c*, l*4cha
Please make sure that the search direction is set to Chinese -> German. If you use Pinyin to look for an entry, the server may not be able to determine the boundaries of the term's syllables correctly. In that case, if you are looking for 西安, for example, you should not use Xian, but rather Xi'an, xi an, xi1an1 or similar as your search term.Back to top
|How do I find a German expression?|
The search for German expressions is basically analogous to the search for Chinese expressions (see above). Please do keep in mind, however, that this is a Chinese-German dictionary, and the search for a German expression may not yield the desired result, even if the equivalent Chinese expression exists in the dictionary. Making the server "also look for similar words" can sometimes help in this situation.Back to top
Look up whole text
|What does "Look up whole text" do?|
To translate a text, one should know all the vocabulary used in that text. "Look up whole text" helps you find unknown words by adding the German translation as an annotation to all the words in the relevant text that also exist in the dictionary. You can see the annotation when you place the mouse pointer over a Chinese word. A left click pops up a window with further information about the word.
Of course, this function is not only useful when you want to translate a Chinese text, but also when you want to quickly read a text with only a few unknown words.Back to top
|How do I use "Look up whole text"?|
Click "Look up whole text" in the dictionary menu (titled "Menu" on the left of the screen). In the large white text area, you can enter the text you want annotated. You can use either simplified or traditional Chinese characters. Pinyin cannot be used, because Chinese has too many words with the same pronounciation. You also should not mix traditional and simplified Chinese characters, because the server chooses one or the other during the first stage of the analysis of your text and will not recognize words written in the other script during the later stages of the analysis.
If you already have an electronic copy of your text, you can save a lot of work by simply copying it into the "Look up whole text" dialog. Just select the part you want annotated, copy it into clipboard (Ctrl+C on most systems), switch to your web browser and paste the selected text into the "Look up whole text" dialog (Ctrl+V on most systems).
This function uses a lot of computing power and is thus rather slow. Please be patient. For this reason, the maximum length of a text to be annotated is limited. If you want to process longer texts, split them into smaller parts and have them processed one after the other.Back to top
|Why can't I see my vocabulary list?|
You have to be logged in to see your vocabulary list.
The reason for this is simple: every user has his own vocabulary list, and the server needs to know whose vocabulary list it is to show.Back to top
|How do I add a word to my vocabulary list?|
Look for the word you to add to your list (see above). The search result contains an arrow and paper-symbol
next to each entry. Just click on it to add the entry to your list. If the word you would like to add does not exist in the dictionary yet, you have to add it first (see below).Back to top
|How do I create my own flash cards?|
To make your own flash cards, you have to add vocabulary to your list first (see above). After you have done that, select "flash cards" from the menu on the left and choose the information you want your cards to contain. After clicking "create", it will take approximately 5 minutes before you can download your flashcards from the same web page (if a lot of users are simultaneously waiting for new flash cards, it might take a little longer).Back to top
|How do I add an entry to the dictionary?|
To add an entry, it is best to look for the Chinese word first to check whether it already exists in the dictionary. A dialog to add the word as a new entry will automatically appear if it is not in the dictionary yet. Enter the Chinese word (in traditional or simplified characters) and the German translation of one meaning. After clicking "Preview", you will see the entry as it would appear in the dictionary. Now, you can edit the entry and add further details. Once you are satisfied with the entry, click "Submit" to add it to the dictionary.Back to top
|What is the minimum amount of information for a new entry?|
Any entry must contain at least the following information: Chinese word (in simplified and traditional characters), pronounciation in Pinyin (with tones), German translation of one meaning.Back to top
|What is the structure of an entry?|
Every entry corresponds to one Chinese word that can have multiple meanings when translated into German. Each meaning can be illustrated by one or more examples.Back to top
|What style shall be chosen for the German translation?|
The different meanings of any one Chinese word should be differentiated clearly. Within one meaning, one should aim for a precise translation: ideally one German expression that perfectly corresponds to the Chinese expression. If that is impossible, use as few similar German expressions as possible, but as many as necessary to capture the meaning of the Chinese expression. Beware: if you use too many similar German expressions, it becomes impossible to differentiate between similar, but different Chinese words.Back to top
|What sort of examples should I add?|
Examples are particularly helpful when they contain information about the source (or at least time period) they come from. For modern Chinese, choose short, typical examples that clarify the usage of the entry. For literary or classical Chinese, the first use of the word in that particular function is especially informative.Back to top
|How do I select the correct measure words?|
Only nouns have a matching set of measure words that can be used to count them. So select "noun" as word type. Mark the relevant measure words in the alphabetical list. If you want to select more than one measure word, you have to press the Ctrl key and hold it down to avoid losing your selection once you choose a new word.
You can only choose among the measure words already in the dictionary. If you cannot find a particular measure word, you have to add it to the dictionary and select "measure word" as word type.Back to top
|How do I enter the antonym of a word?|
Enter a search string that matches the antonym of your entry in the field titled "antonym" and press "Search". Select the antonym among the entries in the resulting list.
Of course, you can only select words that already exist in the dictionary. Both words in a pair of antonyms need to be of the same type; two words of different word types will never be marked antonyms.Back to top
|How do you measure the quality of dictionary entries?|
Every entry is accorded a number of points which decide whether the entry qualifies as a verified entry or not.Back to top
|How do you determine the number of points for an entry?|
The point system works as follows:
Back to top
- The number of points of an entry differs according to who has added, edited or doubted the validity at what point of time.
- Every entry has to be checked by at least one member of the dictionary's board of editors before it can become a validated entry.
- Every user also has a certain number of points that determines how many points entries edited by that user may get.
- The user's points are determined by his prior behavior: the more entries he has edited or added to the dictionary, the higher his amount of points. Incorrect entries that had to be edited or even deleted by somebody else, however, undermine the trust in this user's behavior. This is reflected in a reduction of the user's amount of points.
- The status of a user (anonymous, registered user or editor) also has implications for that user's points. Only editors can make the final verification of a new entry.
Sources: Authors and Literary Works
|How do I manage authors and literary works?|
The names of authors and the titles of their literary works are added like normal dictionary entries. As "area", choose "person" for authors or "book title" for literary works. Once the entry exists, registered users will see the following symbol:
. Click on the symol to add the author/book to your list of sources. If the arrow of the symbol points to the left, a click removes the entry from your list of sources.Back to top
|How do I name the author of a particular source?|
You have to add the author's name to your list of sources first (see above). Add a new entry for the title of your source (see above) and choose "book title" as its "area". Now, you can choose the author's name from a drop down list.Back to top
|How do I name the source of a citation?|
|Do I have to register?|
No, you do not have to register. If you do register, you will, however, gain access to a wider range of functions of the dictionary: vocabulary list, annotation of longer texts, editing your own entries, etc.Back to top
|Why are certain functions reserved for registered users?|
For pure practical reasons: certain functions absolutely require that we know who you are (e.g. your personal vocabulary list). With some other functions, we benefit from knowing who you are (e.g. adding entries to the dictionary).Back to top
|Which browser should I use?|
You can use any web browser you like, of course. If you notice that some pages are not shown the way they should, we do, however, suggest that you use Mozilla Firefox, which you can download for free from here
The reason that some browser do not display our pages the way they should is simply that different programs respect the recommendations of the World Wide Web Consortium
to different degrees.Back to top