Friday, January 25, 2008

Madura English-Sinhala Dictionary

Madura dictionary can find english/sinhala synonyms of any english/sinhala word. Visit [URL Removed; see Update 2]. Great product.

Update 1
URL updated; thanks to a visitor comment.

Update 2
There has been some discussions in the user comments for this post stating that Madura and several other dictionaries are copied from the Thibus dictionary database. So I'm removing the link to Madura dictionary until I get to know the truth of this. Although I don't have access to Thibus dictionary, some idea can be gained by comparing the definitions of the free dictionaries available.


Dinusha said...

Madura Dictionary Online website is

sahan said...

Madura Online Dictionary Web Edition

Sri Lanka official online language translation solutions provider "Madura English-Sinhala Dictionary" now offers Sinhala Unicode compatible "English to Sinhala" and "Sinhala to English" online dictionary & language translator web edition.

Now you can add this Madura Online Dictionary search box to your web site! To get HTML code visit

This project is yours. You can help this project by sending new words, new definitions, corrections & comments to

Anonymous said...

MADHURA English-Sinhala Dictionary - by Chandana Madhura Kulathunga

The facts: This dictionary is a gross violation of copy rights. Its dictionary database is completely & illegally copied from THIBUS. The real makers of this dictionary definitions would have spent years of time to complete it and this man has robbed it without any fear and put it in a crappy piece of software (which would involve few minutes of coding) and showing off as if he were the author.
If this happened in a Western country this fellow would have been in jail. Not only this dictionary the following Sinhala English Dictionaries too use the very same database illegally copied from THIBUS:

Chatura English Sinhala Dictionary - by Chatura Dilan Perera
Vidudaya Popup Dictionary - A M R Ravimal Bandara

If you just check these dictionaries you will notice that all of them have the very same definitions. Its unfortunate to see that these things continue to happen in Sri Lanka.

Anonymous said...

Chatura English Sinhala Dictionary data is based on the EnsiTip which is distribute under GNU/GPL license.

According to GNU/GPL

The licenses for most software are designed to take away your freedom to share and change it. By contrast, the GNU General Public License is intended to guarantee your freedom to share and change free software--to make sure the software is free for all its users. This General Public License applies to most of the Free Software Foundation's software and to any other program whose authors commit to using it.

Anonymous said...

The following dictionaries, which have the same definitions, have illegally copied the dictionary database originally developed by Thibus software:

- Madura English-Sinhala Dictionary
- Madura Online Dictionary - (
- Chatura Sinhala English Dictionary
- Vidudaya English-Sinhala Dictionary
- SriLankeeya Online Sinhala English Dictionary (
- EnSiTip - English-Sinhala-PopUp Dictionary (a Firefox add-on)
- Chatura Sinhala English Dictionary Firefox Toolbar

If this is under GNU/GPL, the dictionary database must be publicly available for anyone to use; but it is not!

The truth is that EnsiTip too has copied the database illegally. Well Any rogue can copy something and republish under GNU/GPL. How come all these dictionaries have the very same definitions?

Chatura said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ravin Perera said...

I removed the link since several people have raised the question regarding the originality of Madura dictionary. But I won't take it as the truth 100% until I personally know it.

This post have had so many search hits which proves the popularity of this free dictionary. But don't think I'm playing noble here by removing the link. I use cracked/pirated software. In that sense, I'm a thief! But I think copying some other's work and claiming the ownership is worse than cracking and it's below my standards :-)

As much as I hate to say it, these copycat products actually helps people than the original software. But users won't get to know about the original software at all. If they knew about it, some users may actually be willing to buy the original one. When the user is presented with the copycat product, the original author gets no chance of reaching the user.

Chatura said...

This is some gangs who made fake copyright claims for Ensitip and Chatura Sinhala English Dictionary. These people dont know anything.

Since Thibas is a propitiatory one, these people make fake copyright claims for Ensitip and Chatura Sinhala English Dictionary.

Anonymous said...

Well this firefox extention says "Data is from University of Colombo School of Computing" and here say you got it from EnsiTip. You have used the same data for your (?) desktop dictionary and also the online dictionary ( with adsense running) If you get the data from a GPLed software all others need to be GPL. So under what license did you release these? But no mention about GPL on any of these. Besides, on the desktop version you shamelessly say "Developed by Chatura Dilan" Just disgusting!! Well developers of this database spent years of time to do it and now you have put it into a crappy bit of coding and showing as if you were the author. (If you just Google anyone will find hundreds of much better open source projects) Also you say that Thibus could have copied data from EnSiTip. You must know that Thibus dictionary was first introduced in 1995 and it was the first of its kind. Sundry buggers like ensitip, madhura, chatura, kathura etc. etc. would have been pissing in their pants by that time!

