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All words currently in the wiki are listed in the Wordlist, which should be a bit easier to search through. We also have the list of (English glosses for) all current Na'vi words, omitting some proper names, in Frommerian Words, so we don't ask for words that already exist.

March 31 2010 — a list of words from the Voice of America "Special English" restricted vocabulary which do not seem to appear in either the extant Frommerian vocabulary or the collection of words so far collected: VOA ideas.


This first Lexical Expansion Project finished on April 30, 2010. The final total of lexical items asked for was 1013.

The Lexical Expansion Program

The A and B priority wordlist (574 words) has been sent to Frommer. All new words must be categorized as C. — March 12 2010.

We need to produce a list of about 1000 of the most desperately needed pieces of vocabulary in Na'vi [1]. Karyu Pawl wants us to categorize them by three priorities, A, B and C. And we have to get him the A and B sets... by March 12th.

This is going to be a bit of a mad race.

We cannot just hand Karyu Pawl a spreadsheet, or point him at a web page. I want to hand him a nicely formatted document that it will be easy for him to use, to make his work as productive and pleasant as possible.

I have experience writing software that grabs and alters pages on a Wiki (like our LN.org Wiki install). I also have experience with the LaTeX typesetting system (here's an example: http://www.aoidoi.org/poets/pindar/I02.pdf). So, I would like us to use the wiki, in a somewhat strucutured and fussy way, to produce the final lists. I can write a program that will grab those pages, reformat them for LaTeX, and do things like add indices, etc., and spit out an attractive PDF that shouldn't be too painful to use.

Whatever limitations the wiki may have, it has some benefits to us here.

  1. Group editing is easy
  2. Keeping track of changes is easy
  3. Each page already has a discussion page built in
  4. Everyone can see what we're up to, while we can still control edits (or, at least, revert naughtiness)

Our main job is to take suggestions from the LN.org population, make sure they're clear and have examples if necessary, and get them into the Wiki.

I have divided up the vocabulary pages into semantic or topical categories. Having related vocabulary together should be useful, both to people asking for words and to Karyu Pawl, to see how senses might overlap and relate.

Editors, please read the Template:lep to see how entries should look (The physical world has a few examples already to look at, too).


These topics are taken from the WOLD list of semantic fields. It will not always be obvious where a word best fits — we needn't get too worked up about that.

For the Editors

Since we cannot all pay equal attention to all 24 categories, I encourage people to take control of particular topics. Let us know in the Discussion page for that topic. Other people will of course update words in your categories, but it's good to have one person paying special attention to a category.

Please resist the urge to add a lot of formatting and markup to the vocabulary. I'd like to spend more time working with the vocabulary than tweaking the program that will generate the PDF from these pages. If there is something you think is desperately needed, though, please let Wm know.

Adding Words

From the forum, words that seem to have general agreement about their importance should be added first. Words that include examples of use should get next priority. Words that are part of bare lists without much commentary get last priority.

In general, unless it seems completely off-the-wall, I see no reason not to accept most people's judgement of priority.

We should try, from time to time, to check our lists against word lists of the most frequently used words in natural languages. The forums sometimes focus on exotica, but Frommer's goals are also clear here, "you know at least as well as I do, and probably better, what words you find most lacking—what gaps you’d most like to be filled so you can communicate more easily in a wider range of situations." Let's try not to leave any obvious, giant holes.

If there are questions, we can discuss it in the forum or on the Discussion pages of the wiki.