Archive for December, 2007


Spelt or spelled? How do you spell?

I realized something, most of my friends and I have started spelling words the American way, which spells ‘organization’ and not ‘organisation’ and ‘color’ not ‘colour’. Thats a little weird because in India we follow the UK English and not North American English. I’m guessing it is because we use MS Word so much, whose default spell check follows NA English. It is sometimes easier to correct the spelling with the default suggestion than to change the spell check’s language. In fact since most codes are written in the US, nearly every spell checker’s default language is always American English, including the firefox’s spell check extension and the spell check in the text editors of blogs. In fact WordPress doesn’t give the option of changing it to any other English.

Its really interesting to see how technology has influenced language in such a subtle way.  I couldn’t find any stats on usage statistics of UK English and American English. I’m pretty sure before this century UK English was more common than American English.

I wonder what English the Chinese use, since China will soon have the world’s largest English speaking population.

Thinking about technology influencing language, a major change has because of texting and IMing, where speed counts. So vowels r lft out in ne wrd wth mor thn 4 lttrs. All over the world English teachers are tearing their hair out over essays written with SMS spelling. I remember last year a school in the UK, allowed students to write in SMS form and accepted submissions SMSed from a phone!

Techcrunch has this article which says, half of Japan’s highest selling books were composed on mobile phones!  

Hw cul is tht!


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