« first day (88 days earlier)      last day (3116 days later) » 

12:10 AM
This is a duplicate.
0
Q: When and how should I use multiple exclamation marks?

OmegaHello, English newbie here =D Now, I never do this, but in some few cases I have seen people use multiple exclamation (or question) marks like Hey!!! What I wish to know, is if that is grammatically correct (or just okay). In case it is, how many marks are grammatically allowed/accepted? ...

 
It looks like one question is about question mark + exclamation point, and the other is about multiple exclamation points. I think that is different enough.
 
@Kosmonaut I concur.
 
12:29 AM
The accepted answer of the other question says that a sentence have only a terminal punctuation mark. I am probably used to stackoverflow.com, where a question is considered a duplicate of another one if the answer to one question is valid also for the other one.
 
1:10 AM
@kiamlaluno: And yet the same questions keep getting asked and answered on SO. The site is so big now that no one can really keep track of all the answers that could respond to multiple questions. Practically every RegExp question would fall into that category. That's one of the reasons I lost interest in SO. Too many boring, same-same questions.
 
Clearly, deciding when a question is a duplicate (or not) is not that easy, in some cases. I would not say that all the questions about regular expressions are duplicates of the first question about regular expressions, for example.
I better go to sleep, now. :-)
 
1:54 AM
@kiamlaluno: I was indulging in a little hyperbole. But sometimes it seems that way. Once you've demonstrated the principle for negative lookahead, every question that can be answered by such a demonstration is fair game for being labeled duplicative.
 
 
4 hours later…
6:13 AM
@Robusto: That is true.
 
6:32 AM
This question needs just a vote to be closed.
0
Q: The final slide of a presentation

lisakI created a Powerpoint presentation for my diploma thesis and I don't know what should be on the last slide below "Thank you." What would you do? Any questions and comments are appreciated and welcome.

 
 
2 hours later…
8:54 AM
This could be a duplicate.
0
Q: Article in “having (a) hard time”

kasymWhat's the difference? I'm having hard time figuring that out I'm having a hard time figuring that out According to Google both are used equally often. Does the article change meaning here?

 
 
2 hours later…
10:44 AM
I agree with ShreevatsaR that it's not a dupe.
 
 
2 hours later…
12:32 PM
@Robusto: I don't know why you think I have any issues with your answer. I simply commented saying that I find interesting (also because I thought I reached the page on dictionary.com from Etymonline) that dictionary.com reports a different date.
I didn't say your answer was not correct, nor that you didn't report the same date reported from Etymonline.
@RegDwight: I agree with you about the question on butler.
 
Yeah, I'm not sure how we could answer it.
 
If the question would be changed, then it could be accepted; as it is, I think it's not acceptable because introduces a subjective element: you.
I think the FAQ reports that such questions are not accepted.
> every answer is equally valid: “What’s your favorite __?”
 
I think it is quite likely to get closed as subjective and argumentative.
 
The question seems similar to "What's your opinion about __?"
Either ways, the question as it is doesn't suit EL&U. I voted to close it as subjective.
I think I will open a question on meta about switching the focus on who replies, rather than the answer given.
I didn't like to read "you are trying to lowering the level of EL&U by using the reference of a substandard language dictionary."
I didn't actually know the NOAD is about a substandard language.
 
1:38 PM
What should be done when somebody keeps to write the reply to a comment in the question he asked?
 
Linky please.
 
1:51 PM
0
Q: What are the words where "-ei-" (except in "-cei-") is pronounced as [i:]?

vgv8The rule is that "ei" is pronounced as [i:] only after letter c (or what is pronounced as [i:] is written as "ei" after letter "c" only). There are exceptions, that I could find so far, like foreign (possibly), seizure, either (possibly), neither (possibly), weird, being, seizure. ...

Instead of answering in a comment that he is not interesting in different English dialects, he replied inside the question with an "update".
I guess he didn't understand what we were trying to tell him.
 
@kiamlaluno: It looked as if you were trying to point out a discrepancy where none existed.
And hello all.
 
The pronunciation of words changes between different English dialects. Does he expect that who answers reports all the possible words that follow the criteria he is asking for.
@Robusto: There is a discrepancy, but not between your answer, and what reported from your source; the discrepancy is between dictionary.com, and Etymonline.
There are three dictionaries that report 1940s, and I think that is probably the right date; still, I wonder how can dictionary.com report 1840-1850, which is one century earlier.
 
