I had the pleasure of attending the eLex (“electronic lexicography”) conference in Louvain-la-Neuve in Belgium earlier this month. As someone who works a lot with lexical databases, I was in my element at an event where everybody was talking about electronic dictionaries.
One of the issues that was discussed a lot at the conference was the question, how do people actually use electronic dictionaries? There are, of course, many different kinds of electronic dictionaries including CD-ROM ones, on-line ones, and dictionaries embedded in hand-held devices. And there are quite striking differences in how people use them in different parts of the world. I already knew that hand-held dictionaries are much more popular in Asia than in Europe, but a talk given by Hilary Nesi at the conference added a great deal of detail that I didn’t know yet.