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Computer Science Department

Reverse Dictionary Application

Marcus Hays

This senior project is a reverse dictionary. Unlike a traditional dictionary, where the user inputs a word and is returned a description, the user will instead type a description to find the word. This cannot be a one-to-many match like a normal dictionary would allow, where a given word will be matched with several possible descriptions. Instead, since there are many ways a human could describe a given word it is a many-to-one relationship. A many-to-one relationship like this means that exact definitions cannot be matched to words as a part of a hash function. With the possibility of a user describing a word in many different ways the program will require a degree of intelligence.

To gather the appropriate data for matches an Internet search engine will be used to search for the definition provided by the user. The words found from the data collected will then be ranked and returned to the user.