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Praise for the Visual Thesaurus

From the Press:

G4 Tech-TV - Call for Help
We were thrilled when G4-Tech TV's "Call for Help" decided to review the Visual Thesaurus. Click here to watch the whole review.
ID Magazine
"On the whole, the VT3 is magnificent. Unlike my Roget's, the VT3 contains some 39,000 proper nouns, American and British spellings and for online subscribers, beta versions in five European languages. The depth of the database is striking."
PC Magazine
"4.5 Stars. Visual Thesaurus 3 is a remarkably inventive and interactive way to explore language."
Times of London Educational Supplement
"The Visual Thesaurus is a highly stimulating illustrative language tool. The use of colour coding for parts of speech and their relationships is a compelling and direct way of introducing children to complex associations within language."
"The Visual Thesaurus creates a floating constellation of related words. The new version will be attractive in that it adds keyboard shortcuts, spell checking, Internet searches, better print options and sound files with correct pronunciations to the mix."
Fast Company
"It's like the class know-it-all, but more fun."
School Library Journal
"Visual Thesaurus goes even further [than most reference software], creating a unique, captivating visual representation of the English language that could never be bound in a book... The program installs effortlessly, and is easily customized."
Tech Edge
Best Content Utility Software
"Once again, my favorite of the show was not the latest hardware gadget or some technology wonder; it was in fact a small little English utility that just astounded me. The Visual just what I need to get students excited about learning vocabulary."
PC Magazine
Listed as one of the 101 Best Products of 2003
"Visual Thesaurus offers an engaging way to explore the English language. You enter a word and then choose a path. Type in booty, for example, and follow the loot path (as opposed to the prize and plunder paths), then you can choose to go with lucre, and so on."
"VT is outstanding for exploring relationships between words, and ideal for brainstorming ideas in work and education."
"We applaud the innovation behind the Visual Thesaurus: It uses technology to animate and expand on the deeply rooted conventioin of traditional thesauri, and in doing so, provides an insightful, if somewhat arduous, journey through the English language."
The Washington Post
"The whole interface feels almost alive; it reinforces word connections in a direct manner and encourages exploration... overall it's a rare, rewarding example of a paper-bound process that has been radically rethought from the bits up."
"One of the best tools we've seen... [the] Visual Thesaurus takes the traditional thesaurus and turns it on its head... Happily, it's a product we can't recommend enough to wordsmiths."
The Chicago Tribune
"Based on the now-familiar Java Web-programming language, these amazing thesaurus searches quickly become intuitive, and a user is continually surprised at the insights and solid results that each search delivers."
The Economist
"A classic in this category is the Visual Thesaurus... Related words are linked with "virtual springs" that pull them together into a cluster. To navigate through the Visual Thesaurus, a user types in a word which pulls up a tree-like shape with the word in question at the centre, and related terms clustered around it... Definitions appear when the cursor is moved over dots next to the words. To find out more about a synonym, a user can click on it, which makes it move to the centre of a new cluster of words."
"Check out [the] Visual Thesaurus, for example. Type a word into the text box and you'll retrieve an almost intoxicating display with the word and all its various meanings and related terms. Speaking of intoxicating, try the word loaded. You'll see little branches spring forth for the concepts of affluence, laden, drunkenness, charged with ammunition, and so on."
The Irish Times
"Is there a word on the tip of your tongue? Can you describe it, hear it, almost see it, but just can't say it? Then check out [the] Visual Thesaurus - an online fusion of language, design, art and typography. By displaying relationships between words and meanings as spatial maps, this funky tool translates language into something you see, as well as say. Just drop your word into its screen and it will splash up an array of multi-coloured alternatives, all rotating in 3-D around your own word. Click on whichever suits, and get a further splash of information and colour."
Education World
USA Today
"A shining example of injecting a staid reference work with a serving of cyberstyle, [the] Visual Thesaurus presents dynamically (via Java) a given word's relationship to other words."
"A near-perfect combination of content and design."
"If you're the type of person who's addicted to the Oxford English Dictionary and William Safire's "On Language" column, then you're going to love the Plumb Design Visual Thesaurus."
The New Yorker
"Reference books have come a long way from the days when they were unwieldy volumes with thin pages dog-eared from use. The best recent advance in reference technology is the Visual Thesaurus, which uses Web animation to illustrate the latticework of language. Enter a word, and the thesaurus will generate a solar system of similar words orbiting around the sun of the original term; click on one of those words, and the system will reorganize."
The Atlantic Monthly
"The Visual Thesaurus represents the marriage of Princeton University's WordNet (an online database that organizes some 50,000 words and 40,000 phrases into synonym sets) and ThinkMap's software (which its creators describe as "not primarily a data-visualization tool, but rather a data-animation tool"). The result is enchanting, if hard to describe: any word typed into the Visual Thesaurus appears onscreen like a spider bobbing at the center of a web of gently swaying gray filaments, each of which has at its end a synonym. Click on any one word at the periphery and it moves to the center of the screen, where a new web of associations emerges. (The old web, connected by the common synonym, is moved off to the side, where it is still easily accessible.) Because the display is run by a Java applet, viewers can customize the display of data: they can favor certain parts of speech, determine the extent to which synonyms of synonyms are displayed in the background, toggle between two- and three-dimensional representations of word associations, and more. The result -- as Marc Tinkler, one of the developers of the Visual Thesaurus, recently told The New York Times's CyberTimes -- is akin to "information choreography."
The New York Times
"Inventive. Imaginative. Ingenious. Fanciful."
"Duck - here comes an adjective. As you click deeper in, a similar word edges in from the right. Clearly this is not your average thesaurus. Strange stuff, perhaps, to the textual domain, but it's the linguistic way of life inside a new Java-powered word "nebula," as Thinkmap describes its Visual Thesaurus, which puts a premium on action, dynamic typography, and design."

