Changes and Additions to Editor, a Cumulative List

Editor's database of writing problems has new entries daily, and the analysis routines are regularly improved.  Major new versions are noted on our "what's new" page.  Customers are welcome to upgrade their copies of the program inexpensively at any time using the payment links on our "upgrades" page.

The following list shows the latest changes first.  The version number is of the most recent full upgrade, effective at the end of each period of development.  To find out when your present version of Editor was created, run the program, click Help on the top menu bar, and select About EDITOR.  The date and version number of your copy are at the bottom of the window.  All enhancements developed after the date of your version will be included in your next upgrade.

Writers considering purchasing Editor for the first time can read upward from earlier entries to get a sense of what the program does and how it has developed over the past decade.

Oct. 2013-Apr. 2015  (v. 5.0.0)

Version 5.0 has been in preparation for more than a year.    Following are some of the new features and USAGE-dictionary additions.

The Manual and some Reference screens have been revised for coverage and clarity.

Editor will now automatically install and run in either a 32-bit or a 64-bit Windows partition, which means in any Windows version from 2000 through 8.1.  Whether Word is installed in 32-bit or in 64-bit Windows, a new Word Add-In installer will find and adapt to it.  (We recommend installing Editor in the 32-bit (x86) partition, as Microsoft currently recommends for Word itself, but that is not essential.)  We have eliminated possible conflicts between our (optional) Word Add-In and some other programs' add-ins—caused by sloppy programming on their part—by giving Editor its own tab on the Word task bar or ribbon.

The Word Add-in has a helpful new feature that will appeal especially to good writers and to writers whose abilities are improving as they use Editor.  A new Exclude button on the Word Add-In display window automates the setup and maintenance of a list of terms the user wants to banish from USAGE's analyses.  Editor has always had such a list, but in earlier versions, it needed to be maintained by hand.  (If you already own a copy of Editor, there's an older description of the Exclude list in the Manual, chapter 4, section 7).  The writer who finds words and phrases that need not be continually flagged in that writer's work can click the new button to have them excluded from Editor's notice.  They can readily be restored later, if appropriate.

The Exclude list is an excellent way to reduce the number of unneeded messages from the CONSIDER dictionary, for example, which casts a wide net over terms that are easily confused by inexperienced writers and terms whose subtle differences can be missed even by accomplished writers.   With judicious use of the Exclude feature, writers can progressively custom-tailor Editor's USAGE output to their particular writing needs and habits.  The newly revised Manual explains how users of the Standard version can also build and maintain an Exclude list efficiently.

Improvements to Editor's USAGE database.  Additions to the six USAGE dictionaries since version 4.5 total about 13000 items.  Editor now flags more than 24,000 usage mistakes, 46,000 contextual-spelling errors that Word's spelling checker does not catch, 57,000 wordy or redundant phrases, 55,000 clichéd, overworked, and trite sayings, and 13,000 commonly confused or misused terms.  From thorough comparative testing (see our "comparisons" web page for details), we know that Editor is more than three times as thorough as any other English grammar checker—and five times as thorough as the most widely promoted one.

In checking for writing problems, moreover, Editor makes far fewer mistakes than other checkers, greatly reducing the likelihood that by changing a text according to Editor's suggestions, a writer will introduce new mistakes--a drawback of using most other checkers.  This likelihood can be devastating: by accepting all the "corrections" of the most expensive grammar checker in our tests, a writer would introduce more new mistakes in spelling, grammar, and style than the total of the ones corrected, thereby making the writing worse rather than improving it.

To be of more help to good writers, we have considerably improved the CONSIDER dictionary.  In addition to querying frequently misused words and expressions, CONSIDER has an enlarged vocabulary of subtle differences that good writers should attend to.  An "heir apparent" is not the same as an "heir presumptive," for example; a country is geographical where a nation is political; a median is seldom a mean; prone and supine are opposites; and so on.  We think CONSIDER will be especially helpful in the final stages of polishing a document.

