Category: brain and language (page 1 of 2)

Episode 273: Voice of the Apes

Why don’t monkeys talk to us?

New research tells us that if our primate cousins don’t do language, it’s not because of their vocal tracts. Those appear to be speech-ready. So if the voice is good to go, what’s the holdup?

Daniel is talking apes with Ben and Kylie on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Promo with Coel Healy


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Patreon extras for this episode

Episode 273: Voice of the Apes [128 kbps]

Cutting Room Floor 273: Voice of the Apes


Show notes

Swearing meme

Frankly, we do give a damn: The relationship between profanity and honesty
https://www.academia.edu/29725191/Frankly_we_do_give_a_damn_The_relationship_between_profanity_and_honesty

People who swear tend to be more honest
http://www.theverge.com/2017/1/21/14341850/profanity-swearing-honesty-linguistics-language

People who curse a lot have better vocabularies than those who don’t, study finds
http://www.sciencealert.com/people-who-curse-a-lot-have-better-vocabularies-than-those-who-don-t-study-finds

Swearing More Is Actually A Sign Of Having A Better Vocabulary, Study Finds
http://www.iflscience.com/brain/knowing-more-swear-words-linked-wider-vocabulary-study-finds/

People Who Can Swear A Lot Found To Have Larger Vocabularies, So Suck It
http://uproxx.com/life/swearing-correlates-with-bigger-vocabulary-f-ck-yeah-it-does/

Julia Roberts vs. Sally Field in Celebrity Curse Off
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0swXMgM284o

Orangutan Found To Mimic Human Speech
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dpoydpDHT8A

Voice control in orangutan gives clues to early human speech
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-07/du-vci072616.php

Monkeys Could Talk, but They Don’t Have the Brains for It
https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/09/science/monkeys-speech.html

Monkey vocal tracts are speech-ready
http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/2/12/e1600723

Fitch (and von Humboldt) on monkey talk
http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/

New Thoughts on the Origins of Human Speech
http://www.archaeology.org/news/5197-170112-baboons-vowels-speech

Baboons use vowel sounds strikingly similar to humans
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/01/baboons-show-they-ve-got-another-building-block-language-vowellike-sounds

Why a lowered larynx is good for human speech production
http://www.ling.cam.ac.uk/mark/Lowered_larynx_MJJ_York_Jan_2010.pdf

The descended larynx is not uniquely human.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1088793/

From Grunting To Gabbing: Why Humans Can Talk
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=129083762

Why monkeys can’t talk—and what they would sound like if they could
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2016/12/why-monkeys-can-t-talk-and-what-they-would-sound-if-they-could

Lemurs groom-at-a-distance through vocal networks
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0003347215003474

‘Baby talk’ in marmoset monkeys
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/01/170116091416.htm

Rogue Scientists Race to Save Climate Data from Trump
https://www.wired.com/2017/01/rogue-scientists-race-save-climate-data-trump/

President Trump ordered the National Park Service to find photos that made his inauguration look huge
http://www.salon.com/2017/01/27/president-trump-ordered-the-national-park-service-to-find-photos-that-made-his-inauguration-look-huge/

Trump admin tells National Park Service to halt tweets
http://edition.cnn.com/2017/01/21/politics/trump-national-park-service-tweets/

Online Etymology Dictionary: rogue
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?allowed_in_frame=0&search=rogue

Here’s a List of All the U.S. Govt’s Rogue Twitter Accounts Fighting Trump’s Crackdown on Science
http://www.core77.com/posts/60230/Heres-a-List-of-All-the-US-Govts-Rogue-Twitter-Accounts-Fighting-Trumps-Crackdown-on-Science

These 24 ‘rogue’ Twitter accounts claim to be from federal agencies
http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/opinion/the-conversation/sd-list-rogue-twitter-accounts-from-federal-agencies-20170125-htmlstory.html

Wikipedia: Samizdat
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samizdat

DataRefuge
https://www.datarefuge.org/about

Stony Brook student held at JFK in Trump travel ban released
http://www.newsday.com/long-island/suffolk/stony-brook-student-held-at-jfk-in-trump-travel-ban-released-1.13032310


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Episode 268: Dialect (featuring Kathryn Hymes and Hakan Seyalioglu)

Are dying languages worth saving?

That’s the concept of a new game that allows players to explore language creation, language community, and language death, all in the course of an evening. Heavy concepts. How does it work?

