Why You Must Ask Yourself, Is My Sentence Correct

As a writer, I need to be particularly careful when it comes to things like spelling and grammar. Even if I hire ghost writers I cannot afford to let my guard down. After all, how can I publish an article about spelling and grammar and expect people to take me seriously if that article is full of errors? People who write regularly can make just as many errors as the next person can. When you are racing to meet deadlines, for example, it can be very tempting to skip proofreading before you submit work for publication.

English is often considered to be a lot easier than many other languages, but in truth, it is a very complex language. After all, it has more words than any other language, and the number of words grows by more than 4000 words every year. English grammar can also be very challenging even if English is your first language.

Quite often when I am writing an article I find myself looking at a particular sentence and thinking, is my sentence correct? The frustrating thing is, I often get even more uncertain the longer I stare at the sentence.

Spell Checkers & Grammar Checkers: If you are using a program like Microsoft Word, don’t assume it will pick up on all errors because it really won’t. It does quite a good job at detecting spelling errors, but it’s not very good at detecting grammatical errors.

Does It Really Matter?

Does it really matter if your writing is free of any spelling errors? Does it matter if your sentences are grammatically incorrect? In some cases, it is not really a big issue. I am sure your friends won’t even give it a second thought if your spelling is atrocious, and neither would anyone else who is close to you. In a more official environment, poor spelling and poor grammar can cause you a lot of problems.

If you write your own content for your website, poor spelling and/or poor grammar can and probably will have a negative impact on credibility. In other words, it is going to affect the way in which people see you.

Another example would be if you are a freelance writer. Clients will be paying you to write for them and they will expect your work to be grammatically correct and free of spelling errors. If you fail them they simply won’t hire you again, and of course, they might very well leave negative feedback which result in you missing out on a huge amount of work.

Common Errors Many People Make

A very common mistake which many writers make involves the phrase, “with regards to”, or “in regards to”. Both of these phrases are grammatically incorrect. The correct use of these phrases would be, “with regard to”, and “in regard to”.

Another example of a common grammatical error involves the incorrect use of the words “I and me”. Let us take a look at an example:

When you have completed the monthly expenditure report, please forward a copy to Paul and I“.

While it may not necessarily sound too bad if you read it out aloud, it is nonetheless incorrect. Try removing “Paul” from the sentence and then read it again. I bet it sounds quite silly now. The correct way would be:

When you have completed the monthly expenditure report, please forward a copy to Paul and me“.

I have only mentioned two common grammatical errors, but there are lots more, and many people continue making the same mistakes day in and day out because they are simply not even aware of it.

Spelling & Grammar Checkers

There are many online grammar checkers which one can use in order to check your written work for grammatical errors, and virtually all of them will also check for spelling errors. Some of these sites are free to use while others charge a monthly or yearly subscription.

It is important to remember that no software is bullet proof. In other words, some errors can still slip through, but if you are using a well-established checker, it will typically only miss grammatical errors that most human readers would never spot in the first place.

Happy writing, and look out for those common errors.

Please Somebody Help Me to Fix My Grammar

I don’t know about you, but even as a native English speaker, I still make mistakes when it comes to grammar. I, sometimes, get so frustrated to want someone to fix my grammar automatically. For me, this can be a major concern because I do a fair amount of freelance writing. When a client is paying me to write an article or an eBook for them they don’t want a book that’s littered with spelling errors and grammatical errors. They expect work which is ready for immediate publication. They don’t want to have to first fix grammatical mistakes, and I can’t blame them either.

Before I submit work that I have completed, I always proofread it first, but I have still had a few clients point out errors to me in the past. Fortunately, most clients are very understanding but it still bothered me. These days it doesn’t really happen anymore because apart from proofreading my work, I also check it with an online spelling and grammar checker.

Online Spelling and Grammar Checkers

Apart from the regular spelling and grammar checkers which are built into word processing software like Microsoft Word, you also get many websites offering different online spelling and grammar checking software. These online grammar checkers are without a doubt far superior to those that are included with word processing software, but as you might expect, most don’t come for free.

MS Word, in my opinion, does an excellent job at picking up on spelling errors, and to be honest, it is not too bad at recognizing grammatical errors either. However, it only tends to tell you that you have messed up, but it doesn’t offer any suggestions on how to correct your errors.

When I use an online software program, on the other hand, it doesn’t only highlight grammatical errors, but it also tells me how to fix my grammar, and this sort of thing can be immensely useful, particularly if you are prone to making grammatical errors.

As I have said already, there are several websites where you can sign up and then use the software which is available. Some will allow you to sign up for a free account but you will have limited access to some of the services or features being offered. This allows you to get a good taste for it, and then hopefully you will want to pay for a subscription that gives you 100% unrestricted access.

Grammar – Why Check it?

Let us face it; a body of text which is littered with spelling errors and grammatical errors really does not say much about the person who wrote the text. If you are a creative writer you can often get away with a few grammatical errors, just like musicians can get away with using poor English. After all, artists are to a certain extent allowed to bend the rules.

However, if you are writing anything which is even remotely formal, then you really do need to ensure your work is grammatically correct. Let us, for example, say you are applying for a job in a country where English is the first language. If your CV is full of spelling errors and grammatical errors, do you honestly think that prospective employers are going to take your application seriously? In some cases they might, but in most cases your job application is going to end up in the trash can.

This is why a lot of people pay freelance writers to write their CVs and their cover letters. The same can be said about many website owners who need written content for their sites. A website populated with poorly written content is never going to be taken seriously, and that is BAD for business.

Grammar Errors that Can Make You Look Dumb

If you often make grammatical errors, don’t beat yourself up over it because virtually everyone does. However, those who take the time to correct their errors are awarded a higher degree of respect. Your choice of words and how you use them can portray you in any number of positive ways, but even one simple error can easily have the exact opposite effect. Here are a few of the most common grammatical mistakes I regularly see:

Referring to Oneself – Many people get confused when it comes to the correct use of the words, I; me, and myself. Most people would instantly agree with me that the following sentence is grammatically correct:

* Mark and I had to hurry because we never wanted to miss the bus.

A lot of people automatically assume the same use or placement would be necessary if they were referring to themselves at the end of a sentence:

* John came running down the corridor because he wanted to speak to Mark and I.

In actual fact, the correct way would be:

* John came running down the corridor because he wanted to speak to Mark and me.

If you were ever in any doubt just ask yourself if the sentence would sound correct if you removed the other person’s name:

* John came running down the corridor because he wanted to speak to I.

The word “myself” should also only be used when it makes more sense than using “I” or “me”.

Loose vs. Lose – A lot of people use these two words incorrectly. This is sadly one grammatical error that will almost always give people the wrong impression of you. Loose would be used to describe some change in your pocket, or perhaps an item of clothing which is not tight fitting. Examples of this word being used include:

  • I have plenty of loose change in my pocket.
  • When I tried my new pair of pants on it was very loose.
  • The neighbor’s dog got loose and killed our cat.

Lose on the other hand is describing something which has happened to you. Here are a few examples:

  • I am going on a diet because I really need to lose weight.
  • I think I am going to lose another tooth.
  • Did you lose that telephone number I gave you?

I have only highlighted two extremely common grammatical errors that can really make you look bad, but these are far from being the only ones. If you have any doubt whatsoever concerning your own grammatical ability, then I would definitely recommend that you sign up with a site that offers an online spelling and grammar checker, even if you only join a site that offers free membership.

Can I Trust Software to Correct My Punctuation?

