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12:42 PM
@all Should a canonical plural question be opened up so we can just close all of these exasperating ones with new numbers "-1, 2, 21, 25" as duplicates of that?
What? You don't want to answer questions about each number from 0 to infinity separately?
but how do i know that english doesn't have a trial number? a quaternal? quintal? septidecimal?
@JSBangs — Only one way to find out. Answer them all!
Actually, I should have said: "Only infinity ways to find out!"
the real question is how i formulate a latinism to represent "negative one"
Well, that's harder than representing the square root of -1, which is simply i ...
1:04 PM
To infinity... and beyond!
hi all
i have to say, this was a livelier place yesterday
what with discussions of PIE and theme vowels and dutch-american heraldry
@JSBangs — Yes. Those were the good old day.
@JSBangs but yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away!
And now it looks as though I'm here to stay!
1:18 PM
@Fx — Oh. I believe. In yesterday.
@RegDwight please don't :)
@RegDwight — Wait, you were here yesterday too. And we had just as many problems, if not more.
The day is still young.
Is that a challenge?
I don't challenge hackers or Russians.
A propos.
1:20 PM
He is making jokes again.
No, apropos Russians. Gagarin was flying a MiG-15 because it was the most reliable plane at that time.
@RegDwight — Seriously?
He also had a very experienced instructor on board. Probably the best instructor in the entire USSR at that time.
But he got wiped out by some idiot going supersonic?
1:22 PM
I think the current theory is that some bozo in a Sukhoy entered Gagarin's zone... Yes, exactly.
I hear it was hard for the MiG-15 to come out of spins due to its reduced vertical stabilizer profile.
Leonov insists that the Su must have missed the MiG by as little as 5 to 10 meters.
Well, that would have simply torn the MiG apart.
@Robusto Gagarin almost brought it under control. 2 more seconds. Just two.
That's a test pilot for you.
1:23 PM
The thing is, he probably didn't know his altitude.
Umm, they have these instruments called "altimeters" ...
MiG15's altimeter was quite slow to react.
In a case of a sudden drop in altitude, it took several seconds to adapt.
And the tower's radar was disfunctional on that day.
Really, this all just makes me sad.
Mayday, also known as Air Crash Investigation(s) and Air Emergency, is a documentary television program produced by Cineflix investigating air crashes, near-crashes and other disasters. Mayday uses re-enactments, interviews and computer-generated imagery to reconstruct the sequence of events leading up to each disaster for the audiences. In addition aviation experts, retired pilots and crash investigators are interviewed explaining how these emergencies came about and how they could have been prevented. Cineflix started production on , with a CDN$2.5 million budget. Cineflix secured deal...
They wouldn't let him fly at all for years, but when they did, they screwed it up big time.
I was impressed by the Russian pilot flying a MiG-29 (I think it was) at the Paris airshow in the '90s, who had a double-engine flameout at takeoff, ejected at about 50 meters, and walked away unharmed after his chute opened and caught just before he hit the ground.
He ejected horizontally too, not up.
Actually, it wasn't on takeoff:
And it was '89.
1:36 PM
Why is that categorized as "comedy"?
@RegDwight — Huh?
On YouTube.
I just searched "Russian pilot ejects" First hit.
I wouldn't call that funny.
My point exactly.
Sometimes I have no idea how some people on YouTube tick.
Yeah, it's funny when people almost die, I guess. A regular laugh riot.
What impressed me was how he managed to point the aircraft away from the crowd before ejecting. That was heroic stuff, and good flying.
1:47 PM
Q: ALLEGED Or ALLEGEDLY.......differnce in use?

prem shekharSeeking to avoid prejudging the facts in a crime and protect the rights of the accused, reporters sometimes over-use “alleged” and “allegedly.” If it is clear that someone has been robbed at gunpoint, it’s not necessary to describe it as an alleged robbery nor the victim as an alleged victim. Thi...

