Desktop version?

Eduardo

Member
I guess things like screen reader won't work on Windows 11 anyway, right? Is it posible for developers to start testing apps now? Mike, now with this announcement, are you thinking on dedicating efforts on full Windows integration for the Android app?
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
I guess things like screen reader won't work on Windows 11 anyway, right?
Extremely unlikely, yeah - would be a huge technical challenge, and in any event the main purposes of the relevant APIs on Android are a) game streaming and b) accessibility and Windows already has its own infrastructure for those things.

Is it posible for developers to start testing apps now?
I believe the first preview is out next week, but it'll be months before it hits consumers and as far as Pleco development is concerned it has to get in line behind a whole bunch of other stuff we're working on.

Mike, now with this announcement, are you thinking on dedicating efforts on full Windows integration for the Android app?
Long way away from that, I'd like to finish 4.0 first and see how people respond to the Mac desktop version of that. I'm not even seeing anything about dedicated APIs for integrating your Android app with Windows, and in any event Android doesn't offer the assortment of APIs to deal with large screens / menus / keyboards / mice etc that iOS does, so it may well be that we can still only offer a satisfying desktop experience with a dedicated Windows port.
 

SongSci

秀才
An update two years later: I'm newly using Pleco for Android with two add-ons (Grand Ricci and A Student's Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese) on a Windows 10 desktop under the BlueStacks emulator. Everything seems to be working fine so far.
 

柏尔

Member
Not sure if this would be useful for the dev team or not, but I might have a potential suggestion that could be a much more viable option than Pleco for Desktop. I have been waiting for a desktop version for years and totally understand how it is a challenge. Have the Dev's though of creating a pleco chrome extension instead? There is an extension I use currently called Zhongwen: Chinese-English Dictionary which is amazing. I rely on this more than anything else. What it is missing unfortunately, is sentences. Basically how the extension works is you hover over any character on a webpage and it gives you the definition without being directed to any other pages. It would be sooooo useful to have pleco example sentences, especially since Pleco sentences are the best for understanding new words. I'm sure this would be much easier since Pleco already does the same thing and chrome extensions are traditionally considered easier to code than full scale desktop applications.

Just a thought.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
Thanks, but we've already almost finished our Mac desktop app - that's actually easier for us than a Chrome extension would have been because we basically just had to redesign the UI and could leave the rest of the app as is. Also, while a Chrome extension might help in your particular case, there are a lot of other users for whom flashcard testing or manually entered dictionary searches or OCR are important and it would not cover those needs as well.
 

SongSci

秀才
The Pleco OCR add-on will also work on a Windows 10 PC with the BlueStacks Android emulator. While the OCR is unable to read through a multiple-page pdf, it can read one page/image at a time. To view the pdf I was interested in, while outside Pleco and BlueStacks I did a Windows Print Screen of page one of the pdf, then page two, etc. Next, I went to the BlueStack Media Manager and fetched the image files from the PC through a Windows Explorer type interface. Then, entering Pleco's OCR, I selected Still OCR, then either Open Image Gallery or Open Image File. While all this may seem cumbersome, if you have a scanned-image document that can't otherwise be readable by the dictionaries, it's worth the effort.
 

goulniky

榜眼
Thanks, but we've already almost finished our Mac desktop app (...)
I haven't visited this forum for a few years, and just found that amazing news. I'd buy a Mac just for this if I didn't already have one. Really looking forward, I'm also a long time user of Wenlin, still great but showing its age.
 
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SongSci

秀才
I haven't visited this forum for a few years, and just found that amazing news. I'd buy a Mac just for this if I didn't already have one. Really looking forward, I'm also a long time user of Wenlin, still great but showing its age.
I still use Wenlin for its helpful etymologies of characters. If Pleco has that capability, this new Pleco user has yet to find it.
 

