Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Latest vs. Newest

“Latest Crew Blasts Off for the International Space Station”

I wrote this in response to an e-mail newsletter distributed by NASA.

Yes, they are all dead, dead, dead....
Also, they never could get anywhere on time.
What you really meant was the “newest crew”.

These newsletters from NASA contain grammatical and logical errors almost every time. They also include the e-mail addresses of the authors, but nobody ever writes back OR publishes any corrections. Also, about half the time, the e-mails to those addresses get returned with the note “Recipient unknown” or “Address unknown”. Why publish any e-mail address if it is not going to work? Why bother?

When I write an e-mail to the office of the President of the United States, it goes through, so the people whom I mentioned above cannot claim that they are too busy of VIPs.

Submit Your Comment

or fill in the name and email fields below:

Comments

Sorry I gave the wrong reference for Merriam-Webster. It should have been:

http://www.learnersdictionary.com/blog.php?action=ViewBlogArticle&ba_id=86

@Jeremy Wheeler - not to mention UK parliament rather than British parliament, that saves a whole eight letters, so that must make it much better English. It's funny how this efficiency lark only seems to apply to certain words, but not to arguments or sticking to the point.

Warsaw Will Aug-11-2012

1 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

D. A. Wood,

"I also proudly write American English, and "thusly" is quite a useful word here. If you don't like it, don't complain about it."

Look hypocrisy! He says don't complain about it when he made two pages about complaining: the one we're on and the "Molotov Cocktails".

As for analytical, how dare you, you arrogant son of a bitch. You know they make a million of you in book stores: they're called encyclopedias. If I wanted one, I'd go out and buy one. I'm sure I wouldn't have to listen to or deal with an absolute prick then.

"If you are unwilling to learn anything about precise, step-by-step reasoning, then just skip over it and don't read about it."

Take a page out of your book? No thanks. You ignore everything that might jeopardize your intellect.

You also fail to see the point completely. This is forum about English and discussion about English. And you just litter your posts with useless, unneeded facts. And like I, and everyone else, have said you don't even acknowledge the information, facts, and quotes we've given to you. You just dismiss them.

You've been lumbering around like a buffoon for too long.

I also commend Warsaw Will, Jeremy Wheeler, and Les R for being able to tolerate you more than I can.

Jasper Aug-11-2012

2 votes   Permalink   Report Abuse

Hi Jasper/Jeremy,
D A Wood: what do we make of him, as he's clearly not here to have sensible, and perhaps humourous (remember I am English!), repartee about the English language?
It's pretty sad when someone feels the need to come over as superior, and more knowledgeable with regard to grasping the finer nuances of "proper" English, when in fact they are not: I suspect DAW has nothing better to do all day than expand his - apparent - encyclopedic knowledge of all subjects, even if he fails, often to understand his points of reference.
Still, it keeps us amused - even if he is, as you say, an irritating prick.
I actually enjoy banter, especially when it concerns different takes on our language by folk from other "English" speaking countries - as long as it's good-humoured and a little thought-provoking: unfortunately DAW meets none of these requirements.
Cheers, Les.

Les R Aug-11-2012

1 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Typo - spot the missing comma, or is there one too many in paragraph one?

Les R Aug-11-2012

1 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

I think I'm having - dare I say it - a senior moment, as I forgot to mention Warsaw Will in my last post. He too has been a long-term tolerator of DAW.

Les R Aug-11-2012

1 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

DAW is one of those internet users whose watchword is, "You might have a PhD but I have read an article on Wikipedia." He seems harmless enough, though a tad irritating at times. I can't, I have to say, take him very seriously but he does provide me with entertainment when I am trying to avoid doing something more important...

Jeremy Wheeler Aug-12-2012

1 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Wheeler, you have no idea what having a graduate degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology means, and another graduate dergree in mathematics from the University of Alabama at Huntsville means, and being a National Merit Finalist means, so I will not bother to explain.
I will say that being a Georgia Tech man means far more than being a supposed graduate of some little-known law school. We know how to get at problems at their roots, rather then merely expressing opinions about them.

Also, you never have asked me about my background.You just spout opinions.
At least one graduate of Georga Tech has been a pilot-astronaut on the Space Shuttle and then The Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
(The Administrator is the top-ranking person, there, with the most responsibilities.) That is the kind of graduates that Georgia Tech produces.

