[texhax] Trying to build a dictionary

Lluís Batlle i Rossell viric at vicerveza.homeunix.net
Mon Aug 22 08:31:33 CEST 2005


Since some years ago I use LaTeX, but by now the default configuration/layout
were good enough to me. :) Now I'm trying to do more dificult things.

I want to do some kind of dictionary (translation-dictionary). By now I've taken
the model from Richard Curnow, in his help-minibook about the Lojban language.
where there are:
http://www.rpcurnow.force9.co.uk/lojban/dict24src.tar.bz2 <= the source

I have two problems, related with:
1. multicol and fancyhdr
2. fonts

1. He uses 'multicol' and 'fancyhdr'. At the headers for each page he tries to
add the beginning word in the page, and also the last, as it's usually done in

He defines a variable () for each translation. Then, at the headers, calls
In the header he defines also \def\oword{\cword}, to save the beginning word
for each page.

But there's a problem. In the header there isn't the first word in the page, but
the third, the fifth, ... So, 'nearly the first'. Also in his dictionary (PDF)
we can see it. How can I get such  a thing to work? I imagine that 'multicol'
works with some buffers to try for fitting, etc. I don't know how to do that

2. My second problem is about fonts. I'd need 'condensed' fonts, because I want
to print the minimum number of pages. Basically, I need 'bold' for the word
headers, and normal for the definitions. Also I think that the font which takes
less horizontal space should be Sans Serif (Helvetica, or something like that.)
He (Richard) does that in his dictionary:

But I have a problem about that! In those fonts there isn't a symbol which I
need for typing in one of the languages of the dictionary: dotlessj. 'dvips'
complains about that.

I better understand the use of fonts using \selectfont, families, series, etc.
I've had quite good results using "txfonts":

The problem is that there is not 'condensed' version of those fonts.

By the way, I'm using 'tetex 1.0.x', and if I want to use 'lucidabr', dvips
complains about a missing "lbr.pfb". I'll try upgrading to 2.0 or 3.0.

Anyway, what would you do, in order to get the maximum amount of text in the
minimum space?

Thanks in advance!

In its laws, society makes its mightiest collective effort to impose
predictability upon human behavior.
  - S. I. Hayakawa, "Language in thought and action"

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