ISSN:1544-8312July, 2012
Judy Vorfeld, PublisherIssue 86

A Gentle Blend of Communication Expressway
& Webgrammar's Food for Thought

Judy's Corner

This in from a subscriber: "I am learning how to use Dragon software. It is great for those who have problems from too much typing. It is also wonderful for children and others with disabilities. My son uses it, as his handwriting is poor. We make sure teachers will accept it. Sometimes we have to fight a bit for it, though most teachers come around when they realize my child can either use Dragon to write a paper, or not do the work at all, as his executive function/ADD makes it difficult for him to focus on writing and developing his thoughts at the same time."

Gerry McGovern recently said, "Beauty is highly desirable but simplicity and usefulness are the overwhelming fashion of our age. Just because it's beautiful does not mean it's useful."

My friend, Debbie, is a brilliant woman who (among other things) is a Home management teacher at State of Hawaii Services for the Blind. She recently attended an NFB convention, and while there, said the following: "The best app for iPhone is Digit-Eyes if you are blind."

I snooped online and here's what I discovered helpful for the blind and dyslexic: "Digit-Eyes reads barcode labels. It enables people without vision to scan UPC / EAN codes and hear the names of over 25 million products. Users can also make their own barcode labels on the Digit-Eyes website and print them on inexpensive address labels. These barcodes may contain text that VoiceOver reads aloud or they can be used to record audio on your iPhone or iPad that is played back whenever the bar code is scanned."

Grammar Tip #1:

Its or It's? Its: Unlike most words, the possessive form of the pronoun "it" is never written with an apostrophe, e.g., "Read the book. Its title is . . ." or, "What is its value?" When you write "it's," you're writing a contraction of it is and it has. It's time to go. It's been great.

Brian's Errors - Professor Charles Darling

Grammar Tip #2:

Metaphors and Similes A metaphor is a figure of speech, and shouldn't be taken literally. Metaphors suggest comparison between two different things-Gates has a heart of gold...His mind is a sharp razor. A simile is a type of metaphor and it shows similarity between two things, using "like" or "as." He has a mind like a razor/After six hours of reading, her eyelids felt like lead weights. She is as beautiful as she is sweet.

Similes and Metaphors

Business Email Tip

Salutation. Gregg Reference Manual says that while you don't have to use a salutation in an email message if it's impersonal or being sent only to people in your organization, it's a good idea to do so. You avoid sounding impersonal. When writing to someone you know, you can use: Judy, Dear Judy, Good morning, Judy, Hello, Judy, Hi Judy. But you can also say something like, "You're right, Judy. I've attached the file." When you're writing to someone you don't know, or need to keep at a formal level, you can say, "Dear Ms. Vorfeld:" or "Dear Judy Vorfeld:"


Arts - CTO - Desktop Publishing - Education - Grammar - History - Small Biz/Home Office - Technology - For Writers, Journalists, Playwrights


Chicago's South Side Jazz Clubs

British Women Romantic Poets, 1789 - 1832. An electronic collection of texts from the University of California, Davis

Ignite Your Creativity: Belinda Witzenhausen

Cory Sekine-Pettite

British Council Film Collection. The link between UK films and filmmakers and new international audiences. Together with the British Council's global network overseas it works to profile the innovation, diversity, creativity and excellence of British films around the world.

How the Wild West REALLY looked: Gorgeous sepia-tinted pictures show the landscape as it was charted for the very first time


Do you know your state insect?

Seat belt legislation

Highways Timeline

Ageless Online Magazine: Child's Play. Toys not just for kids but also for those with dementia.

The World Legal Information Institute, or WorldLII, is a legal research facility which provides access to worldwide law. It also acts as a single search facility for decisions of international courts and tribunals - currently 48 jurisdictions in 20 countries are covered - and is an invaluable tool for anybody searching for litigation involving companies or individuals.

The adoption of a Prime Meridian and the International Meridian Conference of 1884. Although latitude has always been measured from the Equator, there is no equivalent point from which to measure longitude. Over the years, it has been measured from many different places, including national observatories, the island of Hierro in the Canaries and St Paul's Cathedral in London – each country having chosen for itself where to measure from.


Bleeds and Bleed Allowance using when printing

The meddling client by John McWade

Powerpoint: Keep your backgrounds simple


The Mind: Teaching Modules. Video teaching modules for college and high school classrooms and adult learners; 35 video modules (from 5 to 20 minutes in length) and guide

Teaching Petrology Using the Primary Scientific Literature. Provides a historical perspective of our science; promote critical thinking; help students develop analytical and synthetic thinking; demonstrate applications of modern scientific methods and techniques; and prepare students to begin to contribute to our scientific heritage.

A Nation of Learners: Institute of Museum and Library Services.

NASA Higher Education. NASA offers many programs for higher education throughout the year.


Common Errors In English: Professor Paul Brians

Daily Grammar

Daily Writing Tips: Get a daily grammar, spelling, punctuation or vocabulary tip.

Guide To Grammar And Style: Jack Lynch

Professor Charles Darling's Grammar Site


The Millennium of Driving. With the passing of a millennium, the last 1000 years has been a time where the world was brought closer together in ways that some might say were for the better, others the worse. The invention of the motor vehicle has changed the planet forever in a positive way, yet is responsible for more deaths than any other mechanical invention.