Verbs ending with -ize-are no longer identified by Editor as exclusively US spellings.  They are now fully accepted as alternatives in UK English.  But the program still marks those -ise endings that are traditional in British English as UK only, so that US writers can avoid them if they wish.  From the Oxford Dictionaries website, we have extended our list of terms that differ between the US and UK dialects.  But we have marked the UK equivalents of most items identified as US English as ? because of the rapid adoption of US spellings and usages in the UK.  The changes go the other way, too, but US English speakers are more insular--they don't watch much UK television, for example--so fewer UK terms are being adopted by US users than the other way around.

After discovering by test how poor Word's checker is at identifying and correcting mistakes with irregular verbs, we extended Editor's coverage of them.  The program does not catch all irregular-verb mistakes, but it corrects many more than in previous versions and many more than Word's checker does.  We hope second-language writers, in particular, will find these additions helpful.

We have enhanced Editor's ability to decide when hundreds of common nouns like breakaway, handout, layoff, pickup, and touchdown are wrongly used as verbs and should therefore be spelled as two words.  We've done the same with words like checkin, hangup, playoff, and tuneup that should be spelled with either a space or a hyphen, depending on whether they are verbs or nouns in a writer's sentence.

Editor is more helpful with those pesky hyphens, especially in dealing with numbers: "four fifths" may be liquor bottles, but a "four-fifths share" and "four-fifths of the voters" need hyphens.  Editor also advises writers when they wrongly hyphenate some -ly adverbs--words that should never be hyphenated in compounds--but encourages hyphenation of the hundred-odd -ly adjectives that should be.  Word doesn't know about these.

We tripled Editor's collection of oxymorons—phrases like "icy hot," "negative growth," and "clearly confusing,"—whose terms contradict each other.  These common phrases are not mistakes, but they may be clichés and, if not used deliberately, can be distracting to the reader.

We made a foray into the ePublishing world, notorious for its lack of proper editing, and found that Editor can help eBook authors with many of the common contextual-spelling mistakes they make and with many basic punctuation errors, as well as with the wordiness, clichés, and misused words that characterize much eBook prose.

Aug. 2012-Oct. 2013  (v. 4.5.0)

Writers interested in the nature and quality of grammar-checking programs will find our new web page, "comparisons," of interest.  It explains what grammar-checkers can and cannot do, both practically and in principle.  Because no one else has done a careful comparative study, using real-world examples, to hold grammar-checker publishers accountable for their extravagant claims, we undertook such a study ourselves.  We tested twenty proofreading programs on five categories of grammar problems and three categories of style.  Readers will have to decide the credibility of our results for themselves, but the test documents were assembled from published sources, in print or on the Internet.  Each program was run through the same tests, so the results are directly comparable between programs.  Editor did not get perfect scores on any of the tests (perfect scores are impossible, because computer programs don't understand writers' meanings or intentions), but on most tests it scored considerably better than any other program.

We have completed a long-overdue revision of the Writer's Manual, online and printable versions, to take account of changes in Editor's functions and procedures.  Many of the Reference screens have been modified for greater clarity and precision and to include recent changes in US and UK copyediting standards.

Editor's USAGE dictionary database of mistakes and problem terms has expanded by about 16,000 items; some details are given below.  We have coded many individual items with additional "contingency" features, so that, for example, if a writer uses the term "flied," it is probably a mistake for the past participle "flew"--except that in US baseball, "flied out" is used instead of "flew out."  So Editor questions "flied" unless it is followed by "out."  Similarly, the words "of a" are ordinary English except after many adjectives, where they can be wordy and informal: "This coat is too tight of a fit"; "How good of a person was he?"  So when "of a" follows an adjective, Editor flags it as possibly informal and redundant, and suggests omitting "of."  The contingency features will eliminate many false-positive mistakes by the program.

Editor is now more astute about the grammatical quandaries posed by nouns of multitude and their verbs: "A number of senators was (were?) in attendance"; "A small proportion of them are (is?) out to lunch"; "the majority of them is (are?) up for election."  In many such constructions, a singular noun is acceptably followed by a plural verb in English, and Editor helps writers decide when such "antigrammatical" choices are needed.

A general rule is that -ly adverbs are not hyphenated in compound modifiers.  But many -ly adjectives (deadly, friendly, unlikely) should be hyphenated in compounds before nouns.  Editor now catches many of these mistakes.

