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01:00 - 14:0014:00 - 21:00

1:49 AM
Hello there!
Congratulations everyone!
1 hour later…
3:07 AM
If possible, I think the initial questions ought to be "genuine" questions, not "seeding" by people who aren't learners or asking on their behalf.
3:22 AM
4:06 AM
@AndrewGrimm It's hard to tell whether we have such questions...
Good evening. Glad to see that the site has taken off so nicely.
I do wonder where it is going.
Spongebob's house.
Oh, that's nice.
Will Patrick be there?
So are you actually participating on ELL, or have you just hijacked the chat room? :-)
4:14 AM
I have posted an Answer.
@Cerberus Sure. Just make sure he wears a shirt.
What if he falls sleep while talking?
I've not watched Spongebob to any extent.
I think that's the funniest thing in the show.
@Cerberus One whole Answer?
4:17 AM
Well, nearly all the other questions had already been answered.
I missed that whatever-it-was.
I have answered two or three questions, I think.
I came too late, too late.
There will be more questions, Cerberus. Do not fret.
If you say so.
Ugh, my Bio diploma is tomorrow.
nervous as a cat in a roomful of rocking chairs
steals grey sack from KitFox and hides in it
4:24 AM
Diploma? It is presented to you tomorrow?
And you don't know your mark yet?
No, the diploma is the final test.
Ah OK.
Yeah. Each core year 12 class has one.
In June I'll write a Maths diploma.
Are you prepared?
I think so, yes.
4:26 AM
Then you'll be fine. You always do well.
I hope so.
Unfortunately, this test is worth half of my Biology 30 mark.
And there isn't even a written component.
Yeah our central exams were also 1/2 of our mark for each subject. However, they were usually easier than school exams, which together made up the other half. Is it the same for your school?
Is it oral?
It's multiple choice and numerical response, and purportedly "quite difficult".
Ah OK.
So what about average scores: do people generally score higher or lower on this exam than on other exams?
I don't know, actually.
4:30 AM
I don't think my teacher told us.
Lower, if anything.
You'll still do well, I am sure of it.
I really hope so. I have put a lot into studying these past days.
Then I am 100 % certain that you shall.
Thank you for your words of encouragement.
I will be back in a few minutes with a cup of sleepy-tea.
4:41 AM
I slept for 3.5 hours yesterday, then went to bed really early and slept 6 hours.
Then I woke up, 2 hours ago.
I might try to catch a few more hours.
If I can sleep.
5:14 AM
So I had to shovel the driveway just now, and my parents also tried to convince me to get the Bible app for my iPod.
You should install a Qur'an app.
I can't discuss anything with them without them bringing God or the Bible into it.
Replace "God or the Bible" with "x" and you have any parent that ever existed.
It's just how parents work.
Reason #1 why I do not want to be a parent, right there.
Well, your x will seem worth it to you.
5:17 AM
Kids! Don't forget to season your soups!! Soup can't be just salt, you know!
I'll preach about adequately seasoned soup.
You may be chiding your children over their incorrect origami folds.
Every. Single. Day.
But soup would be nice.
Hmm I could use some chicken soup...
Tomertha, you did not use the correct number of significant digits. Go write a persuasive essay as punishment.
Tomertha. That name alone spells doom for your children w.r.t. your parenty OCD.
Of course significant digits are terribly important.
I don't mean to...
5:20 AM
Where are your uncertainties, Breezelnox?! Where are they?
Haha that's a great name.
My grandmother's middle name was Breezelnox.
And of course your first name is now Breezelnox, in her honour.
Uhh okay, daddy.
Now, I would like you to rearrange the eighth bookshelf by the square root of the sum of the author's birth date and death date, from highest to lowest.
But daddy...why square roots? Why not cosines?
5:24 AM
Square roots do not require me to specify whether we are using radians, gradians, degrees, or any other arbitrary thing that I happen to choose.
And you know the family rule, base 7 is the only base.
That does not require specification.
