Some of you have noticed, over the past two days, that terms in posts in the Community have begun to appear underlined with light-blue, dashed underlining (like this: communion), as special hyperlinks. To those who are curious as to the phenomenon, we are beginning beta testing of a feature much-requested by members of the forum: a linked dictionary of key terms in discussion.
Here is how it works:
Key terms are automatically identified by the Discussion Community system when a post is displayed, and converted to dictionary links: you as the poster needn't do anything, nor insert any code/tags/etc. (similar to the way the system already automatically converts bible references to hyperlinks: e.g. John 1:1). Dictionary links are different from normal hyperlinks on the system, which are blue and very noticable (like this); they are designed to be rather unobtrusive, so that when you are not interested in looking up terms, they are not distracting to the normal reading of a post.
When you click on a dictionary linked term, you are automatically taken to that term's definition in the dictionary. Once you're finished reading, simply use your browser's 'Back' button to return to your place in the post you were reading.
(Note: Dictionary links won't appear in the preview versions of posts you are composing; they are inserted by the system only once you post the message and it is displayed in its final form.)
How you can help with this beta test:
This system is currently being beta tested, meaning there are still quirks in the software that runs it, and other items that need working out. One of the known 'bugs' at this stage is that the parser isn't fully accurate yet, so that some words are identified in the middle of others in a bizarre fashion (such as, for example the system parsing 'sin' in the word 'assassin' - though one might argue the system is only being moralistically vigilant here!).
You can help us by:
- Reading through the dictionary itself, and submitting (via replies in this thread, for mutual discussion) terms and phrases that you think should be added.
- If you spot a typo or error in the current definitions, letting us know.
- If you think you can contribute to expanding or clarifying an existing definition, submitting your proposed changes.
- Noting any interface / functionality issues that may arise; or offering suggestions on how terms are linked, how they look, etc.
I hope you enjoy the new feature, even at this beta-testing stage! The product is the result of suggestions (and some tireless work) by members of this Discussion Community - credits to follow in due course.