Jul 3rd 2013

When did Americans gain independence from British English?

 

Color or colour? Neighbor or neighbor? Which is the correct spelling of these seemingly identical words? It depends who and where you ask. For Americans, the correct spelling would be color and for the British the correct spelling is the slightly longer colour.

Since it was the British that originally colonized the land that is the United States of America, wouldn’t it make more sense if these words were spelled the same rather than different?

When did it change, and why?

Historians trace the spelling changes in words like color, neighbor and others to just after the American Revolution in the latter part of the 18th Century.

As America physically distanced itself from the British, many Americans also wanted to distance themselves intellectually.

Noah Webster the “Father of American Scholarship and Education” authored An American Dictionary of the English Language in 1828 and as more copies of this dictionary spread what is regarded as “American English” became standardized all across the United States.

Where do you live? Which spelling is used in your area and most importantly, how are YOU celebrating Independence Day?

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Jul 1st 2013

It’s Canada Day, eh? Discover the origin of the word “Canada”

 

A very happy Canada Day to all of the Canadians reading this! While we celebrate with maple syrup eating, red and white face-painting and hockey playing, do we really know where the word “Canada” comes from?

The answer is interesting and actually comes from an interaction between an explorer and native in the area that is modern day Quebec back in the 16th Century. One explorer asked the locals back in the 1500’s what the area he was standing in was called and the native replied “Kanata” using the aboriginal word for “village.” As such, “Canada” was used to refer to the lands modern day Quebec City.

The area that was described as “Canada” grew and grew until it became the name for the 2nd largest country in the world.

There is, however, another theory about where the name “Canada” originally came from.

A few people suspect that the word “Canada” actually came from early Portuguese explorers who did not find any gold and silver and labelled modern Canada as “cá nada,” (“nothing here”) on that part of their maps.

You can use these fun facts to impress your friends and if you have any interesting facts about Canada leave them in the comment section below!

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Jun 19th 2013

The “A to Z” of Common Spelling Mistakes

Do you experience trouble when spelling specific words? Do you keep getting the spelling of ‘absolutely’ wrong, and wonder if you’re not alone? You aren’t!

In Ginger’s Spelling Book  you’ll find a wide selection of the top frequent spelling mistakes that people make when using Ginger as well as a breakdown of HOW people spell these words incorrectly. Let’s take a look at a couple examples:

“Alright”
When it comes to the word “alright” everything’s NOT “alright.” Usually the biggest

challenge when spelling “alright” is how many “L’s” are needed in the word, but our research shows that it is misspelled in a variety of other ways as well. Here is a breakdown of the different ways that are used to spell “alright.”

The most common alternative misspelling is “allright” with 30.13% of our users using this incorrect spelling. A list of the rest of the alternatives are in the chart to right.

“Zebra”

Ginger’s Spelling Book lists common spelling most common mistakes all the way from “A” to “Z.” Here are some fascinating ways that people have misspelled the word “Zebra.”

Coming in at number one is “izabrao” with 2.16% of the misspellings using this error. The rest are listed in the chart to the left.

What word do you have the most difficulty spelling? Write it in the comment section below.

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Jun 17th 2013

Ginger’s Android App Update!

Get the most out of your Ginger keyboard with Ginger’s new correct-as-you-type feature!

Ginger Spelling and Grammar Keyboard is a free, simple-to-use Android app that corrects typos, errors and misused words. Its revolutionary user interface maximizes your mobile productivity anywhere and anytime.

With this new feature, users can correct full texts as they type or with a single click when they finish writing. Additional updates include:

* Performance improvements and bug fixes
* New and improved user interface
* Improved quality of corrections

“The app saves time by giving you the ability to quickly proofread text…. [Ginger] should be a mainstay on your device….” – AppStorm

Use it to correct your text messages, Whatsapp messages, Gmail and Outlook emails, and even social media apps such as Facebook, Twitter and more – it’s the only grammar and spelling app that understands your terminology, names and even slang!

What are you waiting for? Start communicating better NOW!

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.gingersoftware.android.keyboard

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Jun 16th 2013

Origins of the Word “Father”

Happy Father’s Day!
The first Father’s Day first was celebrated in 1910 in Spokane, Washington. Today, Father’s Day is celebrated all over the world, usually on the 3rd Sunday of June. We know about the origin of Father’s Day (it was created as a response to Mother’s Day just over 100 years ago) but what about the origin of the word “Father?”

The English word father can be traced to a the following languages:

From Middle English: fader
From Old English: fæder
From Proto-Germanic: fadēr

The word “father” also has connections to the following ancient languages:
Latin: pater, Ancient Greek: πατήρ (patēr), and Sanskrit: पितृ (pitṛ).

What about the word “dad?”

The first known record of the word “dad” was around the year 1500. Scholars suggest that the origin of the word “dad” actually comes from the first noises that kids make. “Dad” or “dada” also sounds similar in many different languages and consists of two similar sounding consonants.

In Welsh: tad
Irish daid:
Czech, Latin and Greek: tata
Lithuanian: tete
Sanskrit: tatah

No matter how you say it, Ginger wishes you and your dad a wonderful day!

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