Linguist Daniel Midgley talks to the game’s creators, Kathryn Hymes and Hakan Seyalioglu, on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Promo with Kylie Sturgess


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This episode comes to you courtesy of our patrons Whitney, Matt, Christy, Zoe, and Keda. You guys rock! Thanks for supporting the show.

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Patreon extras for this episode

Interview with Kathryn Hymes and Hakan Seyalioglu of Thorny Games, 2016-11-02 (complete)

Cutting Room Floor 268: Dialect

Episode 268: Dialect (featuring Kathryn Hymes and Hakan Seyalioglu) [128 kbps] (for everyone)


Show notes

Foreign Accent Syndrome: This American Teen Woke Up Speaking Spanish
https://www.inverse.com/article/22798-what-is-foreign-accent-syndrome

Before his coma he spoke English; after waking up he’s fluent in Spanish
http://edition.cnn.com/2016/10/24/health/teen-spanish-new-language-trnd/

High school goalkeeper wakes up from a coma speaking fluent SPANISH
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c085GtExevo

Teen Wakes Up From Coma Speaking Fluent Spanish: ‘It Was Weird’
http://time.com/4542967/teen-coma-fluent-spanish-georgia/

Linguistic prodigy: 4yo Russian girl speaks 7 languages, incl Chinese & Arabic (VIDEO)
https://www.rt.com/viral/363656-child-prodigy-seven-languages/

Incredible four-year-old speaks seven languages fluently
http://www.news.com.au/travel/world-travel/europe/incredible-fouryearold-speaks-seven-languages-fluently/news-story/15e9bbebdc574e1c0f57eece6aa907a1

Thorny Games: Dialect
http://www.thornygames.com/dialect-rpg/

Kickstarter: Dialect: A Game about Language and How it Dies
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/347698129/dialect-a-game-about-language-and-how-it-dies

One Shot Podcast: 168. Dialect Part 1
http://oneshotpodcast.com/podcasts/one-shot/168-dialect-part-1/

LANGUAGE MATTERS: What do we lose when a language dies, and what does it take to save one?
http://www.pbs.org/program/language-matters/

Could the dominance of English harm global scholarship?
http://www.bbc.com/news/business-35282235

Court finds ‘f— Fred Nile’ not offensive language at marriage equality rally
http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/court-finds-f-fred-nile-not-offensive-language-at-marriage-equality-rally-20161025-gs9ymc.html

It’s Perfectly Legal To Tell Anti-LGBT People To “Fuck Off”, Judge Says
https://www.buzzfeed.com/aliceworkman/fck-fred-nile

The ‘F Word’ Is No Longer Deemed Offensive In Australia
http://www.lifehacker.com.au/2016/10/the-f-word-is-no-longer-deemed-offensive-in-australia/

Bono Would Call Appeals-Court Decision ‘Fucking Brilliant’
http://www.vulture.com/2007/06/bono_would_call_this_appeals_cou.html

Why are we still celebrating the art of Eric Gill?
http://www.womensviewsonnews.org/2015/07/why-are-we-still-celebrating-the-art-of-eric-gill/


Show tunes

Find the tracks we play on the RTRFM webpage for this episode.

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Episode 265: Universal Grammar 2 (featuring Dan Everett and Lynne Murphy)

The biggest idea in linguistics is back on the table.

Is there such a thing as the Universal Grammar? Do you have to have a human brain to learn language, or is learning a language just like learning anything else? And are one man’s insights into Amazonian languages sufficient to demolish this theoretical edifice?

Linguists Dan Everett and Lynne Murphy talk to Daniel, Ben, and Kylie on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Promo with Dylan Websdane


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Support for this episode comes from our patrons: Christy, Matt, and Whitney. Thanks, all! Your support gives life its meaning and texture.

Become a Patreon supporter yourself and get access to bonus audio, extra blog posts, Talk the Talk merch, and more!

Patreon extras for this episode

Interview with Dan Everett 2016-10-07 (complete)

Cutting Room Floor 265: Universal Grammar 2

265: Universal Grammar 2 (featuring Dan Everett and Lynne Murphy) [128kbps] (for everyone)


Show notes

Warning: Bad linguistics alert

‘Th’ sound to vanish from English language by 2066 because of multiculturalism, say linguists
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/09/28/th-sound-to-vanish-from-english-language-by-2066-because-of-mult/

Here’s how the English language could sound incredibly different in 50 years
http://www.sciencealert.com/the-english-language-could-sound-incredibly-different-in-50-years-study-finds

Our accents are under threat: dialects may die as computers strip the beauty from language
http://www.wired.co.uk/article/dialect-english-regional-accents

