Every so often someone of great notoriety and scientific acumen with obvious intellect and credentials comes along and says something like, “Beware of the future. Artificial intelligence will doom mankind.” Remember, Skynet from the Terminator only looked like a bad idea from the future.
For Mac writers interested in improving both writing skills and grammar, there’s a proofreading, grammar checking, spell checking app that employees a little artificial intelligence to tell us where our writing has gone awry and offers to correct what’s apparently amiss.
The app is called 1Checker and it’s free for Mac and Windows. What it does is rather straightforward. Drop in a document, article, or short story, and 1Checker employees a little artificial intelligence combined with some natural language processing technologies to tell you what you’ve done wrong.
While you wait, 1Checker digs through your prose to check grammar, spelling, and do a style review, with options to enrich your vocabulary, and improve your writing.
Does it work? Kinda sorta mostly yes or no depending on how well written your article, story, or paper is (compared to what 1Checker thinks is good writing). If you’re at all like me, you’ll put 1Checker to the test. I dropped in a recent and popular article from Mac360. 1Checker found two spelling mistakes, six grammatical mistakes, a few other mistakes (none of which were accurate; context matters), but found the vocabulary Outstanding, and article structure Outstanding.
Then I dropped in an excerpt of Hemingway’s ‘For Whom The Bell Tolls‘ and 1Checker found one spelling mistake, four grammatical errors, one additional mistake, a merely Acceptable vocabulary, but slightly less outstanding Structure (one point less than my article).
Considering the price– free– 1Checker might be a valuable or mildly useful addition to your Mac writing tools, but based upon the context words and phrases it uncovered as errors, artificial intelligence still seems to need a human element.