@RegDwight: Did you see Joel dissing poetry? Harrumph!!!!
7
A: When and how should I use multiple exclamation marks?

Joel SpolskyIt's fine in informal communication, email, poetry, and advertising headlines. Three would be most common. Two, four, or more is rarer. It's never "officially" correct. The people who write books about how punctuation should be used in English tolerate only two levels of enthusiasm: not enthusia...

 
@Robusto: yup, I left an upvote on your comment.
 
I had a boss I used to walk with at lunch. Our conversational topics eventually got around to poetry, which he said "is all bullshit." I found other things to do with my lunch hours after that.
 
1:59 PM
Hahaha.
Well, everybody is entitled to my own opinion.
 
What a coincidence. Mine too.
 
We're such altruists.
 
It's just that we have so much to give ...
 
You watched the XLV?
 
1
Q: Should the object of a comparison be in the nominative, or accusative case?

Brent.LongboroughI have always used the accusative form in cases like ... others who are wiser than me. but I recently read something public by a person I respect very much, in which he wrote: ... others who are wiser than I. Now, my native tongue is English, while his is Columbian (USA!), so I wonder wheth...

 
2:02 PM
Let's say I skimmed it.
 
I'm so freaking tired, first the awesome German Masters finale, and then the SB deep at night.
 
Yeah, I can't imagine staying up till all hours ... wait, I did just that when I was working in Ireland.
The locals I was working with insisted I stay up till the middle of the night to explain American football to them.
I was the play-by-play announcer for a bunch of drunken Dubliners.
Or is that a redundancy?
Kidding!
 
It's just that when you're in the privileged position of watching the SuperBowl without a single commercial break, you kind of feel a moral obligation to watch the entire thing.
 
But seriously, when I was invited to go on a pub crawl, I didn't realize it was more than just a social occasion. It was an endurance contest.
How did you avoid the commercials?
 
I didn't, it was broadcast without.
Europe, baby!
 
2:07 PM
Yeah, yean ...
At least our region doesn't share the same first syllable with urine and ureter and the like. I'm just saying.
 
How do you call an acronym where the acronym is also the first two letters of the first word?
 
Pah. That's in your language that it does that.
 
@kiamlaluno: Example?
But here were in the chat room of that same language.
 
@Robusto: E.U.
 
In English, E.U. can sound like *Eeeeuuuuwwww!"
 
2:10 PM
I can switch to Japanese anytime, it's just that you won't understand a single word. (^_^)
 
Chigau.
 
A common typo.
Chiemgau is the common name of a geographic area in Upper Bavaria. It refers to the foothills of the Alps between the rivers Inn and Traun, with lake Chiemsee at its center. The political districts that contain the Chiemgau are Rosenheim and Traunstein. Wendelstein is the name of a famous mountain close by but not strictly in the Chiemgau, while Kampenwand is actually the most inviting peak south of Chiemsee. Explanation of the name The name Chiemgau and Chiemsee together with the place name Chieming allegedly go back to the Old High German personal name Chiemo (7./8. century). At the...
 
I bet nobody would understand me speaking Eastern Lombard too.
 
I can't write it using Japanese characters because I'm on my work laptop.
But the transliteration is accurate enough.
 
@Robusto: E and U are the fist letters of European, which is the first word in E.U..
 
2:12 PM
I used to have Japanese input in my Win2000 VMWare until it got killed.
 
So ... more misapprehension than typo, and still more "I gotta get my daily quota in of fucking with Robusto."
I also could have said Uso!
 
Nah, can't ever reach that quota, way too high, I'd rather not even try.
 
Anyway, back to XLV: What did you think of the game?
 
My wife said something to the extent, and I am paraphrasing, the boringstest thing she's ever seen.
 
Frankly, the healthiest team usually wins.
 
2:15 PM
The first interception got me screaming, and she woke up.
 
Hahaha.
You had money on Pittsburgh, I take it?
 
I'm not betting. Like, ever.
 
People should watch how I bet and take the other side of the action. Wait ... they already do.
 
