From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
The Worldwide Lexicon (WWL) is an open source project to specify a protocol for querying multi-lingual dictionaries, semantic networks and lexicon servers over the Internet, and to produce software which can carry out these queries and facilitate contributing to such databases.
The WWL project is in an early stage of development. A draft specification for the worldwide lexicon protocol is currently available from the project website. The WWL protocol, which is based on the SOAP protocol, enables applications to automatically discover and query dictionary, encyclopedia and machine translation servers throughout the Internet. Think of this as GNUtella for dictionaries and translation servers.
The project also creates a mechanism to prompt internet users to contribute to WWL servers that support public contributions. Users download a simple program that monitors their keyboard and mouse activity. When the user appears to be idle, the program then polls one or more WWL servers to fetch pending jobs (the user might be asked to define a word, translate a phrase, or score another user's recent submission). This is analogous to SETI@Home, except that instead of tapping idle CPUs to perform calculations, this system taps idle users to contribute knowledge.