Mountain Lion Tip : Useful Spelling and Grammar Tool

I often find myself struggling to spell a word or use the correct grammar whilst writing training courses. OS X has a handy little tool to help with this.

Highlighting a word and control-clicking or right-clicking the word brings up a simple contextual menu list of suggested words:

mountain lion spell check

Most people know this or have found this out.

However, what if I want to check that I have the correct word by finding out what the words means or, alternative words that have the same or similar meaning?

Select the ‘Spelling and Grammar’ option and then select ‘Show Spelling and Grammar’:

show spelling and grammar

This will load up a very useful and powerful spelling and grammar tool:

powerful spelling tool in mountain lion

There is a keyboard shortcut in most apps for this which is ‘Command’ + ‘Shift’ + ‘:’
With the Spelling and Grammar window open, you can change words, skip to the next word where an error has been found, ignore certain words, learn new words, define words, and even guess the appropriate word based on the current entry. To check grammar as well, be sure to check the box at the bottom right.

This is a great tool to use when writing or editing and it can be used in conjunction with the automatic checkers as well. For Applications that do not yet support this feature, (for example Chrome or Firefox), you can always copy and paste the text to check from those apps into an app like TextEdit, open the spelling/grammar checker, and then copy and paste the results back to Chrome or Firefox.

This feature has been tested using OS X v10.8.2 which was the latest Mac OS release at the time of writing and also using the latest Internal and external Apple keyboards.

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