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Supaproofread Explores Fun With The English Language

Very funny video on recognising the importance of proofreading your work.

From teacher Taylor Mali, on spellcheck, proofreading and writing.


Learning English can be confusing!

This short paragraph, produced by an academic, highlights the need for a proofreader. It re-iterates a viewpoint that our eyes see what they want us to see and not necessarily what we should be seeing:

'Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a tatol mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is beuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istelf, but the wrod as a wlohe. Amzanig, huh?'

Instead, the text should read:

According to a researcher (sic) at Cambridge University, it doesn't matter in what order the letters in a word are, the only important thing is that the first and last letter be at the right place. The rest can be a total mess and you can still read it without problem. This is because the human mind does not read every letter by itself but the word as a whole.

If you want to read more about the research above then visit Matt Davis's page at Cambridge University


Previous Writings

It does seem that there was in fact a dissertation on this subject back in 1976: The significance of letter position in word recognition. See a discussion of this on Uncle Jazzbeau's Gallimaufrey's blog. Interestingly, the comments are surprisingly true!!

The following poem was published in the journal of Irreproducible Results, vol. 39, #1, January/February 1994, page 13, and vol. 45, # 5-6, 2000, page 20.

Candidate for a Pullet Surprise
I have a spelling checker,
It came with my PC.
It plane lee marks four my revue
Miss steaks aye can knot sea.

Eye ran this poem threw it,
Your sure reel glad two no.
Its vary polished in it's weigh.
My checker tolled me sew.

A checker is a bless sing,
It freeze yew lodes of thyme.
It helps me right awl stiles two reed,
And aides me when eye rime.

Each frays come posed up on my screen
Eye trussed too bee a joule.
The checker pours o'er every word To cheque sum spelling rule.

Bee fore a veiling checker's
Hour spelling mite decline,
And if we're lacks oar have a laps,
We wood bee maid too wine.

Butt now bee cause my spelling
Is checked with such grate flare,
Their are know fault's with in my cite,
Of nun eye am a wear.

Now spelling does knot phase me,
It does knot bring a tier.
My pay purrs awl due glad den
With wrapped word's fare as hear.

To rite with care is quite a feet
Of witch won should bee proud,
And wee mussed dew the best wee can,
Sew flaw's are knot aloud.

Sow ewe can sea why aye dew prays
Such soft wear four pea seas,
And why eye brake in two averse
Buy righting want too pleas.

See above how the author has written 123 of the 225 words completely incorrect, even though all of the words are spelt correctly.