Lucky Number Slevin, renamed for DVD as Lucky # Slevin (also known as The Wrong Man), is a 2006 crime thriller film written by Jason Smilovic, directed by Paul McGuigan and starring Josh Hartnett, Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, Ben Kingsley, Stanley Tucci, and Lucy Liu. Set in New York City, the plot focuses on the paths of Slevin Kelevra (Hartnett), Lindsey (Liu), two feuding crime lords known as The Boss (Freeman) and The Rabbi (Kingsley), and a mysterious hitman known as Mr. Goodkat (Willis). Plot Over the film's opening credits, two bookies are ambushed in separate locations and murde...
Anyhow, since I'm never following the playoffs, I just jump into the game and try to figure out whose side I should take before it's over.
 
That's very *Training Day*-ish.
 
2:21 PM
The questions about "a [noun]" versus "[noun]" keeps coming.
 
I remember cheering for the Patriots and the Buccaneers. I had not heard of those team names just a day before.
 
0
Q: "such a day" or "such day"?

Valentina It's such a nice day today! I'm interested in the usage of the indefinite article. I know this sentence is correct. We use an indefinite article in exclamations with countable nouns. But the question is: If it's NOT an exclamation, what do we use? Let's say: I went for a walk because it w...

 
Yeah, seen that in the theatre. Never figured out why Denzel got an Oscar for that.
 
Moment mal, bitte, ich muss ein Bagel kriegen.
 
2:23 PM
Sounds painful.
Too bad Writers is still in beta, I would migrate this there:
0
Q: What are the tricks to avoid repetition in writing?

PromatherAfter some time of working on my research, I usually have a structured information of my results, which I can best describe in bullets/numbers. Unfortunately, this is not what academia expects. For example, I concluded my paper introduction with this paragraph: We start by discussing the most...

 
Yeah, agreed.
I wonder if Writers will actually make it as an SE site.
 
That's what Jeff wonders, too. That's why he started promoting it like there's no tomorrow.
 
The thing is, the farther one strays from science and coding and the like, the more subjective the questions and answers become.
 
Well, I am told that "Moms and their babies", or whatever the name of that site is, is doing extremely well.
Moms4mom:
 
That's an outlier.
 
2:38 PM
But a noteworthy one. There are lessons to be learned from them.
Posted by Robert Cartaino on September 29th, 2010

Stack Exchange is about questions with objective, factual answers. We’ve been crystal clear about this for as long as I can remember, even back to the earliest, pre-beta days of Stack Overflow. It’s right there in the standard Stack Exchange FAQ:

What kind of questions should I not ask here?

Avoid asking questions that are subjective, argumentative, or require extended discussion. This is not a discussion board, this is a place for questions that can be answered!

Thus, questions that are not answerable — discussions, debates, opinions — should be closed as subjective. It seems simple enough: Fact good; opinion and discussion bad. But why? …

 
But the truth is, the big money in social media lies in catering to women.
 
That's like saying that the big money in auto repair lies in catering to men.
 
There's a difference.
 
Enlighten me.
 
Before I do, I could argue that the big money in auto repair is more likely to lie with women, because women may be more likely to take a care to be repaired. At least some men will try to fix the problem themselves: change the oil, spark plugs, tighten a fan belt, whatever.
 
2:42 PM
Heh. I had actually typed "home improvement", but then replaced it with "auto repair".
 
Whatever. Unlike men, women can mediate emotional issues through communication. Further, they need to mediate their emotions in this way.
 
I can imagine Donald Trump fixing a problem on his own car.
 
He just buys a new one. Fixed.
 
Donald Trump is not representative of the self-car-fixing population. (I wanted to write auto-auto-enthusiast, but somehow it didn't seem fair.)
 
At least he's not an auto-anto-nym, or anto-auto-nym.
 
2:46 PM
Anyway, I used to work for a big social media company, handling message boards and the like, and the biggest sites in terms of messages and responses were women's sites — by far.
 
It's then to see if the self-car-fixing population is representative of the male population.
 
No fear on that score.
 
I have a feeling that a fair chunk of those messages was single-handedly posted by my wife.
 
Haha.
When I am watching the Super Bowl, I can't wait for the moment my wife falls asleep. At least then I can watch the game.
The only other thing to do is have another couple over. The women can chat in the kitchen and the men can watch the game. I know that sounds sexist, but a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do.
 
Then again, while my wife was still awake, I could at least explain the rules to her, which made me feel extremely superior.
 
2:50 PM
Umm, let me get this straight: you spent your game-watching time falling for her ruse of getting you to talk to her, and you're the one who feels superior?
 