If you have difficulty with spelling and grammar, then believe me, you are far from being the only one. Even people who earn a living from writing make mistakes every day, hence the reason why they rely on proofreaders and editors.

Popular word processing software like Microsoft Word is really good at picking up on spelling mistakes, and even basic grammatical errors, but that is where it ends. Despite English being my first language, and despite the fact that I am forever writing articles and blog posts, I too make mistakes all the time.

Whenever I have finished writing an article, the very first thing I do is I check it for spelling errors and grammatical errors using online spelling and grammar checking software. Nine times out of ten I have to correct a number of errors. I have to correct a few spelling mistakes, I have to correct some grammatical errors, and yes, I often need to correct my punctuation as well.

Online Spelling & Grammar Checking Software

As is to be expected, there are numerous websites that offer spelling and grammar checking services. Many of these are free to use, while others are “members only” websites. Based on my own personal experience, most of the free services leave a lot to be desired. Programs like Microsoft Word are just as good, if not better.

On the opposite side of the scale you have the sites where you have to pay for a subscription, and yes, you get the sort of results you would expect to get. However, if you only need to check a few documents every week or every month, then these sites might not be financially viable for you.

Fortunately, there are some online services, such as Grammarly for example, that offer a free limited membership. As a non-paying member, you can use the software to check for spelling errors and critical grammatical errors, but it won’t help you to identify and correct what are deemed to be “advanced” grammatical errors.

I have used various spelling and grammar checkers, and I can assure you, if you want the absolute best then you need to be willing to pay for a subscription. The free programs I have used in the past have been good at spotting spelling errors and even some easy-to-miss grammatical errors, but most have failed to correct my punctuation.

Correct Punctuation

Flawless punctuation is not going to help you sell your latest article or your latest book, and neither is it going to win you any awards. However, poor punctuation is going to make your work stand out, and I don’t mean stand out in a good sort of way.

The strange thing about punctuation errors is the fact that most of your readers probably won’t even recognize them, but when they are reading your work, something just won’t feel right. This can be extremely detrimental to your business, because whenever you publish something you have written, you are essentially trying to win the trust of your audience, and incorrect utilization of punctuation can make your readers feel uneasy. They won’t know why, but as I have said, something just won’t feel right. Here are a few of the most common punctuation errors:

Extraneous Apostrophes – Many people use an apostrophe incorrectly when they want to pluralize something. They add an apostrophe, followed by the letter S, rather than just adding an S to the end of the word. To avoid this mistake, just remind yourself that an apostrophe indicates possession. For example, this is my dogÕs favorite toy.

Quotation Marks – Incorrect use of quotation marks is a very common punctuation error. Many people, including many experienced writers, will use quotation marks to “emphasize” a particular word or phrase. I make this mistake quite often myself, despite the fact that I know it is wrong. Quotation marks should only ever be used when you are actually quoting something. If you want to emphasize a word or a phrase, you should rather use bold or italicized font.

Insufficient Commas – Commas are your friend so don’t be afraid to use them, but also don’t overdo it. When you fail to use commas, sentences become almost robotic. To avoid this incredibly common mistake, simply read your work out aloud, and insert a comma whenever you have a brief pause, or whenever you take a breath of air between words.

Comma Overload – There is no set rule regarding the number of times you can use commas in a sentence or in a paragraph, but using too many commas really can make your writing look ridiculous. Again, you can avoid this mistake by reading your work aloud and then inserting your commas whenever there’s a slight break between words.

Exclamation Overload – Exclamation marks should really only be used when you want to leave the reader on a high point; when you really want to drive your message home. If you use too many exclamation marks in a block of text, they lose their value. Rather use them tastefully by saving them for when you really need to use them.

Its, It’s or Its’ – This is another extremely common punctuation trap which many people fall into. Simply put, if you are talking about something or somebody, then the use of it’s is correct. Just remember that it’s is short for it is. In other words, if you can’t replace it’s with it is, then it’s wrong. Its’ on the other hand is always wrong and should never be used.

Example:

It’s a very nice day today – Correct
I had to replace two of it’s batteries – Incorrect
I had to replace two of its’ batteries – Incorrect

Semi-Colons – A lot of people use semi-colons when they should in fact be using commas. To avoid making this mistake yourself, just remind yourself that commas represent very brief breaks between words or phrases, while semi-colons represent more definitive breaks. As such, they allow you to turn a group of words into a list within a sentence.

In this article I have only mentioned and discussed a few of the most common punctuation errors, and I have tried to give some tips on how you can avoid making these errors yourself. If you still don’t trust your own judgment, then just go ahead and check your writing with one of the online spelling and grammar checkers.

Is This Grammatically Correct? – Probably Not!

I write articles virtually every day of my life, and like many writers out there, I like to think that my work is 100% free of spelling errors and grammatical errors. Now, I am not trying to blow my own trumpet here, but I am pretty confident that all my writing work is free of spelling errors by the time it gets published. However, I am only human, so I guess I’ve probably slipped up on a few occasions.

When it comes to grammar, however, I don’t have the same level of confidence. I used to, but that was before I started using tools that scan my work for grammatical errors. English is my first language, and I’ve been writing for a number of years now, so I would have expected my grammar to a better than it is. Then again, I think most people would get quite a shock if they checked some of their written work with a good grammar checker.

Writers Can Break the Rules

It is true that writers, to a certain extent, are allowed to break the rules. This allows them the additional freedom to be creative. This bending of the rules is common in poetry for example. Singers also aren’t bound to strict grammatical rules.

When Does Good Grammar Matter?

If you only write to friends and family then they probably won’t even notice any grammar mistakes, and if you write articles that get published online, most of your readers probably won’t notice the odd grammar mistake here and there, and even if they do, they will probably take no notice of it.

However, if your article is littered with errors, then it is probably going to create a negative impact on your perceived credibility. This is why professional businesses pay people to write content for their websites. Good spelling and grammar portray a higher level of professionalism, and this is definitely something you need if you want your readers to take you seriously.

Excellent spelling and grammar can also give you the upper hand when you are applying for a new job. When an employee is reading through a pile of resumes, they obviously look at your qualifications, but subconsciously they will also be taking note of your spelling and grammar. In fact, spelling and grammar can play a crucial role, depending on the type of job you are applying for.

Another thing is the issue of plagiarism that needs to be checked in a document. That is a different but related subject covered in another article here

If your spelling and grammar leave a lot to be desired, no boss is going to want you to communicate with their valuable clients. It is quite simply bad for business. No matter what you are writing, be it an article, or be it a resume, always stop and ask yourself, is this grammatically correct. If need be, run it through a good grammar checker or get a very competent person to check your work for you.

An excellent example of careless spelling and grammar errors is an article in the Mirror about Tesco gaffe.

A Few Fun Facts

  • Did you know that “I am” is the shortest complete sentence in the English language?
  • Have you always taken a lot of pride in your spelling and your ability to pronounce difficult sounding words? Well, try to pronounce “Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis” and see how far you get, and yes, it is a REAL word, and it refers to a type of lung disease.
  • Did you know that approximately “4000” new words are added to the English dictionary every year?
  • Did you know that English is the international language of the air? Regardless of their nationalities, all pilots must be capable of communicating in English.
  • Did you know that at one point, the word “girl” did not refer to a young female? Instead, it referred to any small child.

Now, as I have admitted earlier in this post, I am only human, so if you pick up on one or two spelling errors or grammatical errors, please don’t judge me too harshly. Good luck with your writing, and if you have any reason to doubt your own competence when it comes to spelling and grammar then it would probably be a good idea to consider using a good spelling and grammar tool to scan your work for errors.

