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1:03 AM
@Kosmonaut: Now that you mention it, what is this distinction? The only thing I can think of is that clitics can always exist as separate words, while some affixes cannot; then again, some affixes can be separate words.
Although, when I think about it, some clitics change so much in form that they should probably be considered whole new words. Both categories have the change of accent. Both can be separated from their head by spaces, hyphens, or be attached to them. In fact I suspect that there is no hard line: I believe many affixes are former clitic adverbs or pre-/postpositions. Or am I missing something?
2 hours later…
2:35 AM
I think the key is that clitics are grammatically independent but affixes are grammatically dependent on the words they affix to.
2:59 AM
A: Is [acceptability] a meta-tag?

Jeff AtwoodThis is a meta tag, and I have removed it. Beware, you have two questions now tagged untagged.

That's nice. :-)
I wonder how it is possible to make a distinction between meta-tag and tag.
To me, a meta-tag would be a tag about tags.
As far as I can tell, "meta-tag" is a grab bag of ideas for tags Jeff doesn't like
The best description I can find is from the Aaronut quote on the blog posting about meta-tags: “The reason meta-tags are a problem is that they do not describe the content of the question. They describe some other aspect of the question, like the author’s skill level, or the author’s motivation for asking it, or generally what “kind” of question it is (poll, how-to, etc.).”
I don't think [acceptability] really met these criteria. It is a tag that describes the content of the question—the questions asks about the acceptability of something.
I understand what he means for stackoverflow.com, but I am not sure the concept can be applied to english.se.
I can agree it is possible to tag the question with usage, but call acceptability a meta-tag is not something I agree with.
I think it is absurd that the axe was dropped without even an hour of opportunity for someone to make a defense of the tag.
3:16 AM
That is true too. It should be also a decision taken from who normally works on english.se.
If that means there are few diamond users, then it is time to add more of them.
Is it true that American people don't use shall?
@kiamlaluno I accepted your answer, but would you mind adding a clarification that silviculture is the more technical term? It just bothers me a bit that this distinction in usage (which may be unknown to non-native speakers) isn't highlighted in an answer that is on top. I shall really appreciate it.
Shall is only used in American English in extremely formal contexts. Certainly essentially never in spoken English.
@nohat: Does that mean American people never say I shall return?
@Vitaly: I actually think that forestry is more technical, as it is also the nome used for a science.
I avoided to report that to avoid to make a passable answer a bad answer.
@kiamlaluno strange, one of my dictionaries reports that silviculture is the technical synonym to forestry. Thanks anyway.
I also thought that I shall return would be similar to I should return.
3:28 AM
@kiamlaluno People would say “I will return” or more likely “I’ll return”. You would only say “I shall return” if you were trying to be dramatic or exceedingly formal.
Or Douglas MacArthur ...
When a user exceed the 200 point daily limit, do down votes have effect?
They count.
How nice. :-)
@Robusto: Thank you.
3:34 AM
By the way, is your nick an Italian word? :-)
it doesn't do much though. Usually if someone goes over rep cap it's by a fair margin. More than 2 points.
It's a kind of cigar.
I took it because my name is Rob, not because I smoke cigars.
Where does your name come from?
It's Esperanto. It means "when the moon".
I usually use kiam la luno renkontas las sunon as signature (when the moon meets the sun).
I never knew any Esperantans :)
Don't count me as one. :-)
I started reading about Esperanto thinking it could help me on studying English better.
Where are you from?
3:39 AM
And I still am there. ;-)
What part?
I am in the Northern Italy, central region, Brescia. :-)
The lioness of Italy. :-)
You are female?
3:41 AM
Last time I checked, I was not. ;-)
No, I am not.
Why lioness then?
That is the term for Brescia?
