Archive for January, 2014

Interesting Old English Words

Screen Shot 2014-01-30 at 00.24.41When I watch a movie or TV series, I just can’t help but looking up the words I don’t know- even if I understand the meaning from the context. It is an urge to see the exact equivalence and to take for as they are. 🙂 I guess it is just an old habit from my of high school days

Anyway, sometimes I come across with such interesting words that I just don’t understand how people naturally use them in an everyday conversation! The other day I’ve heard the one “egrote” and I couldn’t find it in an English-Turkish dictionary. I googled it and came across to this interesting article. 

I’ve selected the ones that I like most. You can always click the link at the bottom to read the whole article. 🙂

To egrote: to fake sickness to avoid work. (I have a modern reaction to this verb: seems legit :D)

To fudgel: to pretend to work when you’re not actually doing anything at all. (Word used in the eighteenth century. Too bad it’s no longer used, because it is really useful!)

A pedeconference: to hold a meeting while walking. (I can definitely see myself using this term!)

To uhtceare:  to wake up before dawn and be unable to go back to sleep because you’re worried about something.

Twitter-light: twilight. (This term was used in the early seventeenth century, although it seems quite modern. It actually has nothing to do with social media and is a really romantic word that refers to the hours as the sun setting)

Thanks for the article writer who has compiled such an interesting list. You can visit the blog and see more interesting old English words here. 

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Never Enough Books

This month when I saw my credit card bill, I was totally shocked because it was far too much then I expected. Then I went over each and every payment and I realized that half of them was bookstores and online book sellers. 🙂 As my father says, the money that you spend on books and food is never  pointless. 🙂 However, it is also not good to buy more than books that you can read in one month. So, this month I am determined not to buy any new books and finish the ones I bought last month.

You might be wondering why I’m telling this. Last week I’ve read a post about book love and I kind of justified myself with this post. Here are some beautiful quotes about books by the writers themselves!

I’ve picked the ones I like most, you can always click the link at the bottom to see the original post and many more quotes…

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Source: http://www.buzzfeed.com/hnew92/16-quotes-that-will-make-you-want-to-cuddle-up-wit-9qja

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Disney’s contributions to the English language

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It seems that Disney has a substantial influence on our daily lives. When I look at my slippers, they have Mickey Mouse, I eat my burgers in a place called Bambi and I wear a sweatshirt with Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh! When I buy a present for a babyshower or for a birthday of a kid, it is 90% something from Disney… As you can see, even if we don’t realize most of the times, the popularized Disney culture is everywhere even on baby diapers!

Considering this, it is not surprising that Disney has an effect also on English. Here is an article from Oxford Dictionary Blog, telling the contributions of Disney to the English language. I quote the parts that I like most but you can always read the whole article by clicking the link at the bottom.

supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this adjective is indeed in the Oxford English Dictionary. Meaning extraordinarily good or wonderful. It was in the movie Mary Poppins in 1964.

Disneyfy, Disneyfied, Disneyfication

The earliest of these is the adjective Disneyfied—meaning, ‘created by Disney, or altered in a way considered characteristic of Disney’.

pixie dust

Defined as an ‘imaginary magical substance used by pixies, or a hypothetical thing considered to be special or extremely effective’.

Bambi

Bambi, the young, wide-eyed deer who stars in Disney’s 1942 film. There, we can find some interesting compounds such as Bambi eyes—meaning very large or wide-open eyes—and Bambi factor or Bambi syndrome, two derogatory terms for the tendency of human attitudes toward animals to be dominated by sentimentality or anthropomorphism.

Mickey Mouse

Mickey Mouse made his debut in the short animated cartoon ‘Steamboat Willie’ in 1928, and for decades has been the mascot for the Walt Disney Company, recognized all over the world.  The adjective was first used to describe something featuring, resembling, or having to do with Mickey. However, as early as 1931, Mickey Mouse also began to designate a person or thing deemed to be lacking in value, size, authenticity, or seriousness.

Source: http://blog.oxforddictionaries.com/2013/05/disney/

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The Maps of Common Words

10 mins ago, I came across to a very interesting content about 8 common words and their distribution in Europe. The source also gives short introductions about their etymology! 🙂

I love such content because I kind of have a visual memory and when I see a word in a video game or in an ad, I just don’t forget them no matter how many years pass. I’m sure, as language learners and lovers, you experience this as well. That’s why it is a teaching strategy, adopted by most of second-language teachers.

