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Index » Radio Paradise/General » General Discussion » Little known information... maybe even facts Page: Previous  1, 2, 3 ... 64, 65, 66, 67  Next
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(former member)

(former member) Avatar



Posted: May 30, 2009 - 2:22pm

I'm big in Japan
rachlan

rachlan Avatar

Location: nyc
Gender: Female


Posted: May 30, 2009 - 7:23am

 the term nerd was invented by Dr. Seuss
... in his 1950 book, "If I Ran the Zoo."
justin_thyme

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Location: Windward O`ahu, Hawai`i
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 1:20pm

FYI, Derek Bickerton's not just a gifted linguist and author; he's also the proud father of two famous sons:  Ashley Bickerton, an astoundingly talented and successful mixed-media artist, and James Bickerton, a Honolulu superlawyer whose skillful advocacy on environmental, free speech, and community issues has been instrumental in preserving our quality of life here in Hawaii.  (Ash and Jim are also amazing surfers . . . they travel all over the world chasing the best waves.)  {#Clap}
justin_thyme

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Location: Windward O`ahu, Hawai`i
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 12:56pm

 Lazy8 wrote:

{#Cheers} Thanks, I now have the perfect gift for somebody!
 
You're very welcome.  It's a great read . . . that "somebody" will really enjoy it!  {#Sunny}
Talalala

Talalala Avatar

Location: Århus, Denmark
Gender: Female


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 12:55pm

justin_thyme wrote:

Speaking of languages: I recently finished re-reading Bastard Tongues by linguist Derek Bickerton. It's a fascinating and very entertaining exploration of the evolution of creole languages around the world — as much an adventure story as anything else. I heartily recommend it! Here's the Amazon link in case anyone's interested.

I'll have to check that out!  I read his book Language and Species when I was in college and really enjoyed it..   He is a good writer, too.  Keeps you engaged.

Lazy8

Lazy8 Avatar

Location: The Gallatin Valley of Montana
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 12:44pm

 justin_thyme wrote:
Speaking of languages:  I recently finished re-reading Bastard Tongues by linguist Derek Bickerton.  It's a fascinating and very entertaining exploration of the evolution of creole languages around the world — as much an adventure story as anything else.  I heartily recommend it!  Here's the Amazon link in case anyone's interested.
 
{#Cheers} Thanks, I now have the perfect gift for somebody!

justin_thyme

justin_thyme Avatar

Location: Windward O`ahu, Hawai`i
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 12:16pm

 Lazy8 wrote:

Languages tend to get simpler as they get older . . . .

 
Speaking of languages:  I recently finished re-reading Bastard Tongues by linguist Derek Bickerton.  It's a fascinating and very entertaining exploration of the evolution of creole languages around the world — as much an adventure story as anything else.  I heartily recommend it!  Here's the Amazon link in case anyone's interested.

Talalala

Talalala Avatar

Location: Århus, Denmark
Gender: Female


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 12:04pm

JustineFromWyoming wrote:
Eating all this English toffee won't make me any less sleepy.


Sooooo wish I could help you!

JustineFromWyomi...

JustineFromWyoming Avatar

Location: Teetering on the edge of Avenue D
Gender: Female


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 12:01pm

Eating all this English toffee won't make me any less sleepy.
dionysius

dionysius Avatar

Location: The People's Republic of Austin
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 2, 2008 - 4:43am

 Lazy8 wrote:

Languages tend to get simpler as they get older, and the bits that fall off are the ones that carry no information. Like gender.
 

Not true with the lexicon for any given modern language, for example, which tends to get bigger and more complex as time goes by. English itself is a famous example. Why, we have a word for everything.  And some modern languages are quite conservative grammatically, like Lithuanian, which proudly boasts all seven of the original Indo-European noun cases (wow, an instrumental case?!). Lithuanian also has the richest participle system of all I-E languages, with participles derived from all tenses with distinct active and passive forms, and several gerund forms. Sounds exhausting. Linguistic evolution isn't simply a progress from complexity to simplicity or vice versa; change can work in many different ways, some of them producing greater complexity, or leaving past complexity in place.


winter

winter Avatar

Location: in exile, as always
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 2:57pm

 Lazy8 wrote:

Languages tend to get simpler as they get older, and the bits that fall off are the ones that carry no information. Like gender.

Numbering systems tend to get simpler too—counting in Mandarin is much simpler than in English, which is simpler than French.

French has a further disadvantage: l'Académie Française. The French language actually has a sort of governing body that decides what is French and what isn't, a sure-fire way to freeze the evolution of the language and doom it to the dustbin of history in a few centuries. Assuming anyone pays it any attention.
 


