Words convey our thoughts; hence, we need to select them carefully, so they reflect those thoughts as accurately as possible. Antidote will draw your attention to certain classes of words in your text which may be problematic, including redundancies and words that may be inappropriate or offensive, which you will generally want to avoid; regionalisms and words that belong to a particular register, which you will also want to verify; and certain commonplace verbs, which you might like to liven up. If any reformulations are necessary, quickly find a synonym and replace your repeated word in a single click with the Synonyms command in the tooltip. You can also use the Synonyms of “word” option in the context (right click) menu.
- The vocabulary problems that are flagged (except for commonplace verbs) depend on your language settings. Click on the small settings icon to the right of each class to access the corresponding settings. Note that the new values of the settings will also apply to the checking done in the Language view.
A redundancy is an expression whose meaning is unnecessarily repetitive (e.g.: young puppy, free gift, added bonus, etc.). They are best avoided!
A word that belongs to a non-standard register is likely to strike a false note in your text. The word may be the result of a deliberate stylistic choice, or it may be a mistake, in which case you will probably want to replace it with a neutral synonym.
The corrector draws your attention to words that could be considered offensive (slurs, insults, vulgar terms, etc.). Make very sure their use is justified in your text.
Employing a word or phrase whose use is limited to a particular linguistic region can increase the risk of misunderstanding. Antidote allows you to quickly spot words that are specific to a given English-speaking country, including Canada, the US, the UK and others.
The verb expresses the action of a sentence, serving to link the subject and the object. Thus, the verb has an important role to play: it has to make a good impression on the reader. Antidote will locate the “empty” verbs in your text and those that are overused, so you can replace them with “full” verbs that carry a distinct and precise meaning. So instead of writing She is doing an experiment in nuclear medicine, you might prefer She is conducting an experiment in nuclear medicine.
- The verbs be and have are not included among commonplace verbs when they function as auxiliaries.
- A slider allows you to verify all the commonplace verbs in your text or, for faster processing, only the most flagrant cases. Consult the tooltip associated with each point in the slider for the selection that best suits your needs.
- Include the verb be: The verb to be is extremely frequent, and in many constructions it is difficult to find a synonym for it. Antidote therefore allows you to exclude it. To do so, uncheck the box.
Nominalization is the use of nouns that are derived from verbs or adjectives by the addition of a suffix such as ly. Excessive nominalization, particularly when the verb or adjective is much more common than the noun, can weigh down a text or make it less easy to understand.
Careful use of contractions (e.g. haven’t, won’t), as opposed to non-contracted forms (e.g. have not, will not), can help your text flow smoothly.