Classical chinese and chinese medical dictionaries?

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
One important little note about our newly-licensed 《古汉语大词典》, since I know some people have been trying unsuccessfully to hunt down the printed version; it's also published (same contents, different cover) as the《古代汉语大词典》(ISBN 7532621859), still from 上海辞书出版社, and it's got the same blue-and-white cover design as a lot of other books from them; on my recent China trip I couldn't find 《古汉语大词典》 in any bookstores, but 《古代汉语大词典》does seem to be available at least in larger ones like Wangfujing Bookstore / Shanghai Book City / Commercial Press / etc. Outside of Greater China your best bet for getting it would probably be to mail-order one from Dangdang or another big Chinese book website.
 
...but even if we could get the data in electronic format it would still likely be a very expensive license.
well, I paid ~$150 for the CD version and would be more than willing to pay as much again for a Pleco version. Just saying.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
whitebigsanitation said:
well, I paid ~$150 for the CD version and would be more than willing to pay as much again for a Pleco version. Just saying.
Understood, but the royalty advance is a big factor too - for a title like this we could have to pay several thousand copies' worth of royalties on signing the contract and have that money tied up for a year or more (wouldn't even start making any of it back until we finished converting the data files). So that's a lot of capital for a small company like us to have tied up on one dictionary, and it's less capital we have to invest in other, cheaper dictionary licenses (or other useful things like iPad 2s).
 

character

状元
mikelove said:
Understood, but the royalty advance is a big factor too - for a title like this we could have to pay several thousand copies' worth of royalties on signing the contract and have that money tied up for a year or more (wouldn't even start making any of it back until we finished converting the data files). So that's a lot of capital for a small company like us to have tied up on one dictionary, and it's less capital we have to invest in other, cheaper dictionary licenses (or other useful things like iPad 2s).
If it doesn't reveal too much information, you could create some of these as Kickstarter projects and see how much interest can be generated here, on chinese-forums, and other places. Let people vote with their wallet. If there's not enough real interest, everyone will see that as well.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
character said:
If it doesn't reveal too much information, you could create some of these as Kickstarter projects and see how much interest can be generated here, on chinese-forums, and other places. Let people vote with their wallet. If there's not enough real interest, everyone will see that as well.
Definitely reveals too much - not only of the publisher's information but of our own, if other publishers see that we're offering so-and-so a royalty advance of X they'll insist on doing at least as well for their titles.
 

character

状元
Could you write it as 'license a classical Chinese dictionary and convert it to work with Pleco'? Muddy the waters a bit. But thinking about it, the bigger problem is all in-app purchases need to pass through Apple.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
character said:
Could you write it as 'license a classical Chinese dictionary and convert it to work with Pleco'?
We already licensed one of those - this is more of a request for a super-comprehensive general-purpose Chinese-Chinese dictionary, I think.

character said:
But thinking about it, the bigger problem is all in-app purchases need to pass through Apple.
Yes, that would preclude us from giving people the dictionary for free which kind of defeats the purpose of Kickstarter - maybe on Android though :)
 
mikelove said:
whitebigsanitation said:
Understood, but the royalty advance is a big factor too - for a title like this we could have to pay several thousand copies' worth of royalties on signing the contract and have that money tied up for a year or more (wouldn't even start making any of it back until we finished converting the data files). So that's a lot of capital for a small company like us to have tied up on one dictionary, and it's less capital we have to invest in other, cheaper dictionary licenses (or other useful things like iPad 2s).
Gotcha. Well, I really hope that the math works out someday.
 

jciccotti

Member
I'd just like to add my voice to this, and hopefully with enough of us it'll get pushed through. I'm looking for a Classical Chinese dictionary. I'm currently studying Chinese Philosophy in China, and it would really speed up my studying if it went digital. All that aside, I love Pleco! Thanks for the great work!
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
jciccotti said:
I'd just like to add my voice to this, and hopefully with enough of us it'll get pushed through. I'm looking for a Classical Chinese dictionary. I'm currently studying Chinese Philosophy in China, and it would really speed up my studying if it went digital. All that aside, I love Pleco! Thanks for the great work!
Thanks! We've already got a Classical title licensed, as I mentioned, and we actually do have a few feelers out on the super-comprehensive titles (though the fact that 商务印书馆 appears to be totally closed to electronic licensing isn't helping matters on several of them).
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
Already licensed, as I said, but we've got a couple of other exciting licenses in the queue and we're hoping to release them all in one big block - that way we can offer all of the new stuff in a discounted bundle.
 
I just wanted to speak up, and say that I finally purchased Pleco (full bundle) after hearing of your plans to incorporate a classical dictionary. Meanwhile, I'm enjoying the Flashcards component to brush up on my modern Chinese vocabulary (which is quite rusty). Is there a link to your upcoming products announcement? I read it months ago but can't seem to find it now.
Thanks,
Patrick Draine
iPad, iPhone
 

michau

秀才
There is a serious Classical Chinese-English dictionary at http://tls.uni-hd.de/. It is actually a text corpus of ancient Chinese writings, annotated with meanings of individual words. But it is possible to use it as a dictionary. It has all the features a good dictionary should have: definitions, pronunciations (reconstructed, from several periods), example sentences with translations, wordnet-like word relations (synonyms, antonyms, etc.). The user interface is a bit difficult to use, since it is a university research project, not a commercial application. Any chance to license it? That would be awesome!
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
michau said:
There is a serious Classical Chinese-English dictionary at http://tls.uni-hd.de/. It is actually a text corpus of ancient Chinese writings, annotated with meanings of individual words. But it is possible to use it as a dictionary. It has all the features a good dictionary should have: definitions, pronunciations (reconstructed, from several periods), example sentences with translations, wordnet-like word relations (synonyms, antonyms, etc.). The user interface is a bit difficult to use, since it is a university research project, not a commercial application. Any chance to license it? That would be awesome!
We're actually pretty happy with the 古代汉语大词店 that we've already licensed and are planning to release this summer - it's partly based on data from 辞海 and, like 辞海, has lots and lots of quotations and examples. However if that proves popular we can certainly consider adding some other classical dictionaries into the mix.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
michau said:
The distinguishing feature of TLS is that it's biligual (Chinese-English).
Fair enough, but I'm not actually sure how important that is once you're at the level of studying Classical - you can easily look up the meaning of unknown words in Chinese-language definitions by tapping on them. Anyway as I said we can look into it if our first Classical dictionary proves successful.
 

bokane

举人
Did anything ever come of this? I'm jonesing for new Pleco dictionaries (especially Chinese-Chinese ones!), and I'm sure I'm not alone...
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
bokane said:
Did anything ever come of this? I'm jonesing for new Pleco dictionaries (especially Chinese-Chinese ones!), and I'm sure I'm not alone...
It's happening, but we're still waiting on data files for one Chinese-Chinese dictionary and a signed contract plus data files for another one - we want to release them all in one go, both so that people can make informed decisions on which ones they'd like to purchase and so that we can offer them all together in a discounted bundle.
 
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