Grammarly – Free grammar and spelling checker

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Grammarly is an online grammar and spelling checker that improves communication by helping users find and correct writing mistakes. It’s easy to use:
Copy and paste any English text into Grammarly’s online text editor, or install Grammarly’s free browser extension for ChromeChrome, Safari, and Firefox.
Grammarly’s algorithms flag potential issues in the text and suggest context-specific corrections for grammar, spelling, and vocabulary. Grammarly explains the reasoning behind each correction so you can make an informed decision about whether, and how, to correct an issue.

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For users who want to supercharge their writing performance and leave no errors unchecked, Grammarly Premium is a paid upgrade that checks for over 250 types of grammatical errors, provides vocabulary enhancement suggestions, detects plagiarism, and provides citation suggestions. Grammarly Premium also includes Grammarly for Microsoft® OfficeGrammarly for Microsoft® Office.

Grammarly is an Inc. 500 company with offices in San Francisco, New York, and Kyiv.

Mashable (May 09, 2017) — “San Francisco startup Grammarly just raised $110 million to take its AI-driven grammar-checking tool to the next level. The funding, led by General Catalyst and Spark Capital, marks the first venture capital round in the company’s eight-year life.

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The Sideways dictionary

The Sideways dictionary is like a dictionary, but using analogies instead of definitions. Use it as a tool for finding and sharing helpful analogies to explain technology. Because if everyone understands technology better, we can make technology work better for everyone.

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Video: How to write an analogy: Simplifying complicated technology concepts with Sideways Dictionary

Sideways Dictionary is a collection of witty analogies that help explain complex technology terms. Different analogies can be perfect to different people, so you can add your own—the quirkier and more personal, the better—and vote for the ones you find most helpful.

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Sideways Dictionary is a project by The Washington Post and Jigsaw

RhymeZone – Find rhymes, synonyms, and more

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RhymeZone is a great website to see how a word is used in the context of famous quotes, poems, and plays, but also an easy way of finding rhymes and a whole lot more. Here’s a brief overview of what Rhymezone can do for you:

Find rhymes: This function will return words that exactly rhyme with the word you typed in.
Find near rhymes: This function will return words that almost rhyme with the word you typed in.
Find synonyms: This function will return words that are the same or similar in meaning to the word you typed in.
Find anonyms: This function will return words that can mean the opposite of what you typed in.
Find definition: This function will search for definitions of the word you typed in. It will also allow you to submit your query to other online dictionaries on the Web.
Find homophones: This function will return words that have exactly the same pronunciation as what you typed in but are spelled differently.
Find similar sounding words: This function will return words that have a pronunciation that’s similar, but not necessarily the same, as what you typed in.
Match consonants: This option will return words that have the same pattern of consonant sounds. Phonetic, for example, will return fanatic.
Find related words: This option will return words that are related in some important way to what you typed in.
Find similar spellings: This option will return words in the dictionary that are spelled similarly to what you typed in. Use this feature to spell-check a word that you aren’t sure of.
Match these letters: This option will return words and phrases that contain the letters you type in.
Search for pictures: This function will search for kids-friendly pictures on the Web related to the word you typed in.
Search in Shakespeare: This function will search all of Shakespeare’s plays and poems for your word.

Use Text-to-Speech Functions for Better Proofreading

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Ever proofread an email and realize after you have sent it that it contains a glaring error? You know those errors — these are the ones that you miss because your brain inserts the missing word or overlooks spelling errors such as “wiht” that really should be “with.”

The Unofficial Apple Weblog has a solution we have been using here at translabor for quite a while and we would highly recommend this method too: “The best way to avoid some of these common errors is to read your writing aloud so you can hear what you have written. If you are unable to talk aloud or feel silly doing so, you can take advantage of the text-to-speech feature available on your iPhone or Mac and let your device read to you instead.”

Lifehacker has the link for Text-to-Speech using Windows, Android and Chrome.

Google’s New Spell Check


Lifehacker points out that Google Docs just “updated its spell checker! Sure, in theory that’s a “what could be more boring” scenario. But you guys, it’s pretty awesome.

The updated spell checking bakes in the power of Google’s “Did you mean” technology, meaning that instead of relying on a static dictionary, it uses the context of your word alongside Google’s powerful “Did you mean” database to learn new words, offer spelling suggestions based on context rather than just similarity, and that it can even catch typos when the misspelled word is just the wrong dictionary word. The advantages spelled out in more detail, from the Google Docs blog:

1. Suggestions are contextual. For example, the spell checker is now smart enough to know what you mean if you type “Icland is an icland.

2. Contextual suggestions are made even if the misspelled word is in the dictionary. If you write “Let’s meat tomorrow morning for coffee” you’ll see a suggestion to change “meat” to “meet.”

3. Suggestions are constantly evolving. As Google crawls the web, we see new words, and if those new words become popular enough they’ll automatically be included in our spell checker-even pop culture terms, like Skrillex.

Antique Typewriters


Some of you may recall that there was a time before the computer. Translators had to work with what they called typewriters and the stunning Martin Howard Collection of Early Typewriters gives a you a pretty good overview what those things looked like in the 1880s and 1890s. So, next time you complain about your word processor, give one of those old school machines a try. Mister Howard is also selling typewriters and those things would probably look lovely at most offices.