Basque – Spanish dictionary, version 1

Basque – Spanish dictionary, version 1

Diccionario Euskera - Castellano, versión 1

This first version of the application is focused on the improvement of the user’s experience with respect to Euskeraz ikasi. At a technical level, the improvements I would like to make are:

  1. EfficiencyEuskeraz ikasi closes itself too often and I think that when using it on an iPhone 4, a web based application should not cause so many problems. I do not know if it causes the same problems in Android as I did not use it as much as to reproduce the problem, although, for the time being I want to focus on iOS.
  2. Elimination of framework: The Euskeraz ikasi application uses jQuery Mobile as framework. If I want to increase my knowledge of web design for mobiles, I have to work without framework and create the different HTML elements, CSS, graphics and JavaScript. Anyway, I do not like jQuery Mobile much as I think it has a slow performance and I find LungoJS much more interesting.
  3. Elimination of jQuery: My goal is to program without the use of jQuery  to have a better idea of JavaScript. Though this library is wonderful as it ease the work in JavaScript and the compatibility with browsers – especially for those who do not have a technical profile – , one of my goals is to have a better knowledge of the JavaScript Core.
  4. Application load: The application takes quite a long time to start and I want it to have more speed so you can do the queries faster.

User’s experience

My goal is to organize the application so that the word search will be as fast as possible. To do that, I am going to do the following changes:

  1. Remove intermediate screens: To get to the dictionary and to change the dictionary I have to go through a home screen. The application will go directly to the search screen of Basque – Spanish, as it is the one I use the most. Maybe, if I get to the version 4 I will give to the user the option of customizing the dictionary with which you start the application.
  2. Remove clicks: You have to click too much to search for a word. We can solve this with an input of search type, as, although it does not recognize the cancel button in iOS, I will be able to reproduce the functionality with JavaScript. Something else I find unnecessary is the translate button as the results could appear as you are writing, working similar to the way iOs browser does. Also, where you find the search more annoying is with the new searches, as you have to click too much:
    1. Click on the input to focus it.
    2. Click again to see the options: Select, Select all and Paste.
    3. Select the ‘select all’ option to erase the previous word when we write the new one.
    4. Write the new word to search.
    5. Click translate button.

    With an input of a search style, the clicks to be done would be:

    1. Click cancel button of the input to erase the previous search. The input would focus automatically.
    2. Write the new word to search.
  3. Interface optimization: The working of the dictionary revolves around the browser and the changes I have introduced in it, input of search type, with cancel button and search results while you are writing, to be able to view the results with the least possible actions and speed up, this way, the word search. On the other hand, I have separated in different lines the word and the translation to improve the display, although this may require more space. If I get to implement options of customization, I think it would be interesting to propose as an option the display of the word and its translation in the same line or in different lines.
  4. Orientation: Euskeraz ikasi only allows the vertical orientation. When I am reading some media in a horizontal position and I come up with a doubt in any word and I have to look for it in the dictionary, I have to turn my device first. This action is especially annoying on the iPad. Therefore the application must be able to be used both vertically and horizontally. Besides this, with the new gestures of iOS 5 on the iPad, it is really comfortable, for example, to read on the browser and change to the dictionary when a doubt comes up by simply sliding to the left or to the right.

Problems

Some of the problems I found in this version and that I hope to be able to correct on coming versions:

  • When the application starts, some white blinking appears for a moment, which I think is caused by something in the JavaScript.
  • To check if the previous problem was caused by JavaScript, when removing the link to JS, the images and gradients are late in appear after the startup image disappear . I have not seen this effect in other web applications so I guess it must be a problem with the CSS and not with the browser.
  • The application searches all the files and it uses the Safari database, so it is designed to work without data connection, but if I enter the application without being connected to the Internet, this shows a warning of no internet connection, though the application works correctly afterwards.

Demo

Next we can see a demo of the dictionary. If we wish to download the dictionary on our iOS device you have to access the following link, Hiztegia v1, from the Safari browser of our iPhone and click the ‘add to home screen’ button.
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