Oh… yes. It's Brescia that is called so.
Thanks, it's an interesting phrase. I checked the Wikipedia article about Brescia when you said it, to make sure I understood it right. @kiamlaluno
I am sorry for the confusion. As my last sentence ended with Brescia, I didn't say to what I was referring.
Though I can't yet make a connection between the resistance of 1849 and the nickname.
Is it something about the Italian language?
3:45 AM
Italian isn't one of the languages I'm very familiar with.
Let me see if the meaning can be used in English too.
Was your area part of Gaul way back when?
The NOAD says lion means a brave or strong person. It means the same in Italian.
But lioness?
The lioness does all the hunting. The lion just lies around and waits to be fed.
3:48 AM
It's the female for lion. In Italian city (città) is feminine.
We have grammar gender. :-)
I know
Which is about as useful as teats on a bull ...
Brescia is a Celtic town. It has been conquest from Roman, and became Augusta Brixia.
Well, in Italian the gender is useful. It helps with the adjectives and articles.
Don't need no gender on no adjectives 'n' articles neither ...
You would, if you would speak Italian. :-)
3:52 AM
In Russian, grammatical gender has a strong effect on your feeling towards something. Does the same stand for Italian?
I would pretty much have to then.
I get enough of gender with German.
We have, for example, берёза (birch), which is feminine, and дуб (oak), which is masculine.
So in Russian poetry, the birch tends to be excessively feminised, often represented as a young girl.
Ива (willow, feminine) is feminised in poetry and novels, as well.
That is what happen in Italian too. The liberty is represented by a young woman; the same is true for the statues representing Italy, a town, etc.
I studied Russian for a year in high school, and as I recall it was not too hard.
Oh, nice.
3:56 AM
Echo is then feminine, in Italian. It was the name of a muse.
I could never hear the difference between the soft signs and hard signs though.
Some phonemes you have to grow up with.
Is it like Japanese? I read it's a tonal language.
Russian? No
Not completely. Not like Chinese.
You are asking about Japanese?
I mean, is Russian as tonal as Japanese? :-)
3:58 AM
I don't think Russian is tonal at all.
I don't think so either, but as a native Russian speaker, I may be biased. ;-)
I was just asking. I don't speak Russian at all. :-)
Japanese uses raised pitch for emphasis, but that's about it. In certain constructions, like the one I mentioned on English.SE the other day. Inu-(w)o ka'te-imasue ... the 'te' is spoken with a rising inflection.
I know how to say yes, no, goodbye, tovarich, but not a complete sentence.
Urka. :-)
I don't have a Cyrillic keyboard, but I can say "Ya nichego ne znayu."
4:02 AM
Dasfidania, tovarich.
Ya ne ponimayu po-russki
Oh, you even used the hyphen. How nice. Most Russians don't know better.
Is that Russian, or Japanese? :-)
that was Russian
Or my approximation of it.
4:04 AM
Where would you learn urka? I am curious.
I think I heard it in TV, in an Italian program.
That's a curiosity indeed, because urka has always been a relatively rare slang word.
what does it mean?
It means a crook
I think they used it because its similarity with an Italian word. I must investigate. :-)
4:07 AM
Well, to be more exact, it hasn't always been a rare word.
It is a slang word back from the 30s-40s.
By the late 80s, it was used mostly by journalists to impress the reader with a funny slang-ish word.
I think last time I heard it anywhere (except this chatroom) was in the mid-90s.
To notice the title: urca urca tirulero, which doesn't have any meaning.
tirulero doesn't make any sense in Russian either, for what it's worth. :-)
In Italian, urca is an expression of wonder, if I remember well. I have not used the word in ages.
Should the first comment to this question be removed? It's a request for support, rather than be a comment to the question.
Q: Does the verb "unpublish" exist?

kiamlalunoI use a CMS (content management system) where a post, or comment is visible to all the users (if there aren't other restrictions) when it is flagged as published. What verb should I use to mean that I changed the status of a post from published to unpublished? The dictionary reports that unpubli...

