language

Don't Decide Off Your Own Bat To Use Back Instead

If you do something off your own bat, you don’t require assistance. If you use the incorrect phrase “off your own back”, you definitely need help.


The Correct Way To Spell 'Lifehacker' And 'Lifehacking'

Several readers wrote in to point out to us that “lifehacking” was given an honourable mention in the Macquarie Dictionary‘s 2014 words of the year list. I’m torn over this. It’s nice that the Macquarie editors noticed — but with that said, they seem a little late to the party.


Four Phrases We All Say, But Should Remove From Our Vocabularies

You probably say some things about yourself that you don’t really mean, like laughing at your own laziness or asking about opinions that don’t really matter. Unfortunately, the more you say them, the more power they have over you. Here are four phrases you should keep an eye on.


Who's Your Daddy? Learn The Difference Between Whose And Who's

An apostrophe in English can indicate either possession or missing letters. One example that everyone gets wrong is it’s versus its. A similar example that goes awry almost as often is whose versus who’s.


Mainichi Teaches You Japanese With Every New Chrome Tab

Chrome/Web: Learning another language can be difficult if you don’t immerse yourself in it every day. Mainichi is a Chrome new tab replacement and web app that teaches you (and reminds you of) everyday Japanese words.


ProWritingAid Checks For Clarity, Repeated Words And Cliched Phrases

Editing your own work can be difficult. If you don’t give yourself enough time between writing and revising, everything might sound good. ProWritingAid is a webapp that edits your work for writing style and gives you immediate feedback.


In Australia, It's Safest To Spell 'Yoghurt' With An 'H'

One of the most crucial factors with yoghurt is consistency — you want it to be rich and creamy. Unfortunately, consistency is not a hallmark of the English language, which is why there’s a lot of confusion over whether yoghurt or yogurt is the accepted spelling.


Your Colleagues Are Not Your 'Work Colleagues'

Knowing what a word means is critical to using it correctly. If you use the expression “work colleagues”, what you’re really saying is that that you don’t know what “colleagues” means.


Focus On Your Apology, Not Your Reason, To Express Yourself Clearly

Communicating clearly is crucial when you’re apologising, especially if you want to make your perspective heard too. If your apology has a “but” in it, consider switching the parts before and after the “but”. This will put the focus on your apology, instead of the reason for your behaviour.


Google Translate Brings Real-Time Text Translation To Your Phone

iOS/Android: Last year, Google bought Word Lens, the amazing app that translates signs in real time, and made it free for everyone. Now the company has gone one better and rolled the feature into Google Translate.