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Thursday, May 28, 2020

Is the spelling sanitizer or sanitiser?

The main time I tend to use hand sanitiser, or is that hand sanitizer, is when I’m on a cruise before I eat. I’ve also used it when visiting people in a hospital, or in an aged care facility. It makes sense.

However, now with COVID-19, all that has changed and now it becomes part of your regular routine.

The question then is, is the Australian spelling with the ‘s’ or the ‘z’?

A check of Google for sites ending in .au for the words sanitiser and sanitizer, returns 1.19 million results for the ‘s’ spelling and 464,000 for the ‘z’ spelling.  A check of the Australian Oxford Dictionary and the Macquarie Dictionary for the words sanitise and sanitize, gives us sanitise with the ‘s’ as the primary spelling and sanitize with the ‘z’ as the secondary spelling.

In Australia the preferred spelling uses the ‘s’ for the word sanitiser and its various forms.

Kelvin Eldridge

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Question received regarding how often the dictionary files are updated and the upgrade policy.

I received two questions recently regarding the dictionary files I produce. I thought the questions were very good and I wanted to share the answer with everyone.

The questions were:

How often are the files updated?

What is the upgrade policy?

Now in my ideal world I'd have lots of people purchasing the dictionary files which would enable me to put in the time required to release regular updates. Ideally, I wanted to make the updates free for anyone who had purchased the files.

Unfortunately my ideal world and reality don't match very well. I understand that people won't understand the time involved in finding and researching the words I include or exclude from the dictionary files. Each word is reviewed, but some words reviewed can take quite a long time to review. The time involved is considerable.

For this reason it's not viable for me to simply provide free updates. The time to update the documentation and the files packaged as zip files also takes some time.

To be frank, the money from sales each year would not cover the time involved each year.

For this reason, at this stage, I feel the best approach is for people to purchase the current release for the relatively small cost. The package received is better than anything else currently available in my humble opinion. Then in a couple of years time, if there's sufficient changes to the newly released files, people are then welcome to purchase the new release. Those benefiting from the work I do are then contributing to the ongoing development.

When a new release is available I will send out an email to everyone who has purchased the relevant files and let them know the update is available. Whether they purchase the update or not is entirely their choice.

In terms of how often the updates occur I have no clear answer, but I would say for the actual packages I sell it would be a number of years. It's is currently nearly four years since the last update was released.

Word Check, which is the online tool available to everyone for free, is updated regularly with new words added (a few have been removed), as I find words and research the words to see if the words should or shouldn't be included.

I hope this answers the questions for anyone who is interested.

Kelvin Eldridge

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Is the spelling barbeque or barbecue?

Australia Day is a day to relax and have friends over for a barbeque, or is that barbecue?

A search using Google for sites ending in .au, returns around 3.7 million results for barbeque and 17.3 million results for barbecue. Microsoft Word allows both barbecue and barbeque as valid spellings.

The Oxford and Macquarie dictionaries list barbecue as the primary spelling and barbeque as a secondary spelling. The Macquarie dictionary notes there’s greater use of the secondary spelling barbeque in Australia, than there is in the US or UK.

The preferred spelling in Australia is barbecue. Now there’s something to ponder whilst grilling the snags on Australia Day.

Kelvin Eldridge
The preferred Australian English spelling.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Is the spelling financer or financier?

Whilst editing a document recently I noticed the spelling financer and financier in the same paragraph. I couldn't help think is this a difference in usage, or perhaps a spelling issue.

Checking the Macquarie and Australian Oxford dictionaries there is no mention of financer, but financier is included in both dictionaries. Checking online dictionaries including the Merriam Webster (American), Oxford (UK) and Collins, none include financer. The only online resource to include financer was Wiktionary, but as Wiktionary isn't a reliable authoritative resource, you need to take care putting any credence on whether or not it is a correct spelling.

Microsoft Word's spellchecker marks both financer and financier as correctly spelled words, which is one reason people may inadvertently use financer and think they've used the correct spelling, when they really should have used the word financier.

A check of Google for Australian sites (sites ending in .au) produces 872,600 results for financier and 42,700 for financer.

As there is no reference in any of the authoritative references to the spelling financer, this would tend to lead us to accept financer is a spelling error and financier is the correct spelling.

Kelvin Eldridge
The preferred Australian English spelling.