Category Archives: Miscellaneous

Water

Dear All, Water is one of the resources that is often overlooked in western mass culture simply due to its … cheapness. However, unlike other more costly resources,  water is the resource which has a direct impact on our ability to learn, to teach, to conduct research, and to be healthy. The video below brings …

Continue reading

Salt

Dear All, What do we know about salt from the linguistic perspective and in general? According to Oxford Dictionary the origin of the word “salt” can be traced to: “Old English sealt (noun), sealtan (verb), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch zout and German Salz (nouns), from an Indo-European root shared by Latin sal, Greek …

Continue reading

Google Translate

Dear All, Have you ever thought that it would nice to speak X language? Indeed, it would be. All it takes is to start and little by little to pursue the goal. While you are doing this, there is a tool that can help you to communicate in a different language in the meanwhile. The …

Continue reading

SVG to PNG

Dear All: Have you ever had to convert a file from one format to another for your studies or research? I often need to convert files to different formats for my research. Most recently I came across an image in public domain which I wanted to convert from SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) format to PNG …

Continue reading

Oh, but how about “ough”?​

Did you know that in English “ough” can be read in 9 ways? Dear All, The English is a language which requires solid reading skills reading correctly. For instance, the “ough” can be read in at least nine different ways. Here is a sentence which contains all the instances: A rough-coated, dough-faced, thoughtful ploughman strode …

Continue reading

Brain consumes 20% of energy

Did you know that our brain consumes about 20% of our energy intake? So, if the brain consumes 20% of all our energy (Scientific American, 2016), what are some of the implications of this fact? Well, the first thing that comes to mind is the fuel: how do we fuel the brain? You may have …

Continue reading

Sir Richard Francis Burton spoke 24 languages

Did you know that Sir Richard Francis Burton spoke at least 24 languages? Sir Richard Francis Burton was the translator of “The Arabian Nights” into English and a polyglot. The languages he spoke are: Amharic, Arabic, Aramaic, Asante, Egba, English, Fan, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindustani (Sindhi and Urdu), Icelandic, Italian, Latin, Marathi, Occitan (Gascon/Béarnese …

Continue reading

Linguistic humour

Dear All, The quote above by Friedrich von Schlegel calls upon bringing together the world of science and humanities. Indeed, some of the greatest discoveries were made at the intersection of disciplines. For example, radio galaxies were found through the combined analysis of radio and optical data. What can unite sciences and humanities? The answer …

Continue reading

URL (link) shortener

Dear All, Have you ever tried to copy a link to share with your students, colleagues or fellow students and the link takes half a page with a lot of strange symbols? It may still work well if you send it electronically, but what if you want to print it and to include in a …

Continue reading

Irradiation and learning

Dear All, An old Latin proverb says “Mens sana in corpore sano” or “Healthy spirit in a healthy body”. This proverb underlines the importance of physical health for one’s spiritual life. In my opinion, it is equally applicable to the process of learning. In order to learn something it is important to be healthy because …

Continue reading

Independent and dependent variables

Dear All, When we conduct a linguistic research, we usually work with a number of variables some of which are independent and some are dependent. This post defines these two types of variables. An independent variable is what is given (e.g. age, sex, social class, geographical location, occupation), the “input”. An dependent variable is what …

Continue reading

Healthier and longer life

Dear All, Many centuries, across different cultures people have been looking for a way to make our lives healthier and longer. Well, modern medicine has partially succeeded in this by helping to prolong our lives to a limited extent. But what about the quality of life? How to make it not only longer, but also …

Continue reading

Linguistic Web tool

Hello Everyone! Today I would like to share with you quite an interesting linguistic tool. It is called Reverso. Reverso can be useful to people who are interested in linguistic matters such as: translation, conjugation, spelling, dictionary forms, and usage examples. This tool can be of use to learners of foreign languages who want to …

