Test Drive1

Bob was absolutely the worst speller you would ever meet. The jokes about his "skills" ranged from silly to absurd, just like his spelling. Unfortunately, reminding Bob about his inadequate grasp of the English language usually resulted in his spelling problem turning into a verbal problem as well. Whole words -- sentences even -- leapt from his tongue, carrying little or no meaning for anyone except, perhaps, himself. Once, when someone referred to him as the Newton of the human race (and they didn't mean Sir Isaac), he responded by saying, "Get lots, Hugh Baxter!" We never did figure out who Hugh Baxter was.

[Note: All the words in the above paragraph were drawn from the original Newton's limited dictionary/word-list. I created it specifically so we could compare recognition rates independent of the richness of our respective language models. The paragraph is known as either "Test Drive1" (that's a number one on the end) or "Test Drivel", depending upon how well your recognizer works, and, perhaps, the dryness of your humor. I wasn't so much denigrating the Newton's old recognizer with this as I was reminding us that we have to do a lot better (in fact, the original recognizer has itself gotten much better over time). We also kept (and still keep) a copy of the complete set of Garry Trudeau's Doonesbury strips parodying the original Newton recognizer tacked to the wall, as a humorous, but poignant reminder of what could happen if we didn't do a lot better.]