Only Word Check uses the preferred Australian English spelling. Other sites use American or British English. Check your spelling using Australian English spelling.

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Friday, April 19, 2013

British English Word Check Hints and Tips

This blog entry aims to provide a collection of hints and tips for using the British English version Word Check. British English Word Check is an online service which enables you to check the spelling of a word and if you haven't entered the correct spelling, a list of suggested words will be presented.

Please feel free to suggest words, or to challenge existing words (in a nice way of course). The input you provide will help evolve the British English dictionary word list. The British English word list is open source licensed as LGPL and is available for a small distribution fee.

  • Word Check requires a password. This is available to clients of Online Connections and anyone purchasing a dictionary product.
  • Word Check in many instances is more accurate than a spellchecker as it allows you to check against the list of actual words, which can include spaces, hyphens, periods and apostrophes.
  • Word Check doesn't allow you to create words using prefixes and suffixes which may not be actual usage. For example typing non-non as a word is often valid when using a spellchecker.
  • Word Check is case sensitive. Enter the word as you would write it. For example type in England and not england. If you type in england without the first letter being capitalised, the result will be Not Found.
  • If you wish to look up the meaning of a word don't use plurals or possessives. Use the base word. Also generally use lower case unless the word requires the first letter or all letters as upper case otherwise the word's definition won't be found.
  • In general enter words in lower case and with the letters correctly capitalised. For example enter London and not london. Entering london will result in the message Not Found but a list of suggestions will be provided.
  • If you enter a word in all capitals, as would be used in a heading, the word will be compared with the words in the dictionary converted to capitals. You should avoid entering words in capitals so you can determine the correct capitalisation. You shouldn't assume that if you now use the word which was in capitals in lower case it will be correct. For example LONDON will be found, but london will not be found.
  • There is quite a bit of confusion as to whether some words should be a single word, a hyphenated word, or contain a space between two or more words. Word Check aims to provide the correct variation. Try all three variations to determine the correct spelling. For example "ice cream" is the preferred spelling, but to determine which is the preferred spelling, you may wish to try "icecream" and "ice-cream". Keep in mind there are standard phrases which use hyphens, but when writing you can hyphenate words are required which wouldn't be in the word list. For words you hyphenate through your own choice you may need to check the spelling of the words individually.
  • You may wish to check the meaning of a word and not just the spelling of a word. Many words which are very similar, only differ by one letter, yet can mean very different things, such as meter and metre, or confirmation and conformation.
  • Word Check aims to provide the correct spelling variations for a word, including possessives and plurals. These are not readily available in other dictionaries and can often be the hardest to determine as being correct. For example Word Check includes: dog, dogs and dog's.

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