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Thread: The BibleWorks Hebraica/Judaica project

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  1. #1
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    Default The BibleWorks Hebraica/Judaica project

    Hello Bibleworks users and forum members,

    Would you like to see more Hebrew modules?
    Would you be happy to use any of the following(or any other Hebraica) in Bibleworks?
    If, we work together I think it is possible increase the number of Hebrew modules available to BibleWorks' users. Here are a few things that might be handy to have with in BibleWorks.

    • The Siddur / Siddorim
    • Jacob ben Chajim ibn Adonijah's Tanakh
    • The Mishnah, Talmud, Mishneh Torah
    • The Masorah Parva,
    • The Masorah Magna,
    • The Masorah Finalis
    • Rashi's commentary on the pentatuech

    Entering Hebrew text into BibleWorks is not that hard, but it is not as easy as copy and pasting unicode Hebrew text into the BW compiler. One, first must transcribe Hebrew/Greek texts into CCAT format.


    What is CCAT?
    CCAT stands for: CENTER FOR COMPUTER ANALYSIS OF TEXTS


    On the BibleWorks formus CCAT most often means a type of transliteration scheme (Hebrew and Greek) called Beta Code. It uses only the ASCII characters/codes that are readily available on all computers. Special Hebrew, Greek, Coptic, etc fonts are then mapped over the CCAT/BETA codes.


    What then is Beta Code?
    Beta Code was created by David Woodley Packard a linguist, humanist, professor, but more famously known as the son of the co-founder of the Hewlett-Packard Company. It was first adopted in the 1970's for the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae (TLG), (1976) I assume by The Gramcord institute, in 1987 for for the Perseus Project, by Bibleworks, and many others.

    What does CCAT/Beta Code look like?

    Here is the first line from the first tractate of the Mishnah Database I have started working on:

    Mishnah:
    Seder Zeraim; Tractate Berakhot

    With vowel points

    מֵאֵימָתַי קוֹרִין אֶת שְׁמַע בְּעַרְבִית
    M")"YMFTAY QWORIYN )ET $:MA( BAR:BIYT

    Without vowel points
    מאימתי קורין את שמע בערבית
    M)YMTY QWRYN )T $M( B(RBYT


    מאימתי קורין את שמע בערבית
    משעה שהכהנים נכנסים לאכל בתרומתן עד סוף האשמורה הראשונה דברי רבי אליעזר
    וחכמים אומרים עד חצות
    רבן גמליאל אומר עד שיעלה עמוד השחר
    מעשה שבאו בניו מבית המשתה אמרו לו לא קרינו את שמע
    אמר להם אם לא עלה עמוד השחר חיבין אתם לקרות
    ולא זו בלבד אלא כל מה שאמרו חכמים עד חצות מצותן עד שיעלה עמוד השחר
    הקטר חלבים ואברים מצותן עד שיעלה עמוד השחר
    וכל הנאכלין ליום אחד מצותן עד שיעלה עמוד השחר
    אם כן למה אמרו חכמים עד חצות כדי להרחיק את האדם מן העבירה


    M$NH ZW BMHDWRH HMBW)RT
    M)YMTY QWRYN )T $M( B(RBYT
    M$(H $HKHNYM NKNSYM L)KL BTRWMTN (D SWP H)$MWRH HR)$WNH DBRY RBY )LY(ZR
    WXKMYM )WMRYM (D XCWT
    RBN GMLY)L )WMR (D $Y(LH (MWD H$XR
    M($H $B)W BNYW MBYT HM$TH )MRW LW L) QRYNW )T $M(
    )MR LHM )M L) (LH (MWD H$XR XYBYN )TM LQRWT
    WL) ZW BLBD )L) KL MH $)MRW XKMYM (D XCWT MCWTN (D $Y(LH (MWD H$XR
    HQ+R XLBYM W)BRYM MCWTN (D $Y(LH (MWD H$XR
    WKL HN)KLYN LYWM )XD MCWTN (D $Y(LH (MWD H$XR
    )M KN LMH )MRW XKMYM (D XCWT KDY LHRXYQ )T H)DM MN H(BYRH

    It only took about 4 minutes to transcribe this from Unicode, it is easy to enter un-pointed Hebrew this way than it is to enter the vowel points, and (in some text) the accents.


    Would, you be interesting in the Mishnah or other Jewish and Hebraica texts?
    Would you be interested in helping to type, or in prof reading? Are, there any other BW users working on Hebrew databases? If, so let's work together.