It’s the end of the frog and toad for regional slang, says report
https://www.theguardian.com/education/2016/sep/29/its-the-end-of-the-frog-and-toad-for-regional-slang-says-report

XKCD:

Better linguistics alert

Researchers are using an app to crowdsource how the English language has changed
http://qz.com/694906/researchers-are-using-an-app-to-crowdsource-how-the-english-language-has-changed/

How do you say ‘scone’? English regional accents decline as ‘southern’ accent becomes widespread
http://home.bt.com/news/uk-news/how-do-you-say-scone-english-regional-accents-decline-as-southern-accent-becomes-widespread-11364064620130

How London has killed off elements of local dialects across England – in seven maps
https://www.indy100.com/article/how-london-has-killed-off-elements-of-local-dialects-across-englandin-seven-maps–ZJxofkDwH7Z

New Scientist: The Electric Kool-Aid language test
https://www.newscientist.com/article/2108618-the-electric-kool-aid-language-test/

Dan Everett: Who’s afraid of the big bad Wolfe? Apparently everyone.
https://daneverettbooks.com/whos-afraid-of-the-big-bad-wolfe-apparently-everyone/

Trump recorded having extremely lewd conversation about women in 2005
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-recorded-having-extremely-lewd-conversation-about-women-in-2005/2016/10/07/3b9ce776-8cb4-11e6-bf8a-3d26847eeed4_story.html

A banner day for profanity
https://stronglang.wordpress.com/2016/10/08/a-banner-day-for-profanity/

An Oxford linguist on the dangers of dismissing comments about sexual assault as “locker-room talk”
http://qz.com/807395/donald-trump-oxford-linguist-deborah-cameron-explains-the-dangers-of-dismissing-comments-about-sexual-assault-as-locker-room-talk/

“Locker room” language encourages rape culture, even if it stays private
http://qz.com/806386/donald-trumps-lewd-access-hollywood-video-locker-room-language-encourages-rape-culture/

Lynne Murphy on Twitter: @lynneguist
https://twitter.com/lynneguist

Lynne’s blog: Separated by a Common Language
https://separatedbyacommonlanguage.blogspot.com.au

Linguistics explains why Trump sounds racist when he says “the” African Americans
http://qz.com/806174/second-presidential-debate-linguistics-explains-why-donald-trump-sounds-racist-when-he-says-the-african-americans/

Everything that was said at the second Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton debate, highlighted
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/10/09/everything-that-was-said-at-the-second-donald-trump-vs-hillary-clinton-debate-highlighted/

“open mic” and “on the mic”


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Episode 262: Universal Grammar

Why do all human languages resemble each other? And how do children learn language so fast?

For many linguists, the answer is Universal Grammar. It’s one of the biggest ideas in linguistics, but now it might possibly be coming unstuck. What is it, and what does its acceptance or rejection mean for modern linguistics?

Linguist Daniel Midgley has something for everyone on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Promo with Kylie Sturgess


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This episode comes to you with the help of our patrons Whitney, Matt, and now… Christy! Thanks, y’all.

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Show notes

The French Number
http://www.thefrenchnumber.fr

Evidence Rebuts Chomsky’s Theory of Language Learning
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/evidence-rebuts-chomsky-s-theory-of-language-learning/

Don’t believe the rumours. Universal Grammar is alive and well.
https://medium.com/@dan.milway/dont-believe-the-rumours-universal-grammar-is-alive-and-well-58c1fbc5608b#.av7h2vini

The bonfire of Noam Chomsky: journalist Tom Wolfe targets the acclaimed linguist
http://www.vox.com/the-big-idea/2016/9/14/12910180/noam-chomsky-tom-wolfe-linguist

Tom Wolfe plays mischief with language in ‘Kingdom of Speech’
http://articles.philly.com/2016-09-11/news/75354678_1_language-evolution-darwin-urdu

Noam Chomsky on the Evolution of Language: A Biolinguistic Perspective
http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/37725-noam-chomsky-on-the-evolution-of-language-a-biolinguistic-perspective

Dr. Noam Chomsky’s answers to questions from r/linguistics
https://www.reddit.com/r/linguistics/comments/13buz0/dr_noam_chomskys_answers_to_questions_from/?

Universal Grammar- How Do You Back It?
https://www.reddit.com/r/linguistics/comments/16avcv/universal_grammar_how_do_you_back_it/?