I wonder if Christina Aguilera ever watched The Simpsons.
Then again, I don't. She clearly hasn't.
 
I thought this was a simple question to answer. :-)
0
Q: Is "best regards" a pleonasm?

kiamlalunoIf the meaning of regards is best wishes, isn't best regards (used to express friendliness in greetings, especially at the end of letters) a pleonasm? Best regards, kiamlaluno Best best wishes, kiamlaluno

 
@Robusto: let me just say that I felt like feeling superior no matter what.
 
@RegDwight: It's our only way to walk away from encounters with the opposite sex retaining some shreds of our dignity.
Real or imagined.
 
3:07 PM
Oops, am I walking in on a psychiatry session?
 
Make yourself comfortable, @Kosmonaut.
 
Wait, we both can't share the same couch.
And I thought I was paying for this session ...
 
(I guess there is a confusion about who should use the couch.)
 
Okay, okay, I will be paying for a second couch.
 
OK. I guess group therapy works too.
 
3:12 PM
* Slowly backs out of room *
 
That's fine; just a question: who asks questions?
 
That's so deep, kiamlaluno.
 
@Kosmonaut: Once you enter, you cannot easily go out.
It was not actually deep. It's a matter of being practice: who asks questions doesn't use the coach.
 
This reminds me of Fight Club on so many levels.
 
If it was though to be deep, I would have asked about the deepest sea deep.
 
3:16 PM
Umm... wut?
 
No, it's not that.
 
The Mariana Trench is the deepest part of the world's oceans, and the lowest elevation of the surface of the Earth's crust. It is currently estimated to be up to deep. It is located in the western Pacific Ocean, to the east of the Mariana Islands. The trench is about long but has a mean width of only . It reaches a maximum-known depth of about at the Vityaz-1 Deep and about at the Challenger Deep, a small slot-shaped valley in its floor, at its southern end. If Mount Everest, the highest mountain on Earth at , were set in the deepest part of the Mariana Trench, there would be of ...
 
Now that's deep.
 
Hahaha.
 
That is what I meant.
 
3:18 PM
I wonder why the depth is omitted from the snippet.
 
I was just wondering that.
 
Is "10,971 m (35,994 ft)" somehow offensive?
 
As I didn't ask about the Mariana Trench, I didn't mean to be deep.
 
Perhaps because it's over 9000!
 
You put the imperial measure in parentheses? I find that offensive.
 
3:19 PM
That's an occasion to say "holy cow!".
 
That would explain it.
 
Do you mean the "cow", or the "holy"?
 
"Holy cow" ... isn't that offensive to some cultures? Stereotyping?
 
Bunch of metric using socialists, the lot of you!
 
Can't lie to me, @Kosmonaut, I know where you like your metrics. You're only offended at Fahrenheit in parentheses.
 
3:21 PM
Shoot, I already gave myself away earlier.
 
I don't know: I only have heard "holy cow" from an American.
 
Holy cow of Moscow?
 
There are a lot of ethnic slurs you will hear only from Americans.
 
"Holy cow" is an ethnic slur?
 
No. I was being facetious.
 
3:22 PM
What is about "holy smokes"?
I cannot repeat the third one I have heard.
 
Now that's offensive, kiamlaluno! Take that back!
 
Well, ironically, I started thinking you were referring to Hinduism considering the cow sacred — so now it might be offensive.
 
I was making that allusion.
 
When I was a child, we had that thermometer that would insist on Réaumur.
 
Haha, so now I'm all caught up!
 
3:24 PM
Checkmate.
 
The old Rèamur.
 
Wow, I hadn't ever even heard of that.
 
The only time I have heard of it was on physics.
 
I'm here to help.
 
Wow, it's close enough to celsius to just completely confuse people.
 
3:25 PM
__NOTOC__ The Réaumur scale (°Ré, °Re, °R), also known as the "octogesimal division", is a temperature scale in which the freezing and boiling points of water are set to 0 and 80 degrees respectively. The scale is named after René Antoine Ferchault de Réaumur, who first proposed something similar in 1730. Réaumur’s thermometer contained diluted alcohol and was constructed on the principle of taking the freezing point of water as 0°, and graduating the tube into degrees each of which was one-thousandth of the volume contained by the bulb and tube up to the zero mark. He suggested that t...
 
You tell me.
I was so confused, I'm still confused today.
Those crazy French.
 
Hey, those crazy French invented the metric system.
 