Uhh whatever. I'm going to watch telepathic pottery-making with some friends, the dernier cri.
OK. I'm going to sip tea and fret about things.
sips tea; frets
I have made a successful prophecy. Take that, atheists.
Have you?
5:27 AM
But not really.
Alright, goodbye.
2 hours later…
7:36 AM
2 views, 3 votes. Awesome!
@AndrewGrimm You're good.
Hmm, looks like ell.se has been infiltrated by ELU
7:55 AM
Don't act surprised.
It is a colony of ELU!
We seek to assimilate all of SE eventually.
We will found "ELOverflow", then at some point close down Stack Overflow as a duplicate, since "every question is in/about English anyway".
@Cerberus English is a product of Biology, which is product of Chemistry, which is a product of Physics. Would you prefer to be annexed by Physics or Chem?
8:30 AM
Would "correct-word" be better than "proper-word"? The latter sounds confusingly similar to "proper noun".
@AndrewGrimm former is better
@Manishearth Ehhh shit.
By the way, I think physics should be annexed by math.
And math by philosophy.
And philosophy by English.
Or, at the very least, linguistics.
And so the circle is round.
@Cerberus I shall put all my moderator powers to use to prevent that
@Manishearth Ah, I see there is some rivalry between the sister disciplines.
Nah, just me defending my turf
Actually, Math and Physics are what I like.
8:39 AM
I see.
I've never liked Chemistry as a course. Love to learn it on my own though
Why would you want to learn chemistry on your own?
@skullpatrol I like it that way
Don't you need a lab?
Wha? No
That's just if you want to brush up analytical chemistry
8:43 AM
It is a lab science, no?
Waaay more than that
I agree it is waaay more... but like Physics you need to do experiments.
there's no "need"
There's a whole theoretical aspect of both Physics and Chemistry, and you need not even look at a lab
Agreed. But still the are called experimental sciences for a reason, no?
What? Nobody calls them that
8:47 AM
They get their results from experiments.
Experimental sciences intersect with them
@skullpatrol define "result"
Current theoretical physics is waay ahead of anything we can possibly experimentally verify
TPhysicists do math all day
no experiments
But to test the theory?
The older Physics and Chemistry were indeed in sync with experimental capabilities. Stuff you learn in high school, etc. But that doesn't scale
@skullpatrol they don't.. not exactly
some experimental results may prove the theory wrong, but there is no way to prove them right
currently, if someone can prove them consistent with all the current real world observations, that's that
Anyway, to learn physics/chem, unless you want to specialize in the experimental side, you really don't need a lab
That is what I'm trying to say. The experimental side is part of learning the subject...
@skullpatrol no
You don't learn the whole subject
you can't
8:53 AM
A necessary part.
Up till a certain degree, yes
I've already reached that
What would you do with a lab if you wanted to learn relativity?
or quantum mechanics?
Yes, there are labs for both, but they are more demonstrational and less "let's make our own experiment"
The foundations of Chemistry are much more lab based than Physics.
After a point, most of these things are better understood by reading them up in a textbook than by doing the experiment oneself, since the experiments aren't that straightforward
@Manishearth Agreed, and as you said that point is passed in high school.
which I have passed :)
Which is why, to learn chem/physics, I don't need a lab anymore (though labs are fun! ^.^)
I am specializing in Physics, though, so we do have some lab courses. Again, these are more demonstrational, though they familiarize you with some experimental techniques
9:03 AM
That is my whole point:
techniques are to lab sciences what methods are to math
@skullpatrol not really, again
if those lab courses weren't there, it wouldn't impact my learning at all, given that I want to do theoretical physics
methods in math are necessary whatever you do
experimental techniques -- good to know, but not necessary unless you're doing experimental science
Ohh, I see... I am using the more restricted definition of a Science as that which uses the scientific method verifiable in the lab.
Nah, the scientific method isn't relevant to most of science now
As in, it's still very important
But useless when you don't have the right tech
1 hour later…
10:10 AM
Oh wow we're up and running and I'm so late to the party.