PluralSight Review – Unbiased Facts Unveiled

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These days it seems as though every second person you speak to is involved in the tech industry in one way or another. Of course it is also blatantly obvious that this trend is not about to change anytime soon either. In fact, it continues to be one of the world’s fastest growing industries, if not the fastest.

Whether you are a developer; a programmer; a designer, or even a creative writer, your only chance of success involves staying ahead of the game. There are millions and millions of people out there with university degrees which are relevant to their chosen career paths. These days degrees often don’t have the clout they once had, and graduates need to find other ways to make themselves more appealing to potential employees. The only way to do that is by continually building up your education portfolio.

Even digital nomads are no longer able to get by without acquiring advanced skills and qualifications. Actually, many employers aren’t really all that concerned about traditional university degrees anymore. This is particularly true when it comes to things like graphic design and etc.

Companies like PluralSight have recognized this phenomenon, and they have been quick to step up to the mark. They offer literally thousands of courses which have been specifically designed to offer real-life value in the workplace, and their impeccable reputation suggests that they must be doing something right, but are their courses really worth your time and money?

PluralSight – A Brief Overview

Before we get started with the actual PluralSight review, let’s first take a brief look at the company itself, including their mission and their objectives.

Described as being the biggest tech and creative writing library on earth, PluralSight first opened their doors back in 2004. Back then the company provided exclusively classroom-based training tailored for developers only.

By 2008, management had realized that there was a huge demand for other types of courses, and they believed that there were many professionals out there who would like to further their education, but without having to attend formal classes. This prompted management to take PluralSight online.

By the start of 2013, the company had more than 400 developer courses available. As the marketplace started shifting, with subscribers and potential subscribers requesting additional courses to support an ever widening range of skill sets, the company acquired funding to further accelerate growth. This included the acquisition of four other reputable training companies, with the biggest being the acquisition of Digital-Tutors in 2014.

Today, PluralSight offers over 3,000 courses, all of which have been authored by leading industry experts. Okay, from what you have read so far, you might already be thinking that there is no need to read any further, but let’s keep in mind that we are talking about furthering your education here, and it’s not a matter to be taken lightly. So, rather than jump in blindfolded, please continue reading. Don’t worry; I’ll get straight to the point.

Benefits of Enrolling with PluralSight

  • Convenience – PluralSight has certainly gone the extra mile to make sure that their courses are unbelievably convenient. Subscribers are able to complete their courses regardless of where about they are, and they are able to do so using virtually any device, including tablets; smart phones, and even a very innovative “offline” player.
  • Scope and Variety – It’s hard to even begin describing just how extensive their selection of course is. As some people have commented: when it comes to PluralSight, the question is not what courses do they offer, but rather, are there any courses they don’t offer.
  • International Recognition – All courses are 100% legitimate courses that have been developed by leading experts. They are specifically designed for use in a real-life working environment, and there is no doubt that they can successfully make your online resume shine out in a crowd.
  • Extremely Affordable – With subscriptions starting at just $29 per month or $299 per year, it’s difficult to imagine finding quality training for less anywhere else. If you are a quick learner, you get even better value for money because you are paying for monthly or yearly subscriptions rather than for individual courses.

Okay, we’ve looked at a brief outline of the benefits, but let’s discuss these in a bit more detail using a Pros and Cons type of format:

The Pros of PluralSight Training Courses

  • Convenience – PluralSight courses offer almost unrivalled convenience. Whether you are sitting in front of your computer at home, or whether you’re on the move, you can continue working your way through any of the courses currently being offered. Even if you don’t own a computer or a tablet, you can complete your course using nothing more than your trusty smart phone. In fact, you don’t even require “always on” internet access either because all study materials can be downloaded quickly and effortlessly when you do have access to the internet. This includes all necessary study materials, including video tutorials which can be viewed with a downloadable “offline” video player. In terms of convenience, PluralSight definitely gets full marks!
  • Scope & Variety – It is hard to imagine any course you could possibly be interested in, that isn’t currently being offered by this company. If your desired training course is related to IT; creative writing or etc. you are virtually guaranteed of finding it available through this company. If you have any doubts whatsoever, just go ahead and do a few online queries. No matter which sort of PluralSight review you read, you will see mention of the number of courses being offered by this company, and it’s not at all surprising really, considering that they now offer more than 3,700 courses that you can choose from.
  • Course Recognition – To be fair, judging these qualifications on an “international recognition” basis is something I personally would not agree with. The reason for this being that they are not designed to compete with university degrees and the like. You are not studying for a bachelor’s degree or any other degree for that matter. Instead, people who do these courses do so in order to increase their competence in their chosen field, and that is exactly what these courses are designed for. That’s not to say the courses are not recognized nationally or internationally, but they just are not recognized in the same way as university degrees are.
  • Value for Money – Starting at just $29 per month or $299 per year, nobody can deny the fact that PluralSight training courses offer exceptional value for money. Think about it for a moment. For less than $1 per day, you can acquire an education which will be with you for the rest of your life; qualifications and additional expertise which could potentially help you to increase your income tenfold.
  • Access to Tutors – When you do training courses with PluralSight you are never really left to struggle all by yourself. Yes, independent learning is definitely encouraged, but the company has structured their business model in such a way so as to ensure all their students have access to expert tutors and other likeminded students.
  • Certification – After completing each course successfully, students are awarded a certificate in order to prove their latest achievement. These certificates can easily be attached to your online resume, and as we all know, potential employers love to see a long list of relevant qualifications.
  • Free Trial – While it might not be a game changer for some people, the PluralSight Free Trial offered by the company is certainly a welcome feature. It allows you to get firsthand experience as far as study materials and so on are concerned, before you actually commit yourself to taking out a subscription.

The Cons of PluralSight Training Courses

  • Lack of Recognition – While there might not be very many “real” cons, one cannot just ignore the fact that there is no guarantee that your new qualifications will be recognized by one and all. After all, they are not professional university degrees with which most people are familiar. Nonetheless, this also should not deter you from completing courses through this company. Most of them can give you a profound advantage in the workplace, and at the end of the day, that’s what matters the most. If this is something you are very concerned about, I would suggest getting in touch with the customer service department in order to discuss your concerns.
  • Language Limitations – Although it is to be expected, I feel the company could attract significantly more customers if they made their courses available in more languages.
  • Overwhelming Variety – I have read countless reviews relating to this company, and I have come across a number of comments from people who say that they felt a bit overwhelmed by the sheer amount of variety on offer. With so many courses available, some people feel that it is difficult to decide which course best fits their individual needs. If you find yourself in this position, I would recommend signing up for the free trial, and then once you have done that you will be able to ask for professional advice regarding which is the best course for you.

PluralSight Review Towards Their Customer Service Department

Whenever you order something online, be it a material object, or be it a service, it always involves you having to place a certain amount of trust in the company you are dealing with. As you no doubt already know, most online businesses offer Money-Back guarantees; warranties, and supposedly outstanding customer support.

If you have even had reason to test any of these personally, there’s a strong possibility that you walked away in the end feeling very disappointed. Of course, it is never the company’s fault because as they will quickly point out, all their terms and conditions are publicly available on their websites, although usually only hidden in the fine print.

I have not personally put PluralSight to the test, but I have studied countless reviews, and what I discovered seemed to me like a breath of fresh air. I’ve only managed to uncover very few negative comments relating to customer service at PluralSight, and of those, a large percentage appear to have been left prematurely. The overwhelming majority of subscribers who have commented about customer service have only had good things to say.