And 10 months in a year and 100 seconds in a minute.
 
It was also used in Germany, and Russia.
 
A good thing, too, or they never would have adopted it. :)
 
3:28 PM
Allons enfants de la Patrie, le jour de gloire est arrivé!
 
In heaven, the cooks are French, the engineers are German, and the police are English. In hell, the cooks are English, the engineers are French, and the police are German.
 
Hold on a sec while I'm drawing a loooong beard in MSPaint.
 
Or so I've heard.
 
Rats, there should be a whitespace before the !
 
Back in a few. Stand-up beckons.
 
3:38 PM
Hm, reading up on whether jokes can have beards in English got me this:
In the foundations of mathematics, Russell's paradox (also known as Russell's antinomy), discovered by Bertrand Russell in 1901, showed that the naive set theory created by Georg Cantor leads to a contradiction. The same paradox had been discovered a year before by Ernst Zermelo but he did not publish the idea, which remained known only to Hilbert, Husserl and other members of the University of Göttingen. Let R be the set of all sets that are not members of themselves. If R qualifies as a member of itself, it would contradict its own definition as a set containing sets that are not member...
 
Yes, a very famous problem in set theory.
Paradox, I should say.
It makes my head hurt to think about it.
 
That's why I quit studying maths.
Too much head-hurt.
 
Genau.
 
It was my favorite subject in school, though. Up to a certain limit, I am all into mathematics.
 
I like mathematics, and to some extent I appreciate its ruthless beauty.
But ... Kopfweh.
 
3:53 PM
I appreciate the beauty, I just can't stand all the work.
When it comes to mathematics, I'm a consumer, not a producer.
And you're all into German, lately, or what?
 
I think you started it.
 
Is that a reference to Fawlty Towers?
 
Don't mention the war!
 
1
Q: What are the tricks to avoid repetition in writing?

PromatherAfter some time of working on my research, I usually have a structured information of my results, which I can best describe in bullets/numbers. Unfortunately, this is not what academia expects. For example, I concluded my paper introduction with this paragraph: We start by discussing the most...

 
Killed it.
 
4:00 PM
I would vote to migrate, if I could.
 
He already cross-posted.
 
Ah yes.
 
@RegDwight I am not into German; I could just say the origin of my name (Alberto). :-)
 
Oh! No inlining love for Wiktionary...
 
I thought adal and beraht were German words. :-)
 
4:05 PM
Germanic, for sure.
 
Æþel is OE for noble.
 
Whence Edelweiss.
Edelweiss (; Leontopodium alpinum), is one of the best-known European mountain flowers, belonging to the sunflower family. Names The common name comes from German edel, meaning "noble", and weiß (also spelled weiss) "white", thus signifying "noble whiteness" or "noble purity". The scientific name Leontopodium is a Latin adaptation of Greek leontopódion (λεοντοπόδιον) "lion's paw", from léōn "lion" and pódion "foot" (diminutive of poús, podós "foot"). The Romanian name, floarea reginei, means "Queen's flower". Description Leaves and flowers are covered with white hairs and appear w...
 
I guess the Italian text I read is wrong. It translated "Germanic" with "German". :-)
 
And Adler.
The term Adler, the German word for the bird of prey "eagle", is both the last name of many people and an emblematic bird (notably in heraldry, numismatics, etc.) featured on many blazons since the feudal age, including the present German Bundeswappen and at times on the flags of Austria and Germany. Adler may also refer to: People *Charles Adler (disambiguation), about various people named Charles Adler *Friedrich Adler (disambiguation), about various people named Friedrich Adler *Max Adler (disambiguation), about various people named Max Adler *Samuel Adler (disambiguation), about va...
 
I can't make the ligatures on this PC, but Aethelraed Unraed is always translated as "Ethelred the Unready" but it really meant "Aethelraed the Uncounseled" or something along those lines.
He was king before Svein Forkbeard conquered England.
So the Norman Conquest was only the second conquest of England in that century.
 
4:08 PM
That would make sense as Rat is council in German.
 
Yup.
 
Æthelræd Unræd?
 
Si, bene. Grazie.
 
Prego.
 