i voted Subjective & Argumentative
I would vote "no idea what's being asked here".
@JSBangs — Same. Also "peeving disguised as a question."
@Robusto Agreed, NARQ.
There seem to be four different questions in there.
None of them clearly carved out.
My sense is the OP is outraged at anyone having to used "allegedly" in a news story.
1:52 PM
But nobody would say "alleged accused".
"Alleged murderer", yes. But not "alleged accused".
Oh well "The alleged accused suspected suspect is in custody".
@RegDwight Though it looks like a predominantly Indian/Pakistani usage, looking through the results. I wouldn't say it myself...
I was just going to point out the same thing.
OP's another question looks like a poem.
Q: Seems ,appear,look...how to differentiate the use?

prem shekharAre there any significant structural or semantic differences between seem, appear and look in the sense of to give the impression of being or doing something? She looks unhappy. He seems angry. They appear (to be) contented. It looks as if it's going to rain again. It looks like we're going ...

>I seem to have lost my way. Can you help me?

>It seems to be some kind of jellyfish. Do not go near it.
2:02 PM
You seem to be looking like someone who appears to be confused.
O-ha. An edit coming in...
Q: ALLEGED Or ALLEGEDLY.......differnce in use?

prem shekharalleged harasser has the right to be informed. It's also alleged that there are more young black men in jail at any given time than there are in higher education. alleged breaches. alleged misconduct of officers. alleged infringement on which we act. alleged perpetrator, 29 year-old Mar...

That does help, but not much.
Wow, that is so ... not clearer.
If I understand him correctly, the question now amounts to a "Can you list a few more sentences with word X?"
But the title is still asking something different.
And there was I going to say just this morning, hey, we've been heavy on interesting questions lately.
Haha, @Kosmonaut is our Clippit.
"It looks like you are asking about the difference between an adjective and an adverb. Would you like help?"
Can I have my name changed, @RegDwight?
Uh, you have to change it yourself?
2:13 PM
But he wants to change it to @RegDwight.
Just don't take Justin of Arthur.
You could take vgv9.
Or Яobusto.
I did change it myself. Twice (or thrice, depends on how you count it), actually. First time to a Cyrillic one and back a few months ago, and to the Cyrillic one yesterday. But then I discovered that they introduced the 30-day interval before changing your name again, so I am stuck with the Cyrillic one. I think a Latin name would be better. @RegDwight
Hahaha. Oh well. I think you might have to email the team or something. But let me check.
There you go. Seemed to work.
Yay! Thanks, @RegDwight
Not at all.
Those crazy Russians with their Latin names.
2:18 PM
Vitaly is a Latin name? Nickname for Vitellius, perhaps?
But seriously, there should be a warning or something.
LOL @Kosmonaut, that's what you get for asking.
@Vitaly I herewith warn you most very sternly.
@RegDwight — Wait, shouldn't there be threats of dire consequences?
2:20 PM
Why do the Americans get all the cool tornadoes and we don't get a single EF0-ish one? Do you have to get runaway capitalism to get tornadoes?
Psst, Vitaly, too soon.
@Vitaly — Notice that we Americans never characterize Russian disasters as "cool" — or wish we could have them?
> Why do the Russians get all of the awesome nuclear disasters?
@RegDwight I'd like to think I'm less irritating than Clippy.
2:32 PM
@Kosmonaut — I think you would have to work a lot harder to be that irritating. You'd need to train for years.
@Robusto For starters, I probably should change my gravatar.
Even a long journey begins with the first comment.
If I had this gravatar, I think that would boost the annoyance-factor by 50.
Can you make it blink and wink?
@Kosmonaut Clippy should be the April Fool's joke for Writers.SE
2:34 PM
@Robusto I am sorry. A tornado in itself is an impressive sight, so it makes me want to witness one. I have a hard time trying to think of a tornado as a “disaster.”
@Vitaly That is sort of like saying you want to witness a black hole because black holes are cool.
Just watch Twister
@MrHen i'm pretty sure this is the only time I've seen someone actually recommend watching Twister
@Kosmonaut — Wow, you are annoying me, like, 157% more now.
@Vitaly actually, a tornado is a pretty cool sight, so I understand where you're coming from. i once got to watch a waterspout (a tornado over water) from a safe distance, which was awesome
2:36 PM
@JSBangs Here. You are welcome.
I actually think we should quickly make a few comments so that Clippy scrolls of the page.
Remember, if you become Clippy, people may write blog posts about the best ways of killing you. freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/1068552/posts
@Vitaly Three Mlie Island was peanuts compared to Chernobyl. Nonetheless, point taken
I definitely prefer Three Mile Island™ Peanuts to the store brand.
@RegDwight OMG
2:38 PM
and Fukushima is even more peanuts, a non-emergency blown up entirely by media hysteria. but i digress
@RegDwight That is truly disturbing.
I am here to disturb.
@RegDwight — Wait. Shouldn't the circular reasoning spin in opposite directions? Otherwise the torque might flip him over.
Those dead eyes....
They tie the clip together!
I would have become a storm chaser had I lived in the US.
@Vitaly — In America, the storms find you.
@Robusto omg, what is that Hong Kong thing?
I haven't even seen a supercell. :(
The closest I had to severe weather was a hurricane (not a supercell-borne, though) with winds of up to 30 metres per second.
I was in the countryside when the hurricane struck, and I literally danced in the rain.
The rain was so heavy it tried to bend me down to earth.
Seriously, dude, ease up on them drugs.
2:48 PM
The drug's called adrenaline.
Then there were about a dozen dust devils seconds before the storm reached the area I was in. Is it what you get before a storm in the US?
Usually there are sirens
Then I go into the basement.
I've seen three tornadoes in my lifetime. One creepy characteristic you notice beforehand is that the air may get very still and quiet, but there is a low overcast and the clouds seem to be moving relatively rapidly. Then suddenly you get heavy rain or hail — all hell breaks loose.
3:05 PM
Is that Robusto?
That is how I imagined him to look
Artist's impression.
That's just me breaking wind.
That image is a deja vu all over again.
3 hours later…
5:41 PM
I think we have a new record.
A: Usage of "might" and "would" to indicate doubt

