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So far NovaAdmin has created 28 blog entries.

Why words make language

From hieroglyphics to emojis, and grunts to gestures, humans have always used multiple modes to communicate, including language. If you've ever sent a text using emojis, which the recipient received and understood, then you've communicated in a new language code. Communication codes have been with us since the grunts of our ancestors developed in to [...]

By |2019-11-12T18:25:57+00:00November 12th, 2019|Language, Words|0 Comments

The Oxford English Dictionary, like the English language, is all about change

Samuel Johnson once said a dictionary should aim to “not form, but register” the language. Indeed, a dictionary should “not teach men how they should think,” he continued, “but relate how they have hitherto expressed their thoughts.” We tend to think of our dictionaries as tools of instruction; as books that set the standard, with [...]

By |2019-11-07T11:56:32+00:00November 7th, 2019|English language, OED, Oxford English Dictionary|0 Comments

Smartphone keyboards designed for traditional languages at cutting edge of their survival

An international software firm developing smartphone keyboards specifically designed to write in traditional languages is helping people protect their language. The project, called Keyman, allows people to type in one of more than 600 different languages, most of which are majority languages. A majority language is one spoken by large groups of people such as [...]

By |2019-10-25T14:01:53+00:00October 25th, 2019|Indigenous languages, Smart phone, Technology|0 Comments

Invented Languages and the Science of the Mind

Hildegard von Bingen was something of a medieval genius. She founded and was Abbess of a convent at Rubensberg in Germany, she wrote ethereally beautiful music, she was an amazing artist (one of the first to draw the visual effects of migraines), and she invented her own language. The language she constructed, Lingua Ignota (Latin [...]

By |2019-10-24T10:28:56+00:00October 24th, 2019|Conlang, Constructed languages, Language|0 Comments

Recognizing And Reviving Argentina’s Indigenous Languages

BUENOS AIRES — Argentina may be South America's most Europeanized country, with Spanish, of course, as its official language, but it also has 36 recognized indigenous tongues (belonging to 38 peoples). That is the conclusion that researchers involved in a year-long project create the country's first comprehensive language map presented earlier this month in Buenos [...]

By |2019-10-23T15:36:22+00:00October 23rd, 2019|Argentina, Language|0 Comments

Why the language-ready brain is so complex

In a review article published in Science, Peter Hagoort, professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at Radboud University and director of the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, argues for a new model of language, involving the interaction of multiple brain networks. This model is much more complex than the classical neurobiological model of language, which was largely [...]

By |2019-10-23T15:32:32+00:00October 21st, 2019|Language, The brain|0 Comments

Here’s How Words Get Removed from the Dictionary

The dictionary isn’t forever. Here’s the lowdown on what happens to a word when its popularity starts to wane. You can’t call someone a frutescent snollygoster anymore—at least not officially. Those words have been deleted from the dictionary, so you’ll have to come up with alternate terms to describe a shrubby, unscrupulous politician. And those [...]

By |2019-10-17T17:13:28+00:00October 17th, 2019|Dictionaries and Lexicography, Language, Words|0 Comments

Here’s How Words Get Added to the Dictionary

Just look it up—or look here to check out the dish on dictionaries that logophiles will love! (Logophile means word lover!) What’s the deal with new words? Where do they come from and how do they go from obscure to official? First, new words have to circulate in culture to make it into the dictionary. [...]

By |2019-10-13T16:57:14+00:00October 13th, 2019|Dictionaries and Lexicography, Language|0 Comments

Reclaiming a culture: How Indiana University is helping an indigenous community restore its endangered language

More than 2,000 hours of audio and video field recordings of vocabulary, interviews and storytelling from indigenous people reside in the collection of the American Indian Studies Research Institute at Indiana University. Now, some of these recordings are being put to use to help one indigenous community reclaim its endangered language and culture. The institute [...]

By |2019-10-12T14:51:07+00:00October 12th, 2019|Endangered Languages, Indigenous languages|0 Comments

Why larger communities create more systematic languages

The differences between the 6,800 or so languages that currently exist in the world are remarkable. From Cantonese, in which a speaker must perfect six different tones each of which change the meaning of a single word, to Georgian, in which verb endings vary not just according to the tense or plurality (as in English), [...]

By |2019-10-08T12:14:06+00:00October 8th, 2019|Language|0 Comments