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Paper Presented at Probing Experience II Symposium, Oct. 1, 2008 (PDF)

Accompanying Slides for Above Presentation


Welcome to Connotative Intelligence Corporation's language reference website.

At this website, you will see previews of the world's first connotative language reference toolsthe first new language reference tools to be developed since Roget's Thesaurus (1852).

PLEASE NOTE: This website covers only language-based applications of Connotative IntelligenceTM technology. For information on Connotative IntelligenceTM applications dealing with Internet searching, images, video, sound, and other media, contact Wayne Chase:  

Language Reference Breakthrough: First Since Roget's Thesaurus (1852)
As Revolutionary as the Word Processor, As Useful as the Dictionary
Words Convey Two Kinds of Meaning; Today's Dictionaries Provide Only One  Kind
Control Over Connotation is Essential
Emotional Power Tools for Writers

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Language Reference Breakthrough:
First Since Roget's Thesaurus (1852)

In the long history of the written word, three types of language reference tools have evolved:

1. Dictionaries. The first English-language dictionary was published more than 400 years ago (Robert Cawdrey, 1604). Today's dictionary variants include:
     *   Standard dictionaries in print, software, and on-line formats
     *   Language-translating dictionaries in all formats
     *   Special-topic dictionaries such as reverse dictionaries (e.g.,
          the Wordtree Branching Dictionary), dictionaries of rhyme, slang, idiom,
          first names, computer terms, medical terms, musical terms, and endless
          other subjects

2. Grammar/Spelling/Style Guides & Electronic Checkers. The first English grammar treatise was published in 1640 (Ben Jonson, posthumously). Today, you can go into any book store and choose from countless books and software programs dedicated to improving your grammar, spelling, and writing style. As well, all major word processing programs feature built-in spell checkers and grammar/style checkers.

3. Thesauruses (or Thesauri). Rudimentary "synonym dictionaries" were published in the 17th Century. However, Peter Roget's 1852 Thesaurus is considered the pioneer of modern thesauruses of synonyms and antonyms. Today's electronic thesaurus variants include the IdeaFisher ("a thesaurus on steroids") and the Plumb Design Visual Thesaurus.

Now: Connotative tools—the first language reference breakthrough since 1852. An entirely new type of whole-language reference tool, based on language content never before available—the emotional or connotative meanings of words and phraseswill soon become available in print, software, and online formats.


As Revolutionary as the Word Processor, as Useful as the Dictionary

When you write an email, blog entry, business proposal, magazine article, short story, resume, speech, advertisement, creative term paper, poem, etc., you seek to evoke certain emotions in your readership—pleasure, anger, elation, suspense, passion, astonishment, shame, joy, tenderness, distress, serenity, or any of hundreds of other emotions.

Now imagine opening an emotional dictionary, thesaurus, or software product and getting instant access to the exact words—nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs—that are certain to arouse the precise emotions you wish to elicit in your readership.

Connotative Intelligence Corporation has developed Connotative Intelligence™ Technology, the new language reference technology for people who write in any genre:

Magazine, newspaper, and blog articles
Business letters and reports
Advertising and promotional copy
Self-help books
Short stories
Song lyrics
Student term papers and essays
Children's books

Connotative Intelligence™ Technology is the foundation for the world's first emotional language reference products (books and software). Here at, you will be able to preview entirely new kinds of language reference tools such as:

Emotional Dictionaries
Emotional Thesauruses
Emotion-checking Software


Words Convey Two Kinds of Meaning;
Today's Dictionaries Provide Only One Kind

When you look up a word in any good dictionary, such as the Oxford or Merriam-Webster, what you get is one kind of meaning. It's called denotative meaning (also known as objective, literal, intellectual, or cognitive meaning).

However, as all good writers know, words and phrases reflect the intellectual-emotional duality of the human mind. Words actually convey two distinctly different kinds of meaning simultaneously.

"Denotation, also known as cognitive meaning, refers to the direct relationship between a term and the object, idea, or action it designates. . . .
"Connotation, also known as affective meaning, refers to the emotive or associational aspect of a term." (McArthur, T. The Oxford Companion to the English Language. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992)

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Words such as celebration, springtime, and kiss arouse unique assemblages of positive emotional connotations. Words such as homeless, cancer, and rape summon clouds of negative emotional connotations. Many words and phrases, such as bullfight, call up mixed positive and negative connotations. Connotative meaning also includes the evocation of other sensations and impressions, such as power (e.g., war) and activity (e.g., carnival).

Today's dictionaries and thesauruses are completely devoid of connotative meaning. However, as you will see at this Web site, new emotional language reference products will soon change the world of language reference. The full range of connotative or emotional meaning associated with all the words of an entire language will be available to everyone—for the first time in the history of language. And not just the English language—all major languages!


Control Over Connotation is Essential

Language authorities have long agreed that control over connotative meaning spells the difference between powerful, memorable writing, and flat, weak writing:

"No one can write with color, force, and persuasiveness without control over connotation." (Weaver, R.M. A Rhetoric and Composition Handbook. New York, NY: William Morrow & Co., 1974.)

"Skill in using the emotional appeal of connotation is essential in any writing designed to persuade, convince, anger, inspire, or soothe a reader." (McCrimmon, J.M. Writing with a Purpose. Cambridge, MA: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1950.)

"In most contexts, denotation is less important than attitude, implied emotional stance, or tone." (Jerome, J. The Poet and the Poem. Cincinnati, OH: Writer’s Digest Books, 1979.)


Emotional Power Tools for Writers

Until recently, it was thought that capturing the full spectrum of emotional or connotative meaning in language and making it available in language reference products (for example, an "emotional dictionary" or an "emotional thesaurus") was simply impossible. And, until recently, for technical reasons, it was impossible.

No longer.

Advances in computer technology and the ascendancy of the Internet as a global communication medium have made it possible for Connotative Intelligence Corporation to develop the world's first and only technology for gaining complete, systematic access to emotional meaning in language.

And not just the English language—any language.

Using Connotative Intelligence™ Technology, publishers of traditional language reference products will be able to create revolutionary new kinds of products based on access to connotative meaning in language.

Enjoy your exploration of, home of Connotative Intelligence™ technology and previews of emotional power tools for writers.


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