What are the leading anti-UG theories?
https://www.reddit.com/r/linguistics/comments/4es4pb/what_are_the_leading_antiug_theories/

The language faculty that wasn’t: a usage-based account of natural language recursion
http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01182/full

A Cognitive Neural Architecture Able to Learn and Communicate through Natural Language
http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0140866

Grammar rules aren’t nearly as clear-cut as we thought
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2016/01/grammar-rules-aren-t-nearly-clear-cut-we-thought

Child language acquisition: Why universal grammar doesn’t help
http://muse.jhu.edu/article/552064

‘Avengers’ assemble to take on ‘racist, abusive coward’ Donald Trump, urge people to vote
http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/movies/avengers-assemble-take-on-racist-abusive-coward-donald-trump-urge-people-to-vote-20160921-grlnmt.html

‘Butt’ is an actual unit of measurement
http://gizmodo.com/butt-is-an-actual-unit-of-measurement-1622427091

The first fuckwit
https://stronglang.wordpress.com/2016/09/14/the-first-fuckwit/

My table

sweary-units-of-measurement


Show tunes

Find the tracks we play on the RTRFM webpage for this episode.

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Episode 247: Singlish (featuring Sean Yeo)

We’re talking about Singapore Colloquial English, or Singlish.

The Singaporean government would love to wipe it out, but Singlish is gaining prestige in the English-speaking world. Oxford is even adding Singlish words to its dictionary. But what is this language like, and what does it mean to its speakers?

Singlish speaker Sean Yeo joins Daniel, Ben, and Kylie on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Promo with Scott Quinn


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We’re very grateful for the support from our patrons Whitney Fielding and Matt. You’re helping us to keep the talk happening!

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Show notes

Brain pattern predicts how fast an adult learns a new language
http://sciencebulletin.org/archives/925.html

Brain waves predict speed of second language learning
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/310181.php

Languages come naturally, so some. Oui?
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/higher-education/languages-come-naturally-so-some-oui/news-story/b5d717d7f3235fa25c1c14650590290e

What is the function of the various brainwaves?
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/what-is-the-function-of-t-1997-12-22/

Foreign Language Skills Wired In The Brain
http://primemind.com/articles/struggling-to-learn-a-new-language-maybe-it-s-all-in-your-head

Crosstalk between left and right brain is key to language development
http://medicalxpress.com/news/2016-05-crosstalk-left-brain-key-language.html

The rise of Singlish
http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-33809914

10 Bizarre Things Singaporeans Do That The Rest Of The World Won’t Understand
(Good example of words from several languages in one sentence.)
http://thesmartlocal.com/read/singaporean-culture-quirks

xSinglish-English-Chinese-Malay-Tamil-Dialects--Sentence.jpg.pagespeed.ic.eh7srapJT-

Singapore Infopedia: Singlish
http://eresources.nlb.gov.sg/infopedia/articles/SIP_1745_2010-12-29.html

Singapore Colloquial English (Singlish)
http://www.hawaii.edu/satocenter/langnet/definitions/singlish.html

The ‘Speak Good English Movement’
Google Books Link

Me Singlish Damn Powerful One, Ah?
http://www.escapeartistes.com/2011/08/20/me-singlish-damn-powerful-one-ah/

Oxford: New Singapore English words
http://public.oed.com/the-oed-today/recent-updates-to-the-oed/march-2016-update/new-singapore-english-words/

Shiok! 19 Singlish items added to the Oxford English Dictionary
http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/shiok-19-singlish-items-added-to-the-oxford-english-dictionary

What’s a ‘Chinese helicopter’? Latest Singlish entry in Oxford Dictionary has us scratching our heads
http://news.asiaone.com/news/singapore/whats-chinese-helicopter-latest-singlish-entry-oxford-dictionary-has-us-scratching

‘Chinese helicopter’: Singlish OED entry baffles Singaporeans
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-36283670

Some find new Singlish terms in Oxford dictionary ‘ridiculous’
(Note the language attitudes.)
http://news.asiaone.com/news/singapore/some-find-new-singlish-terms-oxford-dictionary-ridiculous

Wah, now can act blur and lepak: Oxford English Dictionary
http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/wah-now-can-act-blur-and/2776828.html

Inky’s Daring Escape Shows How Smart Octopuses Are
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/04/160414-inky-octopus-escapes-intelligence/

Anthea Fraser Gupta: Singapore Colloquial English? Or deviant Standard English? (PDF)
http://anthea.id.au/papers/sicol.pdf

mr brown tries to explain the Meaning of Lah
http://www.mrbrown.com/blog/2005/04/mr_browns_meani.html

Singlish Dictionary
http://www.singlishdictionary.com

Singapore scene is entering golden age of indie music
http://www.straitstimes.com/lifestyle/singapore-scene-is-entering-golden-age-of-indie-music


Show tunes

Find the tracks we play on the RTRFM webpage for this episode.