back to grammatical gender. I once wondered whether native English speakers perceived the entities that the English nouns refer to as possessing some form of gender, even in the absence of the grammatical category of gender
some Wikipedia page mentioned that gender in English has become a ‘hidden category,’ if I am recalling the term right
which doesn't really provide one with any insight into how native English speakers perceive the nouns
Old English had grammar gender.
4:20 AM
Yeah, it had the category of grammatical gender explicitly, which has become a hidden category
The word wyrm (worm) was apparently masculine in Old English
I'll tell you how I perceive gender in nouns: as a useless encumbrance. :)
In some cases, there are two words for the same animal, but recent words don't make distinction of gender.
So, is it possible that modern English speakers could perceive a worm as ‘he’, not as simply ‘it’?
I think a worm is a it.
4:23 AM
It was a he in Old English. ;-)
You use "he" or "she" for domestic animals, though.
And ‘she’ for ships.
We we ain't in Olde England anymore.
I don't say "Sume man eode ham to his huse." I say "Some guy went home to his house."
This reminds me that infants are customarily called ‘it’ in BrE, which AmE speakers apparently find offensive.
Not true.
A newborn is called "it" if you don't know the sex. If you do, you call it he or she.
4:25 AM
It is used to refer to child of unspecified sex in American English too.
That's what I'm saying.
It's implied that the gender is unknown.
It's also how you ask what sex a child is: "Is it a boy or a girl?"
Wait, I shall try to find a blog entry about it.
@Robusto: Are you American?
4:29 AM
Si, molto Americano.
Ok, now this comment is spammish (the second one).
Q: Does the verb "unpublish" exist?

kiamlalunoI use a CMS (content management system) where a post, or comment is visible to all the users (if there aren't other restrictions) when it is flagged as published. What verb should I use to mean that I changed the status of a post from published to unpublished? The dictionary reports that unpubli...

Cool. I visited LI many times, in the last 10 years. :-)
Why are you spamming that here?
Because there are diamond users? :-)
When I said spam-ish, I was referring to the comment to that question, not to my comment.
I've been playing this XBox 360 game called Assassin's Creed lately ... it has a lot of Italian in it. Pretty interesting.
Do you mean they use Italian words?
4:37 AM
Yeah, they sometimes speak whole sentences in Italian.
Wow; what an honor. :-)
It's about Renaissance Italy, and the battle between the Borgia and the Medici.
It's really something I would not have expected.
Oh… Borgia…
Does the game make also references to history?
4:39 AM
Absolutely. That's what's so cool about it.
That's cool, and nice. :-)
Meh. I know some Russians who complain that when they have local History Olympiads in Russian schools, their kids are being posed with questions to which they [kids] most likely would know an answer if they played that game. And they [parents] figure that the authors of the questionnaires play that game as well.
For once, it's not a game about Mafia. :-)
BTW, Vitally, I hear the Russian press is blaming Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II for the airport terrorist incident recently.
I cannot say whether it's true. I haven't read Russian press in a long time.
However, the Russian news I get on the Web didn't mention anything like that.
4:44 AM
Because there is one "chapter" that takes place in a Russian airport, and the deal is you are working undercover trying to bring down this Russian mobster, but you have to massacre civilians at the airport to prove yourself.
I don't play that myself, but my son does.
I couldn't bring myself to even pretend to kill civilians.
Have you run that game on your computer or shut it down yourself? ;-)
How do you edit a message you already sent?
I found it.
@kiamlaluno Press the up arrow. Oh well, you beat me to it.
My son is in college. He plays it sometimes on my XBox when he comes home for a visit. Actually, I only really bought the XBox for the boys to play when they come home. But then I played Assassin's Creed and kind of got into it.
Anyway, if you have ever shut the game down, you have in effect obliterated a whole world full of civilians. The chunks of data were erased from the memory. You're evil! ;-)
4:51 AM
I don't deny it. I have killed a lot of bits of data in my time ...
Somehow they keep coming back to live though. Or undeath ...
Later. Gotta go to work in the morning. Also we're getting slammed with snow here for the next two days. I ... hate ... winter ...
Bye, Robusto.
Bye @Robusto
Do users see my email, on english.se or other SE sites?
5:02 AM
I don't. And when you edit a profile, it says the e-mail is never displayed.
@Vitaly: Thank you.
You're welcome.
Hi good Morning/evening
Good morning.
5:20 AM
I m new to this chatroom. Do we discuss only about english in here?
5:32 AM
I guess the chat has the same purpose of the site.
If it is so then I m in the right place. I am proud to say that I m interested in English oration
6:24 AM
This is another duplicate.
Q: Rule on absence of the article "the" with plural nouns

vgv8I recently reviewed (as I believe, rather thoroughly) the rules of using articles in English and I do not recall any rule on absence of definitive article THE with plural nouns. Can you give me a reference on such a rule?