Æthelred the Unready, or Æthelred II (c. 968 – 23 April 1016), was king of England (978–1013 and 1014–1016). He was son of King Edgar and Queen Ælfthryth. Æthelred was only about 10 (no more than 13) when his half-brother Edward was murdered. Æthelred was not personally suspected of participation, but as the murder was committed at Corfe Castle by the attendants of Ælfthryth, it made it more difficult for the new king to rally the nation against the military raids by Danes, especially as the legend of St Edward the Martyr grew. Later, Æthelred ordered a massacre of Danish settlers in 1002...
 
4:10 PM
I didn't do anything; I am just lucky I am using a Mac, and I found the right keys to press.
 
Got a meeting. TTYL.
 
I have an æ right here. Also, ŋ, đ, ſ, etc. (Ubuntu.)
Later @Robusto.
 
ɬ
 
My keyboard is Italian; if I would have æ right there, I would think something is wrong in my keyboard. :-)
 
Nah, I don't have it printed on the keys, but if I press Alt Graecum, I get all kind of funny stuff. ¹²³¼½¬
 
4:13 PM
ʕʔ
 
What is that?
 
„Ω€®™æ¨œøπåß∂ƒ∞∆ªº¬†©√∫˜µ…•–¶
 
It's a pharyngeal fricative and a ɡlottal stop.
Any attempt to pronounce those two sounds in sequence will cause you to choke.
 
Ah, it's two characters...
 
ʔal-ʕarabijja
 
4:16 PM
I have my usual appointment to speak Calabrian. See you later. :-)
 
CU @kiamlaluno.
 
Does he have to also say "bye" at the end?
1
Q: See you later. . . bye?

WAFAre the closing greetings "see you later", "talk to you later", and the like sufficient to end a conversation (especially a phone conversation) or must they be succeeded by "bye" or another word of definite finality? In other words, is it redundant to append "bye" to "speak to you later" or a si...

 
@Kosmounaut: yeah, I am familiar with the individual glyphs, e.g. from māʔ.
It's just that both of them combined looked somewhat NSFWish.
 
Haha, I guess we are back in a psychiatry session then!
 
We've never been out.
 
4:20 PM
Wow
Mind = blown
 
That is a very interesting construction, linguistically and typographically.
 
A semanticist wouldn't like it.
 
Those guys are like that.
 
But they are pretty mean people at heart anyway.
 
I bet "Mind = blown" is a more common expression than "a semanticist".
 
4:23 PM
Certainly. I see "mind = blown" at least once per day on the Web.
 
It's in every second Reddit comment.
 
It's funny because it is more common than "that blew my mind".
Just like "pot. kettle. black"
 
Hah! Is that true? Or just your gut feeling?
And do people actually say "mind = blown"?
 
I'm talking about on a place like Reddit.
Nobody says "mind = blown" — but I might now.
 
Yeah well, no discussion about that corner of the Web.
 
4:26 PM
Nobody ever says "pot. kettle. black" either.
 
It's interesting how an extremely common (thus, supposedly extremely useful) expression never makes it into speech.
 
Well, it's just that people have to say "that's the pot calling the kettle black"
 
That's cumbersome!
Even lol made it into everyday speech.
 
But at least you can get the meaning of it from that!
Some day, people will write to an etymology guide and say "why do we say 'pot, kettle, black' when someone is a hypocrite?" And nobody will know why anymore...
I lol'd @ that.
I can still remember thinking I would never use the word "blog" because I thought it sounded so stupid. I only wanted to say "weblog".
Now I feel like if I said "weblog" in class, the students would call me grandpa
 
That's a thought that keeps crossing my mind constantly. The language is evolving before our very eyes, but people start noticing only 20 years later, when nobody can remember anymore how things came to be the way they are.
Obviously, blog is well-documented, but lots and lots of words aren't.
Even though we now have all the tools and the manpower.
 
4:33 PM
That's one thing that's so cool about it. We use this system even though we don't have complete knowledge of the system, and nobody is in charge of it
 
That reminds me of several answers of yours )))
 
Good that I am consistent then.
 
I must say that there was one that I found rather consolating, for reasons I'm not sure I can explain. Let me find it.
8
A: Where do accents and dialects come from?

KosmonautWhat do we mean by "dialect"? First of all, let me say that the distinction between "dialect", "slang", and "language" is fuzzy, arbitrary, and fundamentally a social (cultural, political) construct. Two dialects of the same language can be mutually unintelligible (e.g. Moroccan and Baghdadi Ar...

