Most Popular Pages—Last 7 Days

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1. It Is Interesting to Note: Best Practices for Scholarly Writing in All DisciplinesGabriel Lanyi (46 visits)

It Is Interesting to Note: Best Practices for Scholarly Writing in All Disciplines. Gabriel Lanyi*. Abstract Emoticons were designed to express in one glyph a rich cognitive-emotional reaction at a time when readers’ span of attention is approaching epsilon. Since the style guides of most scholarly journals do not recommend the use of emoticons, researchers were induced to develop new modes of expression to promptly convey complex scientific data to the busy reader. The best practices reveal some of the more productive techniques emerging in the literature. * * *. With the exponential growth in scholarship, there are now more articles in every field than hours in the lives of their ... more ]

2. The Serial CommaThe Language Debate Society (27 visits)

The Serial Comma. The Language Debate Society. Here at the Language Debate Society, we debate only the most important language topics that lesser minds dare not touch. This month’s debate is on the serial comma. Did you know that that in the court case O’Connor v. Oakhurst Dairy, a US court ruled that the ambiguity created by the lack of a serial comma meant that the company was required to provide overtime pay to its drivers? This month we have two cream-of-the-crop scholars who are going to milk this topic for all it’s worth. Prior to the debate, we polled our live audience here at the Εταιρεία ... more ]

3. The Daughters of Corpus LinguisticsLexi Cal, Anna-Lee Ziss (23 visits)

The Daughters of Corpus Linguistics. Lexi Cal, Anna-Lee Ziss. Corpus linguistics has enjoyed a meteoric rise in popularity ever since being discovered on the hard drive of a ZX Spectrum in an alleyway behind the Text Miner’s pub in Nantwich in 1984. Since then it has gone on to infiltrate pretty much every area of linguistics, from challenging the authorship of some of the alleged letters of the apostle Paul to legitimising quirky 20,000-page usage-based grammars of English. But more than that, due to its association with computational techniques, corpus linguistics can also be considered the coolest subdiscipline of linguistics: corpus linguists are regularly seen jet setting between Monaco and Las ... more ]

4. Académie Française Has Banned Conlanging, AgainSpecGram Wire Services (21 visits)

Académie Française Has Banned Conlanging, Again. SpecGram Wire Services. Paris, FranceToday marked the 85th consecutive year in which l’Académie française has banned conlanging. The convened panel of Immortals (as members are officially known) passed the measure, a terse 400 words in French (or 70 in its English translation) in a twelve minute discussion that opened with the reading of a passage reminding everyone that the Immortals’ resplendent green uniforms were adopted specifically to denote the military spirit needed for “The War on Conlanging.” Critics of the move have lambasted l’Académie. One detractor, speaking on condition of ... more ]

5. A New Mechanism For Contact-Induced Change: Evidence From Maritime LanguagesH.D. Onesimus (20 visits)

A New Mechanism For Contact-Induced Change: Evidence From Maritime Languages. H.D. Onesimus, Gobi Institute of Maritime Linguistics, Lanzhou, China. Modern contact linguistics has demonstrated an impressive ability to account for language change and the emergence of new languages with a remarkably small number of mechanisms: bilingualism, creolization, borrowing, and convergence (also known as “smart drift”). However, a few intractable situations of language contact seemingly cannot be accounted for in terms of this elegant system (notable examples include Wutun, Ma’a and Texas English). In this article, I show how the long-standing problem of Penguin and the Cetacean languages reveals a new type of ... more ] Podcast! Book!

6. Vol CXCII, No 4 (19 visits)

Speculative Grammarian Volume CXCII, Number 4 Editor-in-Chief: Trey Jones; Executive Editors: Keith Slater, Mikael Thompson; Senior Editors: Jonathan Downie, Deak Kirkham; Contributing Editors: Pete Bleackley, Vincent Fish; Associate Editors: Luca Dinu, Yuval Wigderson, Daniel Swanson; Editorial Associates: Andrew Lamont, Gabriel Lanyi, Mark Mandel, CJ Quines, Noah Schachter; Comptroller General: Joey Whitford; Our Happy Place Is Not a Very Happy Place; March 2023 ... more ]

7. The C-Rhyme and Pun-ish-ment of St. AlvinJerry Fyodor & Josef Dobrovskýevsky (19 visits)

The C-Rhyme and Pun-ish-ment of St. Alvin. by Jerry Fyodor & Josef Dobrovskýevsky. It is now commonly accepted that St. Alvin was always accompanied by an assistant called Theodorus. Theodorus was a budding philosopher, with interests in Kant, Hegel and innateness in generative grammar. He was however, very rotund and was therefore known as the Deep Fat Friar. As a young monk, St Alvin left his first monastery, where he had taken a vow of silence, to found an order that believed that people were best served by creating attractive paper to put around Christmas gifts. It is for this reason that his autobiography was entitled “From Trappist to Wrappist.” The members of that order were noted for their ... more ]

8. Archives (16 visits)

SpecGram Archives. A word from our Senior Archivist, Holger Delbrück: While bringing aging media to the web and hence the world is truly a labor of love, SpecGram tries the passion of even the most ardent admirer. Needless to say, we’ve fallen behind schedule. At every turn, the authors found in the pages of this hallowed journal stretch credibility with their gratuitous font mongeringfirst it was the IPA, then a few non-standard transcription systems, then Greek, and not just the alphabet, but the entire diacritical mess, and now I’ve got some god-forsaken Old Church Slavonic glyph sitting on my desk that no one can even name, and which would give the Unicode Consortium ... more ]