POLISH has more than 300 new terms, mostly common clichés and overused expressions, and TIGHTEN has hundreds of wordy and redundant additions, all taken from Internet sources.  In SPELL1, Editor's collection of trademarks now numbers more than 250 legally protected, registered names that ought to be capitalized in published writing: Band-Aid, Beer Nuts, and Breathalyzers; Ping Pong, Plexiglas, and Pop-Tarts, etc.  Editor also points out trademarks that used to be protected but have now become generic—widely used but seldom capitalized (aspirin, lineoleum)—and trademarks that may require capitalization in the US but not in the UK, or vice-versa.  CONSIDER has expanded its anthology of oxymorons to upward of 175 common, self-contradictory terms like centered around, deceptively honest, and routine emergency that a writer may use deliberately sometimes but should avoid as clichés otherwise.  As usual, many of these entries are wildcarded, so a single entry can catch several oxymorons--e.g., accurate(ly) estimate, accurate estimates, accurate estimating, accurate estimation.

Editor's lists of terms whose US and UK forms differ continue to expand.  We have improved Editor's knowledge of the proper spellings of US and UK compass directions, which often differ (US northeast, UK north-east; US southeastward, UK south-eastward, and so on).  We have also taught Editor the differences between the US and UK dialects' spelling of 45 other directional terms ending in -ward(s), which differ inconsistently between these dialects (forward/forwards, onward/onwards, but not leeward/leewards, and so on).  We have greatly improved the program's ability to handle more than 50 common abbreviated titles like Dr, Mlle, Mr, Mrs--all of which need periods in US spelling but not in UK.  Using the Economist Style Guide, a standard British resource, we have added many other US-UK differences.

We notified Editor that the common "dot-extensions" (.doc, .txt, .exe, .jpg, .gif, and many others) used in file names are not sentence endings and should not be followed by capital letters.  Many other grammar checkers do not know this.

And for our Icelandic users, we told Editor that the plural form of eyrir is aurar :-)

Dec. 2011-July 2012  (v. 4.0.0)

The latest version of Editor is 4.0, released in July, 2012.

In addition to six months' worth of miscellaneous additions and corrections to the USAGE dictionaries, refinements of the analysis routines, and revisions of some Reference screens and of all our short documentation files, here are several kinds of categorical improvements we have made.  In SPELL1, we've done extensive work on nearly a thousand verb-particle pairs (break away, knock off, work around): their roles as nouns, verbs, adjectives, and whether they should be hyphenated, spaced, or closed up in various contexts, are clarified.  We added about 180 egregious oxymorons (comparatively unique, seriously funny) to CONSIDER.  From the Oxford Guide to Plain English, we extended Editor's list in POLISH of plain-English recommendations for replacing pretentious and foreign terms by about 100 items (accommodations--use "places to stay"? nuptial--use "wedding"?).  In FIX, we've made many additions to the database of UK-US usage differences and subtracted some Briticisms that are becoming common in US writing and no longer need to be identified as exclusively one or the other.  We reviewed 500 or so -ingly verb forms and added many that are either awkward in themselves (cheeringly, takingly), clichés (breathtakingly beautiful), or redundant (deafeningly loud; use "deafening"?).  In all, there are more than 6000 new entries.

May-Nov. 2011  (v. 3.8.0)

The latest version of Editor is 3.8, released in mid-November.

Editor has a new Preferences option to ignore quoted material in USAGE's analyses.  This option will be especially useful to writers of fiction, scholarship, and journalism, who now can choose not to have possible mistakes and problems in their dialogue or other quoted material questioned by the program.  We have continued expanding the USAGE dictionaries, with more than 3300 new entries, along with fine-tuning of many entries to reduce false positives.  The Reference screens are thoroughly revised in conformity with the latest revisions to the Chicago Manual of Style, the Times (London) Style Guide, the Associated Press (AP) guidelines, and other authoritative sources.  We have continued to expand Editor's command of British (UK) English, now including many differences in usage, as well as in spelling, between US and UK styles.  (The user determines which dialect of English Editor assumes as standard, and it queries items that appear to come from the other dialect.)  We have refined and expanded the handling of trademarks that require capitalization or other spelling changes and have incorporated many modern changes to the traditional names of major world cities.  Checking hyphenation of numbers and numerals has improved, as has the routine to handle which/that confusions in US English.  We fixed a bug that prevented proper use of Word Add-In bookmarks, a bug in the Add-In Help button on the trial version, and a bug that caused spacing-error messages in Word 2003 .doc files that use footnote numbers.  We enlarged the database of overly formal and pretentious language, with recommendations for substituting plain-English terms.