I do not exist in a vacuum. My father has a doctorate in education. My mother (rest her soul) had her master's degeee in education, in English & School Administration.. My sister is an M.D., a board-certified surgeon. My daughter has a bachelor's degree in chemistry & biology.

Don't make any wise-ass remarks about me.
D.A.W.

D. A. Wood Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

If you don't like any of the pages that I submitted, such as this one and the one on Molotov Cocktails, there is a quite simple answer to that problem.
Do not read them! Do not write anything on them!

Best of all, do not complain about them! You remind me of the millions oif people in the U.S.A. who complain about TV programs. Sakes alive! It you do not like what is on the TV, just change channels.

On the Internet, there is something that is even better than that!
If you don't like what is on the line of thought, just create a different one of your own.
Just go for it.
D.A.W.

D. A. Wood Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

My, DAW, you surely are from one of America's most gifted families - that, or you're full of bullshit: I suspect the latter.
You show your true level by starting your last post with "Wheeler": this is a forum about English usage - in all its variants, but you choose to open with rank rudeness.
You really are a pompous boor - do you know that?
Warsaw Will, Jasper, Jeremy Wheeler and I have got your measure - you're just a twat that we sometimes indulge. However, the novelty is wearing off now.
Sad that a grown man behaves the way you choose to.

Les R Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

You people of the British Isles forget so easily that if you hadn't had a HUGE (and I mean HUGE) amount of help from the Americans and the Canadians, you would still have jack-booted Nazis marching your streets every day and living in Buckingham Palace?
Then you want to make rude remarks about the so-called "boorish" Americans who saved your A$$es from Nazi domination?

That's a huge difference between the Canadians and the Europeans.
When we help the Canadians, the Canadians say "thank you" and then they do everything that they can to help us.This has happened countless times between Canadians and Americans, and we are genuine neighbors in North America.

On the other hand, most of the British and French looks for any opportunity to show us their butts and stick out their tongues at us.
D.A.W.

D. A. Wood Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

"Ensure" is never used in American English.
It is considered to be one of those British peculiarities, just like the Brit. Eng. words "flat", "boot", "bonnet", "gearbox", and "Cheerio!"
D.A.W.

D. A. Wood Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

How many hundreds of dictionaries have you read?

D. A. Wood Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

I use ensure and I'm an American. And I like the sound of fiat; however, I haven't had the pleasure of using it too much. Also, if you had looked at Warsaw Will's link and scroll down, you would have found that nouns act "pre-head modifiers". Although not an adjective, they fall in the category adjectives (and adverbs, amongst others) are in. May I ask what's the British peculiarity of "boot"?

Jasper Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Oh dear, Jasper, what are we to do with DAW?
It's mildly amusing to see him get his knickers in a twist, but the worrying part - perhaps even for his family - is that he sincerely believes the ill-reasoned twaddle that he comes out with. Do you have any laws - stateside - like part of our Mental Health Act i.e. sectioning? This enables sane people to require those with suspect sanity to be looked after for their own good. Actually, thinking about it, DAW might possibly already be in some sort of institution, as he has an awful lot of spare time on his hands - he must be, else how would have the time to collate his unending ramblings about inconsequa (freshly coined by me), which bores us rigid.
Peculiar British boots? Haven't a clue, I'm afraid. Cheers, Les.

Les R Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Oh dear DAW, do you have nothing better than to bring out that old chestnut again.
For clarification:
We never had Nazi jack-boots marching down our streets - we kept them out: yes, before your rather late intervention (as was the case in the 1914-18 conflict).
You never joined the fight against fascism and the Axis for any sort of altruistic reasons - purely for self advancement - when your own interests were threatened, and a desire to show that you were capable of taking on the Third Reich.
Europe paid handsomely for your help - just as we paid handsomely in terms of human flesh for the right to be free of Hitler, Mussolini and Hirohito.
Oh, I see, Pearl Harbour had nothing to do with it, when your nose was put out of joint? My American friends would be ashamed of a character like you purporting to represent them.
Basically you're just a clown with an over-inflated idea of self-importance - which endears you to no one.
Very sad.
I

Les R Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Typo - missed out the "enti" in inconsequentia.

