S3Analyzer FAQS


Q: What is this sentence analysis tool?

A: This program, called S3Analyzer (Simple Step-by-step Sentence Analyzer) is meant to simplify some of the mundane tasks when analyzing sentences using the procedure recommended in “Technical English” and “Readings in Information Literature”. It allows you to select and add words by mouse clicks. It also generates a HTML file conforming to a format required in these courses.


Q: Does it do the analysis automatically for me?

A: No. You have to decide how to break up a sentence into clauses, add words, and type in Chinese translations.


Q: How do I download and install S3Analyzer?

A: Simply download these three files (program, DLL1, DLL2) to the desktop or a directory. (You don’t need the two DLLs if your computer already has them installed.) Double click the program icon to run it.


Q: How do I use the tool?

A: The GUI should be fairly straightforward. But just in case you can’t survive without a manual, here is a very short intro:

1.     If you want to analyze sentences from a large section of text in sequential order, you should put them in a plain text file (.txt). Here is a sample file that you can download and practice on. Note that there should be no line break in a sentence, so making each sentence a separate line should always work. Click the “File Open” button and enter the filename in the FileOpen dialog box.
If you don’t have such a text file, you can provide your sentences manually.

2.     Click the “next sentence” button to read in the next sentence from the file. The next sentence will appear in the textbox at the top of the window. Alternatively, type or copy/paste your sentence into the textbox.

3.     Click the “load sentence” button to load this sentence into the blank region below the textbox. The sentence will actually appear TWICE. All words in the upper half are initially gray to indicate that no word has been added so far. Those in the lower half, on the other hand, are initially black. Your task is to select words from the lower half and move them up using the “add words” button. Clicking a word will select the word (and turn it red as a visual indication). Clicking a word while holding the Shift key will select the longest consecutive string of black words up to this word. As you go along, words added in earlier steps appear in black and newly added words appear in red.

4.     For a simple sentence, proceed to add words as describe in the class notes. Remember, you should always add subject and verb first. You are given a chance to enter Chinese translation each time you add one or more words. If you prefer not to type in the Chinese translation, you can turn this feature off by using the “Options” button.

5.     For a compound, complex, or compound-complex sentence, you may want to first break it up into clauses. Select a clause and click the “add clause” button; this will create a new tab in the top textbox to hold this clause. Once all clauses are identified, you can proceed to analyze clauses. Select a clause tab, click the “load sentence” button to load the clause, and add words as in Step 4. Do this for each clause in the sentence.

6.     If you make a mistake in the process, a click of the “reload sentence” button will give you a fresh start.

7.     When the entire sentence is done, click the “output HTML” button. This will generate in C:\ a web page with a filename that consists of the current date, time, and the first few characters of the sentence.

8.     Go to Step 2 to work on more sentences.


Remember, this program is not an automatic analyzer; you still need to fill in a question (and a Chinese translation, if you haven’t done it with the program) at each step as describe in the class notes. You can either edit the html file directly with a text editor, or use a adequate word processor, which may prove more efficient as you can set colors much easier. A good choice is the Open Office Suite, a free software. You can download the latest version of the program from their official site. (By the way, ISU is one of their mirror sites.)


Please also bear in mind that this is only a prototype. If you have any problem with the program, let me know.


My goal is to eventually have a nice tool that helps me create something like this without a lot of hassle.