Jan-Apr. 2011  (v. 3.6.0)

The latest version of Editor is 3.6, released in mid-April.

We have revised and updated some of Editor's Reference screens, modifying UK rules for punctuating quotations and adding suggestions for dealing with ellipses.  With help from The Times (London) Style and Usage Guide, we have extended Editor's already considerable command of British (UK) English.  Many common proverbs and traditional sayings have been added to POLISH and designated as proverbs or platitudes to distinguish them from other types of clichés.  Editor now has the ability to catch problem terms beginning with numerals: clichés like "24/7" and "800-pound gorilla(s)," redundancies like "100 percent perfect," and missing hyphens in terms like "10th century manuscript" and "21st century cyberwars."  As usual, many other new spelling and usage problems have been added to the USAGE database, and we have fixed a few minor bugs that we and some of our customers have found in the software.  Editor's collection of writing problems is now more than 52,000 individual, wildcarded items in 1.5 MB of text; our estimate of how many spelling errors, writing mistakes, and style problems the software can find is more than 200,000.

July-Dec. 2010  (v. 3.5.8)

Dictionary additions include many mistaken and troublesome terms used by writers in business, the media, and sports.  Normally, Editor's analyses do not include internal punctuation in terms it looks for, except ' and -.  A new routine, however, lets POLISH catch multiple variations of the same cliché using only one dictionary entry: here today gone tomorrow / here today, gone tomorrow / here today and gone tomorrow / here today, and gone tomorrow / here today but gone tomorrow / here today, but gone tomorrow.  Editor's list has many new clichés, as well, as we near the end (we will never reach it) of our exhaustive survey of formal and informal cliché collections.  The Reference screen on possessives and several other screens are improved.  New routines catch mistakes involving gerunds and infinitives after particular verbs.  For example, considers to go and manages going are both grammatically incorrect; they should be considers going and manages to go.  Editor now flags adjectives like ablaze and alone that do not properly precede nouns--we do not say "alone ranger," for example.  We believe these recent routines, with a new Reference screen that explains and illustrates them, will be helpful to many ESL writers.  We have done extensive new work on hyphenation in light of the Chicago Manual of Style's latest guidelines.

Aug. 2009-June 2010  (v. 3.5.2)

While developing our new Microsoft Word add-in that allows editing a Word 2003-2010 document directly in Word, with Editor's analytical comments displayed on screen (see our "What's New" page), we have also focused on expanding the USAGE dictionaries and refining the analysis routines they invoke within Editor.  In FIX, there are many new entries that find nonstandard uses of prepositions after adjectives, verbs, and nouns in phrases like (correct preposition in parentheses): analogous with (to), ashamed about (of), need for having (to have), similar with (to), and theories on (of/about).  FIX can also now identify many misused verb tenses with "stative" verbs that describe states of affairs or of being.  For example, it is improper English to say, "A water molecule is consisting of three atoms" or "I was preferring skim milk with my cereal."  FIX will catch many of these mistakes, more often made by nonnative than native English speakers.  Editor can now help with confusions between "which" and "that" in clauses: "The people which I saw robbing the bank were wearing masks" will provoke the suggestion to replace "which" with "that"--unless the writer is British.

In TIGHTEN, there are many new entries, including unnecessary prepositions in terms like exploring into (delete "into") and studying about (delete "about").  In SPELL1, the list of phrases needing compounding or hyphenation continues to expand, with particular attention to numbers, as in "We made a twenty four year commitment."  The list in POLISH of clichés and overworked or trite terms continues growing (remember that items on this list are not necessarily mistakes, but they do merit thinking about before using deliberately).  POLISH now lists nearly 10,000 items with a "capture" potential of nearly 45,000 clichés, trite expressions, inflated words and phrases, and vague terms.

A new pricing structure is in effect for the new versions.  See our buy-now page.

