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Chinese emoji, with a twist

Adrienne LaFrance has an eye-opening article about "The Westernization of Emoji" in The Atlantic (5/22/17).  Here's the summary statement at the beginning: The takeout box and the fortune cookie are perceived as emblems of Chinese culture, when they’re actually central to the American experience of it.

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A trilingual, biscriptal note (with emoji)

Message in a store window @ 826 Valencia, San Francisco:

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Unicode: The brontosaurus emoji

Today's xkcd: Mouseover title: "I'm excited about the proposal to add a 'brontosaurus' emoji codepoint because it has the potential to bring together a half-dozen different groups of pedantic people into a single glorious internet argument."

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Emojiplomacy

Austin Ramzy, "Julie Bishop, Foreign Minister of Australia, Raises Eyebrows With Emojis", NYT 10/22/2015: What, exactly, does that scowling, red-faced emoji mean? I’m mad? Frustrated? Sunburned?   The question, which has plagued more than a few text-message exchanges, became a topic of debate in the Australian Senate on Thursday, when Foreign Minister Julie Bishop’s liberal […]

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Emojify the Web: "the next phase of linguistic evolution"

Today's announcement from the Google Chrome team (yes, note the date):

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Biscriptal juxtaposition in Chinese, part 4

Screenshot from Nikita Kuzmin's WeChat:

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CCP approved image macros

Two powerful agencies of the PRC central government, Zhōnggòng zhōngyāng jìlǜ jiǎnchá wěiyuánhuì 中共中央纪律检查委员会 ("Central Commission for Discipline Inspection") and Zhōnghuá rénmín gònghéguó jiānchá bù 中华人民共和国监察部 ("People's Republic of China Ministry of Supervision"), have issued "bā xiàng guīdìng biǎoqíng bāo 八项规定表情包" ("emoticons for the eight provisions / stipulations / rules"); see also here.  The biǎoqíng bāo 表情包 (lit., expression […]

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Kanji learning for coprophiliacs

Missed this earlier in the year: "Poop-Themed Kanji Study Book a Bestseller in Japan" nippon.com (4/21/17) Not only is there one book utilizing the theme of excrement to stimulate interest in kanji, there's a whole graded series of texts, and they're selling like hotcakes (pardon me). It doesn't hurt that there's a general fascination with […]

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Is there a practical limit to how much can fit in Unicode?

A lengthy, important article by Michael Erard recently appeared in the New York Times Magazine: "How the Appetite for Emojis Complicates the Effort to Standardize the World’s Alphabets:  Do the volunteers behind Unicode, whose mission is to bring all human languages into the digital sphere, have enough bandwidth to deal with emojis too?" (10/18/17) The […]

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"Let's" in Chinese

Advertisement recently spotted by Guy Freeman in the Central, Hong Kong MTR (subway) station:

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Ball ball 你

Yep, just like that.  This expression is very common on the Chinese internet, messaging, chatting, etc. now, but — for those of us who are not in the know — what does it mean? I'll just give one hint:  nǐ 你 means "you".

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Similes for quality of computer code

I must admit to having enjoyed the series of savage similes about quality of computer program code presented in three xkcd comic strips. They show a female character, known to aficionados as Ponytail, reluctantly agreeing to take a critical look at some code that the male character Cueball has written. Almost at first sight, she […]

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Biscriptal juxtaposition in Chinese, part 3

Christopher Alderton saw this flyer on his way to work a few days ago:

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