Word Finder


Compound Words and Phrases

By default, the WordFinder functions only find single words. The singlewords file is derived from the UK Advanced Cryptics Dictionary, a word list for crossword solvers and setters, compiled by Ross Beresford. At the time of writing, it contains 183,768 words.

If the "Include compounds" box is checked, WordFinder also looks through a file containing compound words and common phrases as well as words with accented letters, which are converted to their unaccented equivalent. The words and phrases are stored in three fields:

  1. the word with spaces and punctuation marks removed, and letters following them capitalized
  2. the original word or phrase
  3. the lengths of the component words in a form suitable for the length displayed in a cryptic crossword clue:
    AaronSRodAaron's rod(6,3)
    balanceSheetbalance-sheet(7-5)
    crosswordPuzzlecrossword puzzle(9,6)

WordFinder Software

Shell Scripting Recipes The software that drives the WordFinder is a collection of Unix shell scripts. Most of these scripts are available in my book, Shell Scripting Recipes: A Problem-Solution Approach (Apress, May 2005). You can run these scripts on any version of Unix, including Linux, Solaris, and the various BSD implementations. They have not been tested on Mac OS/X, but they should work there, too. (If you try them, please let me know how they run.)