Most people are familiar with the likes of Google Translate and Dictionary.com as online resources for language queries. Ludwig Guru is a little different. The purpose of this search engine is to give users a giant database of "correct" English sentences that serve as a model for their ideas. For example, if you searched for "I would like to learn," Ludwig would return results like "I would like to learn about vertical gardening" from The New York Times, "I would like to learn more about TB" from PubMed, and "I’d like to learn with her competitiveness" from WikiHow.
Ludwig is geared toward people who are struggling with writing in English. If you are having a tip-of-the-tongue moment where you can’t quite seem to put together a phrase, searching Ludwig’s huge database can be useful to find exactly what you’re looking for, or at least phrases that appear similar. Ludwig can also translate, it provides tons of links to valuable resources, and its compare feature allows you to look at similar sentences that share a key phrase or word. Ludwig can also identify idioms that may be harder to translate, so those who are struggling can find the right idiom by searching in a different language.
Although Ludwig could be useful for English Language Learners, the tool may end up appealing to native English speakers who are looking for an easy way to put together an essay or article quickly without thinking critically about their unique voice and writing style. Languages are complex and varied, and when most of the sources are the New York Times, PubMed, and other big name news outlets, users are missing out on a variety of other styles.
Ludwig is a unique new search tool that has a lot of applications as a resource for people who need a little extra support in English writing. However, its plug-and-chug format seems to be a little too formulaic for those who are looking to challenge themselves in their writing beyond well-worn phrases and template-based sentence structures.Image: Dictionary via Wikimedia Commons