Reviewer’s Recommendation

It is somewhat difficult for me to say whether I recommend PluralSight because I have never enrolled in any of their course. I wish I could but I simply don’t have the time. Nonetheless, I have spent a considerable amount of time exploring their website, and I’ve spent far more time studying reviews and feedback from past and present students / customers.

It is my honest opinion that this company can be trusted to provide their subscribers with genuinely good training courses which can later be put to use in a real-life working environment.

Customer service personnel also appear to have a genuine desire to assist people with queries, while expert tutors are on hand to provide professional help with any course related difficulties which you might encounter along the way

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If you would like to find additional information about PluralSight or the many courses they currently offer, please

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Download Dragon Naturally Speaking – Meeting the Dragon

Dragon Naturally Speaking is a high-end product, and as is often the case, premium products demand premium prices. It is not the sort of product you should buy just because you like the idea of being able to write articles without having to type a single word. Mastering the software requires quite a bit of commitment, but if you can get through this, Dragon is exceptionally good at what it does. It’s fast; it’s amazingly accurate, and it can quite literally slash the amount of time you spend on your keyboard in half.

Performance

No matter what you read when you download Dragon Naturally Speaking software, you will almost certainly read a lot of good things regarding the performance of this software. The speed with which it processes your speech and converts it to text is actually incredible, and the high level of accuracy makes it seem even more unbelievable.

Unlike with previous versions of this software where you were required to use a good quality microphone, the latest version allows you to use the built in microphone of you PC; laptop and etc. When this new capability was extensively tested, the results showed that accuracy was only marginally less than what it is if you use a high quality connected microphone. These tests were done with the user sitting 40cm from the microphone on their laptop.

According to Nuance, the latest version of their Dragon software is 15% more accurate than Dragon Naturally Speaking 12, which was the previous version. However, since version 12 was in itself incredibly accurate, most users probably won’t even notice a jump of 15%.

Another remarkable quality of Dragon Naturally Speaking 13 is its uncanny ability to handle even very technical dictation. Yes, the software will occasionally mistake “an” for “and” but if minor errors like this appear once or twice in every three or four paragraphs then it is not really a major issue. Some users have also reported that a “full stop” command is sometimes mistaken for the word “stop”, but again, these minor errors tend to be far and few between, and most are very easy to correct.

One very important thing to keep in mind if you are considering purchasing this software, is the fact that no matter how efficient the software is, your own dictation skills play a crucial role. Many people incorrectly believe that dictation is simply a matter of speaking the words, phrases and sentences they want converted into text. In reality however, there is more to it than that.

The accuracy and efficiency of Dragon Naturally Speaking will to a large extent depend on you how clearly you pronounce your words, and of course your grammar is also important. With all that having been said, even if you have never dictated anything in your life before, you will almost certainly be very impressed at just how good this software is. In fact, if you are new to dictation, you will find that the software is able to transcribe faster than what you are able to dictate.

As with virtually all software, Dragon is dependent on the performance of your computer. If your computer or laptop is starting to age, make sure you pay close attention to Nuance’s recommended system requirements. For example, you will need at least 4 GB of drive space. You will also need 2 GB (32 bit) RAM or 4 GB (64 bit) RAM, and at least a 2.2 GHz dual-core processor.

With previous releases, users were required to train the software so that it could better recognize their voice and accent. This was done by dictating scripts provided by Nuance, but even after completing this process, the software continued to learn every time you dictated anything. With the latest version, this is no longer necessary, although the option to do so is still available.

Dragon is incredibly fast and accurate even if used straight out the box, but if you are willing to invest some time to train it, and to familiarize yourself with all of its different nooks and crannies, you will find it becomes even faster and more accurate.

PROS

Dragon Naturally Speaking supports webmail dictation; it is incredibly fast, and remarkably accurate. Depending on your dictating proficiency, it can allow you to complete a written document in half the time it would take the average person to type that same document. The software actually learns an individual’s writing style by scanning previously written content such as emails, Google Docs and etc. It is also seen as being the world’s leading voice recognition software. Lastly, the latest version allows you to start using the software straight out of the box without any need for training it.

CONS

At the time of writing this Dragon Naturally Speaking review, Google Chrome is not supported as well as Internet Explorer. The software also doesn’t include any automated transcription, and for many people, the learning curve can be quite demanding because it really does need a reasonable amount of dedication in order to get the most out of it. For most individuals, its relatively high price tag is perhaps the biggest con.

Compatibility

As long as your machine or device meets the recommended system requirements such as hard drive space and RAM, Dragon Naturally Speaking is generally compatible with all versions of Windows. If you use a Mac, then you will need to purchase Nuance’s Mac version of the software which is called Dragon Dictate for Mac.

The latest version of Dragon features enhanced compatibility which allows it to be used with a range of programs which were sadly excluded in earlier versions. Today you can use it in most webmail applications, including Gmail; Yahoo Mail; Outlook, and etc. The latest premium version is also compatible with programs such as Excel; Power Point; WordPad; MS Word and etc. However, program compatibility depends on which version of the software you purchase. For example, the “Home” edition does not support programs like Excel and Power Point, while the “Premium” version does.

Language Compatibility

When you initially install the software, you are asked to choose between “Typical Installation” and “Custom Installation”. If you choose Typical Installation, the software’s TextBridge feature will automatically install English; French; German; Italian and Spanish language packs.

If “Custom Installation” is chosen, you will have the option to also install Danish; Dutch; Finnish; Norwegian; Brazilian; Portuguese and Swedish.

Choosing the Best Dragon

Nuance has fine tuned their Dragon software to suite various niches. This has basically been achieved by creating slightly different versions, with each one tweaked for a particular niche. For example, you get Dragon for Business; Dragon for Healthcare, and of course, Dragon for Individuals.

This is not to say that Dragon for Business won’t be compatible for use in a healthcare environment, but the Dragon for Healthcare is obviously a better choice because it has be specifically tweaked for this particular niche.

Value for Money

How much value are you getting for your money when you download Dragon Naturally Speaking? I guess this is a million dollar question because the value of this software will vary from one person to the next, and also from one business to the next. It will also depend on whether you purchase the “Home” version or the “Premium” version. In short, the more valuable your time is to you, the more valuable this software will be.

Let’s take a writer for example, who typically needs to write as many as many articles as possible each day for the sake of article marketing. If this writer can type an average of ten articles per day, Dragon Naturally Speaking 13 could potentially allow them to complete 20 articles per day, or to complete their required amount of articles in half the time it usually takes them.

The value is even greater for people who are slow typists because by using the software, they can effectively produce written text just as fast as anyone else can. Anyone who uses this speech recognition software can save a considerable amount of time, and especially if they are dedicated to learning how to use it correctly.

Despite the obvious advantages of this software, many people may however still be put off by the price. This is particularly true as far as your average person is concerned, considering that Microsoft Windows includes some free basic voice recognition features. For this reason, I wouldn’t class it as an “impulse buy” product. If you rarely spend time typing, then I think it is an expensive option which you could probably do without.

On the other hand, if you do spend a lot of time typing emails; memos; letters or articles, then it is by far the best voice recognition software currently available, and in my opinion, it represents excellent value for money.

Learning Curve

One of the most important things to keep in mind before purchasing this speech recognition software, is the fact that it is without any doubt a high-end product. It is “professional” software in the true sense of the word. It is amazingly good at what it does, but this advanced capability comes with a price, and I don’t only a price tag. The real price you pay is dedication to learning how to use it properly in order to get the most out of it.

