Grammalecte  syntax.txt at [00fe4c5157]

File doc/syntax.txt artifact 223b361257 part of check-in 00fe4c5157


Note: This documentation is obsolete right now.

# Principles #

Grammalecte is a bi-passes grammar checker engine. On the first pass, the
engine checks the text paragraph by paragraph. On the second passe, the engine
check the text sentence by sentence.

The command to switch to the second pass is `[++]`.

In each pass, you can write as many rules as you need.

A rule is defined by:

* [optional] flags “LCR” for the regex word boundaries and case sensitiveness
* a regex pattern trigger
* a list of actions (can’t be empty)
* [optional] user option name for activating/disactivating the rule
* [optional] rule name

There is no limit to the number of actions and the type of actions a rule can
launch. Each action has its own condition to be triggered.

There are three kind of actions:

* Error warning, with a message, and optionally suggestions, and optionally an URL
* Text transformation, modifying internally the checked text
* Disambiguation action, setting tags on a position

The rules file for your language must be named “rules.grx”.
The settings file must be named “config.ini”.

All these files are simple utf-8 text file.
UTF-8 is mandatory.

# Rule syntax #

        __LCR/option(rulename)__  pattern
            <<- condition ->> error_suggestions  # message_error|
            <<- condition ~>> text_rewriting
            <<- condition =>> commands_for_disambiguation

Patterns are written with the Python syntax for regular expressions:

There can be one or several actions for each rule, executed the order they are

Conditions are optional, i.e.:

        <<- ~>> replacement

LCR flags means:

* L: Left boundary for the regex
* C: Case sensitiveness
* R: Right boundary for the regex

Left boundary (L):

>   `[`     word boundary

>   `<`     no word boundary

right boundary (R):

>   `]`     word boundary

>   `>`     no word boundary

Case sensitiveness (C):

>   `i`     case insensitive

>   `s`     case sensitive

>   `u`     uppercase allowed for lowercase characters

>>          i.e.:  "Word"  becomes  "W[oO][rR][dD]"


        __[i]__  pattern
        __<s]__  pattern
        __[u>__  pattern
        __<s>__  pattern

User option activating/disactivating is possible with an option name placed
just after the LCR flags, i.e.:

        __[i]/option1__  pattern
        __[u]/option2__  pattern
        __[s>/option1__  pattern
        __<u>/option3__  pattern
        __<i>/option3__  pattern

Rules can be named:

        __[i]/option1(name1)__  pattern
        __[u]/option2(name2)__  pattern
        __[s>/option1(name3)__  pattern
        __<u>(name4)__          pattern
        __<i>(name5)__          pattern

Each rule name must be unique.

The LCR flags are also optional. If you don’t set these flags, the default LCR
flags will be:


Example. Report “foo” in the text and suggest "bar":

        foo <<- ->> bar # Use bar instead of foo.

Example. Recognize and suggest missing hyphen and rewrite internally the text
with the hyphen:

        __[s]__ foo bar
            <<- ->> foo-bar # Missing hyphen.
            <<- ~>> foo-bar

## Simple-line or multi-line rules ##

Rules can be break to multiple lines by leading tabulators or spaces.
You should use 4 spaces.


        __<s>__ pattern
            <<- condition ->> replacement
            # message
            <<- condition ->> suggestion # message
            <<- condition
            ~>> text_rewriting
            <<- =>> disambiguation

        __<s>__ pattern <<- condition ->> replacement # message

## Comments ##

Lines beginning with # are comments.

## End of file ##

With the command:


at the beginning of a line, the compiler won’t go further.
Whatever is written after will be considered as comments.

## Whitespaces at the border of patterns or suggestions ##

Example: Recognize double or more spaces and suggests a single space:

        __<s>__  "  +" <<- ->> " "      # Extra space(s).

ASCII " characters protect spaces in the pattern and in the replacement text.

## Pattern groups and back references ##

It is usually useful to retrieve parts of the matched pattern. We simply use
parenthesis in pattern to get groups with back references.