DanBrian Hooper: I had a look via Google for more information on this point, but, try as I might, I couldn't find anything. I remember reading an article on the difference between "Launching the lifeboat may have saved lives" and "Launching the lifeboat might have saved lives" but I can't remember w...

Certainly one of the longest answers ever. On this site, that is.
5:53 PM
@RegDwight — And not a single upvote! Awww ...
I'm not even halfway through.
I can't upvote stuff I haven't read.
It could be saying something bad about communism at the very end.
6:05 PM
@RegDwight — Then it's your obligation to squash that stuff. Otherwise, Stalin will notice your omission.
I am now halfway through. No communism bashing thus far.
I am trying to think of a polite comment to leave. So far my options are "TL;DR" and "Dear Lord".
I said this earlier:
@all Should a canonical plural question be opened up so we can just close all of these exasperating ones with new numbers "-1, 2, 21, 25" as duplicates of that?
Q: How do numbers within ]-1,1[ affect plurality?

zneakIf I recall correctly, the Académie française states that, for French, quantities comprised within [-1,1] are singular, and anything else is plural. This means, for instance, that we should say (in French) 0.3722 apple, instead of 0.3722 apples. I know for 1 and -1 in English, but how do real nu...

I'm fairly certain that's a dupe.
@RegDwight How do you do the thing you do where you quote people from earlier?
You mean this?
19 secs ago, by Billare
@RegDwight How do you do the thing you do where you quote people from earlier?
6:14 PM
@RegDwight Yes, exactly.
Hover over the message → click on the arrow to the left → click on "permalink" → copypasta.
Q: 0.25 mile or 0.25 miles?

grokusI have seen people say both 0.25 mile and 0.25 miles. Should we use plural or singular for a fraction of a mile?

Looks like a dupe to me.
Hi @Kosmonaut, you agree?
It's from August
Q: How do numbers within ]-1,1[ affect plurality?

zneakIf I recall correctly, the Académie française states that, for French, quantities comprised within [-1,1] are singular, and anything else is plural. This means, for instance, that we should say (in French) 0.3722 apple, instead of 0.3722 apples. I know for 1 and -1 in English, but how do real nu...

