For the Love of Words

I love words, and I'm always looking out for cool software that makes exploring them and their relationships to other words easier and fun.  Today I came across this cool app, which has both a desktop and an online version, called Visual Thesaurus.  Even though I can't afford it, and had only a few minutes to play with it before it required payment to continue, for what you get it is really inexpensive ($19.95 a year for the online version), and it's a lot of fun.  Once you search for a word, you can see all the synonyms surrounding it, which are color coded to indicate the type of word (noun, verb, etc.)  But what is really cool is that when you hover over a colored node, the software shows a small popup window that contains a short definition and a usage sentence.

As a geek, too, I am fascinated with graphs and how they can be used to visualize information, and the graph used in Visual Thesaurus is really cool.  It's animated and when you select a node (word) it seems alive as it springs around a bit and comes to rest.  You have to check this out and also check out the introductory videos.

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