Even though Dragon Naturally Speaking 13 can be used straight out of the box, without you first having to train the software, it can still be relatively challenging, and particularly for people who aren’t technically minded.

To a certain extent, the software is incredibly user friendly, but this is generally limited to its more basic features. For example, if you have the software running when you launch your browser, it will automatically run in your browser. If you were then to log into gmail or whichever webmail you use, you could effortlessly reply to emails by means of dictation using your Dragon software. It really couldn’t be any easier.

The software is remarkably efficient at learning your style of writing and grammar, but it does still make errors, and correcting errors can be somewhat cumbersome and time consuming. I’ve read in some reviews that it’s the software itself which is responsible for a relatively long learning curve. Personally, I agree with others who argue that the length of the learning curve depends largely on how fast you are able to master the art of dictation.

As I’ve mentioned earlier in this review, dictation is not as easy and as straightforward as it first seems. The bottom line is: The faster you learn how to dictate properly, the shorter your learning curve is going to be.

Final Verdict Before You Download Dragon Naturally Speaking

Dragon Naturally Speaking 13 boosts Rock Solid accuracy and it is incredibly fast. Its built-in macro system, if used correctly, can make Dragon even faster since it allows you to fully automate commonly used phrases and sentences. It’s also good to see that Nuance has now made it possible for users to use built-in microphones rather than always having to use a plugged in microphone, as was the case with earlier versions of the software.

On the downside, many novice computer users will almost certainly find the software a bit confusing and tricky to use. Additionally, while most PCs and Macs will have no problem running this software, it is nonetheless high-spec software which might prove to be too heavy for some portable devices such as laptops, tablets and etc.

If you have a suitable machine capable of running Dragon Naturally Speaking 13, and you’re willing to invest a reasonable amount of time in order to fully understand the software, then in all honesty, there is no better choice out there.

Using a Plagiarism Checker For Free – The Facts

Plagiarism is the act of copying content which actually belongs to someone else. For example, you need to publish an article on your website that explains all about house training puppies, but you are not a good writer, and you also don’t want to hire a writer. Instead, you visit someone else’s site and you copy one of their articles which you then post on your site.

What Are the Risks?

If you copy content from a website belonging to another person or business entity, you could, in fact, be guilty of a criminal offence, depending on the circumstances. Strictly speaking, plagiarism in itself is not illegal. However, if you copy content which is protected by copyright laws, then you could be sued in a court of law for copyright violation.

Many people have their own blog sites with plenty of content that is not protected by copyright laws, but unless you want to run the risk of being involved in a very costly court case, you really need to tread very carefully when it comes to copying other people’s content.

For most average website owners, the big worry is not about the possibility of being sued, but instead, it is about Google. Google HATES duplicate content!!! You can try every SEO (search engine optimization) trick in the book to improve your rankings in the search results, but if Google discovers that your site is full of duplicate content you can quite literally kiss your rankings goodbye.

I GUARANTEE you that you cannot fool Google. If you publish duplicate content on your site you WILL get caught out. Plagiarism might be very tempting at times, but it is simply not worth the risk.

Why Use A Plagiarism Checker?

Many people and particularly full-time writers use plagiarism checker in order to check whether or not their work will stand up to Google’s scrutiny. Although unintentional plagiarism is not very common, it can still happen. This is when you write an original article but when you run it through a plagiarism test it fails. This has in fact happened to me once before a good few years ago, and for this reason, I always check every article I write.

Plagiarism checkers can of course also be used to see if anyone else has been copying content from your site and then publishing it on their own site. If you find some of your content elsewhere on the internet, you can then report that site to Google, and yes, action will be taken.

Plagiarism Checker For Free

Is it possible to use a plagiarism checker for free? To be honest, I am not actually sure if I should say yes, or if I should say no. There are a couple of free plagiarism checkers out there, but I have personally never had much luck with them. Quite often, when you actually try to use them you simply end up with an error message telling you your request could not be processed.

Some free checkers also don’t compare all the text in a document, but instead, they only compare randomly chosen sentences. In some cases, you might also be restricted to a certain number of scans per month, while other websites require you to sign up for a free membership and then they bombard you with countless emails.

Sites that offer a spelling checker; a grammar checker and a plagiarism checker all under a single banner with reasonably priced subscriptions tend to work best for me. This allows me to conveniently check for spelling errors and grammatical errors before running it through a plagiarism test. There’s no need for me to go from one site to the next. I can carry out all three tests from a single location and then publish or submit my completed work.

Nonetheless, if you have a REALLY tight budget, then, of course, any plagiarism checker for free is better than no checker at all.

Kaspersky Labs Total Security Review – The Pros and Cons

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Keeping your digital world safe and secure should be one of your top priorities these days. Fortunately, most modern-day hackers have too much self pride to waste their time on common folk like myself. Instead, they target government agencies and large business organizations, just like we saw a short while ago when Sony Pictures got hacked. Still, there are probably millions of shady characters out there who are intent on creating and/or spreading computer viruses and other sorts of malware.

You can bet your last dollar, that if you were to disable or uninstall all your security software, and you use the internet every day, you will definitely end up with malware on your computer or mobile device. Even with my own computer being “fully protected” I still occasionally discover a threat or two when I do a full system scan.

These days, and particularly in the more developed countries, people have embraced modern conveniences such as online shopping and online banking. More often than not, their personal details, including their financial details, are stored somewhere on their computers, and quite often on a mobile device as well. This reliance on technology makes us extremely vulnerable to cyber criminals.

Like other internet security suites, Kaspersky Labs Total Security has been designed specifically for keeping your computer safe from attack. One of the very attractive features of the particular software is the fact that it’s been designed to be compatible with all devices, including Mac; iPad, and any Android powered mobile device. Okay, Kaspersky Total Security review will take a look at what you can expect from this software if you choose to purchase it.

Performance

Overall, this security suite performs very nicely, and certainly a lot better than some of its competitors, but of course, it has been created by Kaspersky Labs, who many see as being the world’s number one internet security software provider. However, we need to keep in mind that performance and speed are two different things. If you are looking for antivirus software capable of doing a full system scan in the shortest possible time, then Kaspersky’s Total Security suite is probably not the best choice for you.

This is not to say that this software is slow, but as far as full system scans are concerned, it is not the fastest kid on the block. In a recent test carried out by the people over at PC Advisor, a full system scan of 494,295 files took 1 hour and 54 minutes. This software suite does it slightly faster than the previous offering, but compared to other security packages that were tested, Total Security is somewhat on the lower end of the list in terms of scanning speed.

With that having been said, Kaspersky Total Security does not slow down system performance as much as some other security programs do. In fact, during the tests that were carried out at PC Advisor, it was noted that Total Security had virtually no negative impact on overall system performance at all.

Personal Security

As with most comparable software suites, Kaspersky Total Security does a really good job at preventing others from infecting your computer or mobile device. When analysts tested its ability to detect spam emails, it proved to be very reliable. The software does slow down email retrieval times, but almost no spam messages made it into the Inbox. Also, no legitimate emails were mistaken as spam.

Total Security also scored full marks in PC Advisor’s “Threat Detection Test” which is designed to test just how robust a security program is. This brings me back to the subject of phishing, and I honestly believe that people should consider the fact that Kaspersky Total Security is virtually the only security software package to outperform Symantec Norton Security.