Image credit: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/wah-now-can-act-blur-and/2776828.html

Episode 244: Brain Thesaurus (featuring David J. Peterson)

Where’s the language in your brain? Researchers have constructed a kind of brain atlas, showing the patterns of neural activation when we hear words.

And Klingon is at the centre of a legal battle. Can a language be under copyright — even if it’s a constructed one?

David J. Peterson, language creator for Game of Thrones, talks to Daniel, Kylie, and Ben on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Promo with Kylie Sturgess


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All of our patrons can now hear the entire interview with David J. Peterson — the version that was too long for radio.

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Show notes

Language Creation Society press release
http://conlang.org/axanar/

The amicus brief (PDF)
https://popehat.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/035-1-Brief-of-Amicus-Curiae.pdf

Brief aims to convince court that Klingon’s a real language – in Klingon
http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article74873867.html

Star Trek’s Klingon Language Is At The Center Of A Bizarre Legal Fight
http://uproxx.com/gammasquad/klingon-lawsuit/

KlingonWiki: Axanar Lawsuit
http://www.klingonwiki.net/En/AxanarLawsuit

Speech means using both sides of brain
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115132635.htm

Dogs Process Speech the Same Way as Humans
http://motherboard.vice.com/read/dogs-process-speech-the-same-way-as-humans

A brand new ‘atlas’ shows where different ideas live in our brains
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2016/04/28/a-brand-new-atlas-shows-where-different-ideas-live-in-our-brains/

Neuroscientists create ‘atlas’ showing how words are organised in the brain
https://www.theguardian.com/science/2016/apr/27/brain-atlas-showing-how-words-are-organised-neuroscience

This giant ‘brain dictionary’ reveals where your mind stores thousands of words
http://www.sciencealert.com/this-giant-brain-dictionary-reveals-where-your-mind-stores-thousands-of-words

Brain’s ‘thesaurus’ mapped to help decode inner thoughts
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-04/uoc–bm042616.php

What Is Biohacking?
http://theness.com/neurologicablog/index.php/what-is-biohacking/

Body-hackers: the people who turn themselves into cyborgs
http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/architecture-design-blog/2015/aug/14/body-hackers-the-people-who-turn-themselves-into-cyborgs

Bodyhackers are all around you, they’re called women
http://fusion.net/story/294770/women-body-hackers/


Show tunes

Find the tracks we play on the RTRFM webpage for this episode.

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Episode 222: Brain, Body, Baby

For babies, learning language seems like child’s play.

But new research is showing us that there’s a lot going on in there, with contributions from brain, body, and memory. How does it all work?

Linguist Daniel Midgley bundles it all together on this episode of Talk the Talk.


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Promo with Kylie Sturgess


Show notes

Mama or Dada? Research looks at what words are easiest for kids to learn
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/10/151012132455.htm

Why we should be excited by 100,000 year old human teeth from China
https://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2015/10/15/why-we-should-be-excited-by-100000-year-old-human-teeth-from-china/

Humans Exited Africa, and Trekked to China, Fossils Reveal
http://www.livescience.com/52481-modern-humans-reached-china-before-europe.html

Evidence Challenges the “Out of Africa” Timeline of Human Evolution
http://io9.com/more-evidence-undermines-the-out-of-africa-theory-of-1619420466

Earliest Known Draft of King James Bible Is Found, Scholar Says
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/15/books/earliest-known-draft-of-king-james-bible-is-found-scholar-says.html

Oldest Draft of King James Bible Discovered
http://news.discovery.com/history/religion/oldest-draft-of-king-james-bible-discovered-15101.htm

Oldest King James Bible Draft Found In England, Suggests 17th Century Translation Wasn’t Group Effort
http://www.ibtimes.com/oldest-king-james-bible-draft-found-england-suggests-17th-century-translation-wasnt-2142463

English phrases and sayings that derive from the Bible
http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/bible-phrases-sayings.html

Babies need free tongue movement to decipher speech sounds
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2015-10/uobc-bnf100915.php

Bruderer et al: Sensorimotor influences on speech perception in infancy
http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2015/10/06/1508631112.abstract

