This page accompanies a paper about exchanging terminological data presented at the 2010 AMTA (machine translation) conference in Denver.

Introduction to TBX-Glossary

TBX (TermBase eXchange) is family of XML-based languages for the interchange of terminological information (called TMLs, for Terminological Markup Language; also informally called "dialects" of TBX). All dialects of TBX share certain essential elements of core structure, in which information is represented on one of three structural levels: concept, language, and term. Concept entries contain language sections, which in turn contain information grouped around individual terms. The core structure also provides a set of generic elements for attaching descriptive and administrative information to these entries. These generic elements can be employed differently in different TMLs.

TBX-Glossary is one such TML, designed to support the interchange of glossary data among several formats: UTX-Simple, GlossML, the TBX family, and OLIF. Its expressive capacities are intentionally limited; it is designed to express only such essential data as can be unambiguously represented in all of these formats. This design goal is the main point differentiating TBX-Glossary from other standard TMLs such as TBX-Basic (intended to serve the most common needs in localization) or TBX-Default (intended to provide a broad array of terminological data categories taken from the on-line catalog of data categories associated with ISO 12620).

This site provides a specification for TBX-Glossary, a sample glossary in each format, and software to convert glossaries from one format to another.

Supporting Software


The cross-platform convert_glossary program automatically converts glossary files among the four formats named above. It also supports import of glossaries from a special format, closely related to UTX-S but adjusted for greater convenience when entering data by hand.

The convert_glossary application is written in Perl and relies on a Perl module called XML::Rules. The software is open source and can be obtained upon request from the authors of the paper. (Contact Alan K. Melby at the BYU Translation Research Group: akmtrg [at] byu [dot] edu, with "convert_glossary" at the start of the subject line.)

For casual use with small files, there is an on-line version of the converter available at: Input to the converter must conform to the specification for one of the supported formats, and to certain additional convertibility guidelines.

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