Shun

状元
Hi @SongSci,

I still use Wenlin for its helpful etymologies of characters. If Pleco has that capability, this new Pleco user has yet to find it.
I can't tell if Wenlin's etymological information is based solely on the Shuowen Jiezi, which of course is one of the oldest character dictionaries (from the Han dynasty):


… or if it's based on newer sources, as well. What is available for Pleco and includes some of the most recent research findings are the Outlier dictionaries you can get as Add-ons. The Outlier Essentials dictionary comes with about 3,000 character etymologies, constantly growing up to 4,000. You can have a look at the demo version. This is their webpage:


Hope this helps,

Shun
 
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SongSci

秀才
Hi @SongSci,



I can't tell if Wenlin's etymological information is based solely on the Shuowen Jiezi, which of course is one of the oldest character dictionaries (from the Han dynasty):


… or if it's based on newer sources, as well. What is available for Pleco and includes some of the most recent research findings are the Outlier dictionaries you can get as Add-ons. The Outlier Essentials dictionary comes with about 3,000 character etymologies, constantly growing up to 4,000. You can have a look at the demo version. This is their webpage:


Hope this helps,

Shun
Thanks very much for your comments, Shun, which are indeed helpful. I was very impressed with the Outlier's detailed Shang and Warring State etymologies (images and historical discussion). The treatment there is much more extensive than Wenlin's. But the latter's briefer etymologies are claimed to reflect modern scholarship. Besides the quoted material from Wieger and Karlgren, the documentation claims that "Wenlin’s Seal font and all Shuowen-related data appearing in Wenlin’s Seal character Zìdiǎn entries reflect the current state of this work (2010, ongoing)." The citation corresponding to the preceding comment seems to be:

"說文解字 ‧ 電子版》 Shuō Wén Jiě Zì — Diànzǐ Bǎn: Digital Recension of the Eastern Hàn Chinese Grammaticon. Richard Cook. UC Berkeley, Department of Linguistics, Ph.D. Dissertation, 2003. (~1800 p.) ◦ A new printing of this work in four volumes (~2400 p.) was published in 2010 as STEDT Monograph 9, including a newly available fourth volume of the complete text in Seal characters; for more information, see the author’s website: http://rscook.org."

I will be interested in watching how Outlier's work on the sound of the characters develops -- whether it presents phonological etymologies as well. These are very much needed for properly appreciating the T'ang and Song poetry. Baxter's representation of character pronunciation in Middle Chinese is given in Pleco's SCM add-on dictionary, but I haven't had a chance to see what period that purports to represent and how accurate it is. So far I've been taking Pulleyblank's Lexicon of Reconstructed Pronunciation in Early Middle Chinese, Late Middle Chinese, and Early Mandarin (1991) as the "gold standard" for the pronunciation of characters in the Sui, T'ang, and Mongol dynasties respectively. If there are corrections to that work, I'd be interested in hearing about them. Unfortunately, Pulleyblank's Lexicon is only available in printed form. I'd love to see it available in Pleco.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
Just want to confirm: if I purchase the add-ons for the iOS app, will they also work with the future macOS desktop app?
Probably not, at least not without an additional purchase of some sort. Some add-ons like dictionaries and readers may move over for free, but we haven't settled on a final business model for Mac yet, and likely won't until it's out of beta testing, so at the moment I'm afraid I can't make any promises at all regarding whether a particular iOS item will work for free on Mac.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
Hi, Mike. Is the macOS version Apple Silicon-only, or is it going to work on Intel Macs? If it's available for Intel Macs and you need an Intel beta tester, I'm available.
It'll almost certainly support both in the final release, but we might limit the betas to ARM to simplify the build process a bit - anyway once there's a beta ready there'll be an announcement with details.
 

mlondon

Member
It'll almost certainly support both in the final release, but we might limit the betas to ARM to simplify the build process a bit - anyway once there's a beta ready there'll be an announcement with details.
Volunteering to beta-test on my M1Max MacbookPro!

Also, how do we sign up to be notified when the final app is available?
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
Also, how do we sign up to be notified when the final app is available?
It'll go out on our mailing list at some point, but honestly "let all of your users know about this new thing so they can download it simultaneously and all flood you with complaints about the same problems at the same time" is maybe not the best strategy for keeping one's sanity so my inclination is to roll it out more discreetly / have some people stumble onto it accidentally before I start shouting about it to the world.
 

LeonardoM

举人
my inclination is to roll it out more discreetly / have some people stumble onto it accidentally.
For those of us who actually follow this forum and pleco news in general, which I suppose is a very small portion of the entire Pleco user base, where do we have to check if a beta is out? For iPhone, and for Mac, i mean.
 
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