Derek Harrison's Crossword Message Board

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Crosswords in languages other than English: assistance sought

The next release of my crossword construction program Qxw will allow the creation of grids in languages other than English and scripts other than Roman. It would be desirable to provide built-in default settings for as many languages as possible, and to do this I need to gather information about the conventions used in crosswords in each supported language.

For any given language I need to know:

- the alphabet of characters that can appear in the grid

- given a word in a dictionary, possibly decorated with accents and the like, how to map each character in the word to a character from the grid alphabet

For example, Qxw currently includes a rule that maps the character A-with-a-ring-on-top to a plain A. This is appropriate for an English crossword, but not, as I understand it, in Swedish where the letters are considered distinct (and hence cannot check one another).

If you have some knowledge of crosswords in another language - however obscure - and would be willing to help with this, or know someone else who might, I'd be grateful if you could let me know.

Contributors will of course be credited in the program and its manual, and the collected information will be made public.

Please feel free to reply privately if you prefer to avoid clogging up Derek's message board with detailed technico-linguistic discussions.


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