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Lingsoft grammar checker

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Grammar and style errors can be embarrassing and in some cases even dangerous and expensive. Quite often these grammar errors are very simple, and not at all caused by the author not knowing how it should have been, but a result of time pressure, copy-pasting, joint authoring, or pure negligence. Many corporations have thick printed style guides, but often they lay around unused. Is there a better way to avoid grammar errors and implement good brand-aware style in your writing? Yes there is.

Lingsoft's grammar checkers for Danish, Finnish, Norwegian Bokmål and Swedish are designed to detect basic grammar errors in standard written language. Each language has its own rules and error types, reflecting the grammatical structure of that particular language, and depending on what can be detected by computational means with reasonable confidence and consistency, and without creating false alarms too often. The grammar checkers handle bigger entities than pure individual words, and can therefore detect not only grammar errors but, for example, number formatting and punctuation errors, as well as controversial words and expressions.

Gold-standard accuracy

Swedish grammar exampleLingsoft's grammar checkers target several specific types of grammar and writing convention errors. They detect potential errors and stylistically non-recommended expressions from a number of categories, presupposing that the context where the error or the non-recommended expression occurs conforms to the context condition of the error detection rule. The context conditions may be based on specific sequences of words, inflected forms or individual characters.

Most error-detection rules will attempt to provide one or more potential corrections for the detected error. In some cases correcting an error may cause a further error, typically an agreement error, to be detected. With some types of errors, suggesting a correction is not feasible. In these cases the grammar checker delivers an explanation of the detected error.

In the design and development of the grammar checkers, Lingsoft has endeavored to minimize the number of linguistic errors, to the extent that an adequate balance is reached between error detection and false alarm avoidance, as far as such a balance can be reached by computational means. In particular, Lingsoft has endeavored to achieve the following gold-standard metric:

The number of false flags detected by the grammar checker will be less than one (1) per standard A4/letter page (consisting of single-spaced, unformatted 12-point font-size text).

It all starts from Lingsoft Lexical Algorithm

Each grammar checker is based on Lingsoft's comprehensive model of the inflectional, derivational and compositional word structure of the corresponding language. The language model provides correct inflections, and allows for new words to be formed based on the words known to the model. The generative mechanisms have been restricted to increase precision, meaning that not all morphologically acceptable compound or derivative words are recognized.

The word analyzer subcomponent is used by the grammar checker both for analyzing the input text and for generating suggestions with error-detection rules based on sequences of particular inflected forms. For more reliable detection of grammar errors, the word analysis output is disambiguated with Lingsoft's constraint-grammar parser for the corresponding language before applying the grammar rules.

Lingsoft's unique approach to grammar and style checking also applies to versions customized for particular domains, customers or user groups. Wouldn't it be great to breathe new life to your dust-collecting style guide and design a customized style checker for your brand. Read more.

Robust, compact and fast

The lexical content and the two-level rules of the language model are compiled to an extremely compact and fast finite state transducer, which along with the disambiguation and error-detection rules and other data is included in the grammar checker module file. The typical size of that binary file is only some megabytes.

Lingsoft has put much effort in making it easy to integrate the grammar modules with LSPROOF, a common programming library for Lingsoft's spelling and grammar checkers, available for Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, and more. Java and .NET wrappers are also available e.g. for spelling and grammar checking in web applications. LSPROOF supports Unicode character encoding.


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