A number of questions have arising in regards CutSpel so I thought I should add a FAQ page.
Why did you use Cut Spelling and not spelling reform xxx which is way better?
There are an huge number of spelling reforms that have been proposed over the years, some of which are very clever and elegant, and some which are crazy. I chose Cut Spelling as the basis for CutSpel for three reasons.
- It is simple.
- The reformed words are shorter. This should encouraging its use (i.e. think mobile keyboards).
- It can be used with traditional spelling. This has allowed me to implement a subset of Cut Spelling to aid initial use (i.e. keep it simple).
Of course if anyone prefers a different proposal they are welcome to take the source code and implement their own favourite spelling reform.
Update Jan 2017. Mark Petersen has used the CutSpel source code to make a extension for Simplified Spelling. Try it and compare with CutSpel. I personally find SoundSpel hard to read than Cut Spelling, but I am curious to know what others think.
Why is word xxx not changed by CutSpel even though it should be according the Cut Spelling rules?
I only implemented a subset of Cut Spelling in CutSpel. I left many words unchanged for both performance and aesthetic reasons. I tried to err on the side of caution when modifying words. The number of word that are cut can be changed in the future. When it comes to spelling reform I think it is best to start small and build rather than try to achieve the perfect reform all in one go.
I don’t like the way Cut Spelling changes some words!
If you don’t like how some words are change you can easily remove them from the CutSpel word list. The list is just a CSV document and can be easily changed using any text editor.
Why do you not modify proper nouns like names?
This was a personal choice I made. I have found that most people are very attached to the way their name is spelled and don’t appreciate other people “fixing” the spelling of it for them.
What is the CutSpel icon supposed to be?
It is a scythe. I hope this captures the archaic nature of English spelling (when English spelling was last reformed the scythe was a modern tool), the stupidly of current English spelling, and the cutting nature of CutSpel.
Why isn’t this website written using Cut Spelling?
I have to say I did think about doing this, but I wanted the focus to be on the content, not the presentation. Until you spend a couple of hours getting used to reading Cut Spelling then it can be a bit distracting. One of the nice aspects of Cut Spelling is that it is 100% compatible with traditional spelling so it is up to the writer to choose if to use the traditional or cut version of any word.
Where did the main hero image come from?
I took this in 2012 from the roof of the New York Metropolitan Museum. I have always had a soft spot for god rays 🙂