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Latest information about VERSION 3

Known bugs

If you have previously installed another release of version 3, then The windows 2000 version starts and shows nothing but a green square. To fix this, Click options->alphabet, and select any alphabet except "?", then click OK.

Alphabet handling

Proper documentation about alphabets will be provided in the future. Meanwhile, here are some notes from Iain, and from a user who has figured it out!

Alphabet handling in Windows

Dasher stores new alphabets and looks for user training files in: Documents and Settings\ Data.rc for versions of Windows that have such a folder. The system settings in system.rc are not changed. This is the equivalent of a ~/.dasher.rc directory on a Unix system for user settings.

[Earlier versions of windows simply put dasher.rc in the Files directory - giving all users the same settings.]

This makes cleaning out test versions of Dasher and hacking the alphabet file directory hard, as it may not be an obvious place to look. However, it is how Windows apps are supposed to behave. Dasher makes an API call to ask where to save this data; it isn't just making this path up.

People wanting to hack the alphabet file directly will probably find it fairly obvious (once they've found the file!).

They'll need a text editor that can deal with UNIX text file format. (Not notepad, but anything decent should do.) Otherwise the file will lose its line breaks and be hard to read.

XML purists might want to consult alphabets.dtd for the formal specification.

Others may need to be reminded to use UTF-8 encoding if they use anything outside ASCII.

I am not sure all international issues have yet been fixed - so people creating alphabets may still run into problems.

How to make your own alphabet - examples

"I want numerals!" - You can use numbers right now. AFAIK, you can edit the file alphabet.xml to include any of the basic 7 Bit ASCII characters.

If you want to, you can download a modified alphabet definition. It provides an additional alphabet named "mixed limited +nums". This does two things in addition to the standard "english/limited" alphabet:

- it provides numbers

- it arranges small/capital letters beneath each other, which was optional in dasher 1.68.

The location to put this will depend on your OS.

L'Inference Group è supportato dalla Fondazione Gatsby
e da una collaborazione con l'istituto di ricerca IBM di Zurigo
David MacKay
Ultima modifica Fri Oct 1 10:33:27 BST 2010