Q: Definite article with plural nouns

kiamlalunoAre there cases where the definite article is used with a plural noun, or is it a rule that the definite article is never used with the plural of a word?

3 hours later…
9:21 AM
@kiamlaluno: note that diamond mods can see your email address, so as to be able to contact you directly if there are any issues to be settled. They can also see your real name (well, the "real name" you provide), and open your consecutive-days calendar.
9:31 AM
@RegDwight: Thank you. I was more worried of that user who tries to contact me, and reports it as a comment on english.SE.
I don't know why, but I keep to write "Red" when I write your nick. :-)
Heh. Many people do, especially on the meta Meta.
I miss a lot of comments because of that.
It's short for Reginald. There is no Redinald!
I hope not! :-)
BTW, that last question, I'm not sure if that's a dupe, but I think it's what they call "noise or pointless" on MSO.
I am used to users who write kiamlaluna, on drupal.org. It doesn't happen too frequently, thought.
I think "I am not a female!". :-)
I'm not that familiar with Esperanto. Do they have both luno and luna?
9:36 AM
It's quite a noise. In the question I asked you find when the article is used; therefore, you know when it should be not used.
There is just luno; the feminine would be lunino.
I seem to vaguely remember that all nouns take -o, all adjectives take -a, or something like that.
I am sure you know a word that is related to fraulo, but I am sure you would think it refers to a woman.
That is correct.
Yeah, Esperanto is full of "German" words.
Yep. Tago is another word of those.
That's a funny word!
Now I'm hungry!
9:40 AM
Anyway, fraulo means mister, and the feminine would be fraulino.
I didn't know that tago had that effect. :-)
I didn't know either until just a minute ago.
Well, between an hour will be tagmezo. :-)
Speaking of German words borrowed from Esperanto, there are also kvar and kvin.
I'm not sure that's German, sounds quite Latin to me.
Quarta, quinta.
Si deve suonare tutto questo pezzo delicatissimamente e senza sordini
Oh. From the kv, I thought they were German-related words. :-)
Now it's my turn to be hungry. :-)
How so? I didn't say sArdini!
9:45 AM
What are sordini? :-)
Ugh, err, what do you call them in English? Mute, I think.
Sardine e alici!
Ah! Dampers!
Another German(ic)-looking word.
OK; I am lost. :-)
What is sordini?
A mute is a device fitted to a musical instrument to alter the sound produced: by affecting the timbre, reducing the volume, or most commonly both. Musical directions for muting The use of a mute is usually indicated in musical notation by the direction con sordino (often abbreviated con sord, sord, sordino). (Sordina, with plural sordine, is the strictly correct Italian term for mute as used on string instruments; but the forms con sordino, senza sordino, sordino via, etc., are much more commonly used as terms in music than the forms con sordina, senza sordine, etc.) The mute should ...
9:47 AM
It's the first time I heard of that. :-)
Musical notation is full of all kinds of funky Italian words.
Andante, allegro, piano, pianissimo_. andante allegro. :-)
Presto agitato.
There are many Italian words used in lyric.
Actually, lyric used texts in Italian. The first to use texts in German was Mozart.
I am sure I didn't use the correct word. :-)
Yeah, it's still called libretto for a reason.
And librettist.
9:52 AM
There isn't an article in Italian for sordino. There is an article in German, but I would understand Chinese better than that. ;-)
La sordina, in musica, è un dispositivo meccanico che, applicato ad uno strumento musicale, ne modifica il suono, attutendolo e modificandone il timbro. Ogni strumento viene sordinato in maniera e con dispositivi diversi; allo stesso modo la frequenza con cui le sordine vengono applicate è molto variabile a seconda del tipo di strumento: il procedimento è abbastanza frequente per gli ottoni mentre è più raro per altre famiglie e quasi inesistente per alcuni strumenti (chitarre, flauti). Quanto si è detto riguarda le sordine che vengono usate per modificare il suono degli strumenti duran...
I should add the link to this page on the article for sordino.
What Beethoven meant, however, is only briefly mentioned in a single sentence buried in the middle of the page: "Nel caso del pianoforte, alcuni spartiti specificano senza sord. per indicare l'uso del pedale (normalmente specificato con Ped.)."
Thank you. :-)
