Words are interesting, alluring, beguiling, deceiving, betraying, abandoning, don’t you find? The fact that you’re reading right now suggests you consider words at least tolerable, adequate, acceptable. Perhaps you even find words enjoyable, amusing, campy, goofy, idiotic, foolish. If so, you might like the look of Synonymy (sadly not out yet). It’s about synonyms, or rather synonyms which aren’t quite synonyms. It’ll have you getting from one word to another quite different one through chains of synonyms. It’s about the blurry edges of words that make carefully choosing them so much fun, the slight inflections you can add to draw connections. Also, Richard Dawkins is its narrator.
Synonymy will give you two words, one to start with and another to reach. How you reach it through bending synonyms is up to you. You know, like Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon but with words; ‘graboid’ isn’t even in the thesaurus. Or perhaps more like a potential round on lovely quiz show Only Connect, except it’s hosted by Richard Dawkins rather than Victoria Coren Mitchell, which would be a terrible mistake for BBC Two. Similies, like synonyms, are imprecise.
Weekly challenges will encourage a spot of jolly competition too.
It’s only in English now, but developer (and filmmaker) Christopher Jarvis hopes to add other languages too. I’m planning to move to Paris next year, so a fun way to brush up on synonyms — one of the weaknesses of school-taught French — sounds lovely.
Synonymy’s due on November 6th. It’s currently trying to negotiate Steam Greenlight.