If Lincoln Had Used a Computer（如果林肯使用过计算机……）
1. The ad
for a software program caught my eye. It said, "Write better in 30 days or your money back."
2. I'm familiar
with computer programs that correct spelling through the use of built-in dictionaries. But the ad for this program said that it would correct "stylistic
3. Style. That's a big part of what writing is about. So I stopped by the computer store to give it a test run. I wanted to see what the program would say about one of my favorite pieces of writing.
4. I typed it into the computer. Then the computer printed out a critique
. Here it is:
5. Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent
a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition
that all men are created equal. [Long sentences can be difficult to read and understand. Consider revising so that no more than one complete thought is expressed in each sentence. Passive voice: "are created." Consider using active. Usually a paragraph should have more than one sentence.]
6. Now we are engaged [Passive voice: "are engaged." Consider using active. See "Help" key for more information.] in a great civil
war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met [Passive voice: "are met." Consider using active.] on a great battle field of that war. We have come to dedicated a portion
of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that [Delete doubled word.] nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.