1/3/08
12:21 pm

MacMost Now 21: The Incredible Leopard Dictionary App

Gary Rosenzweig looks at all the cool news features in Dictionary with Leopard. You can look up definitions, thesaurus entries, a special Apple dictionary, Wikipedia and Japanese dictionaries. You can also see dictionary front matter and look up words while in other applications.

Video Transcript (Click to Expand)
Hi, this is Gary Rosenzweig with MacMost Now. So since upgrading to Leopard, have you checked out the dictionary?
No I haven't gotten around to it. I assume it's just the same dictionary that there was in Tiger.
Well the dictionary in Leopard's got a whole bunch of new features. It's a whole new app and it's actually pretty useful.
Okay, sure, why don't' you show me?
Okay, so here's the dictionary application, looks pretty basic, just like it did before. You can type in a word and it will try to auto-complete it for you here and give you a list of possibilities. It will also go ahead and suggest things that don't even match exactly the spelling that you're typing. So it can act as a good spelling lookup dictionary too. Once you're in the definition, you got a lot of information and you can click on something to get a definition of that. So you can just keep clicking on words and getting different definitions.
Well, okay, but defining words is what it did before. Does it do anything new?
Yeah, you bet. You can go ahead for instance and switch over to Thesaurus, and you can loop up Thesaurus words for the same word you were looking at a dictionary word for. Then you can continue with the Thesaurus and click on one word in there and it will give you the Thesaurus entry for that one, which is very useful for looking things up. Another dictionary in there is the Apple dictionary. Click on that and you can type in a term that's related to computing. For instance, keychain, and it will find you a definition for something like keychain access.
Aah, so you could pretty much look up anything now.
Well, if you really want to look up anything, you can simply switch to this next app which is Wikipedia, and it will look up whatever term you were looking up before in Wikipedia. So for instance here's the Wikipedia entry for keychain access. It presents very nicely. And then, you can also go ahead and click on another word in here, like FTP servers, and it will load in the FTP servers entry from Wikipedia.
Yeah, but do you know what I really love about dictionaries? You know, it's all that stuff in the front that teaches you about language and pronunciation, and it's like history of English, you know, all that stuff.
Really?
Yeah really, like I love that stuff.
Well then, actually then your dictionary can accommodate you. All you need to do is go back to the dictionary, and you can go to the dictionary part of the dictionary app, go to front/back matter, which is a menu item under Go, and it takes you to all this front matter. You can look up all sorts of things like language guides, list of cliches, history of English timeline, constitution of the US, chemical elements, so just about anything. It's all there.
Well if it's got like a dictionary and a thesaurus and Apple dictionary and Wikipedia, is there any way to add new dictionaries to the dictionary application?
Yes, actually, there is. All you need to do is go into the dictionary preferences, and there's already a few dictionaries in there, like Japanese, Japanese-English dictionary, Japanese synonyms. So you can just to add one. Another cool thing that the dictionary can do is you can actually use it in other applications. So for instance, in Mail, you can control click on a word, and look it up in the dictionary.
Okay, so would it help me, if say, theoretically somebody would send me an email and there's a word in it I don't understand, not that that ever happens, could I easily look it up in the dictionary?
Right, well here you go. Here's mail, and here's the email I got and you can basically just select a word, control click on it, select look up in dictionary, and it brings the word up. And you can use it in other applications as well, like text edit and all sorts of applications support this.
Well, I had no idea the dictionary application did all this. Thanks for showing me.
No problem. hey and if you've got a question, you can always email me at questions (-at-) macmost.com. 'Til next time, this is Gary Rosenzweig with MacMost Now.

Comments: 7 Responses to “MacMost Now 21: The Incredible Leopard Dictionary App”

    Vicki
    8/11/09 @ 5:13 pm

    I’m glad you showed me how to use the Dictionary in Leopard.
    I’m a poetry laureate student and have a diploma in short story and new article writing (the basics.) I also just love words and their meanings.
    That front page matter was really helpful to know about.
    lol at the way you presented the information. You should do more pod casts that way.
    I’m watching the pod casts from the begininng of 2008 until when I found Mac Most on You Tube.
    TY

    Mr Anthony Cotton
    7/17/12 @ 2:15 pm

    Can you put a picture or document in to widgets.I got a good one from Answers.com it`s sort of an Encyclopedia. My Dictionary does not have Wikipedia. It`s got the ones that you mention but not that one.

    Mr Anthony Cotton
    7/18/12 @ 9:53 am

    No Gary it`s not. I know you can put it in the Dashboard when you are on the internet,because it gives you a menu with the option to open it in Dashboard.
    I just want to know can you add a picture or a document to Dashboard? Gary

    Mr Anthony Cotton
    7/20/12 @ 11:10 am

    Thanks for letting me know. I just thought you could.
    Thanks Gary

    Mr Anthony Cotton
    7/20/12 @ 11:15 am

    I have just had another look at your video,and i forgot you can take a screen shot,or has you mentioned just the part you want. Thanks Gary

Comments Closed.