Feb.-July 2009  (v. 2.2.3)

We have added many new examples from our extensive collections of clichés, overused or trite expressions, and pretentious language into Editor's database dictionary POLISH.  As experienced writers know, using such terms is not necessarily wrong--sometimes they are the best ways to say something--but their overuse can lead to flabby and uninspired writing.  Editor's purpose is to call attention to as many as possible of them and let the writer decide whether to keep or change them.  We confidently claim that POLISH has by far the largest collection of such terms in captivity, more than 9,000, with many UK English entries as well as US English entries.  Because most terms are wildcarded to catch variant but equivalent forms, Editor's coverage of these terms extends to well over 35,000 instances.

Intensive work on Editor's spelling dictionaries has expanded their "capture" potential--the possible number of spelling mistakes the software can find--by many thousands, to an estimated 50,000. Few of these mistakes are found by Word's or WordPerfect's spelling checkers, often because they are phrases in which the individual words are correctly spelled. All of Editor's other dictionaries have new entries as well, including many new jargon terms, common in business, that have escaped to plague other domains of prose.

Oct. 2008-Jan. 2009  (v. 2.2.0)

Editor now can read Word 2007 .docx files directly: there's no need to save them as Word 97-2003 files first. The Editor dictionaries have many new spelling and word-usage entries.  There is a new routine to catch verb-particle pairs wrongly used as verb compounds—for example, "They plan to blowup the decrepit building."  In such cases, USAGE suggests two words, e.g., "blow up."  We have eliminated some false positives in the handling of verb-particle pairs.  A new routine flags a large class of common redundancies of the form "too overpriced" and "too undersized."

We have a new pricing structure for Editor upgrades: US$15.00 for an e-mail upgrade to any compatible address (see our "download" FAQ), US$20.00 for a CD upgrade package shipped anywhere in the world.

Apr-Sept. 2008  (v. 2.1.3)

Editor has a new opening screen and a new mechanical-errors Reference window discussing appropriate uses of colons in MLA, APA, and Chicago styles.  We fixed a bug that prevented display of several recent mechanical-errors Reference screens in the View Output window.  We have added information from the Economist's authoritative Style Guide on British rules and conventions and have reviewed the USAGE dictionaries to be sure we have British English equivalents of our American English writing-problem entries wherever appropriate (we had most of them but found a few to add).  Many new FIX and CONSIDER entries help avoid common misuses of terms like climatic for climactic and different for various.

Editor's ability to identify compounds that need hyphenation—and hyphenated terms that should not have hyphens—and to find verb-particle pairs that are redundant as nouns continues to grow.  So does its inventory of contextual spelling mistakes.  Microsoft's Word 2007 has finally gotten around to looking for contextual misspellings; Editor has had contextual spell-checking for more than twenty years.  As a glance through the sidebars on our Web pages indicates, we still find many such spelling errors (more than 30,000) that Microsoft overlooks.

Editor's POLISH collection of clichés, trite or overused expressions, and pompous terms is unequaled in the electronic world, and we have many additions yet to make.

We have recalculated our estimate of Editor's "scope," that is, of the number of writing errors and questionable terms that the program can now find, at more than 125,000.

Feb-Mar. 2008  (v. 2.1.0)

Many of Editor's References windows now include information about APA and Chicago Manual of Style rules, as well as MLA standard rules, where appropriate.  Although Editor's ability to find mistakes in using commas is limited—many uses of commas depend on meaning rather than on phrasal structure—a new Reference screen describes and illustrates the most common comma mistakes that writers make.

Editor's POLISH database of common clichés and trite expressions in British and US usage now includes more than 8100 items.  No comparable list can be found on the Internet—one site claiming to have the largest collection anywhere has fewer than 3500—and published books usually have 2000 or so.  SPELL1's database of mistakes that standard word processors' spelling checkers do not catch is now more than 12,500 items, most wildcarded so that our roughly estimated "catch" potential for spelling problems is now more than 21,500 mistakes.  Similarly, TIGHTEN's capture potential for wordy and redundant phrases has grown from 35,000 or so to more than 42,500.