In Russian, we have the word сурдина (surdina) for the sordina per tromba.
Or any brass instrument, for that matter.
9:58 AM
It's almost the same word, except it's used in a more specific way.
So, are you still hungry or what? (^_^)
After talking of sordina so much, no. :-)
We could talk about gelati, then.
Oh well… ice cream doesn't match well with sardine. :-)
I think I will pass on that. :-)
I just like the word. Ge-la-ti. Kind of like what Nabokov was getting at with his choice of Lo-li-ta.
Also, there's actually ice cream with sardine taste/flavour.
10:06 AM
Now I am definitively not hungry. :-)
For cry out loud! Who would even taste that ice cream?
Don't reply: I know I would not. :-)
*crying out
I hope I didn't write the wrong expression: I heard it many times, but I am still not sure I understand what is being said.
I think your usage was fine. At least I understood perfectly what you meant.
The Japanese have all kinds of ice-cream. Garlic, meat, fish, cheese, vegetables, you name it.
That's good; it means I really keep attention to what a person tells me. :-)
I would rather eat a pizza with french fries on top. :-)
What is about a Bismarck pizza? Yummy!
Wurstels and french fries!
Now I am really hungry!
To point the finger, those are all Italian pizzas; no need to put the blame on other countries. :-)
What I would really like to taste, now, it's fudge.
Is there fudge in Germany too?
10:24 AM
Yeah, sure there is.
I still can't make head or tails of the [acceptability] question.
Guess I'll have to wait till Kosmonaut and nohat are around, have a chat with them.
Nor do I.
I can't believe this is happening.
Or has happened.
nohat expressed his opinion with "WTF". :-)
That can't be starred enough.
Do you know what Drude would mean?
Just in case, I starred the link too.
10:31 AM
I dunno, could be a misspelling of dude or druid(e), or a proper name.
I'm not familiar with that forum, I would have to guess.
There's the German word Drude, it's a female elf.
But it's extremely seldom.
I was thinking of dude, but the word has been written in capital case.
Yeah, hence my reasoning that it could be a proper name.
Drudge or who knows, just Drude, as is.
I would spouse the last hypothesis you said. :-)
Ehmm… the one before the last.
Haha, spouse is funny (^_^)
I will ask on drupal.org, and report the answer here. ;-)
10:35 AM
Fair enough.
That is a case of translation from Italian to English I do. :-)
I don't know why, but there is already a person laughing at my English expressions.
In Italian, sposo la tua teoria would mean I agree with your hypothesis.
I thought spouse could be also a verb, in English.
Now that you mentioned the domain name, couldn't the dru in Drude be the same as (or related to) the dru in drupal?
Drupal derives from the Dutch word for drop.
Yeah, just read that on Wikipedia. (^_^)
Funny how I never thought about what it could mean.
Dries was thinking to call his first site dorp.org, but when verifying the domain was available, he wrote drop.
Oh. I memorized it. :-)
10:40 AM
Yeah well, I guess I won't forget it now, either, it's a fun story.
I registered my account on drupal.org 4 years and 45 weeks ago. :)
Do they have shiny badges for that?
StackExchange and Reddit do.
If you look at Druplicon, it's a water drop. :-)
No. We don't have even a tag for site maintainers/administrators.
A water drop with a sleep mask on.
I thought it was the mask thieves use. :-)
10:44 AM
Or that. Somehow it also reminds me of Astro Boy.
That is why I was thinking to make a module that would add badges, and permissions based on the reputation.
Actually, there are some modules that allow to create a StackExchange-like site with Drupal.
I'm pretty sure someone is working on that already. There are all kinds of SE clones around.
I wonder if there's one in Turbo Pascal 5.5.
I hope I don't select Hebraic in the Google search preferences. I would have troubles to reset the language back to English. :-)
Turbo Pascal for a web site; that would be really cool.
Is Turbo Pascal like Delphi?
I wonder if when I edit one of my old questions/answers, other users see the question jumping on the top of the recent questions.
I edited one of my questions (or answers), and it has been voted up.
Delphi is a mix of Borland Pascal Object and Visual Basic 3.0.
I'm now holding a book titled "Programming in Turbo Pascal 5.5". It's in Russian, published in 1992. Good times.
I think I will delete this question; I got already two down votes because it.
Q: Check the information available from http://example.com/info.html

