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CQPweb — combining power, flexibility and usability in a corpus analysis tool

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CQPweb is a new web-based corpus analysis system, intended to address the conflicting requirements for usability and power in corpus analysis software. To do this, its user interface emulates the BNCweb system. Like BNCweb, CQPweb is built on two separate query technologies: the IMS Open Corpus Workbench and the MySQL relational database. CQPweb’s main innovative feature is its flexibility; its more generalised data model makes it compatible with any corpus. The analysis options available in CQPweb include: concordancing; collocations; distribution tables and charts; frequency lists; and keywords or key tags.

An evaluation of CQPweb against criteria earlier laid down for a future web-based corpus analysis tool suggests that it fulfils many, but not all, of the requirements foreseen for such a piece of software. Despite some limitations, in making a sophisticated query system accessible to untrained users, CQPweb combines ease of use, power and flexibility to a very high degree.

Keywords: Corpus Workbench; concordancer; corpus analysis tool; database; web interface

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2012

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