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Free comma punctuation checker?

Discussion in 'General Chit-Chat' started by Andy D, Feb 25, 2020.

  1. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    I'm fairly knowledgeable about grammar and punctuation, but not when it comes to commas :(.
    Does anyone know if there is a decent, free comma checker?
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2020
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  2. Dan360

    Dan360 Member

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    I keep hearing ads for Grammarly, but I think it's just a chrome extension or something.
     
  3. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    I have Grammarly, it ties into Chrome and Outlook.
    It's a great program, but doesn't check commas.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2020
  4. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

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  5. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    I'm not trying to be insulting, but maybe you'd be best off to review the rules for commas. For me the issue arises when doing dr names/titles, but otherwise they seem to be straight forward. Who knows, maybe you could become an SS commatrooper and start berating customers who insist on improper comma placement!
     
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  6. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    Ohh I have read them, and have always found the rules to be extensive and confusing...
    What I find the hardest, is to know when to end a sentence or add a comma.

    I'm not being a jerk, honest question, wouldn't it be:
    I'm not trying to be insulting, but maybe you'd be best off to review the rules for commas. For me, the issue arises when doing dr names/titles, but otherwise, they seem to be straight forward. Who knows, maybe you could become an SS commatrooper and start berating customers who insist on improper comma placement!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  7. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    See! You got this!
    upload_2020-2-25_17-3-6.png

    But really, are you concerned with your grammar to customers, or when typing and formatting their info to produce?
    I'll try pretty hard when I'm doing something like a proposal, up until it gets to the description of parts and such because honestly that's a stream of consciousness. Otherwise in an email I will almost always reread a long one and throw some periods throughout, as I use commas like their about to be tariffed! Then of course on a forum IDGRA, and commas make me feel like I'm having a conversation, as opposed to speaking like a robot with periods.
    edit: forgot to mention, I'm not sure about the proper comma placement in my previous post...
    double edit: How did I miss this perfect opportunity to use Comma Police! Just shameful...
     
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  8. James Burke

    James Burke Being a grandpa is more fun than working

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    I was thinking of something a little more grammarian, perhaps...

    JB


    Pause.jpg
     
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  9. James Burke

    James Burke Being a grandpa is more fun than working

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    BTW...I had an awesome grammar teacher when I was in high school. He was also an actor in our community theater and he'd always throw in a bit of spontaneous schtick to help illustrate his point. His lessons were fantastic, we students were spellbound (no pun intended) and I became a grammar addict...albeit purely unintentionally from the outset. My only disappointment was the end of my senior year.

    I happened to run into him some twenty years afterwards, sitting in a local diner along with my Algebra II and composition teachers...drinking coffee and doing what all retired teachers seem to do, I suppose...whatever that is.

    I personally took the opportunity to thank each of them profusely for their investment in my education, and I made sure to emphasize how I still relied on skills gleaned from each of their courses.

    If you can read this, thank a teacher.


    JB
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2020
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  10. jimbug72

    jimbug72 Member

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    I tend to put commas where I would pause when I speak, but then I realize that I often speak like a moron... If I'm writing something where I feel like my punctuation is going to be noticed. I re-read every sentence that has a comma and try to take out the pause. If it doesn't sound weird without the pause, I delete the comma..

    When I read your quote from JBurton without pausing at the red commas you added, it still sounds fine. I would have added them there originally too, but then I would have gone back and deleted them after reading w/o pause.
     
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  11. CMYKENGINEERING

    CMYKENGINEERING Member

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    Your edit is correct, by the way!

    There are no free or paid comma checkers because commas are the most complex and therefore most misused punctuation mark in English. Some usages are simple: a comma after every list item and before the last list item too (if you like Oxford commas, which I do). After lists, most people have a slightly muddier understanding of when exactly they are used. For instance, do you know why your edited commas are correct?

    Correct commas usage can be determined 95% of the time by remembering the definition of a sentence. As basic as that sounds, if you know that a sentence is one complete thought with at least one subject and one predicate (simple or complex verb), you can use that knowledge to decide when to use a comma. A very common comma error is called the comma splice. This happens when two sentences are joined by a comma only. This is incorrect. Two independent clauses (another name for a complete sentence) are most commonly joined with a comma and a coordinating conjunction. You can remember them with the acronym FANBOY (for, and, nor, but, or, and yet). You cannot join two sentences like this:

    I went to the store but Henry was already there.

    Instead, do this:

    I went to the store, but Henry was already there.

    "I went to the store" and "Henry was already there" are two complete sentences and therefore cannot be combined with a comma only. In this case, I used the coordinating conjunction "but".

    You can also use subordinating conjunctions to join sentences (there is no easy acronym for these, unfortunately), but I think fewer people have problems with using subordinating conjunctions because it seems more obvious that a comma should be used. For instance, this is what you did when you corrected "For me the issue arises..." to "For me, the issue arises...". "For" is a subordinating conjunction.

    This situation happens when joining an independent clause (a complete sentence) with a dependent clause, which is not a complete sentence and cannot stand alone. "For me" makes no sense by itself, so it has to be joined with a complete thought ("the issue arises when doing dr names/titles") by a comma. Note that the comma is only necessary when the dependent clause comes before the main independent clause; otherwise, you can join it with no other punctuation mark ("The issue arises when doing dr names/titles for me", though this construction is obviously less clear).

    Reading about rules can be helpful, but the #1 best way to learn about proper punctuation is, in my opinion, to read books, especially books with a better reputation (I won't get into what that means but instead leave that to you).

    P.S. Do you know why I didn't use a comma in my last sentence? "I won't get into what that means but instead leave that to you." Shouldn't there have been a comma before "but"? No, because the two halves of that sentence ("I won't get into what that means" and "instead leave that to you") are in fact not two halves but an one whole sentence. You can tell this because the subject, "I", is the same in both sentences. This is why no software exists to perfectly determine proper comma usage.
     
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  12. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    Thanks, but now I have a headache :)
    Here is a comma rule I thought was funny for some reason; When having coordinate adjectives, such as "A big,red box" add commas, but not when it's a common phrase, such as "Little old Lady" or
    "Tall dark and handsome"... the rules just go on and on o_O
    To add another twist; I have been designing and making signs for about 25 years, but the choice to use punctuation in some signage, or not to for aesthetics,
    can still be a challenge.
     
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  13. Taryn

    Taryn Member

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    Hey, thanks for the free grammar lesson! :)

    I didn't know there wasn't a comma between "tall" and "dark". "Little old lady" I get mainly because I say that so fast. Where else am I not allowed to have commas?
    English was my best subject because it gets clear pretty fast that my teachers may not have had the most consistent idea of what was taught when...
     
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  14. shoresigns

    shoresigns Very Active Member

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    Maybe give this famous book on punctuation a read?

    8600._SX318_.jpg
     
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  15. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    Feel free to use my graphic as your icon!
    Very fine read by the way, though I agree with Andy, I now have a headache.
     
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  16. GAC05

    GAC05 Major Contributor

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    With my grammatical skills I was hesitant to click on this thread so I paused then dove in.

    wait-one.jpg
     
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  17. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    FYI, Random letters and numbers, AKA; GACO5, I always enjoy your posts :)
     
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