I must say I am rather worried there's so many questions right from the start that outright duplicate ELU content. But I guess this will fix itself as time passes and more actual ELLers start posting their questions.
Hint: if you gonna duplicate ELU content, make sure it's closed or deleted ELU content.
Say ELLers 10 times fast.
TPTB will be watching this very closely and if we basically create a copy of ELU, they will shut ELL down before it sees the light of public beta.
@skullpatrol I just said it 11 times slowly. Does that count?
@RegDwighт Or a better fit for ELL than for ELU. I expect some questions will be migrated that are not closed on ELU.
@RegDwighт True.
This is an ambitious project.
@Cerberus very few, I think. Most are too old to migrate, plus even the ones that are still young enough we probably won't be able to migrate for quite some time, the way I understood Robert.
10:16 AM
Considering all the possible overlap...
Again, the idea is not to have overlap in the first place.
Where does language learning end and Usage begin?
This place is for questions that get shut down on ELU. Not the questions that are open with 60+-voted answers with COCA graphs.
@RegDwighт Able, because we have to wait for public beta, no?
@RegDwighт Well, that's silly. Look at Linguistics. It had lots of overlap with us.
@Cerberus only mods can migrate to sites that are not listed in the close-reason dialog, and only 3k users can migrate to a sites that are.
10:19 AM
And ELL doesn't have mods, or 3k users, and the default for the list is only our own meta.
Which sites get added and when and why is decided by TPTB.
@Cerberus well of course, perhaps I'm not making myself clear. The idea is not to create overlap on purpose while there's an unlimited supply of questions that actually do not overlap.
Some of the questions listed in discuss.area51.stackexchange.com/questions/8910/… are described as being better suited to ELL than ELU, but they haven't been closed on ELU.
@RegDwighт There is such a supply. But can our current privateers provide it?
10:40 AM
Hi people :)
@Cerberus That is exactly the question.
in English Language & Usage, Jan 16 at 14:19, by RegDwighт
First we'll have to ask those questions ourselves, though.
in English Language & Usage, Jan 16 at 14:19, by RegDwighт
Because for the closed beta only ELU regulars will show up.
Someone said we shouldn't be seeding questions.
Someone on ELL.
On the plus side, we presumably have some control over ELU regulars and can inject some discipline.
@LiamW Hi!
@Cerberus linky?
10:42 AM
I don't have it.
I read it...somewhere.
I have asked my first question. One that didn't sit well with TPTB on ELU and in fact got deleted.
Probably on ELL Meta?
@Cerberus How did you choose your username? Also, what does Cerberus mean? I think we are all doing OK for the first day of beta :)
@RegDwighт By whom?
Cerberus (), or Kerberos, (Greek form: Κέρβερος, ) in Greek and Roman mythology, is a multi-headed hound (usually three-headed) which guards the gates of the Underworld, to prevent those who have crossed the river Styx from ever escaping. Cerberus featured in many works of ancient Greek and Roman literature and in works of both ancient and modern art and architecture, although the depiction and background surrounding Cerberus often differed across various works by different authors of the era. The most notable difference is the number of its heads: Most sources describe or depict three ...
@Cerberus by Jasper and Shog. How's that for a mix? You didn't expect that.
10:43 AM
I chose it when I was 16 or so and first had to make an account on a website.
@RegDwighт Ugh.
Do you want me to answer it?
Probably not...
I do remember that question.
I don't remember whether I got it the first time.
I do get it now.
Ah, yes.
I'm already seeing some people basically copying answers from ELU. I'd rather have an answer from you because I know it will be genuine.
10:47 AM
Thanks, I guess.
Reputation must mean something, from day one.
this site is currently in private beta for at least 6 more days.
Yes, the "at least" part needs emphasis, many people miss that.
@skullpatrol Very nice. That's 0.98 Lawlers.
Wow, that was fast.
10:52 AM
Thank you, @Cerberus. I will the missing verb in your first sentence myself.
Oh, dear.
Please so.