kiamlalunoWhat does the sentence reported in the title mean? Check the information you find in that page, and in any page with a link in that page. Check the information you find in that page.

1992… Yes; they were good times. :-)
10:54 AM
I'm not sure you can delete it now that it has an upvoted answer.
I think you will have to close-vote it, not sure.
That fine; I voted that answer. :-)
I thought it was a good question; at least it would make clear what the difference between available from and available on is, IMO.
I think it could benefit from some editing, to highlight just that.
Actually, the title looks kind of spammy, without quotes.
Perhaps some people are voting on that.
You were right, indeed. I cannot delete it.
Oh for Pete's sake!
Well… the link is the classic example.com. If they think there is really a site with that name, they could as well think Santa Claus really exists. :-)
Heh. Well, I'm not saying that that is really what is happening. Just a theory.
I would not surprised it would be so. Sometimes people don't think.
11:00 AM
But if you want to highlight the difference between "available from" and "available on", I would ask just that.
Or that, or they overthink.
The idea was to ask about that in the specific case. I don't want to get 1000 answers saying a different meaning of "available from".
Q: "Available from" versus "available on"

kiamlalunoWhat is the difference between available from and available on? Do the following sentences have a different meaning? Check the information available from [URL of a web page]. Check the information available on [URL of a web page]. My interpretation is that they mean, respectively: Chec...

Fantastic; another down vote.
I like the edit. A lot.
I must thank you for the suggestion. Sometimes I need somebody who proof-read my questions, even to just suggest what it is better to avoid misinterpretations like that.
You're welcome.
I think that most of the down votes are done from who speaks English as first language.
For them the question is quite obvious, but sometimes they don't think of the meaning of the phrase being asked.
11:16 AM
I must say that a few downvotes here or there is nothing to get upset about. Off the top of my head, I can think of at least two answers that got a downvote (along with many upvotes) for no reason whatsoever, one by Robusto, one by nohat.
Now, if people start getting downvoted like on the breasts question, that is insane.
I know. I just find that some questions are more obvious than others, but I would not down vote a question for that.
For example, there is the question about the difference between day and date.
The point is that ultimately, everyone is entitled to his opinion, and he's paying a -1 himself for the privilege.
That's true. :-)
Plus, as the site grows, there are many more votes, including downvotes.
What I don't understand are the votes for a user who doesn't frequent the site anymore.
11:20 AM
We now have well over 4000 users. What's 2 downvotes, (or even 10) in that context?
Well, that's passive rep.
The "old "questions don't get thrown away, people still come across them, and they still vote.
I wish I would have that passive reputation; when I was away, nobody voted my questions/answers. :-)
I have some stats right here. According to the latest dump, you're getting 4.936 passive rep points per day.
Oh… that is the decimal point. :-)
Still it's amazing.
Do you mean votes on my old questions/answers?
11:23 AM
Yeah, five thousand passive rep every single day, now that's what I call inflation!
I was going with another "for Pete's sake". :-)
Yep, votes on all posts that are older than 4 weeks.
Rep that is collected in the first 2 weeks is ignored, any rep after that is considered "passive".
How do you see those statistics?
Also, my stats only consider the top 2000 posts.
Brb, Xblast, afk for 20 min or so.
I hope you are not going to blast somebody. ;-)
@RegDwight: Thank you for the link.
11:49 AM
Geez, got pwned big time.
Yeah, haven't lost like that in a looooooong time.
I hope it was not painful. :-)
It kind of is.
Oh… Xblast is a game.
11:58 AM
And an extremely fun one at that.
Anyhow, where were we? Ah yes. DataExplorer rocks.
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