Looks like it.
Oh I see you posted an answer.
The OP has commented that the original does not address negative values. (And I agree.)
6:39 PM
Q: Is -1 singular or plural?

marcogDo we say -1 thing or -1 things? EDIT: I am interested in both cases: two things minus one thing(s) and the quantity minus/negative one thing(s). BOUNTY: While there are some good answers, I'm starting a bounty in an attempt to get an authoritative answer. I'm looking for either a solid, undeni...

If that was a better question I would use it to close the ]-1,1[ question
Well, that one specifically addresses -1, not the entire interval.
The answers do both
(Other than the crappy one that was accepted.)
Oh well.
I suppose if we leave the most recent question open, we will have covered all our bases.
Until someone comes up with something even more creative.
Such as saying, I know that decimal quotes have been covered before, but what about rational numbers?
And then we will have to migrate it to Math.
i want to know about pluralizing the transfinites
and the infinitesimals
@RegDwight I am really tempted to just ask, "What numbers are plural?" to make a definitive question
6:49 PM
How about "Freakin numbers, how does they work?"
"√-1 cows" or "√-1 cow"??
Oh. Nice to have you back.
So tell me, what shall we do with the drunken sailor?
1 hour ago, by RegDwight
A: Usage of "might" and "would" to indicate doubt

DanBrian Hooper: I had a look via Google for more information on this point, but, try as I might, I couldn't find anything. I remember reading an article on the difference between "Launching the lifeboat may have saved lives" and "Launching the lifeboat might have saved lives" but I can't remember w...

what the...
I read it all.
Do I get a badge?
@RegDwight — Read Freakonomics to figure out how "freakin numbers" does work.
6:55 PM
@Robusto Thank you. That'll be my answer to that question.
"The ferry, I'm sad to report, [this is my scenario] went down."
@Kosmonaut I bet your plurality question is going to become one of your highest voted answers.
@Billare Really? You know, I can never predict these things.
@Kosmonaut After all the excellent answers you give on questions like morphology and phonetics, it's going to be something more petty like this.
6:57 PM
I wouldn't be surprised.
Nah. It's not on the MultiCollider. <rains on parade>
@RegDwight ???
If you could edit the question to involve some sexual reference or C# somehow, you might improve your odds.
Or both.
In the same reference also.
@Billare Only questions that get featured on the SE MultiCollider are teh awesum.
6:59 PM
@RegDwight I don't know what the MultiCollider is.
The thingamajig in the upper left corner of any SE site.
I have no idea what to do with that manifesto about "may" and "might".
Or the SE front page, if you will.
@Kosmonaut Neither do I.
53 mins ago, by RegDwight
I am trying to think of a polite comment to leave. So far my options are "TL;DR" and "Dear Lord".
@RegDwight LOL
@RegDwight Yes, how that work? When things shoot up that viewpage, I know they get alot of views, but how are they picked?
I know that if a question is Tweeted, it greatly improves the chances of getting 1K views.
7:01 PM
@Billare Gnomes.
Tweeting is a long, slow storm.
Mar 4 at 12:15, by RegDwight
Arbitrarily awarded hotness points.
Mar 4 at 12:15, by RegDwight
That's the official wording.
Mar 4 at 12:16, by RegDwight
Just hover over the numbers at http://stackexchange.com/questions
@RegDwight The points are awarded here.
@RegDwight It relies on upvotes somehow, I think. If you get alot of upvotes in quick succession, you can shoot up the page, and then stay there when everyone wants to check out what's so interesting.
Yes, it has a compounding effect.
7:03 PM
Feb 9 at 16:33, by Kosmonaut
user image
Anyhow, it relies on a number of factors. But I don't want to be boring.
More than usual, that is.
@Kosmonaut No, thanks.
But you are beautiful.
Q: What is an adjectival complement in English?

BillareHow can one determine what an adjectival complement is in an English sentence? Are there are any subcategories to this classification? I'd love concrete examples, to help me better understand this aspect of grammar.

