[OT] command of English by non-native speakers

Avi Greenbury avismailinglistaccount at googlemail.com
Fri Dec 11 11:13:28 GMT 2009

Nils Kassube wrote:
> Christopher Chan wrote:
> > Where? Where? We have way longer school hours and zero grammar being
> > taught as far as I can tell. Even spelling is a bit of a joke with
> >  spell checkers being available on computers.
> Spell checkers are useless, IMHO. 

They really aren't.

Inline spell-checkers are not to be relied upon blindly, but having a
way to take a stab at the spelling of a word and quickly see if it's
correct is invaluable to people who have trouble spelling.

There are a great many words for which there aren't differently-spelled
homophones, and these are also the ones people are more likely to spell
wrong. Words like necessary and valuable where a spelling mistake is
likely, but a spelling mistake that's also a valid spelling of something
else is quite rare.

I know a few people who rely on spell checkers on a daily basis, and I
don't recall any of them sending me emails where they've used the wrong
homophone anywhere.

MS Office's grammar checker is part of the spell checker now, but it
appears to be substantially less sophisticated than the earlier ones.

Avi Greenbury
http://aviswebsite.co.uk ;)

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