Les R Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

There's an old story about the captains of a US Navy ship and a Royal Navy ship arguing. "If it wasn't for us," says the American captain, "you'd all be speaking German." Quite possibly," says the British captain, "but then, if it wasn't for us, you'd all be speaking Spanish."

I know that some Americans are a bit sensitive about being late for the two world wars: perhaps that's why they seem so determined to start the third...

Jeremy Wheeler Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

DA Wood, you say:
"Wheeler, you have no idea what having a graduate degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology means, and another graduate dergree in mathematics from the University of Alabama at Huntsville means, and being a National Merit Finalist means, so I will not bother to explain."

Perhaps you could help me, then. I do know of a DA Wood who has degrees from Auburn, Georgia Tech, and the University of Alabama. He used to be with the Department of Technology at Northern Illinois University. He has published a number of papers on various subjects: Is that you?

Jeremy Wheeler Aug-12-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

@Les R
flat - apartment. Boot and bonnet are both to do with cars, boot - trunk, bonnet - hood.

But surprisingly he may have a point about 'ensure'. It's not a Briticism, but the insistence on differentiating between insure and ensure does seem to be British. MWDEU quotes Websters Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary - "Ensure, insure, assure are interchangeable in many contexts where they indicate the making certain or inevitable of an outcome ..."

http://books.google.com/books?id=2yJusP0vrdgC&pg=PA399


Just thought I'd make a language point before this turns into the History Channel. A propos, ironically, I've just been listening to an episode of the BBC comedy series Steptoe and Son. On a visit to the the battlefields of Flanders, old man Steptoe meets an American who asks him if his medals are from the '17-'18 war, and later says 'We
saved you in the First World War and in the '42-'45 war.

The episode is on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zum97ghIEw and the section in question is at 20.00. The French get involved as well. All the stupid old prejudices come out, but in a rather funnier way than the conversation above.

Warsaw Will Aug-13-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Hi WW, Nice to hear from you!
Ensure-insure?
If - according to the infamous Noah - they are interchangeable, pray tell why I, and I'm sure many, many others (no doubt yourself as well) insure our cars/auto's - we don't ensure or assure them. That's just one example where the revered Noah - I jest, of course - falls flat.
Have you ever taken out life ensurance - seems pretty odd don't you think, to assume you can, as whim takes you, substitute one for t'other.
As I said to the slightly deranged DAW:
I/we/you tell our partners to "ensure (i.e. make sure) that you tell little Jimmy/Johnny or whoever to clean his teeth before he goes to bed".
Not in any context would you insure same - or if you did, insure him against what? The tooth fairy coming to get him if he didn't?
Insurance (insure) and ensurance (were there to be such a word) would be two different things; one being to take out cover against some sort of eventuality and the other being to take action so that some other action would come to fruition.
Assure is a completely different kettle of fish altogether!
Life assurance policies acknowledge the inevitable, and offer a financial situation at the end of a specified time.
Life insurance covers against a possible action, which "may" need addressing at some unspecified time.
Ensure doesn't apply at all in this context.
That's how we differentiate it here in the UK.
What words would be used - appropriately - by Americans to describe the two situations above? Help me, I really need to know!
Bonnet/boot - although not the peculiar ones that DAW alludes to - /hood/trunk: we all - both sides of the pond - know exactly what is meant by using any of those words. I don't think any are better/worse than the others - they all make sense (although I do remember Model T's had a different bonnet, like many cars of the time, and drawing that term from vehicles like a "Surrey with the fringe on top".
All the best, and could I ask you to say a prayer for DAW, in the hope that he might return to the land of the rational.
Best wishes, Les (London)

Les R Aug-13-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

The 42/45 war? 'Nuff said!

Les R Aug-13-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

@Les R - Being British, I was as surprised as you, but I think you missed something - they are only interchangeable for the meaning 'make certain that something happens'. What's more, not all Americans accept that they are interchangeable even then. But it's certainly not as cut and dried as it is in BrE. And this interchangeability doesn't apply to the meaning of take out insurance (or assurance), there only insure (or assure) will do, whether you're in the UK or the US.

