About The Phrase Finder
From the site:
The Phrasefinder site was founded in 1997 by Gary Martin, who writes the Meanings and Origins section of the site and the Phrase A Week posts.
It grew out of an interest in computational linguistics that was developed during his post-graduate research in 1985 and later while working in an IBM-financed research project at Sheffield Hallam University. That project, headed by Professor Asher Cashdan, investigated the use of artificial intelligence techniques to aid the teaching of writing.
The site initially hosted a searchable database of phrases and idioms. Its search algorithm also uses artificial intelligence methods to provide pertinent search results. In 1998, a listing of the meanings and origins of phrases was added. That list of idioms and phrases now contains more than 1,500 entries (September 2007).