Di said...

How it's a crappy code if the whole community get advantage from it and every one thank for developing that software?

The users have freedom to do anything if something distribute under GNU/GPL. even can sell the new versions which i dont like to do.

The desktop version is developed my myself using C#.NET and I get the data from a GNU/GPL project. how it's disgusting to use 'developed by Chatura Dilan Perera'? i dont mentioned that it is copyrighted to me.

And, i got data from a GNU/GPL project. Do i need to mention how i got data? is it a violation of GNU/GPL terms?

According to GNU/GPL version 2

'When we speak of free software, we are referring to freedom, not price. Our General Public Licenses are designed to make sure that you have the freedom to distribute copies of free software (and charge for this service if you wish), that you receive source code or can get it if you want it, that you can change the software or use pieces of it in new free programs; and that you know you can do these things.'

If you like i can give you the source code of Chatura Dictionary. you can also get the source code of the Firefox toolbar from firefox addon directory.

Now what?

I'm telling this with confidence because I have not done any illegal thing here.

however due to inability of thibus people the data might have been leaked. i dont know the full story about the data who hacked it or is their any alliance.

Every people in Sri Lanka get the advantage out of the data now. and it is also a merit for the people who get years to enter data (as you say) than hide it somewhere with no use of them. i havent heard about the thibus dictionary till you people say.

now the best thing is make that data under GNU/GPL license. so every people will use that data and new products can be introduced to the community from it.


if there is illegal thing happen here i'm ready to stop distributing the Chatura dictionary.

Anonymous said...

Can anybody claim the (rights or) ownership of the words of a language?

Can anybody say I own these words of this language(and the definitions)?

like to know your thoughts.

Anonymous said...

ensitips license agreement says:

EnSiTip Add-On: GNU General Public License

The current EnSiTip dictionary is a contribution of many people and several sources for the testing purpose of EnSiTip (and for the purpose of other research). Some contributors are reluctant to reveal their original sources and hence we cannot endorse the content yet. We are in the process of coming out with a dictionary (whose sources will be acknowledged) for EnSiTip very soon.

While the EnSiTip program is GPLed we have not yet thought about a particular licensing scheme for the dictionary. EnSiTip is still in Beta, and we are planning to release the full and final version soon along with the official licensed dictionary. The final version of the dictionary is not publicly available yet.

Ravin Perera said...

This is not about language ownership! This is about Software Ownership. This includes the particular database format used, database structure, certain optimizations etc... Those things fall into developer's intellectual property.

Anonymous said...

Someone is saying that EnSiTip dictionary is a contribution of many people. But the database is an exact copy of THIBUS. (Very same database is used by Madura, Chatura, Vidudaya, etc.) Anyone can compare these dictionaries and see.

EnSiTip is originally based on the EHTip extension by Robert Katic, which is GPLed. As per EnSiTip project page (, the database content is provided by a single person called Mr.Dasun Sameera, who seems to be a university student at that time. All other contributors were just checking or testing the program and no details given about the person who did the coding (or at least the changes to the original EHTip extension) Also someone called Dr. Ruvan Weerasinghe seems to be the head of the team and it may be that EnSiTip is made by just changing the database of the original EHTip extension so it did not require any major change in coding. So we can fairly assume that the person called Dasun Sameera might have copied the database from the original source (THIBUS) or from Madura. It is clear that all these people are only IT personnel and not lexicographers nor language experts. The question is how they can use a proprietary database and republish under GPL? This is a serious issue because all others are now saying that they took the database from EnSiTip (Only Madura can not give this excuse as he published his dictionary before EnSiTip)

Another person is asking whether anybody can claim the ownership of the words of a language. Well it is true you can’t claim the ownership of the words of a language. But the principle of copyrights is a different thing. THIBUS dictionary is copyrighted and it doesn’t mean that they are the owners of those words but the protection given by the copyrights is that no one else can copy the data and publish elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

Here is some funny comment probably made by someone connected to EnSiTip:

"Some contributors are reluctant to reveal their original sources"

Well no thief will willingly revel where he/she stole from !

Seemingly EnSiTip has violated the copyrights of Thibus. However from legal point of view, no one can escape criminal liability by claiming that the database is taken from GPLed EnSiTip as EnSiTip has no legal right to use the Thibus database. Remember even using cracked / pirated software is a criminal offence.

Anonymous said...

EnSiTip Firefox Add-on is Discontinued From 01/06/2010.

Therefore now no one can escape criminal liability by saying data copied from GPLed EnSiTip project.

Anonymous said...

භාෂාවක වචන කොපිරයිට් කරන්නෙ කොහොමද ?