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Ich blogge nebenbei seit 2008 täglich für ikono.tv .
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New VideosYou can watch my playlists over here. The latest videos are below.
- Google Translate Turns Obama Into Bush“Google wonks beavering away at translating snippets of French into the English language might wish to take note of the following fact – their system thinks “le président américain” is “Bush”. That’s George W Bush, we suppose. The Register reports that “Reg reader Robert spotted the amusing cockup when he tried to translate an article [...]
- The Alphabet of Untranslatable WordsHow do you translate the untranslateable? “Age-tori” in Japanese (“To look worse after a haircut”) has no equivalent word in English, but it should, because it’s useful (I’m sure you’ve all had this happened to you at one point in time or another). Irish illustrator Fuchsia Macaree did it with aplomb with artful alphabets. Here’s [...]
- Queen’s English Society says enuf is enough, innit?Society formed 40 years ago to protect language against poor spelling and grammar closes because too few people care. The Guardian reports: “The Queen may be celebrating her jubilee, but the Queen’s English Society, which has railed against the misuse and deterioration of the English language, is to fold. For 40 years the society has [...]
- The Language WarsWhy New Yorker writers and others keep pushing bogus controversies. If you didn’t already know that euphonious dichotomies are usually phony dichotomies, you need only check out the latest round in the supposed clash between “prescriptivist” and “descriptivist” theories of language. This pseudo-controversy, a staple of literary magazines for decades, was gin […]
- 10 Untranslatable Words (And When You’ll Want to Use Them)English is so limited sometimes. There are so many kickass words in other languages, that describe concepts that we just don’t have one word for in English. And that’s a shame, because sometimes we find ourselves in situations that English just can’t describe. IO9: “Science fiction and fantasy are full of those sorts of quirky [...]
- A Language Dies Every 14 DaysBy the next century nearly half of the roughly 7,000 languages spoken on Earth will likely disappear, as communities abandon native tongues in favor of English, Mandarin, or Spanish. What is lost when a language goes silent? An interesting story by Russ Rymer for National Geographic: “One morning in early fall Andrei Mongush and his [...]
- When Did English Lose the Long Letter S?Above is a selection from a 1711 printing of Milton’s Paradise Lost. Notice that what appears to be the modern letter f appears in the place of the modern letter s. This is the “long s”–a typographical practice of past centuries. When did it fade away? Evan Soltas used Google’s N-gram function to assess when [...]
- The TED Open Translation ProjectThe TED Open Translation Project brings TEDTalks beyond the English-speaking world by offering subtitles, time-coded transcripts and the ability for any talk to be translated by volunteers worldwide. The project launched with 300 translations in 40 languages, and 200 volunteer translators. Every talk on TED.com will now have English subtitles, which can be t […]
- Learn Invented Languages, From Elvish to Klingon“Geek culture is filled with invented languages. Some are just alluded to in movies and novels, others are fairly well developed and then expounded upon by devoted fans. But the linguistics of these inventions fascinate many of us, and understanding a word or two in these languages surely helps one’s geek cred. From Elvish to [...]
- Etymologicon & Story English In 100 WordEnglish is a wonderful, but infamously tricksy, thing. These two gripping reads will shed some light on just why this is, in an amusing, thought-provoking and enlightening way. Let Mark Forsyth take you on a tour of the secret labyrinth that lurks beneath the English language that takes in monks and monkeys, film buffs and [...]
- Google Translate Turns Obama Into Bush