Wednesday, November 22, 2017

MorphGNT, James Tauber, #SBL2017 - Linking Lexical Resources for Biblical Greek

I returned from the annual Society of Biblical Literature meeting in Boston yesterday, and I want to post some of my experiences there. I had some institutional stuff to attend to, so I didn't get to as many sessions as I would have liked, and I didn't even make it all the way through the exhibit hall.
I did make it to James Tauber's session on "Linking Lexical Resources for Biblical Greek" in the SBL Global Education and Research Technology Section. Tauber has done pioneering work on the web, and he and Ulrik Sandborg-Petersen are behind MorphGNT.
In this session, he described the issues behind the schemes, such as Strongs or Goodrick-Kohlenberger, used to tag Greek (or Hebrew) lemmas. There are problems in actually identifying some lemmas and how certain forms are related (ὁράω and εἶδον?). As more resources become available for integrating texts, translations, lexicons, etc., a better system is needed for identifying words and allowing for their use in existing resources.
As the above photo from his presentation shows, someone may identify δέω (#1 meaning either "tie" or "need") as a lemma and δεῖ (the impersonal "it is necessary" = #2) as a separate form. Someone else may want to distinguish the two meanings of δέω, and those could be assigned as #3 and #4 but still be linked in the new system under #1. Further, someone else may choose to include δεῖ #2 under the root #4, so then a new number can be assigned (#5) which links those two.
This way of creating new number assignments as necessary does allow for existing numbering schemes to be preserved and integrated, and it also allows for further granularization and linking as necessary. Clearly there's a lot of work to be done to make this viable, but it does show a way through the categorization issues.
More info HERE.
UPDATE: Tauber has now posted slides/audio of his presentation HERE.

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