Thanks http://www.businessinsider.com/ for this great compilation! I guess they get this content from Reddit though. In short, thanks whoever came up this idea and visualized the distribution of these words for us. 🙂

You can go to the source and read more by clicking the link at the bottom.

“The word for “church” shows the influence of ancient Greece:”

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“Bear” appears to be influenced by Russia, where largest brown bear population in Europe can be found. Notice the dominant word literally means “honey-eater.”

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“Apple” has a lot of diversity: Notice how the word in Finland and Estonia may come from a Indo-Iranian origin.”

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“Orange” is an interesting one. In the west it comes form Sanskrit while the dominant word in much of eastern and northern Europe comes from a word meaning “apple from China.”

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“Garoful,” the ancient Greek word for “rose,” only remains in northeastern Italy.”

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“Most of Europe derives “pineapple” from the Guarani language, which is an indigenous language of South America, although the U.K. (and consequently the U.S.) get the word from Latin.”

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Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/european-maps-showing-origins-of-common-words-2013-11

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Time to Challenge

Just before new year, I discovered a perfect mobile game and I’m totally addicted to it now. I will tell you the app by using multiple screenshots.

First of all, you can download the app here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/quizup-biggest-trivia-game/id718421443?mt=8

Here is the description of the game: Join over 7 million people who love and play QuizUp! Challenge your friends and connect with others around the globe in the largest real-time trivia game ever. Go head to head in over 150,000 questions and 280 topics ranging from your favorite TV shows and books to sports and music. With new topics being added all the time, QuizUp is sure to keep you entertained and test your knowledge for hours on end!

 

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These are the generic images of the app. But here is the topic I love and I guess you’ll love most: Educational

Under this topic, you’ll find these sub-topics:

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You can challenge your friends with topics about spelling and vocabulary knowledge together with other hundreds of them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is a screenshots from the quiz. Each play consists of 7 rounds.

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Using a smartphone is essential now. With such apps we can really use them in a smart way!

 

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If you speak another language, you can be a translator! :)

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I don’t know have you ever get that feeling but when I tell people my major is Translation/ I’m a translator, they kind of roll their eyes and look down on the job we do. Maybe I’m wrong but some of my friends also feel this way, too.

Recently, I have read an article about this which make me realize that it is not something Turkey and there are other people out there getting this feeling. Here are, according to the writer of the article- Neil Payne, 5 shocking statements about translation even smart people make:

#1: “If you speak another language, you can be a translator”

This is perhaps one of the most common statements I hear from businesses who do not wish to invest in professional translation services. It is possibly the most serious of the lot.

Let’s get this clear – speaking another language does not and will never qualify anybody to become a “translator”. It may help you understand the meaning of something, say in French, but could you properly then translate that into your own language? Some people may be able to accurately translate texts but the vast majority will not.

#2: “Translation is easy peasy”

In the real world, translators and agencies don’t press buttons to produce magically accurate translations. In the real world, translators research their subjects, produce draft translations, agonise over vocabulary choices and struggle with complex layouts. Translation is not easy; it can be, but on the whole translation takes time and it takes effort.

#3: “You can use Google to translate”

For many people when you mention ‘translation’ they start to think or talk about machine translations or software. Google Translate for example is seen by some as their answer to all translation needs. It’s free. It’s cheap. It’s accurate.

No it isn’t accurate. If you believe this then you don’t understand machine translation. No translation software can and ever will be able to completely take the place of a human translators.

#4: “Professional translation isn’t necessary”

OK, it is true that you don’t always need a “professional translator”. There are many good people out there who can translate superbly but do not have professional qualifications or accreditations. However, there are also many good people out there who could fix your car but does that mean you bypass the mechanic?

#5: “Everyone speaks English now. I don’t need a translation.”

In short, if you think this, you haven’t done much travelling abroad. Yes, a lot more people speak English than they did 20 years ago but to think that absolves anyone of having to translate materials, presentations, websites, marketing copy, advertisements, contracts, etc is nonsense. Everyone doesn’t speak English.

To read the whole article, click here.

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