Lazy8

Lazy8 Avatar

Location: The Gallatin Valley of Montana
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 2:52pm

 dionysius wrote:
Latin? Three genders but no articles. Closely related to Greek, three genders with articles. Lithuanian has strongly inflected noun system, like those ancient languages, but with no article. Icelandic uses only postfixed definite articles. English, with a developed system of definite and indefinite article, is more sophisticated than most languages. Try to have a Russian speaker make a quick and easy distinction between "a (any) banana lassi" and "the (one under discussion) banana lassi" and you'll get my point. That Frenchman was un homme complètement fou!

And I am aware that articles are weakened demonstratives, but demonstratives (like the Latin ille which yields Spanish el)  are not used like articles in these languages!

 
Languages tend to get simpler as they get older, and the bits that fall off are the ones that carry no information. Like gender.

Numbering systems tend to get simpler too—counting in Mandarin is much simpler than in English, which is simpler than French.

French has a further disadvantage: l'Académie Française. The French language actually has a sort of governing body that decides what is French and what isn't, a sure-fire way to freeze the evolution of the language and doom it to the dustbin of history in a few centuries. Assuming anyone pays it any attention.

musik_knut

musik_knut Avatar

Location: Third Stone From The Sun
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 2:41pm

 

 

Most people can not chew gum while simutaneously slapping their ass with both hands. {#Yes}

If someone offers to slap your ass while you chew gum, call the authorities.


BlueHeronDruid

BlueHeronDruid Avatar

Location: Заебани сме луѓе


Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 1:46pm

The current temperature at Newark Liberty Airport gate A18 is in the low 120's F.
phineas

phineas Avatar



Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 1:25pm

 Isabeau wrote:

I consider it boorish to look under a chair to see what gender it is.{#Snooty}

 
Chairs the world over appreciate this!

phineas

phineas Avatar



Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 1:23pm

 dionysius wrote:


Latin? Three genders but no articles. Closely related to Greek, three genders with articles. Lithuanian has strongly inflected noun system, like those ancient languages, but with no article. Icelandic uses only postfixed definite articles. English, with a developed system of definite and indefinite article, is more sophisticated than most languages. Try to have a Russian speaker make a quick and easy distinction between "a (any) banana lassi" and "the (one under discussion) banana lassi" and you'll get my point. That Frenchman was un homme complètement fou!

And I am aware that articles are weakened demonstratives, but demonstratives (like the Latin ille which yields Spanish el)  are not used like articles in these languages!


 
And crazy, too!

dionysius

dionysius Avatar

Location: The People's Republic of Austin
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 1:09pm

 Welly wrote:
Billy G has a soft spot for Librarians {#Wink}

 

And who wouldn't?
Welly

Welly Avatar

Location: Lotusland
Gender: Female


Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 1:08pm

Billy G has a soft spot for Librarians {#Wink}
dionysius

dionysius Avatar

Location: The People's Republic of Austin
Gender: Male


Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 1:05pm

 phineas wrote:

Years ago, in Nepal, I sat next at a table next to a group of travellers, among them a Frenchman who was declaiming loudly that, because there is no 'gender' in English, "It is a baby language... THE butter, THE chair..."  I wish I had been quick enough to ask if he thought, then, that French must be an adolescent language (2 genders), compared to, say, German with three. And would that in turn make Mandarin, which doesn't even use definite articles, an embryonic language.

But no, I just ordered a banana lassi and some toast...
 

Latin? Three genders but no articles. Closely related to Greek, three genders with articles. Lithuanian has strongly inflected noun system, like those ancient languages, but with no article. Icelandic uses only postfixed definite articles. English, with a developed system of definite and indefinite article, is more sophisticated than most languages. Try to have a Russian speaker make a quick and easy distinction between "a (any) banana lassi" and "the (one under discussion) banana lassi" and you'll get my point. That Frenchman was un homme complètement fou!

And I am aware that articles are weakened demonstratives, but demonstratives (like the Latin ille which yields Spanish el)  are not used like articles in these languages!

AliGator

AliGator Avatar



Posted: Dec 1, 2008 - 12:59pm

 phineas wrote:

Years ago, in Nepal, I sat next at a table next to a group of travellers, among them a Frenchman who was declaiming loudly that, because there is no 'gender' in English, "It is a baby language... THE butter, THE chair..."  I wish I had been quick enough to ask if he thought, then, that French must be an adolescent language (2 genders), compared to, say, German with three. And would that in turn make Mandarin, which doesn't even use definite articles, an embryonic language.

But no, I just ordered a banana lassi and some toast...
 
My ex, who's French as you may know, used to say English was a primitive language for the exact same reason.

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