July 2007-Jan. 2008   (v. 2.0.0)

Editor 2.0 was released in early January, 2008.  The new version of Editor provides expanded USAGE dictionaries and enhanced analysis routines that increase the scope and accuracy of Editor's coverage.  Editor 2.0 finds well over 100,000 errors and writing problems in 47 categories and provides several new features for custom-tailoring the program. Among the new routines in USAGE are checks for

      • improperly formatted dates;
      • double negatives;
      • verb-particle redundancies like bulge out, connect up, join with, and
        hundreds more;
      • mistakes in compounding and hyphenation: drop off and drop-off, hang up
        and hangup, middle-class and middle class, roundup and round up; the
        SPELL1 dictionary has more than 5000 new entries since July of this year.
      • correct handling of multiparagraph quotations;
      • some problems with missing punctuation.

New custom-tailoring options in USAGE allow

      • creating a personal "exclude" list of words and phrases the user wants
        USAGE to ignore;
      • organizing USAGE output by sentence number rather than by dictionary
        name (a feature we recommend only to experienced Editor users);
      • adding up to 20 items of the user's choice to the counted-items list.

WORD LISTS options, previously expanded to flag repeated phrases and paragraphs, now include a way to find paragraphs with excessive internal repetition.

The Manual has been thoroughly revised and the Reference and Help screens have been modified to reflect the new features.

Known bugs have been fixed, including the inability in some cases to scroll to the end of a file when output windows are tiled horizontally.

The price of Editor 2.0 is USD $50.00.  Domestic upgrades are $15.00, international upgrades $20.00.  Customers who purchased the pre-2.0 version of Editor during December at the price of $45.00, or who upgraded at pre-2.0 prices in December, will receive free e-mail downloads of version 2.0 in early January.
(Customers must have an e-mail server that will accept the download; see our FAQ on downloading for more information). Feb.-June 2007  (v. 1.9.1)

This Web site now includes a selection of comments from our customers: see "Who uses Editor?" on our FAQ page.  We have further expanded and improved Editor's analysis routines, improved elements of the user interface, and further augmented and refined the USAGE dictionaries, especially with more extensive information on proper compounding.  We can estimate Editor's scope at more than 95,000 writing problems, few of them uncommon or obscure.

Dec.-Jan. 2006-7  (v. 1.8.8)

Editor's dictionary databases now contain more than 26,000 items.  Including new routines in the SPELL2 analysis, the scope of USAGE's analysis can be estimated at more than 90,000 identifiable writing problems.

Aug.-Nov. 2006  (v. 1.8.5)

A new Preferences feature allows changing the way DRAFT Output is displayed on screen in View Output.  The output can be single-spaced (displaying more text at one time) or double-spaced (the default), and paragraphs that are not indented can be marked with [P] to make navigation easier.  Editor now counts quotation marks correctly in multiparagraph quotations and dialog, and knows both the US and the British conventions for punctuating around closing quotation marks: it will complain when a US writer uses the British convention, and vice versa.  There are many new USAGE dictionary entries, including more words commonly misused like farther and further, corespondent, and anticipate and expect.

We have modified the View Output window to show more text, and have made sure that feature works on monitor resolutions other than the standard 1024 X 768 pixels.  (Right-click on your desktop and click the Settings tab to find out what resolution you are currently using.)  At resolution 1280 X 1024, the View Output window displays 40% more text in either full or horizontally tiled form.

Apr.-July 2006  (v. 1.7.0)

Work on expanding and refining the USAGE databases has continued steadily.  Editor has a number of new and revised internal routines that improve the precision of FIX, SPELL1, SPELL2, and other analyses.  CONSIDER has more-comprehensive coverage of frequently misused words like habit / custom, fortunate / fortuitous, baneful / baleful, and so on.  Editor is highly ranked by Google as "proofreading software" and by TopTenReviews as "writing enhancement software."

Jan.-Mar. 2006  (v. 1.6.5)

Editor's Web site has a new Frequently Asked Questions page, and new links from the Upgrades page that will allow payment for inexpensive Editor upgrades by credit card using a secure PayPal site.

