Language and words in the news – 15th August, 2014

Posted by on August 15, 2014

© Ioannis Kounadeas / Fotolia.comThis post contains a selection of links related to language and words in the news. These can be items from the latest news, blog posts or interesting websites related to global English, language change, education in general, and language learning and teaching in particular.

Feel free to contact us if you would like to submit a link for us to include, or just add a comment to the post, with the link(s) you’d like to share.

Language change and slang

Is it what you say or is it who you are?
Neil Hall, professor of functional and comparative genomics at the University of Liverpool, has devised the Kardashian index, a way of measuring whether scientists deserve their fame or are just ‘famous for being famous’. Who knows if it will catch on?

De-Extinction: The Mammoth Walks Again
Another very useful word, here applied to words that die and then come back to life.

From a language point of view, what’s happening in Iraq, Syria, and environs has revived words that have not been common for many years. – See more at: http://www.cjr.org/language_corner/language_corner_063014.php?utm_content=buffer811d0&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer#sthash.WQopCEDs.dpufFrom a language point of view, what’s happening in Iraq, Syria, and environs has revived words that have not been common for many years.From a language point of view, what’s happening in Iraq, Syria, and environs has revived words that have not been common for many years..

Global English

Who is speaking up for Canadian English?
The elusive Canadian identity is often defined by what it isn’t, a spirit of absence that may explain what’s gone missing from the story of our language. Canada doesn’t have its own dictionary.

Books, science, dictionaries, words and language

Typography And Font Deconstruction
I now know what a tittle is. This lovely infographic shows some technical terms and details associated with type and explains the meaning of each term in simple, plain English.

The Typographic Universe
In their latest book, Steven Heller and Gail Anderson explore ‘the alphabet of everyday things’: letters found in unexpected places such as flowers, train sets, or human bones.

Computational Linguistics of Twitter Reveals Existence of Global Superdialects
The first study of dialects on Twitter reveals global patterns that have never been observed before.

Can you own a language?
A fight between Wikipedia and Tasmanian aborigines adds a new twist to an old debate.

Spoken Latin: A modern remedy for the nation’s age-old reading problems?
You open a door and introduce yourself. “Salve,” you whisper to the first person you see. Emboldened, you speak up: “Nomen mihi est Francisca.” But then, before you can conjugate a deponent verb, a man sitting at a table begins discussing the Russo-Turkish war of 1877-78. In Latin.

Fun

A for ‘orses
Someone reminded me about the Cockney alphabet. Here it is for those who are not familiar with it.

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