text editors, online spell checkers
You may ask yourself why you should use online spell checkers if you already are using Microsoft Word or OpenOffice, which both include spellcheckers.
So, why bother to copy and paste a text into an online form? That's a good question!
The easy explanation is that text editors like Word or OpenOffice are intended to be word processing software first. They include lots of useful functionalities and integration with other software that make them the standard office tools. Grammar and spelling are secondary priorities for this kind of software. Though they have improved a lot, there is still space for improvement regarding their spell checking and proofreading capabilities.
But better than any explanation is the real proof. And therefore we will try to give you some answers to that not just telling you that the integrated spell checkers in Word have their limitations, but testing daily and common errors with both alternatives.
Here are some examples of common errors, both misspellings, and grammar errors, that Online-Spellcheck does detect, but Word did not mark.
"I should of thought of that."
Microsoft Word would say that's just fine.
We know it's not, but do we notice it when proofreading? Let's run it through Online-spellcheck.com just to be sure.
What do you know now for sure? It should be "I should have thought of that."
Here's another one: "I drunk all the soda."
hmm. . . Are you sure that's all you were drinking?
Word must have been drinking with you because your verb conjugation could use a little work.
Yes, it should be "I drank all the soda."
"Marketing are bad for brands."
Surely Word would catch such an obvious mistake?!
Well, it doesn't!
Good thing you can depend on the proofreading ability of Online-spellcheck.com to catch just such a grammar error.
Another error that Online-spellcheck.com caught but Microsoft Word missed: "Send me an e-mail."
Should be "email" and Online Spellcheck automatically corrects it.
Yes, you are right: We are biased. In fact, we had to test quite a bit to find errors overlooked in Word!
But we also found a lot of false positives!
False positives tend to annoy whenever you are writing something that does not fall into standard text forms. Creative writing or a text intending a more colloquial speech often gets marked throughout the whole document. After a while, one tends to ignore these error marks or just clicks on "omit rule" in an automated manner.
We decided to make a random test to prove how useful double checks can be.
We therefore just went to fetch an unbiased text and chose a random article on the front page of the British newspaper "The Guardian". (Here is the link)
We copied and pasted the text into our Word editor. After this, we pasted the same document into Online Spellcheck to get another check.
As we assumed, both spell checkers reacted in a different way, and the sum of both actions got the desired result: To get a better text.
In the screenshot below you see how it looks running the integrated spellchecker in Word and selecting UK English: The editor found just one error for the word "overclaimed".
We ran the same text in Online Spellcheck to compare the results:
The web app marks the error in "overclaimed", but it also marks correctly the misspelling of "apologise" instead of "apologize". It also corrects the quotation marks, which is a very often overlooked typo due to the different language settings in computer keyboards.
And it additionally drives attention to the use of the word "standards". Though it is correctly used in the text.
Under normal circumstances, we would always recommend a double check when writing for a broad public. Many journalists in newspapers use the four-eyes-principle to check each other's texts before going public. Working online, we can combine the integrated spell checkers in our text processing software with online apps like Online Spellcheck. Just to be sure.
For reviewing reports and correspondence, a reliable spellchecker is important.
It's particularly easy to make mistakes when you're feeling tired or overworked, so leave the mechanical parts your proofreading to us!