You know, there are all those documentaries about language X dying out or language Y being spoken by only 3 people in the entire world.
I always found that such a pity. But after reading that answer of yours I realized that in the big scheme of things, this is nothing special. There are 6 billion languages dying out right now.
When my grandma died, she took her language with her. When I'll die, I will take mine with me.
 
Ha, yes, that is one way of looking at it.
1700s English is already dead.
But still, from a scientific perspective, it is like the different species dying out all the time — you want to document it before it is gone, because it could provide important clues for understanding the ecosystem better.
 
That's for sure. I have huge respect for people who spend their whole lives traveling through, say, Siberia and documenting the hundreds of languages that will be extinct just in a few year's time.
 
4:42 PM
Those Mormons and Christians do a lot for language documentation.
I was at a conference where a woman around my age was fluent in Marshallese.
Why? Because she was from Brigham Young University (Mormon) and doing that was part of her mission.
 
Sadly, Christians are also responsible for wiping clean entire cultures off the face of the Earth. I say that as an orthodox Christian.
Allegedly, it took but one monk to burn all of Mayan literature.
 
We all have mixed feelings about the SIL and other religious groups — because their goal is to translate the Bible into every language to spread the word of Christianity. They totally violate the prime directive :)
 
:-))
I must say that I turn to Ethnologue.com quite often.
 
It's not a perfect situation, but at least there is something beneficial that comes out of it.
 
That is an excellent Schlußwort. (I have to leave in a few minutes.)
 
4:53 PM
And it looks like our session is up.
 
5:32 PM
Where'd everybody go? [Looks around wistfully.]
 
5:48 PM
@RegDwight: Schlußwort. And you get on my case for speaking German.
 
6:32 PM
@RegDwight: BTW, I just thought of a new term describe the pleasure felt by people who get off on lurking in chat rooms. Such people are indulging in Schattenfreude.
@Kosmonaut, @nohat: Might want to close this one:
0
Q: Longest Word In English Language

TomWhat is the longest word in the English language in which no letter repeats itself?

Exact dupe of
9
Q: What is the longest word in the English language without a repeated letter?

JohnFxNot sure if we are going to do this on this site, but we ought to allow a little Friday fun... What is the longest word you can come up with that is a real English word that doesn't use any individual letter more than once?

@nohat wrote a clever Perl script to sort it out.
 
6:52 PM
0
Q: What is an "unsurance"

osgxHello In semi-offical letter from non-native speaker the "medical unsurance" is offered to me. What is an unsurance really? U & I as required in comments:

I guess the OP didn't understand the subtle joke @RegDwight wrote in his comment. :-)
 
7:07 PM
Haha.
I upticked your comment, @kiamlaluno, but you might have held off a while ... :)
 
7:38 PM
Hi @Martha, welcome to the dead zone.
 
7:56 PM
Hi @Robusto, I'm not helping the dead zone matter - as soon as I opened the chat, something came up at work.
I have an etiquette question: would it be very bad form if I deleted a downvoted answer and wrote a new answer to the same question? I might phrase the new answer differently, but it would say pretty much exactly the same thing.
(To be clear, this is my answer that was downvoted that I want to replace.)
 
@Martha: I don't think it would be bad form. Better than change your original answer to make the downvoters look foolish, I should think ...
"... better than changing ..."
I have stupid fingers. They type things I'm not thinking. Bad fingers! Bad!
 
@Robusto: thanks. (And the whole stupid fingers thing is why I never got much into online chatting. Which is to say, I know what you mean.)
 
i think we need more aggressive moderator-closing of dups, e.g. g-dev\maina\binaries\amd64chk /quick
i've been seeing a lot of dups lately that get an accepted answer faster than they can be closed as dups
 
8:23 PM
@JSBangs: There usually aren't enough people online who have the necessary reputation to vote closure.
 
8:33 PM
@Robusto, that's the problem. the question gets answered faster than it can be closed
i worry that this degrades the overall quality
 
@JSBangs: That happens on all these sites, though. Questions get answered on SO before they can be closed, even though they get closed pretty quickly. Also, it's possible to accept an answer even after it's been closed.
 
 
2 hours later…
10:45 PM
We need more people with enough privileges to vote to close. Once we went out of beta, the reputation thresholds changed and now we don't have enough people with the ability.
 
11:28 PM
Our moderator elections start next week. Hopefully, that'll get us some more manpower.
 

« first day (88 days earlier)      last day (3116 days later) »