The Armenian Literary Tradition. Features the Library's African and Middle Eastern Division's collection of Armenian manuscripts, fabrics, and printed books as well as items from some other Library divisions. Works range from fourteenth and fifteenth-century gospel books hand-copied by monks to nineteenth-century works on palmistry, fire-fighting, and cotton production, and the first modern Armenian novel.

Early Washington (State) Maps. Since the discovery of the Pacific Northwest Coast and the sea explorations by both Spain and Great Britain, the region has been sought for countless, sometimes elusive, dreams: Spain's lust for lost cities of gold, Britain's hunger for new fur trade markets and hunting grounds, America's love affair with the Jeffersonian ideal of the quintessential, gentleman farmer.

Delaware Historical Society. Based in Wilmington, the Delaware Historical Society (DHS) preserves the history of the state through exhibits, online offerings, a lecture series, and a wide range of other activities.


Google Calendar is a lifesaver when you want to sync your calendar between your smartphone, laptop, desktop computer and Outlook or anywhere you go online. It has an intuitive interface where one can easily add events or move them around with "drag and drop" without having to reload the page.

Spredfast: Social Media Management System. Helps enterprises monitor, message, and measure initiatives across social media channels.

Managing Conversation: Tips For Business Owners by Richard Becker


Select and Speak. Lets you select text from almost any website and make it talk. Uses iSpeech's human-quality text-to-speech (TTS) reads selected text. It includes 43 iSpeech text to speech voices. You can configure the voice and speed option by changing the settings at options page. If you use Google Chrome browser, which is superb, it puts an icon on your toolbar. Then you just highlight a blog or webpage, click the icon, and begin listening. No cost.

SugarSync. Automatically sync files across your computers. SugarSync works in the background so your most important data is always backed up and available to you — regardless of your location or the computer you are using. You can start editing a file on your office PC and finish it on your Mac at home.

Google Alerts. Sure, there are more sophisticated alert systems, but for quickly and easily keeping current on a handful of topics that matter most, try Google Alerts. They are easy to set up, have a few simple filtering options and once you pinpoint the right keywords, you are all set. You can't track trends or monitor opinion, like you can with many other fee-based media monitoring systems, but if your purpose is to simply read the latest popular media on a given topic (and you already have a gmail account) it's definitely worth it to set up a few alerts.

Hootlet is a mini-app for tweeting to Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn from any webpage. It automatically pre-shortens a link of a webpage you are visiting, and inserts text from a website's tag. Hootlet users can then edit, schedule, and send updates/posts to one or multiple accounts.

Screencasting Tip What's the perfect screen resolution for your software applications? Another challenge is that most screencasts are recorded at a higher resolution than used in the elearning courses. You may record a full screen demo and then have to squeeze it down to something like 1024×768. And any time you scale a screencast down you'll run into some image degradation.

The Office of Weights and Measures promotes uniformity in U.S. weights and measures laws, regulations, and standards to achieve equity between buyers and sellers in the marketplace. This enhances consumer confidence, enables U.S. businesses to compete fairly at home and abroad, and strengthens the U.S. economy.

NIST Handbook 44 - 2012 Edition. Specifications, Tolerances, and Other Technical Requirements for Weighing and Measuring Devices as adopted by the 96th National Conference on Weights and Measures 2011

7 Things You Must Do for Every Blog Post You Write by Nicholas Scalice: guest post on Jonha Revensencio's Social Media and Social Good


Quote Investigator: Dedicated to Tracing Quotations

Book world expresses disappointment, outrage over Pulitzer snub

History of the Pulitzer Prizes

Why misspelled names are so common & what journalists are doing to prevent them

NPR creates news applications team as part of strategy for multimedia audio. NPR announced to staff Monday that it is creating a team to build news applications and has hired the Chicago Tribune's Brian Boyer to lead it....Journalists "have no idea what kind of gizmos people are looking at your work on," especially when they follow links on social media, said Stencel. "If when they get to that work on their iPad or their iPhone, if they can't see it, that's an unsatisfying experience." And Boyer hopes to change the nature of newsgathering at NPR itself by giving its journalists "human-assisted reporting tools. The idea is to set up systems that scan for certain things that are newsworthy and notify reporters. It's a way "to turn all reporters into data-driven reporters."

I invite all my Webgrammar subscribers to join us by going to the subscription page or by sending an email to

How to find Judy's websites

Editing & Writing Services (Biz site w/writing tips blog)
Office Support Services (Original biz site w/blog & ezine)
Webgrammar for educators, writers, editors, researchers, librarians, etc.
Digifeld (Complimentary redigitized photography by Judy Vorfeld)
Judy Vorfeld's personal website

ARCHIVES FOR ALL EZINE ISSUES beginning with 2012 are now combined into one ezine: eCommunication Food for Thought in the Communication Expressway index:

Current Index and Archive: Communication Expressway

Archive: Webgrammar's Food for Thought


Facebook - Google+ - Twitter - LinkedIn


Copyright Judy Vorfeld