Following intensive new dictionary research and development, Editor's databases of spelling and usage problems now total more than 23,000 items.  The USAGE dictionaries have been modified to include British spellings, so that Editor now catches most cases where these usage problems include British spelling.  Because Canadian, Australian, and other anglophone writers use mixtures of British and American English spelling, their work is now covered by Editor's analyses, as well.  British writers who do not wish to be reminded when they use British spelling (as American English writers are) can turn off these reminders with a single click in Editor's Preferences menu.

Sept.-Dec. 2005  (v. 1.6)

The Writer’s Manual has been revised and updated in both screen and print editions.  Some of the Reference screens have been revised for greater clarity and precision.

The Chicago Manual of Style says, “of ten spelling questions that arise in writing or editing, nine are probably concerned with compound words.”  Editor's coverage and handling of compounds are greatly improved.   When the program finds a phrase that should be compounded or hyphenated before a noun, for example, it checks whether a noun actually follows that phrase in the text before issuing an error message.  Editor also handles compounds involving cardinal and ordinal numbers—forty five, ninety eight, “an eighteenth century bishop ” and “a fifth century iron pot” all get marked for hyphenation.  Four year olds, color terms like blue green, and many other such phrases are also marked.

The new site-license version of Editor, for use on servers and workstations in writing labs and classrooms, now prevents users from making changes to the program’s Preferences settings that would affect subsequent users.  Any user can change USAGE or WORD LISTS preferences while using the program but in this version, the software restores its default preferences each time a user exits.

New WORDLIST (renamed WORD LISTS) options can help writers find unnecessary repetitions of short phrases in their work and can even flag repeated passages from six words to a paragraph in length.

Apr.-Jul. 2005  (v. 1.2.6)

We reorganized the SPELL1 dictionary to distinguish more clearly among entries that contain outright misspellings, those containing commonly misspelled terms, and those identifying homonyms and near-homonyms that may not be misspelled but should be checked to make sure.

Feb.-May 2005  (v. 1.2.5)

Editor now reads most files produced by versions 6 and later of Microsoft Works (Editor must be running in Windows XP to do this).  The software now also reads most RTF files.

Editor can usually handle files that include exotic characters such as Chinese or Hebrew, stored by word processors using special coding.  The program cannot read such languages but seldom stumbles when their characters occasionally show up in otherwise ordinary English prose.

Since Oct. 2004 (v. 1.0.8), we have revised and expanded all the USAGE dictionaries except POLISH.  FIX (problems with grammar and usage) is 10% larger, TIGHTEN (wordiness, redundancy) 8% larger, SPELL1 (spelling problems) 18% larger, and CONSIDER (possible poor choices of words and phrases) 10% larger.  Since January 2004 (Windows v. 1.0), the USAGE dictionaries have expanded by a cumulative 25%.

Dec.-Jan. 2004-2005   (v. 1.1.5)

The View Output button now opens the output-file display screen and automatically displays all output files from the current Editor session, saving several steps for the reader who wants to work with more than one output file on screen at a time.   It is now easier, as well, to do a quick Editor check after changing a document.

Editor can now analyze document files of any practical length: there is no longer a limit on text-file size, though we still recommend breaking long files into several shorter ones for purposes of convenience and then reassembling the revised texts in the word processor for the final draft.  A new USAGE category, with explanatory Reference screen, warns the writer if a title or header is typed all in capital letters, a stylistic misdemeanor.

Editor no longer gives inappropriate warning messages when words like states and babe are capitalized in proper nouns like United States and Babe Ruth.  The Writer’s Manual chapters have been updated.

Several bugs that have caused SPELL2 analyses of some files to crash the program are fixed.  We would appreciate hearing about other SPELL2 problems.  Given a copy of the file causing the problem, we can fix the program and send an upgrade right away.

Editor now adjusts its displays if a user chooses the larger 120-dpi character size over Windows’s standard 96 dpi.

Feb-Oct. 2004    (v. 1.0.8 )

Many small modifications to the software are based on extensive and ongoing testing.  Work on the USAGE dictionaries has expanded them by about 15% since the January release.

Jan. 2004   (v. 1.0.1)

Editor for Windows® is published by Serenity Software.   This is a complete revision and upgrade of the DOS version previously published by the Modern Language Association (MLA) 1990-2001.  Copyright © 1990-2015 by E & J Thiesmeyer

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