Continue reading

Rhyming dictionary, multilingual

Dear All, In “Rhyming dictionary” post, an online rhyming dictionary has already been discussed. That rhyming dictionary is for English. However, I have recently come across a multilingual rhyming dictionary. Why do we need a multilingual dictionary? The answer is simple: a multilingual rhyming dictionary allows finding rhymes in several languages and if you speak …

Continue reading

Original coinages

Dear All, I am fond of words which are coined in an original way. I find particularly interesting those coinages which have a simple form (easy to understand) and at the same time express the meaning concisely. In this post, I am going to look at such words: # Coinages Basis for the coinages Explanations …

Continue reading

Courage, modesty, and humanity in research

Dear All, In research, scientists sometimes become “hostages”of funding. This may show itself in the topic that scholars choose to research or even in findings which they present. It is certainly understandable that we all need means to exist, however, it is also important to keep a fair account of findings. In my opinion, whatever …

Continue reading

Blind men and an elephant

Image credit: WELS net, “Elephant crossing” August 5, 2006, via Flickr, CC BY-NC 2.0. It was six men of Indostan To learning much inclined, Who went to see the Elephant (Though all of them were blind), That each by observation Might satisfy his mind. The First approached the Elephant, And happening to fall Against his …

Continue reading

Communication Research Methods (book)

Dear All, Today I would like to share with one of the most comprehensive and brief books on communication research methods. The book covers all the key stages of research from the inception of a research idea to reporting research results. Both qualitative and quantitative methods are examined. It is important to note that the …

Continue reading

GMOs and health concerns

Dear All, As a follow-up on the previous post “Good food for good studies“, I am posting the information on the book by J. M. Smith “Genetic roulette: The documented health risks of genetically engineered foods”. The book deals with the topic of GMO (genetically modified organism) and provides some documented evidence concerning issues and …

Continue reading

Good food for good studies

Video credit: The Big Picture RT, “Conversations w/Great Minds – Jeffrey Smith GMOs – Seeds of Deception P2” July 23, 2012, via YouTube. Dear All, I strongly believe that food is a good “friend” of productive studies. Food for productive studies should be of quality. The reason for this is that good food makes us …

Continue reading

Can animals speak?

Video credit: JHawx, “Einstein the bird” November 25, 2009, via YouTube. Hello Everyone, Have you ever heard of birds or other representative of fauna that can speak? In this video, you can see a bird that can say several words and phrases. Sometimes, it is difficult to understand them; however, they are still quite intelligible. …

Continue reading

IPA charts, audios, videos

Dear All, Have you ever wondered how exactly it is made possible that we speak? How are sounds produced? What sounds have been recorded by phoneticians in different languages across the world? Well, this post may help to answer these questions. 1. Official IPA website (http://www.langsci.ucl.ac.uk/ipa/) IPA (the International Phonetic Association) is the best known international …

Continue reading

Ngram Viewer for corpus/computational linguistics

Dear All, Today, I would like to share a link to Google Ngram Viewer: Ngram Viewer (http://books.google.com/ngrams/) This is an online, free tool which allows users to conduct linguistic analysis on the frequency of word use. The year frame is quite impressive: 1800-2000. The analysis can be performed using corpora from the following languages: Chinese, …

Continue reading

Shibboleth

Sear All, Have you ever heard the word “shibboleth” [‘ʃɪb(ə)leθ]? What is the meaning of this word? The word “shibboleth” means 1) something that is difficult for pronunciation and which may reveal foreign accent; 2) certain trait of linguistic or nonverbal behaviour which reveals a person who belongs to a certain social group or profession …

Continue reading

Artificial intelligence (AI) and language

Video credit: Chris I-B, “Ladder Climbing with Robot’s POV” July 30, 2013, via YouTube. This video depicts a robot that can walk and climb a ladder. In robotics, it is believed that making robots walk similar to humans is one of the most challenging tasks. Scientists, however, seem to be making progress in this respect, …

Continue reading