GiellaLT Documentation

GiellaLT provides rule-based language technology aimed at minority and indigenous languages

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Doccomments — In-Source Documentation

There is now support for writing structured comments to document the code directly in the source. That is, the lexicon structure, organisation and content is documented directly with the lexicon files, as comments in a certain format. This document describes that format, and how it all works.

General notes

The basic idea is that comments following a certain format will be extracted and converted to another format suitable for online publishing.

!! Some documentation text here.

These comments will be extracted, and saved to a separate document for publishing. The comments must be in Markdown markup format.

That is, to write comments that should become part of the public documentation, you first type two exclamation marks, then one space, and then the Markdown markup you want. To get a heading, you thus type the following:

...some LexC code...
!! # Top-level heading
...some LexC code...

In the extracted Markdown dokument this will look like:

# Top-level heading

which will end up as:

Top-level heading

on the web (minus the quote).

Basic formatting and code citation syntax

If you want to cite whole blocks of code, use triple backslashes as doccomments before and after the target lines, and behind each line, just !!= @CODE@ (but you can of course add your own comments as well):

!! ## A two-level rule
!! ```
"i-stem vowel deletion"		   !!= @CODE@
 i:0 <=> Cns: _ W3: ( ∑ ) #  ; !!= @CODE@
!! ```

This should give the following Markdown fragment:

## A two-level rule
"i-stem vowel deletion"
 i:0 <=> Cns: _ W3: ( ∑ ) #  ;

which should give you the following final view:

A two-level rule

"i-stem vowel deletion"
 i:0 <=> Cns: _ W3: ( ∑ ) #  ;

(again minus the quote).

The full syntax and specification for the markup conventions has its own specification page.

LexC notes


Each lexicon is documented below the keyword LEXICON. It is possible to use the keyword @LEXNAME@ in the text, where it will be replaced with the actual lexicon name. A typical lexicon could look like the following:

!  ================================
!! # Nominal inflection sublexica
!  ================================

!! ## Inflection for odd-syllable nouns: lexicon @LEXNAME@
!  -------------------------------------------------------
!! Short descrioption of this lexicon, and its purpose.
 +N+Sg: N_ODD_SG ;
 +N+Pl: N_ODD_PL ;
 +N:    N_ODD_ESS ;
  +N+SgNomCmp:e%^DISIMP R ;
  +N+SgGenCmp:e%>%^DISIMPn R ;
  +N+PlGenCmp:%>%^DISIMPi R ;
  +N+Der1+Der/Dimin+N:%»adtj GIERIEHTSADTJE ;

The extracted doccomments should look like this:

# Nominal inflection sublexica

## Inflection for odd-syllable nouns: lexicon N_ODD

Short descrioption of this lexicon, and its purpose.

which should end up as (minus quote):

Nominal inflection sublexica

Inflection for odd-syllable nouns: lexicon N_ODD

Short descrioption of this lexicon, and its purpose.

Test data

!  Test data:
!!€gt-norm: gierehtse # Odd-syllable test
!!€ gierehtse           gierehtse+N+Sg+Nom
!!€ gierehtsem          gierehtse+N+Sg+Acc
!!$ gieriehtsem         gierehtse+N+Sg+Acc # negative test - don't accept this!
!!€ gierehtsen          gierehtse+N+Sg+Gen

The above test data corresponds to the following yaml file (sans header):

  gierehtse: # Odd-syllable test
    gierehtse+N+Sg+Nom:  gierehtse
    gierehtse+N+Sg+Acc:  gierehtsem
    gierehtse+N+Sg+Acc: ~gieriehtsem
    gierehtse+N+Sg+Gen:  gierehtsen

Twolc notes

TwolC doccommonts follow the same conventions as LexC. Instead of @LEXNAME@ referencing the last seen lexicon name, you can use @RULENAME@ to reference the last seen two-level rule name in your doccomment.

Twolc test data

Similar to LexC, except that the output is turned into twolc test pairs used in the pair-testing tool.

To Be Written.

Xfst script and regex files

Support for xfscript and regex files is not yet implemented.


CG3 doccommonts follow the same conventions as LexC.

Compilation procedure

The documentation files are compiled when you run make in the root directory of your language repository. There is a makefile in the docs/ catalogue that governs which sourcefiles to harvest for documentation. Linking to the generated files is done automatically, in the generated file docs/

As a default, only the root.lexc file is scheduled for generating documentation. In order to add documentation for more source files, open the docs/ file, and specify the relevant file in the MD_PAGES list ( for src/fst/stems/nouns.lexc, etc). The Markdown files will then be generated, and linked to.

In order to compile again (regardless of compilation status), do make -B in $lang/doc.

There is no need to check in the converted Markdown files, as long as you check in the source files with doccomments. All generated files are built and published automatically on GitHub, and should be online within minutes after committing (svn)/pushing (git).