We all find ourselves looking for the definition of a word. If you are like me you pull up Google and type the word and hit enter. You can normally find a definition in there somewhere that will work. There is also Wiktionary which is a fine site. The site under the microscope today isÂ http://onelook.com/. What makes this site special is not the number of words it contains but the sources that it is pulling from. These are ‘official’ definitions. That may not mean much to those of us that remember a word at 2:00 in the morning and just want to know what it means so that we can go back to bed, but if you are in school or are doing something that requires absolute to the letter accuracy this could be very important.
Aside from all of the definitions you will also see a few additional features. One of which is the ‘Word of the Day’ on the home page. This is a feature for all of the curious word nerds out there. It may just teach you something. The second special feature that this site boasts is what they call the ‘Reverse Dictionary’. This is in Beta right now but the concept is pretty interesting. You can type in a concept and it will return some words that match. I decided to get in on the fun so I typed in “Has the same meaning as” and received a huge list of words. They all seemed to have a relation to the word same but it was not really helpful. I then decided to reduce the number of words in my search to “same meaning”. That still created a healthy list of items but it was paired down. It was then easier to pick out the words in the list like ‘synonym’ and ‘even’ and ‘equal’. Any of these could be what I was looking for if I had a reason to need a word in the first place.Â You can click on any of these words and get the full definition.Â This feature is far from perfect but it is an interesting idea. You also have the ability to browse theÂ differentÂ dictionaries and customize some of the esthetics of the site.
In a haze if online dictionary sites this one has some real promise. Check it out and leave a comment with your experience.