ELAN - Linguistic Annotator

version 6.3

This manual was last updated on 2022-01-24.

The latest version can be downloaded from: https://archive.mpi.nl/tla/elan.

Original Author: Birgit Hellwig

Updates for version 2 and higher: Dieter Van Uytvanck

Updates for version 3.2.0 and higher: Micha Hulsbosch

Updates for version 4.0.0: Aarthy Somasundaram and Micha Hulsbosch

Updates for version 4.1.0: Maddalena Tacchetti and Aarthy Somasundaram

Updates for version 4.1.1 and higher: Aarthy Somasundaram

Updates for version 4.4.0 and higher: Jeroen Geerts

Updates for version 5.0 and higher: Han Sloetjes

Table of Contents

1. Notation Conventions
2. Recent changes to this manual
1. ELAN documents
1.1. Basic Information
1.1.1. Media Files and Annotation Files
1.1.2. Special ELAN data folder
1.2. How to start and manage documents
1.2.1. Selecting a user interface language
1.2.2. Creating a new document
1.2.3. Set the author and license information of a document
1.2.4. Synchronizing video files
1.2.5. Opening an existing document
1.2.6. Opening a remote ELAN file (*.eaf)
1.2.7. Re-open recently accessed files
1.2.8. Switching between multiple files
1.2.9. Saving a document
1.2.10. Saving a selection as .eaf file
1.2.11. Validating an EAF file
1.2.12. Merging transcriptions
1.2.13. Saving a template
1.2.14. Changing the linked media files
1.2.15. Creating automatic backups
1.2.16. Printing
1.2.17. Configuring the page settings (page setup)
1.2.18. Previewing the printed pages
1.2.19. Opening a wave file in Praat
1.2.20. Exporting a selection to a wave file with Praat
1.2.21. Closing a file
1.2.22. Exiting ELAN
1.3. Editing preferences
1.4. Import and Export options
1.4.1. Export as
1.4.2. Import from
1.5. Screen display and navigation through a document
1.5.1. Basic Information: The ELAN window
1.5.2. The Video Viewer
1.5.3. The Annotation Density Viewer
1.5.4. The Waveform Viewer
1.5.5. The Spectrogram Viewer
1.5.6. The Subtitle Viewer
1.5.7. The Grid Viewer
1.5.8. The Text Viewer
1.5.9. The Lexicon Viewer
1.5.10. The Comments Viewer
1.5.11. The Metadata Viewer
1.5.12. Audio And Video Recognizers
1.5.13. The Timeline Viewer and the Interlinear Viewer
1.5.14. The Tier Name panel
1.5.15. The Timeseries Viewer
1.5.16. The Menu options
1.5.17. The Media Player options
1.5.18. The color coding
1.5.19. Increasing/decreasing the size of the ELAN window
1.5.20. Switching Viewers on/off
1.5.21. Show / Hide Specific Viewers
1.5.22. Increasing/decreasing the size of Viewers
1.5.23. Switching tiers on/off
1.5.24. Rearranging the order of tiers
1.5.25. View tiers by Type/Participant/Annotator
1.5.26. Sorting tiers
1.5.27. Creating and applying tier sets
1.5.28. Changing the time zoom
1.5.29. Changing the vertical (intensity) zoom
1.5.30. Changing the font size
1.5.31. Font Browser
1.5.32. Importing and exporting preferences
1.5.33. Editing shortcuts
1.5.34. How to copy current time of the media
1.6. How to navigate through a document
1.6.1. Accessing points in time
1.6.2. Going to the borders of a selection
1.6.3. Jumping step by step through a document
1.6.4. Viewing a list of annotations within one tier (Grid Viewer)
1.6.5. Jumping from annotation to annotation (Interlinear Viewer)
1.7. How to play a document
1.7.1. Playing a document
1.7.2. Playing a selection
1.7.3. Playing around a selection
1.7.4. Playing in slow motion
1.7.5. Changing playback rate and volume via the keyboard
1.8. Adding comments to .eaf files
1.8.1. Comments setup and settings
1.8.2. Adding, deleting & changing comments
1.8.3. Viewing comments & display options
1.8.4. Filter comments
1.8.5. Other functions
1.9. Multiple File Operations
1.9.1. How to select multiple files
1.9.2. Editing multiple files and analysis of multiple files
1.9.3. Multiple file export options
1.9.4. Multiple file import options
2. Annotations
2.1. Basic Information: Annotations, tiers and tier types
2.2. Defining languages for your content
2.3. How to define a tier type
2.3.1. Adding new tier types
2.3.2. Changing tier types
2.3.3. Deleting tier types
2.3.4. Importing tier types
2.3.5. Associating a tier type with a Data Category
2.4. How to define a tier and its attributes
2.4.1. Adding new tiers
2.4.2. Importing tiers
2.4.3. Creating a tier using the Silence Recognizer
2.4.4. Changing tier attributes
2.4.5. Deleting tiers
2.4.6. Merging tiers
2.4.7. Merging tiers (Classic)
2.4.8. Merging tier groups
2.4.9. Changing the parent of a tier
2.4.10. Add New Participant
2.5. Data categories
2.6. Controlled Vocabularies
2.6.1. The creation of a CV
2.6.2. Setting language(s) for a CV
2.6.3. Associating a CV entry with a Data Category
2.6.4. Importing an existing CV
