Friday, August 17, 2018

Editing Software - Perfect It

Intelligent Editing has a software package called  PerfectIt, which I discovered several days ago.  Some software packages I have fallen in love with were pretty specific to certain kinds of work. PerfectIt can be used by anyone who writes anything. It came with a 14-day free trial so I downloaded it and ran my 165 page consulting report through it. It found hundreds of errors and inconsistencies.

It does not do ordinary spell checking but does tell you if you spelled a word more than one way. It does not replace having another human go over your document but it saves them hours of work. It does NOT automatically change anything - YOU are in control of all editing changes it finds. For example, a word might be spelled two different ways deliberately eg behaviour in the text of your document but behavior if you are quoting from an American source. PerfectIt will notify you but you don't change it.

This software would be perfect for academics, students, writers, consultants, bureaucrats, in fact, anyone that produces documents longer than a few pages on a consistent basis. I'm hoping to convince two of my kids, some of their friends, several of my friends to at least try it.  I may have already made a sale to my oldest as she ran a 30 page report through the trial version I had and was some impressed with what all it found.

Try it; you'll like it. Currently priced at USD $70 per year.

Here, in a few words, is what it does (from their website):

Abbreviations
Consistent Presentation: Check for consistent presentation of abbreviations (e.g. Nasa/NASA/N.A.S.A.).
A Definition for Every Abbreviation: Ensure that every abbreviation is defined the first time it appears. 
Defined When Presented: Make sure each abbreviation is defined only once, defined only in one way, and only used if it appears more than once.
Capitalization
Consistent Capitalization of Words & Phrases: Check proper names, processes and business terms for capitalization consistency.
Heading Capitalization: Enforce consistent capitalization across headings, such as sentence case or title case.
House Capitalization Rules: You can set PerfectIt to check your house style to ensure that capitalization in all documents reflects your brand guidelines.
House Style
Phrases to Avoid: Make sure every document produced by your organization does not include insensitive, inappropriate or dated terminology and language.
Uniform Branding: Create style sheets to reflect your presentation rules and your brand image.
Unified Voice: Enforce style preferences so that all writers in your organization speak with one voice.
Hyphens/Dashes
Consistent Hyphenation: Enforce consistent use of hyphens and dashes in common words and phrases, as well as complex terms of art or proper names.
Compounds, Numbers & Directions: Apply consistent hyphenation for prefixes, numbers, fractions, and directions.
Bullets and Lists
List Punctuation: Enforce consistent punctuation, such as periods or semi-colons, in lists and bullets.
Capitals in Bullets, Lists & Tables: Enforce consistent capitalization, such as sentence case or initial case in tables or initial capitals for lists and bullets.
Table Punctuation: Check for consistent punctuation in each cell.
Spelling, Typos, and Numbers
Spelling Errors & Typos: Check for errors that spellcheck won’t catch, including common typing mistakes (e.g. 'manger' instead of 'manager') and embarrassing errors.
Inconsistent Spelling: Check for individual words spelled in more than one way (e.g. 'adviser' and 'advisor').
Consistent Use of Numbers in Sentences: Correct numbers in sentences that were written as numerals but should be spelled out (and vice versa).
Table/Figure Numbering
Table & Figure Order: Find if tables appear in the correct order (e.g. Table 4 should not be before Table 3, which is an easy mistake to make when copy/pasting in multiple author documents).
Table & Figure Headers: Check for missing table/figure headings as well as inconsistent naming.

NOTE: Since I wrote Intelligent editing about how much I liked the software, they offered me 30% discount to buy it. I figured they should wait until I sell a few copies first. 

11 comments:

  1. Interesting. If I was still working it would be useful.
    the Ol'Buzzard

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  2. Glad you found something truly useful.

    Blessings and Bear hugs!

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  3. Looks very interesting. I am using Grammarly and get my documents and emails pretty consistent in quality.

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    1. I downloaded the free Grammarly but never really used it. Do you find it tends to over use articles?

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  4. Very cool. Proofreading software doesn't work well on fiction, so I rarely use anything but the built-in tools in Word (and their spell-checker sucks, BTW - I usually end up correcting it instead of the other way around).

    I don't think even PerfectIt would have been able to catch the typo I made the other day, though. I meant to type "He had no visible reaction". Instead, my fingers fumbled out "He had no visible erection". NOT the same thing AT ALL. (But it was good for a belly laugh.)

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    1. I can understand the invisible erection. "If you have a good tool, you need to build a good shed over it." Likely hasn't seen his toes in years either.

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