Obviously, when it comes to performance, a lot also depends on your own computer setup, at least in terms of speed. Aside from that though, Total Security from Kaspersky really does offer users an outstanding level of internet security, even though some people quite rightly believe it could have a lower price tag.

Intelligent Firewall

As with Kaspersky’s entry level suite, Total Security also comes with an “intelligent firewall” which has proved to be incredibly effective at warding off attacks. Not only is it virtually indestructible, but it also monitors other programs in a bid to detect installed programs that are attempting to connect to a network.

The software generally assigns a security rating to all programs. Program with the lowest rating are then subjected to increased scrutiny. When analysts tested the robustness of the Total Security firewall, they found that nearly all direct attacks were blocked. Additionally, the software successfully blocked around 60% of all exploit attacks. While this might not seem all that impressive at first glance, consumers should keep in mind that this figure is quite a bit higher than it is with several other security suites.

Financial Security

With more and more people embracing the concept of online shopping, protecting your financial details is more important than ever before. Credit card companies have gone to great lengths to protect their customers, and most e-commerce sites have likewise tried to ensure that people can shop with complete peace of mind.

Sadly, there are thousands, if not millions of very smart people out there who will do almost anything to get a free meal. Many times, cyber criminals gain access to your personal details, including your financial details with simple key logging programs, or by running other types of relatively simple malicious software on your machine or your mobile device.

Kaspersky has taken “financial security” to a whole new level by incorporating a feature known as “Safe Money”. If you visit any sort of sensitive site, such as online banking for example, the Total Security software will give you the option to launch it from within the “Safe Money” protection system. If you choose to use this feature, a virtual keyboard allows you to complete your tasks, thereby making it impossible for any key logger to track things like usernames and passwords.

Even if you do use your regular keyboard, the software has a “keyboard encryption” feature which ensures that nobody can trace or track your keyboard activity. In addition to what I have already mentioned, there is also a “Safe Surf” feature which acts as an additional barrier. This piece of the software attempts to guide you away from potentially fraudulent sites, but it doesn’t end there. If activated, Safe Surf will completely wipe out all surfing and browsing history. I could elaborate some more but to be honest; the list goes on and on.

Multi-Device Functionality

If you’ve read this review all the way up to this point, I’m sure you will agree that Kaspersky Labs Total Security packs a powerful punch. However, when it comes to multi device functionality, there is certainly a lot of room for improvement.

If you have a Windows powered PC and an Android powered mobile device, this security suite is really the bee’s knees, but if you have a Mac, or any iOS powered device, then I personally don’t think this is the best choice due to a few rather significant limitations.

For example, if your device is running on an iOS, you are more or less limited to only password management and safe browsing, over and above the usual virus scanning capabilities. The Mac version is also very limited compared to the PC version, and despite this, the software costs more than numerous other security suites. I have also personally had an issue when I installed the Mac version of this software on my MacBook Pro. It froze up my computer and my Mac started misbehaving completely and I had to take my system to the Apple service center who had to fully format the hard disk to restore my system. The bottom line is, if you have a Mac or you use an iOS device, then my advice would be that you should consider a few other choices instead of purchasing this software.

Backup & Restore

To be fair, this software suite makes backing up of files and folders as easy as it can be. Not only does it walk you through the entire process, but it also makes it very easy for you to define your own backup parameters. For example, if you only want to backup your music, your videos and your photos, you can do so with just a few clicks of the mouse.

On the downside, free backup storage space is somewhat limited, in that you only get the free 2GB which is available from Drop Box. This limited “free” storage allowance applies even if you pay for a “5 device” license. Sure, additional storage space can be purchased, but considering the price of this software, 2GB is a little bit on the stingy side if you ask me.

Parental Controls

When it comes to parental controls, this software package definitely scores full marks in our Kaspersky Total Security review because it really knocks the socks off other internet security suites. In fact, Kaspersky has taken Parental Controls to an entirely new level. These days kids are becoming internet savvy younger than ever before, and while this is certainly a good thing, it can also make young children incredibly vulnerable to online abuse.

I personally believe education is better than control. I believe that parents should teach their kids the difference between right and wrong, but I am also wise enough to know that temptation can often be too much for kids to resist. Kaspersky has well and truly nailed it in this regard.

Perhaps the most distinguishing feature is that its content filter CANNOT be subverted with the aid of an “anonymizing” proxy. Simply put, the software is remarkably successful at blocking such proxies. Another wonderful feature for concerned parents is that you are able to set a grid or timetable for allowable computer time. For instance, if you don’t want your kids playing on their computers after eight in the evening, you can setup Kaspersky Total Security to make sure they don’t.

Likewise, you can stipulate how much time your child or children can spend on the computer each day. You can also impose limits on the amount of time your kids spend on the internet. Over and above these parental control features, Total security also allows parents to do the following:

  • Control and/or restrict access to games based on ESRB ratings.
  • Deny access to certain specific programs.
  • Prevent kids from sharing/sending personal data such as telephone numbers; addresses, passwords, and etc.
  • Decide who their children can chat with on social media sites.

In short, the only things that are missing are Remote Control and Notifications. As a parent myself, I feel that both of these features could be very useful for parents because it would allow you to change your current parameters without having to access your child’s PC directly, and notifications would let you know whenever your child has attempted to overstep the boundaries.

Reviewer’s Recommendation and Suggestions on Kaspersky Labs Total Security

In my opinion, which is largely based on the countless reviews I’ve studied, Kaspersky Labs Total Security is robust enough and flexible enough to suit the needs of most people. This is particularly true if you own a PC and one or more Android powered devices. On the other hand, if you are a Mac and iOS fan, then this software might not be the best choice for you. Last but not least, it is a little bit pricey, especially for those people who don’t really need all the different bells and whistles such as the unbeatable parental controls.

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Make a Video Online – Accurate “Content Samurai” Review

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Content Samurai supposedly makes it unbelievably easy for anyone to make a video online, and in this review we are going to see what others are saying about this software. We will also go through a list of the main benefits, and well a list of pros and cons. Additionally, we will look at what sort of role video plays in terms of SEO.

Right, before I kick off, I first need to make something absolutely clear. I myself have never personally used Content Samurai. This is not because I don’t trust it or because I don’t have faith in it, but rather because I don’t have any immediate need for video presentations right now. Anyway, everything you read in this review is based solely on data and information which I found online while I was researching Content Samurai for the purpose of this review. The pros and cons in particular are also based entirely on feedback and testimonials put forward by other people who have used this and other software made by the same company. Okay, let us get started.

Content Samurai is a software program developed by the same people who designed Market Samurai. Market Samurai is an extremely popular and highly versatile keyword research tool that I have also been using for more than 5 years now. The content samurai software has essentially been designed as a video content creation tool for people who have no experience at creating video presentations, and/or for people who simply donÕt have the time it takes to produce quality video using conventional methods.

Having recently watched the demo version on the Content Samurai website, it is clear that the focus has been simplicity and quality. It is also clear that anyone who is capable of clicking a mouse will be able to produce a rather impressive looking video in a matter of minutes.

Many internet marketers, as well as many advertizing specialists and SEO experts believe that the power of video presentations is going to continue to grow. The makers of Content Samurai are obviously aware of this sentiment, and they have been quick to launch a tool which effectively puts video creation within reach of everyone.

Using this software, users can turn any collection of text into a very professional looking video presentation in just 5 simple steps.

Get A Professional Looking Video in 5 Steps

Once you have logged into your account, you just need to follow 5 simple steps in order to have a good quality video.