Someone please vote up Cerberus answer to my question.
It is too good to be languishing at 0 upvotes, and I'm currently out of votes for the day.
51 mins ago, by RegDwight
Hover over the message → click on the arrow to the left → click on "permalink" → copypasta.
Yes, I have seen that @psmears.
You can actually right-click on the arrow to the left, and copy that link
saves a couple of clicks
I also wanted to mention how it works when you search for stuff, but the conversation had moved on.
7:09 PM
fair enough
@Billare Only if he pays me. One trillion dollars!
Hey, Kosmo passes the NNS test. For once.
NNS test?
7:12 PM
@RegDwight —Wait, there was a test?
A: List of common abbreviations (NOAD, ESL, PIE...)

Kosmonaut AAVE — African-American Vernacular English AE, AmE — American English AHD — American Heritage Dictionary BE, BrE — British English BNC — British National Corpus CGEL — Cambridge Grammar of the English Language COCA — Corpus of Contemporary American English COHA — Corpus of Historical American En...

@RegDwight Hey, you just added this in 3 days ago!
People started using it on the main site, and other people started wondering what the hell it was supposed to mean.
It's not a standard abbreviation
Hm. Is personnel a plural noun?
My money is on mass.
7:16 PM
@RegDwight it's a mass noun
A: Pluralizing personnel

AlenannoBe careful: Personnel is not a synonym of "people" or "person". While person is general noun that indicates a human being, the personnel is "people employed in an organization or engaged in an organized undertaking such as military service". And being a plural noun the sentence you saw is perf...

@RegDwight It's used with singular and plural agreement at different times by different people.
That was my first thought when I saw that question.
Mass and countable.
I thought I would have to close it as a dupe of "is Miscrosoft plural".
Turns out, it's asking for something else.
Actually, it's closer to that cannon question.
Q: "Cannon" as plural

Chris DwyerI'm reading a novel based in ye olde pirate-times, and I have come across the author's usage of "cannon" (without the "s") to refer to multiple cannons. The ship boasted 32 cannon onboard. Is this just an archaic usage that the author is employing for purposes of story-telling? Also, how/why di...