2.6.5. Using an External CV
2.6.6. Exporting a CV
2.6.7. Associating a tier type with Controlled Vocabularies
2.6.8. Using CV's
2.7. Consulting a Lexicon
2.7.1. Setting up a Lexicon Service
2.7.2. Set the Lexicon Service and entry field information for a Tier Type
2.7.3. Perform a Lexicon Lookup
2.7.4. Signbank lexicon service
2.7.5. Media Displayer
2.8. How to make a selection
2.8.1. Making a selection on an independent tier
2.8.2. Selecting multiple annotations
2.8.3. Using the selection controls
2.8.4. Creating annotation units without gaps
2.8.5. Making and saving a selection on a referring tier
2.8.6. Deselecting a selection
2.8.7. Changing the boundaries of an existing selection and annotation
2.8.8. Shifting annotations
2.8.9. Activating and deactivating the Bulldozer mode or Shift mode
2.9. How to enter and edit annotations
2.9.1. Entering annotations (into the Inline Edit box)
2.9.2. Entering annotations (into the Edit Annotation box)
2.9.3. Entering annotations from a Controlled Vocabulary
2.9.4. Entering annotations before/after other annotations
2.9.5. Creating depending annotations for a active annotation
2.9.6. Creating annotations on dependent tiers
2.9.7. Creating annotations from gaps
2.9.8. Creating regular annotations
2.9.9. Duplicating annotation values
2.9.10. Snap Annotations
2.9.11. Automatic labelling and numbering
2.9.12. Modifying the content of annotations
2.9.13. Modifying the boundaries of annotations
2.9.14. Moving annotations to another tier
2.9.15. Changing the case of Annotations
2.9.16. Deleting annotation values
2.9.17. Deleting annotations
2.9.18. Deleting annotations and annotation values on multiple tiers
2.9.19. Split Annotations
2.9.20. Merging annotations
2.9.21. Entering annotations in different character sets
2.9.22. Associating an annotation with a Data Category
2.10. Spell checking
2.10.1. Setting up a spell checking service
2.10.2. Spell checking
2.11. How to undo an action
2.12. Tokenize a tier
2.13. How to filter and copy tiers
2.13.1. Filtering tiers
2.13.2. Copying tiers
2.13.3. Copying annotations from one tier to another tier
2.14. How to detect annotation overlaps
2.14.1. Creating annotations from overlaps
2.14.2. Comparing annotators
2.15. Create annotation by subtraction
2.16. Copy and paste annotations
2.16.1. Copy annotation
2.16.2. Paste annotation
2.16.3. Paste annotation here
2.16.4. Copy and paste annotation groups
2.16.5. Duplicate annotation
2.16.6. Copy all annotations from one tier to another.
2.16.7. Synopsis
2.17. Web Services
2.17.1. WebLicht
2.18. Information about annotations
2.18.1. Annotations Spreadsheet
2.18.2. Annotations Statistics
2.18.3. Annotation Density Plot
3. Working modes
3.1. Annotation mode
3.2. Synchronization mode
3.3. Transcription mode
3.3.1. Selecting the tier types for transcription
3.3.2. Selecting tiers for transcription
3.3.3. Show or Hide tiers
3.3.4. Change color of tiers
3.3.5. Change color of tiers
3.3.6. Making tiers non-editable
3.3.7. Entering text for a annotation
3.3.8. Merging annotations
3.3.9. Modifying annotations
3.3.10. Shortcut keys used in this mode
3.4. Segmentation mode
3.4.1. Configuring the behavior of the segmentation keystroke
3.4.2. Editing annotations
3.4.3. Merging annotations and splitting annotations
3.4.4. Step-and-Repeat playback mode
3.4.5. Keyboard shortcuts
3.5. Interlinearization mode
3.5.1. Analyzer setup and configuration
3.5.2. Types of analyzers and their settings
3.5.3. Lexicons
3.5.4. The interlinearization panel
3.5.5. The Suggestion View
4. Searching
4.1. Searching in a single annotation file
4.1.1. Advanced searching: an example
4.1.2. Displaying search results
4.1.3. Jumping from the search results to annotations
4.2. Searching through multiple annotation files
4.2.1. FASTSearch
4.3. Find & replace in multiple files
4.4. Structured search through multiple annotation files
4.4.1. Substring Search Tab
4.4.2. Single Layer Search tab
4.4.3. Multiple Layer Search tab
5. Help
6. Reference guide
6.1. The mouse options
6.1.1. Resizing Viewers
6.1.2. Rearranging the order of tiers
6.1.3. Make a tier the active tier
6.1.4. Accessing points in time
6.1.5. Playing a document
6.1.6. Making a selection
6.1.7. Adding/modifying an annotation
6.2. The shortcut keys
6.2.1. File options
6.2.2. Playing a document & making selections
6.2.3. Working with annotations
6.2.4. Copy and paste
6.2.5. Working with selections
6.2.6. Searching
6.2.7. General
6.3. Key concepts of ELAN
6.3.1. Annotation file (*.eaf)
6.3.2. Media file (*.mpg, *.mov, *.wav etc.)
6.3.3. Annotation
6.3.4. Tier
A.1. Character Classes
A.2. Line terminators
A.3. Groups and capturing
A.4. Comparison to Perl 5