Example. Suggest a word with correct quotation marks:

        \"(\w+)\" <<- ->> “\1”      # Correct quotation marks.

Example. Suggest the missing space after the !, ? or . signs:

        __<i]__ \b([?!.])([A-Z]+) <<- ->> \1 \2     # Missing space?

Example. Back reference in messages.

        (fooo) bar <<- ->> foo      # “\1” should be:

## Name definitions ##

Grammalecte supports name definitions to simplify the description of the
complex rules.


        DEF: name pattern

Usage in the rules:

        ({name}) (\w+) ->> "\1-\2" # Missing hyphen?

## Multiple suggestions ##

Use `|` in the replacement text to add multiple suggestions:

Example. Foo, FOO, Bar and BAR suggestions for the input word "foo".

        foo <<- ->> Foo|FOO|Bar|BAR # Did you mean:

## No suggestion ##

You can display message without making suggestions. For this purpose,
use a single character _ in the suggestion field.

Example. No suggestion.

        foobar <<- ->> _ # Message

## Positioning ##

Positioning is valid only for error creation and text rewriting.

By default, the full pattern will be underlined with blue. You can shorten the
underlined text area by specifying a back reference group of the pattern.
Instead of writing ->>, write -n>>  n being the number of a back reference
group. Actually,  ->>  is similar to  -0>>


        (ying) and yang <<- -1>> yin # Did you mean:

        __[s]__ (Mr.) [A-Z]\w+ <<- ~1>> Mr

### Comparison ###

Rule A:

        ying and yang       <<- ->>     yin and yang        # Did you mean:

Rule B:

        (ying) and yang     <<- -1>>    yin                 # Did you mean:

With the rule A, the full pattern is underlined:

        ying and yang

With the rule B, only the first group is underlined:

        ying and yang

## Longer explanations with URLs ##

Warning messages can contain optional URL for longer explanations.

            <<- ->> yours
            # Possessive pronoun:|

# Text rewriting #

Example. Replacing a string by another.

        Mr. [A-Z]\w+ <<- ~>> Mister

WARNING: The replacing text must be shorter than the replaced text or have the
same length. Breaking this rule will misplace following error reports. You
have to ensure yourself the rules comply with this constraint, Grammalecte
won’t do it for you.

Specific commands for text rewriting:

`~>> *`

>   replace by whitespaces

`~>> @`

>   replace by arrobas, useful mostly at first pass, where it is advised to
>   check usage of punctuations and whitespaces.
>   @ are automatically removed at the beginning of the second pass.

You can use positioning with text rewriting actions.

        Mr(. [A-Z]\w+) <<- ~1>> *

You can also call Python expressions.

        __[s]__ Mr. ([a-z]\w+) <<- ~1>> =\1.upper()

# Disambiguation #

When Grammalecte analyses a word with morph or morphex, before requesting the
POS tags to the dictionary, it checks if there is a stored marker for the
position where the word is. If there is a marker, Grammalecte uses the stored
data and don’t make request to the dictionary.

The disambiguation commands store POS tags at the position of a word.

There is 3 commands for disambiguation.

`select(n, pattern)`

>   stores at position n only the POS tags of the word matching the pattern.

`exclude(n, pattern)`

>   stores at position n the POS tags of the word, except those matching the

`define(n, definition)`

>   stores at position n the POS tags in definition.


        =>> select(\1, "po:noun is:pl")
        =>> exclude(\1, "po:verb")
        =>> define(\1, "po:adv")
        =>> exclude(\1, "po:verb") and define(\2, "po:adv") and select(\3, "po:adv")

Note: select, exclude and define ALWAYS return True.

If select and exclude generate an empty list, no marker is set.

With define, you can set a list of POS tags. Example:

        define(\1, "po:nom is:plur|po:adj is:sing|po:adv")

This will store a list of tags at the position of the first group:

        ["po:nom is:plur", "po:adj is:sing", "po:adv"]

# Conditions #

Conditions are Python expressions, they must return a value, which will be
evaluated as boolean. You can use the usual Python syntax and libraries.

