language

Them's The Breaks: Logic Won't Always Help You Remember

One useful technique to remember a tricky spelling is to try and understand the underlying logic of the phrase. However, if your logic is faulty, your spelling may well be faulty too.


Improve Your Writing With This Periodic Table Of The Figures Of Speech

When you write something — either for work or for fun — the purpose is to convey meaning and engage whoever reads it. Knowing how to use the correct figures of speech in your writing can take it to the next level, and this table can help show you how.


Stop Saying You 'Have To' Do Unimportant Stuff

Some of us lead genuinely busy lives. But for plenty of people, the list of things we “have to” do includes plenty of crap we could easily say no to. Part of the problem may be our obsession with saying that superfluous things are necessary.


It's Harder To Scam People When You Call Them 'Costumers'

One of the most obvious signs of a scam email is spelling errors. If you want to persuade me to click on your dubious link, starting out with the phrase “Dear Costumer” is not going to do the job.


No, Profligacy Does Not Have Two Cs

There are occasions when you are sure you know how to spell a word, then you encounter a different spelling in print and you can’t decide whether the writer is in error or whether you have been getting it wrong all along. That is when it is time to reach for the dictionary.


What 'Nobody Has Lost Their Job' Actually Means

In Question Time at Parliament today, Government senate leader Senator Eric Abetz was asked if the government would apologise for imposing cuts on the ABC that will result in 400 people losing their jobs, thereby breaking an entirely unambiguous pre-election promise that no cuts will be made. His response? “Nobody has lost their job.” Huh?


Should I Use 'Towards' Or 'Toward'?

Peter from Business Insider popped his head over the partition the other day and asked if towards or toward was correct in a headline. I instinctively answered “towards”, but then realised I couldn’t offer a full explanation for my reasoning. Time to head to the dictionary.


This Singular Qantas Error Is Entirely Avoidable

So three weeks ago I picked on Qantas for a spelling mistake on one of its wine bottles. Then last week I pointed out that the airline wasn’t handling apostrophes well. And now I feel compelled to point out an error on the signs explaining how to use Macs in Qantas Club lounges.


Some Companies Can't Spell Correctly Even With The Right Spelling In Front Of Them

I apologise: I know it was only a fortnight ago that I was complaining about how its and it’s are constantly being misused. But this example is particularly offensive.


Slated Is An iOS Keyboard That Automatically Translates What You Type

iOS: If you have friends who speak a language you don’t, communicating over text message is almost impossible. Slated is an iOS keyboard that translates while you type, and can also translate what’s sent back to you.