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Re: MS office Under Linux

On Thu, 2007-01-04 at 21:32 -0500, Patrick wrote:
> Les wrote:
> > <snipped lots of "complex data">
> > 	Grammar checkers can do some interesting things, and they can improve
> > clarity, but they do not make one accomplished in language.  However,
> > their value for a non-native speaker is considerable.
> > Regards,
> > Les H
>    To jump back into the thread; grammar checkers should not be relied 
> upon by non-native speakers for important messages. As has been noted, 
> they have questionable value when writing something which is being used 
> to promote a professional image. If you are writing emails to a mailing 
> list, then they are fine and incorrect language is usually excused. If 
> you are writing to a business prospect, then there is no substitute for 
> a native speaker checking over your work before sending it out. If our 
> company does a presentation utilizing references to another language, I 
> always hire one of the local college students who is from that area to 
> double-check our work. Being American and dealing mostly with 
> businesspeople who speak English, I do not have too much of a problem. 
> But if I was in another country trying to woo an English-speaking 
> company, you can be sure that relying on Microsoft to correct my 
> correspondence is way too much of a gamble for me.
> Patrick
Hi, Patrick,
	There are several levels of communications, among them are publicity,
professional promotion, professional intercourse, professional
interaction, personal interaction, personal, urgent requests for

	The order I have listed them is also IMHO the order of priority for
context and grammar correctness, and should also be tied to cost/effect
relationships.  I believe that the use of grammar checkers satisfies
from personal interaction thorugh urgent requests for assistance.  From
the personal level up, you have to make a tradeoff of the cost in
time/money/effort/reward as you move upward in this chain, from using
local and personal friends reviewing the work to hiring professional
copywriters.  And you are right that from professional interaction up,
the grammar checker should not be relied on as the sole check of grammar
and context.  However as input to the professional checker, using a
grammar checker to help clean up the content can be helpful.  I used my
rough input, one checked by either a grammar checker or a local friend
to input my desires to a professional copy writer, and gave the
professional copywriter both copies along with copious personal
interaction in some cases.  

Note that I did not say that the grammar checker should be the exclusive
process, but only that it had great value.  As to the level of
communications, the very best communications is always written in sixth
or eighth grade level grammar and context.  This is common in the US.
In some communications lowering this to fourth or fifth grade level will
further ensure good comprehension by a larger audience.  However when
doing professional communications you should always employ language
relative to the age and sophistication of the audience.  And remember
that communications is always two ways in person, simplex in letters and
email, and unidirectional in presentations or advertising copy, thus
lowering the bar on technical levels as you go into this last list of
communications.  These things make specifying grammar in the US
difficult, but in some countries, such as Korea (one I am personally
familiar with) there are also issues of gender, generational and
professional status that are an important part of the communications
forms of address and grammar selection.

Les H

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