  1. Click on the “Create New Video” button in order to get the process started. Let’s, for example, say you want to turn one of your blog posts into a video presentation. For the first step you will either need to type in the title of your blog, or just copy and paste it into the “Title” field, and then copy and paste the main content (body) of your blog post into the relevant box.
  2. To start the second step, you just click on the “Create Slides for your Video” button near the bottom of your screen. Content Samurai will then automatically cut your text up into manageable sizes and you will then have an opportunity to review the text snippets. At this point you can also change the appearance of the slides using various options which are displayed to the left of your screen. Alternatively, you can add images to the slides as well. There are millions of royalty free images you can choose from, or you can use your own images. Once you have reviewed your slides, it is time to move onto the next step.
  3. In this step you will need to record your audio. Once again the software automatically cuts your text up into small chunks to make recording easier. You can either record your script manually by recording yourself as you read the small chunks of text, or you can use the automated audio option in which case you don’t need to do anything apart from clicking a button. The software also makes it incredibly easy for you to add music to your video, simply by choosing one of the many royalty free tunes made available to you on the left hand side of your screen if you click the “Add Music” button. I should stress that there is absolutely no editing necessary in order to have your music and your slides perfectly synchronized.
  4. When you reach this step all you have to do is review your video to make sure you are 100% happy with it. If you are, then it’s time for the final step.
  5. Step 5 is downloading your video to your computer or any similar device of your choice, simply by hitting the “Download Video” button.

Top Benefits of Content Samurai

  • You can turn any collection of text into a classy video presentations, including articles, blog posts, sales letters, and etc.
  • You don’t need to be an experienced videographer in order to make professional looking videos. In fact, anyone can do it with this software.
  • You can produce great looking videos in just five simple steps.
  • The software includes a number of features which you can use to automate various tasks, which in turn will make the entire process even quicker than what it already is.
  • It has the potential to boost search engine rankings for your site even if you don’t have a high authority site.
  • It is easy to post your videos on your own website, on YouTube, Facebook, or virtually any other social networking platform.

I have only mentioned six of the most obvious benefits in the list above, and I haven’t really elaborated much. However, most of the above benefits will also appear in the list of pros below, where I will discuss them in a bit more detail.

Content Samurai Pros

  • Anyone Can Use It – When the creators of Content Samurai say anyone and everyone can now make their own professionally looking videos, they really do mean it. Seriously, they are definitely not exaggerating. If you know how to copy and paste and you know how to click your mouse, you can quite literally produce a really good video in a matter of minutes.
  • Only 5 Steps – As you can see further up the page, there are only 5 simple steps to follow in order to create a great looking video, and let’s face it, all 5 steps really are simple.
  • Super Fast – The software seems to process everything really quickly, and particularly if you have a decent internet connection. Depending on the amount of text involved, and depending on your internet connection, you really can create a high quality professional looking video in well under one hour.
  • Unrestricted Use – Content Samurai costs the same for everyone, in that there is only one type of subscription. For your money you get full access to the software and all accompanying features. There is no limit to the number of videos you can create. You can create one or two, or you can create a thousand; it is totally up to you.
  • Unconditional 30 Day Money Back Guarantee – According to the creators of Content Samurai, subscribers are automatically covered by a no-questions-asked 30 day money back guarantee. If for any reason you don’t like the software you can contact Customer Support and they will immediately cancel your subscription. Unfortunately, I have been unable to find any information online to support such claims. On the other hand, I also have not seen any reports claiming otherwise.
  • Real Time Saving – All progress is saved in real time while you work which means you don’t have to worry about forgetting to save your work. In this respect, they have your back covered.

Content Samurai Cons

  • Expensive – While Content Samurai isn’t necessarily more expensive than some other video production software, it will still be too expensive for many cash strapped internet marketers who are still struggling to find their feet. Yes, it is a really amazing tool, but that still doesn’t change the fact that you are going to be forking out $97 per month for the privilege of being able to use it. One possible workaround here would be for you to subscribe; spend a day or two really getting the hang of it, and then just start creating as many videos as you can before you reach the end of your monthly subscription.
  • Bare Bones Website – Apart from a Customer Support link and a Terms & Conditions link, there is virtually nothing on the Content Samurai landing page other than the demonstration video and an option to subscribe. It really is a straight off the bat site that offers virtually no additional information. In all fairness though, the demonstration video does basically tell you everything you need to know. Nonetheless, I have read a few comments online where people have said the bare bones approach makes them reluctant to subscribe.
  • A Lack of Balanced Reviews – I have really searched high and low for information relating to this product, such as reviews and customer testimonials, but I have only had limited success. In an attempt to remedy this, I started researching Noble Samurai, the company behind Content Samurai. I have since come to the conclusion that this company can be trusted, but the lack of publicly available information may put some potential customers off. But, I can definitely personally vouch for their another product, Market Samurai, that I have been using for over 5 years for all my keyword research requirements. And I must tell you that I am extremely happy with this software.
  • No Video Upload Feature – Content Samurai has no feature to facilitate the immediate uploading of videos to sites like YouTube. You have to download all your videos yourself, and then upload them to the sites of your choice. This all takes time, and I am sure some sort of upload feature would certainly attract more customers.

Why Use Video Content?

Video results are increasingly starting to appear on the front page of Google’s search results. These are typically videos which ordinary YouTube users have uploaded to YouTube, and ironically, these videos often enjoy better placement in search results than high authority websites or high authority content which is limited to script only.

Let us take Content Samurai as an example. If you type the words “Content Samurai” in Google’s search box, the search giant returns more than 24 million results. If you try doing this yourself at some point, you will notice there is a video result in third position on page one as you can see in the screen shot below. Start taking note from now on and you will see something similar happening more and often. This doesn’t mean you need to jump straight onto this software, but there is definitely a new trend starting to form.

Reviewer’s Recommendation and Suggestions

Overall, I believe that Content Samurai is genuinely an exceptional tool that really does make it possible for anyone to make a video online. However, I do also agree with others that have said it is a bit on the expensive side, and particularly for those people who are only just starting to learn about internet marketing.

I also believe that the designers should definitely consider adding a feature that allows users to upload their completed videos directly to sites like YouTube, Facebook and etc. With a price tag of $97 per month, I just feel that this type of feature should be included. Of course, if you can afford a subscription and you don’t require an instant upload feature then I am sure you will be able to make great use of Content Samurai.

If you would like more information about Content Samurai, please watch the demonstration video.

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If you would like more information about Content Samurai, or you would like to watch the demonstration video for yourself, then:

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Best Free Grammar Checker – An Unbiased Review

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If you are searching for the best free grammar checker online, you are likely to come across several, including Grammarly, which is what this review is actually about. I have no intention of trying to promote Grammarly or their services in this review. Instead, everything which you read is based entirely on what sort of experiences other people have had after signing up with this company. I will be sharing with you, both the good and the bad; the positives as well as the negatives.

About Grammarly

Grammarly® was originally founded by Alex Shevchenko and Max Lytvyn in 2008, and in 2009 the company launched Grammarly Editor. In 2012 they established their headquarters in San Francisco, and two years later they launched a new improved version of their flagship product, Grammarly Editor.

During this time the company also developed an add-in for Microsoft Office; a Google Chrome extension, and etc. In addition to their free services, the company has also developed various services and features which are available to their premium membership holders. Today Grammarly has over 4 million registered users, and their products are licensed by more than 600 universities and business corporations.

Grammarly has obviously been very successful or else they wouldn’t still be in business, and they certainly wouldn’t have so many registered users. Nonetheless, that does not necessarily mean they are the best. Neither does it mean you are automatically guaranteed a smooth and hassle free experience if you decide to make use of their services.

