Mac OS X Dictionary Tool, OmniDictionary Updated

The Omni Group has released its latest version of OmniDictionary.OmniDictionary is a Mac OS X system-wide dictionary uitility, and the new version includes many new features and other enhancements. From The Omni Group:

The long-awaited 2.0 version of OmniDictionary is finally available! Itis FREE, which is not a very common word these days so you may want to look it up right after you download OmniDictionary.

OmniDictionary is incredibly easy to use. Just download the application, launch it, and start looking up words. All you need is an Internet connection (unless youire hosting a local dictionary server, which OmniDictionary does not provide). OmniDictionary has been in beta for the past year (sorry, it doesnit pay the rent). Weive fixed some bugs, added a few new features, and cleaned it up for final release. Here are some basic features along with release notes:

  • Connects to public dictionary servers and lets you look up words in any/all dictionaries hosted by those servers.
  • Provides a service to many other applications, so you can simply highlight a word in any of these apps (such as Mail or OmniWeb) and look it up via the Services menu.
  • Can speak the definitions to you aloud if you want.
  • Provides history to let you quickly return to words you previously looked up in this session.
  • Allows you to save definitions to a file, or copy them for use in another application.

  • Release Notes Version 2.0

    New Features

  • Added Check for Updates item to the application menu. If you select this menu item, OmniDictionary will check to see if there is a more recent release available. If there is, you will be given the option of going directly to the download page for the new release.
  • The dictionary popup now lists the dictionaries in alphabetical order.
  • Added history-style navigation of prior lookups. You can now use the keyboard to navigate back to a word you defined earlier.
  • Added speech support, so you can have the definitions read to you.
  • Added support for saving the definition to a plain text file.
  • Added support for showing the DICT server information.
  • We now underline link references, and allow you to simply click on them to lookup the underlined word. (These are the words that previously showed up in curly braces.) We also do the same for guesses when the searched-for term is not found.
  • Added server preferences, allowing you to set the dictionary server hostname, port, and timeout.
  • Added font preference, so you can specify what font / font size you want for the definitions.
  • Added the ability to manually disconnect from the server. (Hey - itis convenient for testing if nothing else.)
  • Help and Release Notes are now available via the Help menu.

  • User Interface

  • Tweaked the UI, largely to conform to Aqua HI guidelines.
  • Changed the default font used for definitions to a non-proportial font. The definitions returned by DICT servers are (at least typically) preformatted plain-text definitions, so using a proportional font ends up making them look less nice.
  • Started anti-aliasing even small fonts, as otherwise the Mac OS X standard non-proportional font is not anti-aliased.
  • Added a separator between definitions and label each definition with the dictionary from whence it came.
  • We now change the mouse cursor when it goes over a link in the definition.
  • The term combo box doesnit display any empty entries (unless nothing has yet been looked up, in which case it shows a single empty entry). It shows a maximum of ten entries before it gets a scrollbar.
  • Adjusted the margins on the definition so it looks a bit better.
  • When not connected to the dictionary server, or when in the process of connecting, we now display that status in the dictionary popup.

  • Bug Fixes

  • Printouts are now top-aligned rather than vertically centered.
  • Printing now always prints the definition. Previously it would print the content of the term field if that field was selected.
  • OmniDictionary can now reside in a folder (or descendant of a folder) with a forward slash in the name. (The problem was related to the old Launcher app we used to allow us to package the frameworks in the app; that trick is no longer needed.)
  • When weire invoked as a Service, we now set the term before trying to connect to the server, so itis clearer whatis going on. (Bug reported in a MacNN forum.)
  • The zoom button actually zooms intelligently now.
  • Fixed a bug where a link to another term wouldnit work correctly if the term was split across multiple lines in the definition.
  • Stopped clearing out the term field and definition text area on connection/disconnection as it really wasnit necessary.
  • Improved the automatic reconnection support, and stopped disabling controls when weire disconnected, so you can try a new definition and weill simply try to reconnect.
  • Scroll the definition text view to the top on a lookup, rather than potentially leaving you looking, say, halfway down the new definition.
  • Added server connection timeouts, with the ability to reattempt if we fail to connect.
  • We now scan our lexical tokens from server responses based on RFC 2229, obeying all its quoting rules, etc.
  • Changed default dictionary server from to simply as thatis what seems to be preferred and once stopped responding for a few days while remained available.
  • Adjusted the names of our defaults settings (this may require you to update your OmniDictionary preferences again).

    • You can find more information about OmniDictionary, and other products and services that Omni Group provides, at the Omni Group website.