I don't think this has much to do with Noah, he had been long dead before this controversy surfaced. But why, pray, should he be infamous? I don't use American spelling, but it must be admitted it has some logic to it. More importantly, he deliberately set out to provide Americans with their own variety of English, a thoroughly laudable enterprise for the new country that it was at the time. If I was American I would be proud of him. Admittedly the famous Third Edition caused a bit of a rumpus in the US, although according to Wikipedia it was well received in the UK. And for anyone interested in how standard English is really used, Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of English Usage is one of the best reference books I've ever bought, and it's all freely available on Google Books.

But I'm from Edinburgh, and we've got Chambers. Well, we used to before it moved to London. Chambers 20th Century used to be my favourite dictionary, but I don't find the online version quite as good.

Sorry, the boot bit should have been addressed to Jasper (who I think is American), not you. He seemed a bit puzzled about 'boot'. And I'm not sure you're right; we know a lot of American English (from Hollywood etc), but I don't think Americans are so aware of British English. I sometimes see standard features of British English being treated as mistakes by commenters on US websites. For example - 'The government are' (standard usage in British newspapers), rather than 'The government is', 'learnt' (perfectly standard in BrE) instead of 'learned'.

Warsaw Will Aug-13-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Hurray for Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of English Usage, I say. An excellent book. I do find disputes about US versus British English tiresome. As said above, good for the Americans. Many so-called Americanisms complained of by Brits aren't (gotten is a good example) and some spelling differences could have gone either way in British English (tire/tyre, for example: The Times used the former well into the 1920s) and words such as humor and other 'ou' words merely follow a pattern in British English anyway (we have dropped the 'u' in such words as governour and emperour).

Jeremy Wheeler Aug-13-2012

1 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Still waiting to hear from Dale A Wood on whether he is the same Dale A Wood who has degrees from Auburn, Georgia Tech, and the University of Alabama, who used to be with the Department of Technology at Northern Illinois University, and who has published a number of papers on various subjects (such as "Adaptive competitive self-organizing associative memory"). I am beginning to think the DA Wood on this page is a fraud who claims those degrees when he doesn't have them.

Jeremy Wheeler Aug-14-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

THANK YOU JEREMY for sticking to US/British English. For the poster to claim that it should be 'American English' is ridiculous for several reasons: linguists consistently use the label US/UK/world English to refer to the different 'Englishes' and the Oxford English Dictionary itself refers to the language with the modifiers US/UK and world. The expression 'American English', while understandable, is *not* valid. Although I don't know why I'm bothering- in the whole thread I haven't seen certain posters concede the least point that they could possibly have gotten incorrect. Nor do I think he/she will, re the word 'latest' in the sense of most recent. (Now playing all of today's latest hits..." (esp ludicrous is saying that it must be a Briticism...)

Cheryl in France Oct-14-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

@Cheryl in France - I wonder what linguists you're talking about; the terms I see most often on linguistics sites are AmE and BrE, at for example - http://separatedbyacommonlanguage.blogspot.com/2012/10/briticisms-in-ame.html

Well-known linguist Ben Yagoda refers to American and British English on his blog - http://britishisms.wordpress.com/about/

And the main corpora that linguists use are COCA (Corpus of Contemporary American) and the BNC (British National Corpus)

Warsaw Will Oct-14-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

British Citizenship - Imperial Visas
The British citizenship structure is defined in the British Nationality Act 1981 that came into effect on 1st January 1983.
Keywords: -
British Citizenship
Contact Us:-
Location: 2nd Floor Cygnet House,
12-14 Sydenham Road Croydon
Surrey CR0 2EE
Telephone: +44 0203 627 4777
Email: info@imperialvisas.com
http://imperialvisas.com/british-citizenship.html

santosh Oct-15-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Thank you, Warsaw Will,

Yes, all of these are quite correct: American English, American Literature, American Embassy, American Consulate, American Airlines, American Language, American Medical Association, American Broadcasting Company, the American Telephone and Telegraph Corporation, and the Radio Corporation of America.
So many times we hear of people who were glad to accept help from the American Marshall Plan following World War II, but now they (or their descendents) want to object to the adjective "American".
Dale A. Wood
in the United States of America.

D. A. Wood Oct-16-2012

0 vote   Permalink   Report Abuse

Do you have a question? Submit your question here