Word processors the key to better English

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 14 November, 2001, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 14 November, 2001, 12:00am

I refer to the comments made by Andy Ho in his column on October 30 ('Queen's English or anyone's - simply be consistent') concerning the use of British and American English in Hong Kong.

This is a problem that those of us who teach at universities here have to put up with daily. I tell my students to be consistent - use either version of English, but not both. However - and I think this might help explain some of the questions raised by Mr Ho - most people in Hong Kong use Microsoft Word as their standard word processor, and this has the dictionaries and spell checkers set to US English by default. Few users bother, or know how, to change this to UK English.

I suggest that one way of making sure there is consistency is to have all word processors set to the same dictionary and spell checker in each department and institution.


Associate Professor

Department of Electronic Engineering

City University of Hong Kong