You can call pattern subgroups via \0, \1, \2…


        these (\w+)
            <<- \1 == "man" -1>> men        # Man is a singular noun. Use the plural form:

You can also apply functions to subgroups like:

        \3.islower()"pattern", \2)

## Standard functions ##


>   catches the nth next word after the pattern (separated only by white spaces).
>   returns None if no word catched


>   catches the nth next word before the pattern (separated only by white spaces).
>   returns None if no word catched

`after(regex[, neg_regex])`

>   checks if the text after the pattern matches the regex.

`before(regex[, neg_regex])`

>   checks if the text before the pattern matches the regex.

`textarea(regex[, neg_regex])`

>    checks if the full text of the checked area (paragraph or sentence) matches the regex.

`morph(n, regex[, strict=True][, noword=False])`

>   checks if all tags of the word in group n match the regex.
>   if strict = False, returns True only if one of tags matches the regex.
>   if there is no word at position n, returns the value of noword.

`morphex(n, regex, neg_regex[, noword=False])`

>   checks if one of the tags of the word in group n match the regex and
>          if no tags matches the neg_regex.
>   if there is no word at position n, returns the value of noword.


>   returns True if option_name is activated else False

Note: the analysis is done on the preprocessed text.

## Default variables ##


>   It contains the current country locale of the checked paragraph.

        colour <<- sCountry == "US" ->> color       # Use American English spelling.

# Expressions in the suggestions #

Suggestions (and warning messages) started by an equal sign are Python string expressions
extended with possible back references and named definitions:


        foo\w+ ->> = '"' + \0.upper() + '"'     # With uppercase letters and quoation marks

All words beginning with "foo" will be recognized, and the suggestion is
the uppercase form of the string with ASCII quoation marks: eg. foom ->> "FOOM".

//////////////////////////////// OLD ///////////////////////////////////////

= Text preprocessing and multi-passes checking =

On each pass, Lightproof uses rules written in the text preprocessor to modify
internally the text before checking the text.

The text preprocessor is useful to simplify texts and write simplier checking

For example, sentences with the same grammar mistake:

        These “cats” are blacks.
        These cats are “blacks”.
        These cats are absolutely blacks.
        These stupid “cats” are all blacks.
        These unknown cats are as per usual blacks.

Instead of writting complex rules or several rules to find mistakes for all possible
cases, you can use the text preprocessor to simplify the text.

To remove the chars “”, write:

        [“”] ->> *

The * means: replace text by whitespaces.

Similarly to grammar rules, you can add conditions:

        \w+ly <<- morph(\0, "adverb") ->> *

You can also remove a group reference:

        these (\w+) (\w+) <<- morph(\1, "adjective") and morph(\2, "noun") -1>> *
        (am|are|is|were|was) (all) <<- -2>> *

With these rules, you get the following sentences:

        These  cats  are blacks.
        These cats are  blacks .
        These cats are            blacks.
        These         cats  are     blacks.
        These         cats are              blacks.

These grammar mistakes can be detected with one simple rule:

        these +(\w+) +are +(\w+s)
            <<- morph(\1, "noun") and morph(\2, "plural")
            -2>> _              # Adjectives are invariable.

Instead of replacing text with whitespaces, you can replace text with @.

        https?://\S+ ->> @

This is useful if at first pass you write rules to check successive whitespaces.
@ are automatically removed at the second pass.

You can also replace any text as you wish.

        Mister <<- ->> Mr
        (Mrs?)[.] <<- ->> \1

With the multi-passes checking and the text preprocessor, it is advised to
remove or simplify the text which has been checked on the previous pass.

== Pattern matching ==

Repeating pattern matching of a single rule continues after the previous matching, so
instead of general multiword patterns, like

(\w+) (\w+) <<- some_check(\1, \2) ->> \1, \2 # foo


(\w+) <<- some_check(\1, word(1)) ->> \1, # foo