7:20 PM
That one is just weird.
I know nothing about using "cannon" in that way.
Glad that you didn't answer, then.:P
Well, it's hard to speculate if it is similar to the "personnel" question if I don't understand the "cannon" question.
I mean I understand the question, but the premise is completely alien to me.
It's never hard to speculate.
In Singapore it's illegal to speculate on the sidewalk in public.
I'm speculating day in, day out. In public and in sleep.
@Kosmonaut Does that mean that non-public sidewalks are fine?
Off to Singapore!
7:24 PM
@Kosmonaut I've heard many Singaporeans don't mind what Westerners see as draconian public laws. They say something like, "go to Beijing, and see all the people spitting in the street and dumping trash where it's unwanted, and you'll understand."
Culture is like that.
I would respond by saying that I never wanted to live in Beijing either :)
@Kosmonaut You insensitive <insert-your-nationality-here-if-it-is-not-Chinese> clod
Heh, first you wrote "dolt" and then you edited it to "clod".
7:32 PM
@Kosmonaut Relax, it's an anagram.
You're an anagram.
I failed at my reference
as they say: EPIC FAIL!
I thought they said EPIC FAIL.
@Kosmonaut hey, don't waste others’ jokes by jumping in too soon!
I had to make sure you did see the edit the second time, too :)
Sorry, haha
7:34 PM
@Fx He can see the history.
Regarding "cannon/cannons": Who said it ever evolved? We still use cannon as plural, just as we use head as a plural noun when discussing cattle. "I have 50 head of cattle." "How many did you say?" "Fifty head."
I don't see an option "EVERYTHING", but there is a link to history.
@Robusto Precisely my point.
I also notice the dropped "-s" frequently when people say distance: "It was about fifty mile, give or take."
Same with "Mann" in German.
7:35 PM
@Robusto Erg. Really?
I've heard it with "feet"
Or "foot" in this case.
Yeah, fifty foot, give or take.
It is mainly Southern and AA.
7:36 PM
"Mile" sounds weird to me though, but the general pattern I've seen.
Also money terms. Where 50-Cent got his name.
@Kosmonaut: I never pictured you with such a nose, though
I actually have some form of dog phobia, so that would be my worst nightmare.
@Fx He showed me a different picture.
7:38 PM
@RegDwight that I don't want to know about
He did it right here in chat.
If you can't handle the truth, stay the hell out.
anagram => a rag man
That rag really tied the room together.
We get into some dark, disturbing places in chat. Not for the squeamish.
@Robusto In Arabic they always use a singular noun for numbers above 10...
So it's one man, three men, ten men, eleven man...
7:40 PM
In Arabic they have like four different pluralities, innit?
Oh. I'm sooo stupid.
singular, dual, plural
Depends how you count'em ;-)
@psmears that's psychotic
7:42 PM
In Russian it's a mess. The dual, technically speaking, is dead. But 2 through 4 are counted differently.
@psmears — That's 11 more reason for me not to visit the Middle East.
@JSBangs "Psychotic" is a fair and accurate assessment of the agreement and other rules relating to numbers in formal Arabic
I'm starring that one.
You are a brave man eagle-girl.
Some numbers come before the noun, some after
some take the accusative, some take the genitive
7:43 PM
@psmears: don't even tell them how the plural forms of nouns work. He'll take his own life.
Some agree with the number in gender, some take the opposite gender...
@psmears — Well, he didn't put a picture of Mohammed in the eagle-girl image.
@Kosmonaut OK I'll keep quiet on that one... for now ;-)
@psmears i'm now developing a theory that complicated number systems is a leading cause of violence and extremism. i mean, look at the Russians and the Arabs. QED
I will extremism your poor ass!
7:44 PM
Yeah like if you have a plural inanimate masculine thing, the adjective will take the singular feminine
If it's a rule, it makes just as much sense as any.
@JSBangs — There is some research done that shows children learn math faster if they have a completely decimal number system, i.e., no eleven, twelve, etc. And certainly no quatre-vingt dix-huit.
I like Danish, but only for breakfast.
@Robusto I've seen research to the contrary.
No, not to the contrary. Basically it showed that all kids suck at math.
7:47 PM
I'm serious.
There have been countless attempts at changing the German numbers. They all failed.
@Kosmonaut I see The Onion has opted for minimalist design.
Still, it's gotta be easier for Japanese kids to count juu, juu-ichi, juu-ni, juu-san (ten, ten-one, ten-two, ten-three) than for us English speakers to learn ten, eleven, twelve, thirteen.
@RegDwight Actually here's the real one I was thinking of: onion.demon.co.uk/theonion/other/babies/stupidbabies.htm
Dang it.
Better with the pictures and stuff.
7:52 PM
Yes. We are lacking in the baby pictures department now that Martha ain't around.
You should probably use @ every time you mention @martha... that way she'll have like 700 messages when she returns.
@Robusto Then again, the Japanese count in ten thousands.
Ja, man.
@Kosmonaut And will read every single one of them.
Like you do.
I do now.
Especially now that everything kind of forces you to look at the Large Hadron MultiCollider.
7:54 PM
Feb 22 at 16:26, by Kosmonaut
You mean this thing I never look at, that says my inbox has "431" items?
I bet you never could be bothered catching up.
Well, I was already keeping up at the time, just not in the multicollider.
@RegDwight Is QGLS CGEL ever referenced on the main site, apart from psmears' answer to my question?
@Vitaly You appear to have spilled some letters all over the ground. Shall I help you pick them up?
Googling for "CGEL site:english.stackexchange.com" returns 31 hits.
@RegDwight Quirk, Greenbaum, Leech, Svartvik, A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language ≠ Rodney, Huddleston The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language
The letters just won't stop spilling.
Anyhow, obviously you are asking the wrong person.)))
7:58 PM
Are these words?
No, them are an exclamation mark and a question mark.
45 hits for Quirk, though—not bad
12:00 - 20:0020:00 - 00:00

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