TibThob User Manual

TibThob v1.1 User Manual


Starting up

On Windows, simply double-clicking on the Tibthob icon should start the program.

On Linux, or other Unix system, the file tibthob.tcl is directly executable, like a shell.

The first thing you have to do is to select the dictionary: now automatically triggered, or else use the "Options" menu and the "Dictionary" item. You have to select the Rangjung Yeshe Dictionary in text form, something like ry-dic99.txt or later version. This setting will be kept for next sessions.

It is strongly recommended to copy the dictionary on your hard-disk, for better performance.


TibThob screen shot
A screen shot of a TibThob window showing the different commands

Simple Search

This means actually that exactly what you have typed is searched for in the dictionary.
In version 1.1 and later, the search is no more case-sensitive: you can type for example 'SAMSARA' or 'Samsara' and you'll get any occurrence of 'samsara', 'Samsara' etc. (according to your karma).

Text can be found in the syllables forming a Tibetan entry header (in which case it is typed in Wylie notation) or it can be found in the definitions (in this latter case, it can be English or Wylie).

Type some syllables or words in the input area up rights of the window. Then click the 'SEARCH' button or simply hit the return key.

It is possible to restrict the search area , by using the option menu immediately at right of the SEARCH button:

When many hits are found, it can be useful to refine the search, by requiring or excluding words in different areas of entries. See below the section Refining the Search .

Approximate Syllables Search

This mode is selected with the pull-down button just lefts of the input area, by choosing "Approximate Syllables:".

In this mode, "Approximate" means that some parts of syllables are not taken in account for the search: prefix letters (sngon 'jug), superscribed (ra mgo, la mgo, sa mgo), post-suffix letters (sa in practice), and little a (noted by a single quote) as single suffix.


A screen shot of a TibThob window showing the Approximate Syllables mode

This can be useful if you have some doubts about the exact spelling of a word. Also, sometimes a word appears in different spellings: this mode will find the variants.

For example, if you type "kha gro" as input, this mode will find words like kha grogs, kha sgrog, mkha 'gro, mkha' bgrod, mkha' 'gro .

Note that search areas "in definition" or "anywhere" are not relevant in this mode. They are equivalent to "in entry". But "at start of entry" is applicable.

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Searching in phonetics

This is probably the most remarkable feature of this software: it can search a word even if you know only its pronunciation, not its exact spelling.

This mode is selected with the pull-down button just lefts of the input area, by choosing "Phonetics:".

In this mode, the text you type in the input area is treated as phonetic notation.

For example type "kandro" in the input area, then SEARCH: TibThob will bring back words like bka' 'gro, mkha' 'gro, but not the kha grogs and kha sgrog that the Approximate Syllables mode would find. Or you can try "selwa" and find: sel ba, srel ba, gsal ba, bsal ba.

Phonetic Input Tips


The phonetic conversion has some deficiencies:

Phonetic Options

Several phonetic input styles are selectable: use the the "Phonetic Settings" item in the "Options" menu.

In particular, you can choose between a "more strict" version and a "less strict" version. In the less strict version, sounds that are close are considered equivalent, yielding more hits and thus increasing the chance to find a word if its pronunciation is not precisely known.

More specifically,

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Refining the Search

When a query yields many hits, it can be desirable to restrict the search by additional criteria.

By clicking the Refine... button, you make appear a line with an input field and some options.

Criteria are selected by the option box on the left. One criterion is exclude..., meaning that you can specify a piece of text that must not appear in selected entries. The other is Require..., meaning that you can specify a piece of text that must be present.

For example, searching "byang chub" yields more than 250 hits: suppose you don't want "byang chub sems" which appears more than 100 times, but want the word "practice" in the definition:

Then you can click the "Refine..." button: a new line with one input area and four buttons appears. You can click the leftmost button and choose "exclude:" instead of "require:" , then type "sems" in the input area, and click SEARCH.

This time, all entries with "byang chub sems" are discarded and you have only 155 hits. The you can refine more, by clicking the " Refine... " button (that has opportunately changed to "Refine more... ") and getting a new require/exclude line.

There you type the required word "practice", and you obtain only two items, having saved several minutes of your precious time, as well as some eye fatigue.

You can also choose the area in which the required/excluded words must appear.

The "clear" button removes the contents of the input area, making the criterion inoperant.

The "dismiss" button removes the criterion and its buttons.

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TibThob's display is customisable through the "View Settings " item of the "Options" menu.

These options are persistent: they are stored at the end of the session and retrieved in the next session.

It is possible to change:

Other Tips

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