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PhoMo FAQ
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A list of commonly asked questions for PhoMo
This public article was written by Admin Sheep, and last updated on 31 Dec 2015, 03:50.

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1. How do I add an affix?
2. How do I insert something between two sounds?
3. How do I add particles/prepositions/postpositions?
4. How do I use capital letters/dashes?
5. How do I make it recognise 'V' as a vowel?
6. Why don't digraphs work in categories?
7. Why won't PhoMo recognise combined characters?
8. What on Earth is a 'scope'?

This is a work-in-progress article with all the common questions regarding PhoMo - and of course, the answers for them! If you have a question related to PhoMo and you can't find it here, please post in the CWS Help board and someone should be able to answer it for you.

This article is also coupled with the ones below:
[PhoMo Rules Help]
[PhoMo Examples Reference]
[PhoMo Page Help]

[top]How do I add an affix?

Suppose you want to add the prefix 'to' to a word, you simply use #/to#.
Suppose you want to suffix 'na' to a word, you simply use #/#na.

The '#' character in these rules represents 'the whole word'. So these rules mean 'replace the whole word, with to+the whole word' etc. In other words, if your root word is kari, the code #/to# outputs tokari, and #/#na outputs karina.

[top]How do I insert something between two sounds?

If you want to insert something between two sounds, the best way to do this is to utilise the '%' character. For example, suppose you want to add 'j' between two vowels (so 'ao' > 'ajo'). You can use the rule: V/%j/_V OR V/j%/V_ OR /j/V_V to do this.

The first rule means 'replace a vowel (V) with the same vowel+j (%j) when it precedes another vowel (_V)'.
The second rule means 'replace a vowel (V) with j+same vowel (j%) when it follows another vowel (V_)'.
The third rule means 'insert j (/j) between any two vowels (V_V).'

[top]How do I add particles/prepositions/postpositions?

You can use the '-' character to insert/change/delete/etc a space. For example, if you want to add a preposition 'an', you could use #/an-#. This would change "taka" to "an taka". Please note that after this rule has been applied, the PhoMo will analyse "an taka" as a single word, and not as two separate words.

[top]How do I use capital letters/dashes?

If you want to change a lowercase letter to uppercase, or vice versa, you need to use the escape character '!' to tell PhoMo to consider the capital letter as a letter rather than a category.

For example, to change 'k' to 'K', you can use the rule: k/!K
For example, to change 'K' to 'k', you can use the rule: !K/k

This will also work with trying to edit dashes (which are usually interpreted as spaces).

[top]How do I make it recognise 'V' as a vowel?

If you've added a rule using categories such as 'V' for vowels, 'C' for consonants, or other letters for other groups of sounds/letters, and the rules aren't recognising these you may need to set these up on the orthographical categories page.

[top]Why don't digraphs work in categories?

Digraphs don't work for a number of reasons, but mainly as it is difficult to PhoMo to tell what is actually a digraph and what is just two sequential/adjacent letters. While in some languages this distinction may be clear, this is not a universal thing and therefore can't be applied to all languages.

If you specifically want to target a digraph (or bigger polygraphs), you can do so using specific rules for them (such as: ch/s/_#).

[top]Why won't PhoMo recognise combined characters?

This is a constant challenge for people who are new to PhoMo. There could be a number of reasons these aren't working. However, these are usually linked to whether or not you are using combined characters to create your diacritics, or if you are using precomposed characters.

Combined characters are not single letters
As far as programming languages and Unicode are concerned, a single character that has been created with combining character diacritics are not a single letter. For example, <k̂> is actually two letters: <k> and <^>. For this reason, they often won't work properly in categories (this is also explained in this FAQ article).

Combined characters are not the same as precomposed characters
As far as programming languages and Unicode are concerned, a precomposed character is NOT the same as a combined character. As mentioned above, this is partly because combined characters are not single characters, but also because the precomposed letter has a different Unicode codepoint to the base letter of the combined character (in simple terms, they're completely different).

For this reason, if you use <ã> (combined) in a word, for example kãma, but use <ã> (precomposed) in your rule, for example ã/a/_m, the rule will not change anything. That is because it looks for the precomposed character, but cannot find it.

How can I tell which is which?
One easy test is to try deleting the character using the backspace key (without highlighting it). If the diacritic disappears first, then it's likely a combined character. If the whole thing deletes after one press, it's precomposed.

There's also a field where you can test the character on on the latin diacritic map page. If you put the letter into the field, it will tell you whether it is combined or not.

Where possible, we always recommend using precomposed characters.

[top]What on Earth is a 'scope'?

PhoMo is currently used for a number of different areas of the site. In some of these areas, PhoMo is used to alter words on an orthographic level (for example, in grammar tables). In other areas (such as the pronunciation estimation), PhoMo is altering IPA text.

As your range of vowels will (most likely) be different on an orthographic level than the range of IPA vowels your language has, we use scopes to differentiate them.

The general scope is used where PhoMo alters words orthographically.
The IPA scope is used where PhoMo alters IPA.
The testing scope is just that, it's used only on the Phomo testing page.

The testing scope is useful if you want to test how something looks, or if it works well, before changing your actual scopes. This saves you having to undo everything if you decide against it.
Comments (0)
Edit history
on 31/12/15 03:50+91severyadded third rule option bc its easy af
on 31/12/15 03:33+147severyadded more concrete example to make clearer
on 31/12/15 03:30-2severytitle was grammatically incorrect :P
on 30/12/15 23:45-3hashitypo fixed
on 30/12/15 21:23+119hashiclarified affix rules
on 30/12/15 21:20+1584hashiadded more questions
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