From our Subscribers:

sherry I. (denver, CO) comments on the article: When Lightning Strikes, What Does Air Do?
Visual Thesaurus, so much information, so many articles, so many people, so many opinions, so much fun!
Olga N. (Vancouver Canada) comments on the article: Our Audio Pronunciations... And the Voices Behind Them
I am so glad that I have subscribed to Visual Thesaurus. It makes my work easier and more pleasurable. I am English second language person and this tool helps me a lot in my everyday work. I will recommend it to anyone I know. So much, for so little money.Regards,Olga
Kcecelia (San Francisco, CA) comments on the article: Introducing... The VT Spelling Bee!
This is an addictive program. Using it I am learning new words as well as relearning words I assumed I knew. It is particularly interesting to notice that the tyranny of spellcheck has made me forget the idiosyncrasies of some common words. For example, in the previous sentence the word "idiosyncrasies" is a little puzzle challenge for my brain, eyes, and fingers, but if I just busily click through a misspelled, or more often mistyped, attempt to correct it, my brain remains unexercised. Thanks for this game, I am enjoying it.
Chandresh T. comments on the article: May I Quote You?
First of all, this web site is very good. Please keep it the way it is and don't get into annoying "pop-ups" and "banners" business. The interview is very informative. I am from IT profession and find it very rewarding to learn about things other than IT profession especially about different words and its origination and the use of the words. The research done by Scholar Fred R. Shapiro is noteworthy and I would say unique to a certain extent. Many people have written books on quotes but indepth research, very few. Good reading!
Elizabeth K. comments on the article: A Talking Ghost
I found "Tips for Deprived Readers" very informative. One of my time periods was eluded to and one was actually mentioned. Waiting at the doctor's office is an ideal time. Train and railroad stations also afford good reading time.I am new to VT. I will use my down time to peruse your articles for good "whatever" tips. LOVE your daily word of the day.Thank you, thank you.Elizabeth Kane
I am so thankful that I purchased this for a full year. I am so thrilled, I can not stop play with words and getting back a whole tree of other words. Thank you!Your articles are outstanding.I am having bunches of fun.Pattimari
Shannon Forbes (Casper, WY) comments on the article: Introducing Group Subscriptions
Your FAQ were answered in full. This Visual Thesaurus is like a living thing. My group will be fully engaged by its facile ability to increase their individual understanding and usage of the English language. Kudos to the developers of this wonderful tool. To watch in fascination as the words shift and the patterns flow and re-form with every click of the mouse is a mesmerizing experience, both educational and absolutely beautiful. Thank you for allowing me to share this experience with my two most important partners. Not only will our project benefit mightily, but we will all have a great deal of that rare and priceless thing I like to call "fun with words." Bless this Living Thesaurus.
We are beholden to VT for the myriad tidbits of linguistic treasure that expand our daily usage beyond that of the befuddled masses. Thanks!
I love this site. I teach journalism and writing to seniors at a magnet school. I can't keep them away from my computer!!!
I have used visual thauraus for over a year, and I love it.
VT is awesome! I really enjoy this new technology and I can't wait to use it. For me english is second language..i can truly appreaciate this amazing tools. This is wonderful! I hope my writing skills will get better.Pazie
This comment is about VT in general.I'm basically the kind of person who reads dictionaries, likes to analyze essays for word choices found in different articles, and I can't help proofreading everything. So, I just subscribed this morning, and after my very first try, well, I'm thunderstruck! To see this "spider" open up with all those lovely connecting definitions, synonyms, verbs, nouns......!! I then set it up to give me french definitions, a language I've successfully taught myself over the years and am still working on, and it's simply amazing! I love this program already. I do hope that in the future more will be done for use in french, i.e, type in french words and get english definitions and sentences, etc.I really can't say enough -- I will, though after I explore some more -- in the meantime this program is FABULOUS (I need a better word, but it's going to be fun finding it). Thanks
What an amazing and informative article! As a founder of a start-up non-profit this has been an invaluable tutorial. Thank you.
I LOVE THIS PROGRAM!Thank you, I love to write, in fact, I write most of the day, but much of the time I get bored with the usual words, I love this program because it provides me with so many more words in a very unique and interesting way. I placed this on my daughter's laptop who is off to college, she uses it all the time and greatly improved her school marks, especially essays! My husband likes to play with it and has loads of fun, just playing with it is very educational! GREAT PROGRAM, Thank you very much, from all of us in the Blondeau house!
The Visual Thesaurus is wicked cool. It's so amazing that I added my whole family to my account.
Maginel G. comments on the article: The Fight for English
I am encouraged by this positive approach to all the changes in English and I really want to thank all of you at the Visual Thesaurus for offering so many resources and experiences from people everywhere who love language and communicating! Keep up the good work!
Your magazine is wonderful. Focus, breadth and depth. An amazing combination. Thanks so much! Keep it coming.Stan
zvi Y. comments on the article: Starve an Adjective, Feed a Verb
What a super duper over-the-top terrific sensible articlethx
June B. comments on the article: Seven Types of Bad Writing
This article is terrific. I am so excited about learning even at my age. I've had a desire to write professioanlly for a while now just because I want to be correct, but especially because I want to represent my company well. I've been searching for a while now on how to do just that and I ran across the Visual Thesaurus and this article. I am really happy I did. I am looking forward to reading more articles and any other resources that will help me. Words are really inadequate to express how I feel right now.Thank you for sharing!
As an educator of children with special needs, I am inspired watching each of my students' excitement as he or she becomes more cognizant of the English language, both reading and writing, through their exposure to Visual Thesaurus. We all thank you.