The Cupertino effect

» Thursday, November 16th, 2006

The EU and other international organizations are having a problem caused by spell checkers, which they have dubbed “the Cupertino effect”. Apparently, a lot if the dictionaries in various word processors used throughout these organizations misinterpret cooperation, spelled without a dash as a misspelling of Cupertino (as in 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, CA), rather than suggesting to replace it with co-operation. As a result, hundreds of defaced documents have been published by the EU and others.

What’s really interesting to me here is the fact that this does not seem to be an Apple specific problem. Although the built in spell checker of OS X does suggest Cupertino as firsthand alternative for cooperation when using the british english dictionary (which is a little stupidity that Apple could have avoided…), certain versions of MS Word sport the very same “feature”. Honestly, I don’t really see why Cupertino needs to be a default entry in a word processor’s dictionary anyways. Aachen, Dorsten or Oestrich-Winkel certainly aren’t. (via kottke)