SignLinC: Linking lexical databases and annotated corpora of signed


The core of SignLinC consists of enhancements for LEXUS 3.0 and ELAN 4.0, both released at the start of 2011.


Additions to ELAN include the following:

  • Addition of a "Lexicon" tab at the top right of the interface. Annotations on a gloss tier can be looked up in a LEXUS lexicon. The user can select which fields from LEXUS to display in the Lexicon tab. (li)The possibility of creating a link to an 'external controlled vocabulary' that is published on a web server, and that can be modified independently of specific EAF files. Displaying and browsing a very long list of items in the pop-up menu that appears when creating an annotation on a tier that is linked to an External Controlled Vocabulary (ECV) is optimised by a number of preference options. At this moment it is not yet possible to generate an ECV from within LEXUS, but this will likely be included in future releases of LEXUS.
ANNEX, the online sibling of ELAN, has been modified independently of the project to allow the creation of URL-style links to segments of annotation files on a server. These links can be included on web pages, power-point presentations, or PDF files. In this way, quick access to published annotations is possible from within lexical resources.

SignLinC links two independently evolved data sets for a signed language: the Corpus NGT and the lexical database of the Dutch Sign Centre. The first is a corpus of video texts that was already fully compliant with CLARIN standards, while the latter is an independently evolved Microsoft SQL database. Both are prototypical for the situation of signed language resources in the world: corpora of running signing have only recently been under development and typically use ELAN as the annotation tool, while lexical databases have typically evolved as standalone applications to produce dictionaries in books or on CD/DVD-ROMs. In order to establish a link in both directions, a conversion of relevant parts of the lexical database to the CLARIN LMF standard for lexica was created for a small test set of lemmata.
The SignLinC project was a collaboration between Radboud University, the Dutch Sign Centre (NGc), and the MPI for Psycholinguistics; it was funded by CLARIN-NL and was completed in 2011.

  • Project leader: 
Dr. O.A. Crasborn (Radboud University)
  • CLARIN center: Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics (MPI)
  • Help contact: 


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CLARIN centre