Wordnik, Now With More Thesaurus

by John McGrath on August 16, 2010

We’ve added some new features to the ‘related words’ page, reorganized it, and given it a promotion: Wordnik now sports a thesaurus.

By far the coolest of its new powers is the ability to compare two words on the same page, showing definitions or examples for each side-by-side. It’s like a comparison shopping site, but for words.

To use it click the ‘Compare’ button in the right-hand column of any thesaurus page. Check the boxes next to the two words you’d like to see next to each other, et voilà — as soon as you’ve made your second selection, an overlay shows their definitions side by side. You can also see side-by-side examples, and tweet the comparison. It’s a comparithesaurus.

The tweet option brings up another featurette: Comparisons, despite being page-within-a-page, Pale Fire-style affairs, have URLs of their own, like this. So they can be tweeted, or emailed, or IMed, or whatever. We’ll be adding more built-in share options soon.

This is, like all of Wordnik, an ongoing effort. The underlying data is being continually improved, and the features will be added to and refined. If you have suggestions or criticism, please let us know in the comments or through feedback@wordnik.com.

a August 16, 2010 at 9:16 pm

How very useful/utilitarian! :)

Prateek August 18, 2010 at 12:18 am

Love the compare feature. Sadly it does not let me compare the word that I have searched for in the first place with any of the others.

Taking the example you have shown, how can I compare Jaunty & Brisk?

David August 18, 2010 at 8:43 am

Thanks! This is really nice and will make Wordnik much more useful for me.

George August 22, 2010 at 7:44 am

How do we contribute new words to WORDNIK and to other dictionaries?

Erin August 22, 2010 at 10:22 am

Hi George! Thanks for your comment!

There are several ways to contribute new words to Wordnik (we can’t speak for other dictionaries).

The fastest is to tweet a word — we pick up tweets for new words very quickly and display them on Wordnik. You do not need to have a Wordnik account to do this, but you have to have a Twitter account.

A more permanent (and more helpful) way is to leave a comment on the word’s Wordnik page giving us more information about it. To do this you must have a Wordnik account (it’s free! it’s easy! sign up today!).

I hope this helps!

Kris August 23, 2010 at 1:51 pm

What exciting news! I can finally toss that dusty (NAME OF OLD, BORING DICTIONARY COMPANY) thesaurus into the rubbish bin. I don’t know how, but Wordnik just started rocking harder.

meizitang August 23, 2010 at 7:49 pm

But in summertime the ‘gowany braes’ which lie nearest to it, and the ‘heather braes’ into which they gradually change as they rise higher in the distance, have a certain beauty of their own.

Tiffany August 24, 2010 at 8:52 am

Hey Erin. Is that also the best way to add an example for a word? I created an account thinking it would allow me to add things :)

Erin McKean August 24, 2010 at 12:42 pm

Dear Tiffany — yes, the comment box is also the best way to add an example!

We’re working on ways to let you label your comment as a definition, example, or pure comment, but that’s a ways off.

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