    Grace and Peace
    Last edited by bkMitchell; 10-28-2010 at 08:44 PM.
    Brian K. Mitchell
    חפשו בתורה היטב ואל תסתמכו על דברי
    http://www.adfontes.mitchellbk.com/


  2. #2
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    Great initiative, BK! Someone with the time, patience and know-how could conceivably create some kind of program that would 'convert' Unicode Hebrew into CCAT. (Unfortunately I am lacking in all of the above right now.) If you have a non-copyrighted (or a copyleft) Unicode text such a tool could ease your pain considerably. Of course copyright opens a whole thorny mess of issues, so in many ways the transcription of text from a public domain text would save a bit of hassle.
    Jim Darlack - Associate Director of Goddard Library /
    Reference Librarian at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

    Gloucester Assembly of God | Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
    The 'Unofficial' BibleWorks Blog | Old in the New | Facebook | LibraryThing

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdarlack View Post
    ... If you have a non-copyrighted (or a copyleft) Unicode text such a tool could ease your pain considerably. Of course copyright opens a whole thorny mess of issues, so in many ways the transcription of text from a public domain text would save a bit of hassle.
    I am sure you are familiar with the term, "Free content"
    I know of Free Content Mishnah (Both Hebrew/English) and Public domain Mikraot Gedolot project progress and in Unicode.The text, of the Mishnah I am working with is primarily the one just mentioned. What, do you think of these? Would there be any thorny issues to deal with? I am new to this.

    (I do know of safe public domain Hebrew Texts in PDF format)
    Brian K. Mitchell
    חפשו בתורה היטב ואל תסתמכו על דברי
    http://www.adfontes.mitchellbk.com/


  4. #4
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    I would say that in both cases, these would be fine to use (given that the websites pretty much say as much). As a courtesy, I'd offer whatever you compile to the administrators of the site. They may appreciate having their material made available in other formats.

    Several years ago, I tossed around the idea of converting all of the rabbinic texts available at http://www.mechon-mamre.org/. I contacted the website administrators, and unfortunately they forbade me to use their texts (even though their texts were available to all freely online). I am not sure if it was because of a copyright issue as much as it might have been a "theological" issue for them.
    Jim Darlack - Associate Director of Goddard Library /
    Reference Librarian at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

    Gloucester Assembly of God | Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
    The 'Unofficial' BibleWorks Blog | Old in the New | Facebook | LibraryThing

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdarlack View Post
    Several years ago, I tossed around the idea of converting all of the rabbinic texts available at http://www.mechon-mamre.org/. I contacted the website administrators, and unfortunately they forbade me to use their texts (even though their texts were available to all freely online). I am not sure if it was because of a copyright issue as much as it might have been a "theological" issue for them.
    Now, this is truly intriguing and somewhat disturbing because according to the wikisource Open Mishnah Project:
    "Mechon Mamre has graciously granted us permission to use its text of the Mishnah according to Maimonides version"(link)
    Not to mention that Biola University's Unbound Bible(link) has the Aleppo codex in electronic form that is also from Mechon Mamre:
    The Aleppo Codex without Vowel Points or Punctuation Based on the electronic edition at http://www.mechon-mamre.org Imported from the CrossWire Bible Society's "The Sword Project" Bible Modules.
    I don't understand why you weren't allowed but, a secular organization, a christian university's online Bible program, and another Christian software program seem to be legally allowed to use texts, from the MM and yet they refused you? In fact I remember you mentioning the Aleppo Codex once of the forums as an addition for BW.
    Last edited by bkMitchell; 10-25-2010 at 03:28 AM.
    Brian K. Mitchell
    חפשו בתורה היטב ואל תסתמכו על דברי
    http://www.adfontes.mitchellbk.com/


  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bkMitchell View Post
    Now, this is truly intriguing and somewhat disturbing:
    Intriguing and disturbing indeed!
    Jim Darlack - Associate Director of Goddard Library /
    Reference Librarian at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

    Gloucester Assembly of God | Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
    The 'Unofficial' BibleWorks Blog | Old in the New | Facebook | LibraryThing

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bkMitchell View Post
    I don't understand why you weren't allowed but, a secular organization, a christian university's online Bible program, and another Christian software program seem to be legally allowed to use texts, from the MM and yet they refused you? In fact I remember you mentioning the Aleppo Codex once of the forums as an addition for BW.
    My *guess* is because Jim specifically asked, whereas the other parties might not have. The problem is that there are no crystal clear lines when it comes to this e-universe. If a website uses a public domain text, but they made the e-edition themselves, do they hold some "right" over that text?

    The other wrinkle is that some people don't want their text associated with a commercial product, but they are okay with the text being available for freeware programs. For instance, I believe there are copyrighted texts available in e-sword that are only there because the copyright holders allowed their text to be part of it gratis, which they only did because it was a freeware program (proviso: I do not claim to know the specific arrangements, I'm just inferring that a free program is not paying licensing costs otherwise it really is a labor of love.). Commercial products attract more attention. If there is someone out there who thinks someone is infringing on copyrights, that person may use a lawyer to tell that person to remove the e-text or give proper attribution. But when a commercial business is involved, a warning letter could quickly turn into a lawsuit.
    Last edited by Michael Hanel; 10-25-2010 at 11:55 AM.
    Michael Hanel
    PhD candidate Classics Univ. of Cincinnati
    MDiv Concordia Seminary
    MA Classics Washington University
    Unofficial BibleWorks Blog
    LibraryThing!

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