The Encyclopaedia Britannica has begun to refer to Hong Kong as Xianggang, the Modern Standard Mandarin (MSM) pronunciation of the name.
Victor Steinbok sends in an example of pan-European taboo avoidance at the BBC ("Profile: Beppe Grillo", BBC News Europe 2/26/2013):
Time magazine chose him as a "European Hero" that year, saying he used "over-the-top humour to probe the serious social issues that leaders don't want to touch".
In 2007 he organised "V-Day" – the V stands for a well-known Italian obscenity – when a petition demanding clean politics in Italy gathered 300,000 signatures in the space of a few hours.
In the tradition of other recent examples of amusingly crossed bibliographical wires, Google Books has F. Howard Collins, Authors' and Printers' Dictionary- A Guide for Authors, Editors, Printers, Correctors of the Press, Compositors and Typists, linked somehow with a very different work:
And also, how 35% of the population can be above the 95th percentile…. Razib Khan, "The Obesity Rate for Children Has Not Plummeted (Despite what the New York Times tells you)", Slate 2/28/2014:
Common sense tells you that if you run enough trials, by chance, you will occasionally get an unexpected outcome. When scientists deem a result “statistically significant,” they're just saying that given their default expectations (e.g. around 50/50 for a coin toss), the outcomes obtained are unlikely to have occurred by random chance. A fair coin is unlikely to land on heads nine out of 10 tosses, so such an outcome suggests the coin is probably not fair. Unlikely is not the same as impossible, and if you look long and hard you will inevitably stumble upon random events that seem novel but are just the outcome of chance.
I bring this up because earlier this week the New York Times trumpeted: “Obesity Rate for Young Children Plummets 43% in a Decade.” A surprising discovery, and a pretty big deal, right? The article spread like wildfire on Twitter and Facebook. For once, some heartening news about the health of this nation! My immediate reaction, however, was that there must be something we don’t know about obesity to get such a massive change in such a short period of time. Then I started reading.
It's been uh nearly impossible to understate the far right's hatred
of President Obama's health care law.
In "Nerd, geek, PK: Creeping Romanization (and Englishization), part 2" and other Language Log posts, we have delved into the terminology for nerddom. In the course of our discussions, we seem to have arrived at a consensus that it's difficult to find a Chinese term that conveys well the notion and nuances of the English word "nerd". Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »
What do the following phrases or sayings have in common?
- first-year experience
- fast-track MBA
- be the difference
- cure violence
- student life
- students with diabetes
- one course at a time
- touched by a nurse
- we're conquering cancer
- working toward a world without cancer
- imagination beyond measure
- tomorrow starts here
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been the prime minister of Turkey for 11 years. On Monday, someone posted on YouTube what purports to be recordings of a series of phone conversations between Erdoğan and his son, discussing how to hide a billion dollars or so in cash: "Başçalan Erdoğan'ın Yalanlarının ve Yolsuzluklarının Kaydı"= "Recording of Erdogan's lying and corruption". Here's an acted version of an English translation, from "Full transcript of voice recording purportedly of Erdoğan and his son", Today's Zaman 2/26/2014:
From the "Cantonese Resources" blog:
Ah To 阿塗, a graphic designer and part-time cartoonist who is concerned about the survival of Cantonese in Canton and Hong Kong, has just published a comic called "The Great Canton and Hong Kong Proverbs" on Hong Kong independent media "Passion Times".
David Craig sent in this picture which showed up on the Facebook Armchair Linguists page, originally posted by Olexa Stomachenko; no one seems to know what it means: