I have two new tools I would appreciate feedback on. Specifically:
- Does anything break?
- Does it work on your mobile device?
- Does it do what you expect?
- Can you understand how to use it?
- Can you think of specific ways it could be more useful to you?
- How would you see the two apps being integrated?
Eventually I hope to merge the two tools together but I wanted to get some user testing first. You should consider these a draft and although you can right click to save a fully working html file, doing so will cut you off from future updates.
The urls on suttacentral.net are actually very regular and if you could remember how, it’s possible to just type what you want in the url bar. However, there are lots of mistakes you can make and end up with nothing. This tool aims to take your attempt at a citation and turn it into a working link on not only SuttaCentral, but also SuttaFriends.org, DhammaTalks.org, and ancient-buddhist-texts.net. This is especially helpful because the last three don’t have complete coverage. I have created a table of the existing translations, so the lookup is happening from that. As new translations are added to those sites they will have to be added to the tool.
One particularly handy feature is being able to get an exact link to a Dhammapada verse. Just type
dhp123 and it will automatically give you a link directly to that verse. However, I’m not sure how stable that will be on the SuttaCentral links. (Bhante @Sujato, is the verse id
#dhp123:1 a real thing, or just a temporary fix? There doesn’t seem to be a way to see that id on the front end.)
And you don’t need to use the mouse to select one of the results. Simply pressing return in the input field will open SC’s link in a new tab. Otherwise you can tab to the button you want to open.
This tool aims to take the name of a sutta either in Pali or in English (from the names in the Wisdom Publications editions) and give you citations/links to all possible suttas.
There are two modes: exact search and what I call fuzzy search. Exact requires your complete or partial search term to match exactly including diacritics. The fuzzy search ignores not only diacritics but also aspirated consonants (e.g. kh, gh, th, dh are treated as k, g, t, d) and even double consonants. Exact is much faster, but as it says, requires a precise search term.
The database for the Pali in this tool came from a 10 year old spreadsheet given to me by John K. I believe it was used in the construction of SuttaCentral. It includes alternate names for many suttas, but I can’t guarantee it has every possible alternative.
Big thanks goes to @Khemarato.bhikkhu for his help and especially encouragement. But as always, the responsibility for all errors is mine. And there may be many!!! This is my first real coding project. I’m too embarrassed to show the code yet, but hope to do so eventually.
All feedback is welcome.