9. Pivotal Moments in the History of LinguisticsJohn Miaou and Kean Kaufmann (15 visits)

Pivotal Moments in the History of Linguistics. By John Miaou, Illustrated by Kean Kaufmann. ... Chomsky works out the final, details of the minimalist program ... more ]

10. Quotes: What People are Saying (14 visits)

Quotes: What People are Saying. Here are a few of our favorite things people have said about Speculative Grammarian over the years, collected wild on the internet, or domesticated in email — Q1118. C’est sans doute un humour un peu ésotérique mais bon —Sémioticien du bisou — Q1117. Support the addition of the double-dot wide O to the IPA chart by buying some Speculative Grammarian merchandise! No, I’m not being sponsored or getting a commission from them. I just appreciate good geeky humour —Grace Teng — Q1116. Speculative Grammarian ist die erste Zeitschrift für satirische Linguistik. Kostenlos zugänglich, ein ... more ]

11. Cartoon Theories of LinguisticsPart жThe Trouble with NLPPhineas Q. Phlogiston, Ph.D. (14 visits)

Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, Part ж—The Trouble with NLP. Phineas Q. Phlogiston, Ph.D. Unintentional University of Lghtnbrgstn. Please review previously discussed materials as needed. Now that that is taken care of, let us consider why Natural Language Processing (or, its alter-ego, Computational Linguistics) has not been the resounding success regularly predicted by the NLP faithful: We gave the monkeys the bananas because they were hungry/over-ripe. Time/Fruit flies like a(n) arrow/banana. pretty little girl’s school crying computational linguist Up next: Lexicostatistics vs Glottochronology. References, Baeza-Yates, Ricardo and Berthier Ribeiro-Neto (1999). Modern Information ... more ] Merch! Book!

12. Sleeping Furiously Since 1986Hamlet Tries PraatLaura Ryals (14 visits)

Sleeping Furiously Since 1986 Hamlet Tries Praat. by Laura Ryals. A [b]... or not a [b]... Something is rotten in the state of Denmark, and I think it’s his sampling rate. ... more ]

13. Cartoon Theories of LinguisticsPart 九Lexicostatistics vs. GlottochronologyPhineas Q. Phlogiston, Ph.D. (12 visits)

Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, Part 九—Lexicostatistics vs. Glottochronology. Phineas Q. Phlogiston, Ph.D. Unintentional University of Lghtnbrgstn. If you are new to Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, please review back issues of this journal. Now let us consider the fundamental difference between Lexicostatistics and Glottochronology: Lexicostatistics Glottochronology Up next: Feeding and Bleeding with guest cartoonist Erin Taylor. References, Arndt, Walter W. (1959). “The performance of glottochronology in Germanic”. Language, 35, 180-192. Bergsland, Knut; & Vogt, Hans. (1962). “On the validity of glottochronology”. Current Anthropology, 3, 115-153. Chretien, Douglas ... more ] Podcast!

14. Cartoon Theories of LinguisticsPart ζPhysics vs. Physics EnvyPhineas Q. Phlogiston, Ph.D. (11 visits)

Cartoon Theories of Linguistics, Part ζ—Physics vs. Physics Envy. Phineas Q. Phlogiston, Ph.D. Unintentional University of Lghtnbrgstn. Introductions are superfluous for those who have been keeping up. Now, to the heart of the matter, in which we discuss the long-recognized but little-discussed travesty of unconfidence in our field of study: ... Up next: Diachronic vs Synchronic. References, Cohen, Joel E. (1971). “Mathematics as Metaphor: a review of Dynamical System Theory in Biology. Vol. 1, Stability Theory and Its Applications by Robert Rosen.” Science, New Series, Vol. 172, No. 3984. Dymetman, Marc. (1998). “Group Theory and Computational ... more ]

15. A Love/Hate Relationship: Pesky AntonymsJessie Sams (10 visits)

A Love/Hate Relationship: Pesky Antonyms. Jessie Sams, Stephen F. Austin State University. When students get to college, the majority of them have never thought about antonyms as being anything more than “opposites.” So big is the opposite of small, just like buyer is the opposite of seller. Then, all of a sudden, students are forced into a linguistics course with a professor who tells them that they have to learn to differentiate among different types of antonyms. Student’s minds are nearly exploding with information as they have to learn definitions of terms like ‘converse’ and ‘gradable’ and ‘complementary’ in the world of ... more ]

16. SpecGram Dictionary of the Linguistics of Mythological BeastsVolume 2: The WyvernMiss Ickle, B. Easts (10 visits)

SpecGram Dictionary of the Linguistics of Mythological Beasts . It’s Not Just Legendary; It’s Unreal . Volume 2 (Legs and Wings): The Wyvern, by Miss Ickle, B. Easts. ‘Where are my dragons!?’ is an exclamation as familiar to the ear of the popular culturite as ‘I am your father’ ‘I’ll be back’ and of course Pozzo’s response to Vladimir, ‘Where?’. However, after the admin interns recently discovered a literal flurry of letters from our readers from back in 2012, we feel it our bounden duty to point out that the beasts referred to in this famous phrase are not in fact dragons but wyverns, dragon-like beasts but with only one ... more ]

17. The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics (10 visits)

The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics . For decades, Speculative Grammarian has been the premier scholarly journal featuring research in the neglected field of satirical linguisticsand now it is available in book formboth physical and electronic! We wish we were kidding,1 but no, seriously, we’ve published a large3 collection of SpecGram articles, along with just enough new material to force obsessive collectors and fans to buy it, regardless of the cost.4 From the Introduction: The past twenty-five years have witnessed many changes in linguistics, with major developments in linguistic theory, significant expansion ... more ]

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Last updated Mar. 24, 2023.