You have four minutes. The clock is ticking!
Will he make it?
How could I such a prominent verb?
Stay tuned.
I don't!
I mean: ...
10:54 AM
I: done.
Thanks a bunch.
Mean is a verb, done is a participle. Pineapple!
Participles are verbs too.
Just not finite verbs.
Nonsense. You only just invented it.
First time I hear that.
Certainly not.
10:55 AM
I will go ask on ELU.
Do as you please.
And on ELL.
And on Skeptics.
They are verbs in that they can have arguments and are derived from verbal stems.
They are adjectives in that they modify nouns.
And on Linguistics. And I will name you by name, and Alenanno will ban you.
So they are both at once.
An infinitive is also a verb.
10:56 AM
Okay so now it looks like I have to explain a joke to you.
Not a finite verb.
1 min ago, by RegDwighт
Mean is a verb, done is a participle. Pineapple!
How was I supposed to know!?
Some people actually are like that!
@Cerberus You wasn't. You're not good at English, after all.
I don't get it:(
10:56 AM
Like a certain J. L.
@skullpatrol ask on ELL.
And on ELU.
@RegDwighт *on English
@Cerberus between English.
Between, under, and on top of.
Why am I getting "you will have to repost it in 5 seconds" in this room?
10:57 AM
Because you typed too fast.
I thought only Cerberus ever had that problem, and only in the WMT room.
I get that all the time. Just not now.
But am an ESL
@Cerberus Can't be. I have to translate every word from Dutch.
No, I hear people complain about it all the time.
@skullpatrol I don't get it either. That's just Reg.
From Dutch?
10:58 AM
Yes, from Dutch.
Is that your latest fad?
And I don't know a word of Dutch, that's the problem.
@Cerberus Sounds technical.
Well, I do know the word "ananas".
in English Language & Usage, Aug 1 '11 at 20:20, by Cerberus
@simchona Hmm... I know ananas (the only word in Dutch), but I never got it, not after hearing it several times.
"You can perform this action again in 8 seconds"
Sucks, huh?
I have got higher numbers, in the past.
11:02 AM
Good luck on this project guys..
11:13 AM
Q: How to choose the right Article

WalrusHow do I know whether to use the definite (the) or indefinite (a, an) article, or if it can even be omitted?

Is this too broad?
That is, a good answer would be extremely long.
It's an attempt to take over the question from ELU.
On ELU, it got answered. I gave it a shot.
But it was during its beta.
A: Are there any simple rules for article usage ("a" vs "the" vs none)

RegDwighтWell, if you insist on the rule being simple, here you are: a = some, any the = this, that Two simple examples. Note that you just wrote "...if a person knows which item you are talking about...". You didn't write "...if the person knows...". And that's correct, because you are not pointing t...

Right now I have no idea if the answer for ELL should be more detailed, or actually even more simple.
So I'm staying away from it.
Right, you gave what one could reasonably tell an OP in an answer.
In reality, most of the articles we use here could be motivated in several ways, and cannot be predicted by such simple rules.
I think there are many, many idiomatic combinations.
> it's an [x]
> gave it a shot
And often both are possible. Or neither.
Not to mention the bit about omitting articles.
It seems so innocent, but it's a vast wasteland.
Enter at your own peril.
11:29 AM
Articles and prepositions are perhaps the most difficult thing to learn in a language.
Prepositions are always the trickiest part when learning a language (that has them). Master them and the rest is smooth sailing. In German, one is actually married with someone; "married to" would be ungrammatical. In Russian, I am married on my wife, while she is married behind me. Go figure. (The list goes on, but you get the idea.) — RegDwighт Nov 29 '10 at 21:31
12:10 PM
I know. We all know.
Your wife is married behind you.
It's also with in Dutch.
12:53 PM
My first answer on this site earned me a peer pressure badge.
1:08 PM
Yay indeed.
1:24 PM
Hey anyone here?!
nope. I can't see anyone. probably all asleep. especially Ceberus
1:46 PM
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