In order to find more about this company so that I could write this review, I spent a considerable amount of time doing online research. By the way, I never write reviews which are based solely on my own personal experience with a product or a company. I think reviews offer far more value to readers if they are based on the opinions of many people. So, to find out what others are saying about Grammarly, please continue reading.

Most Notable Benefits

In order for you to use any product or service, there naturally has to be at least a few benefits to be had. The benefits associated with grammar checkers are quite obvious, but let’s see what people are saying about this particular one from Grammarly. Here are the most frequently cited benefits I came across while doing my research:

  • Easy Sign Up Process – Signing up for a free membership takes absolutely no time at all. You simply fill your name, add your email address, choose a password, and then click ENTER. If you want to take a short tour to see how things work you can, or else you can just start using the software immediately.

  • Multi-Platform Integration – Once you have logged into your Grammarly account, you are given an option to download an add-on extension for your browser. This essentially allows you to use the free grammar check whenever you are typing anything on your computer, including things like email and etc. However, this extension does not work in Microsoft Office unless you download the Microsoft Office extension which also happens to be free.

  • It’s Free – While this must certainly seem like a very obvious benefit, I am still mentioning it here because so many other people have specifically mentioned it.

  • Good Customer Support – Several members have commented on the fact that Grammarly offers customer support to all members, regardless of whether you signed up for a free membership, or whether you signed up for a premium membership.

  • High Degree of Accuracy – Countless people have remarked on how accurate the software is. According to one report I read, deliberately flawed text was tested for grammatical errors and spelling errors using various free software programs, including Microsoft Word. Grammarly achieved an accuracy score of 97%, while Microsoft Word only scored 78%.

Most Commonly Cited Pros

Doing my research, I saw a lot of different pros being mentioned, but I am only going to mention and discuss the most frequently cited ones. Please keep in mind though, that this review is essentially about the free spelling and grammar checker offered by Grammarly. As such, most of the people who wrote the reviews I studied would have been comparing this product to other similar free products. Anyway, let’s check out the pros:

  • Easy 3-Step Registration – I know this has been mentioned in the list of benefits further up the page, but I think it also deserves mention in this section. The fact that you can start using the software after only having to complete three quick and easy steps is clearly something which people appreciate. No check boxes to mark; no endless questions to answer, and no need to log into your email account to recover some verification code or whatever. It really is a matter of one, two, three and you’re in. Obviously if you sign up for a premium membership then there is going to be additional form filling, but that is something which cannot really be avoided.

  • Easy to Use – In virtually every single review I have read, the authors have commented on just how easy the software is to use. If you download the browser extension add-on you can quickly and effortlessly check for spelling and grammar errors in real time while you are typing emails, filling out online forms, or even while you are working in WordPress. If you install the free Microsoft add-on then you can also scan for errors in real time when using Microsoft Office programs. Alternatively, you can log into your Grammarly account and then simply upload any files you want to scan and correct, or you can just drag and drop text into the appropriate box. In a nutshell, it really doesn’t get any easier than this.

  • High Level of Accuracy – This too has been mentioned in the list of benefits further up the page, but it was mentioned there mostly because it is not something you would automatically expect from free software. Judging from the many reviews I have studied, this grammar checker is not infallible, but it consistently scores higher marks for accuracy than most of the other grammar checkers with which it was compared.

  • More than a Grammar Checker – Rather than only scanning text for grammatical errors, this software also checks for punctuation errors and spelling errors, including contextual spelling errors. Any errors that are found are underscored with a red line, and you are shown one or more correct options to choose from. If you are still confused, you can follow the links on the error cards which take you directly to the forum where you can then get additional information. Another thing which many people have commented on is the fact that the software has been designed not only as a spelling and grammar checker, but also as a tool for teaching.

  • Very Versatile – No matter where you are or what you are doing, you can use the grammar checker to quickly scan your work for errors since it has multi-platform compatibility.

  • Good Customer Service – Quite often, when you sign up for free memberships online, you aren’t entitled to any form of customer service. This is not the case with Grammarly. All members, including those with free membership are entitled to use the Help Desk. In addition to the Help Desk, members are also encouraged to actively participate in the forums where you will always find someone who can answer your questions.

  • Plagiarism Checker – While this feature is only available with a premium membership, I think it deserves a place in this list of pros. Many of the people who are using Grammerly are writers and many have commented on how nice it is to have a dependable grammar checker and plagiarism checker all in one bundle. Naturally this feature can also be extremely useful for students and for people who are publishing content on their websites, not least because duplicate content can seriously damage your search engine rankings.

  • Formality Level Recognition – This is another feature which deserves a place on this list. I could of course be wrong, but to the best of my knowledge, this is the only grammar checking software capable of recognizing different levels of formality. For example, it can distinguish between academic writing; business writing and technical writing.

  • Money Back Guarantee – If you sign up for the premium membership, you get a 7-Day Money Back Guarantee. While 7 days may not seem like a lot of time, most members tend to agree that it is ample time to test drive this software. In all fairness, you don’t have to physically send something back to a supplier. Instead, you just send an email to customer support.

Most Commonly Cited Cons

The cons appearing in the list below are not necessarily accurate or even true, but they do reflect the way some people feel about Grammarly. As I’ve already mentioned, this review is based on general customer opinions, so it is only fair that I report about complaints as well.

  • Intrusiveness – A few past customers have complained that the software is too intrusive. In other words, it keeps on offering assistance even when you don’t really want it to. I can only think that this must be because these customers downloaded and installed the browser extension. If that is indeed the case, the extension can easily be disabled from within your browser.

  • Not the Fastest – Grammarly is really quick, but according to the research I have done, there are faster options out there.

  • It Is Not Infallible – While this grammar checker is without question more accurate that many other grammar checkers, it is still not 100% accurate. Then again, a grammar checker which is 100% accurate 100% of the time has not yet been invented.

  • Guarantee Time Limit – Some people have complained about only having 7 days to claim a full refund if they are not happy with their membership. I personally feel that 7 days is adequate, as do most current members.

  • Restrictive Refund Policy – Some past customers have complained about not being able to get partial refunds if they reach a point where they no longer need the software prior to their membership ending. I have to be fair here and say that I have read the company’s refund policy, and they make it very clear that they don’t refund any fees if a member decides to cancel prematurely.

  • No Live Chat – A few members have said they would be a lot happier if Grammarly introduced a Live Chat feature. Considering how common Live Chat is nowadays, I too cannot understand why this company doesn’t have it, even if they restricted it to premium members only.

Pricing – (at the time of writing this Product Review)

Basic Membership : Free

Monthly : $29.95

Quarterly : $59.95

Annual : $139.95

NOTE: Enterprise Subscriptions are also available for bulk users in higher education; government agencies and business corporations.

Reviewer’s Recommendation and Suggestions

Based on the large amount of research I have done, I have no reason to doubt that Grammarly offers the best free grammar checker currently available. From what I have read, the company sometimes has special promotions, and they also often offer a free trial period, which might be something worth considering if you intend signing up for a premium membership.

If you only want to use the software occasionally for writing emails to friends and family, or for when you post to social media sites then the free membership should be fine. If, on the other hand, you are expected to routinely produce content which must be grammatically correct; free of spelling errors, and 100% unique, then one of the premium membership packages would naturally be a better choice.

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If you would like to find additional information about Grammarly, or if you would like to sign up for a FREE Membership, then:

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