“Help! I’m losing phonemes as you speak!”
http://www.cafepress.com/mf/63235081/phonemes_bodysuit?aid=1568734

Why ‘Mom’ and ‘Dad’ Sound So Similar in So Many Languages
http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2015/10/words-mom-dad-similar-languages/409810/

Gaze shifting helps babies learn new languages
http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/spectrum/society/gaze-shifting-helps-babies-learn-new-languages/112859.html

NINE-HUNDED DOLLARYDOOS (Simpsons clip)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-w3iPFl-cfI

Change the Australian currency name to Dollarydoos.
https://www.change.org/p/change-the-australian-currency-name-to-dollarydoos?source_location=trending_petitions_home_page&algorithm=curated_trending

Aussies get behind proposal to change currency to dollarydoos
http://www.9news.com.au/national/2015/10/16/15/39/aussies-get-behind-proposal-to-change-currency-to-dollarydoos

The Reserve Bank and Reform of the Currency: 1960–1988 — The Royal Controversy
http://www.rba.gov.au/Museum/Displays/1960_1988_rba_and_reform_of_the_currency/the_royal_controversy.html

Holt’s folly: one royal we rejected
‘”The Australian drawl, [Holt] warned, could easily reduce ”14 australs” to ”40 nostrils”.’
http://www.smh.com.au/money/on-the-money/holts-folly-one-royal-we-rejected-20130603-2nmoa.html

Simpsons neologisms
http://simpsons.wikia.com/wiki/Made-up_words

Sifting the fact from fiction about baby sign language
https://theconversation.com/sifting-the-fact-from-fiction-about-baby-sign-language-36924

Science Blogs on Dustan Baby Language: A Cry Is Just A Cry
http://scienceblogs.com/deanscorner/2011/05/17/a-cry-is-just-a-cry/

‘Linguistics experts point out that Dunstan’s hypothesis has not been subjected to rigorous testing or academic scrutiny. The Dunstan company had, at one time, developed a clinical trial plan with Brown University researchers to test its claims, but abandoned it for consumer surveys and small-group observations in order “to hasten the development of a system that could be used by parents,” skipping rigorous testing to go straight to market.’
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunstan_Baby_Language


Show tunes

Find the tracks we play on the RTRFM webpage for this episode.

Image credit: http://tdlc.ucsd.edu/images/deak_lab.jpg

Episode 193: The Bilingual Advantage

Speaking another language is good for your brain — at least that’s what we’ve heard.

But some new research paints a less-positive picture. Should you learn another language? And how?

Linguist Daniel Midgley gets bilingual on this episode of Talk the Talk.


Listen to this episode

Or subscribe via iTunes
Subscribe on Android
Click here for more options: How to listen to Talk the Talk


Promo with Graeme Watson


Show notes

Dramatic decline in number of university students taking modern foreign languages
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/universityeducation/11412441/Dramatic-decline-in-number-of-university-students-taking-modern-foreign-languages.html

Only one in 65 new students chooses a modern language degree – we need a rethink
https://theconversation.com/only-one-in-65-new-students-chooses-a-modern-language-degree-we-need-a-rethink-37768

Americans are beginning to lose their love for foreign languages
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2015/02/19/americans-are-beginning-to-lose-their-love-for-foreign-languages/

Learning The Language
http://bcheights.com/opinions/2015/learning-language/

Facebook Is Cracking Down on Viral Hoaxes. Really.
http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2015/01/20/facebook_hoaxes_news_feed_changes_will_limit_false_news_stories.html

3 News defends use of Te Reo
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/te-manu-korihi/266367/3-news-defends-use-of-te-reo

Kanoa Lloyd’s Te Reo stance wins plaudits
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/266391/te-reo-stance-wins-plaudits

NZ weather presenter hits back at criticism for using Maori language
http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2015/02/18/nz-weather-presenter-hits-back-criticism-using-maori-language

100 Māori words every New Zealander should know
http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/culture/maori-language-week/100-maori-words

Learn about the structure of Te Reo, the Māori language
http://kupu.maori.nz

Bill Gates wishes he’d learned a language.
http://www.9news.com.au/technology/2015/01/29/13/17/bill-gates-reveals-his-biggest-regret-in-life

Here’s the Reddit AMA with Bill Gates
http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2tzjp7/hi_reddit_im_bill_gates_and_im_back_for_my_third/co3q0hr

Now Skype can translate for us, what’s the point in learning a language?
http://theconversation.com/now-skype-can-translate-for-us-whats-the-point-in-learning-a-language-35923

Is Bilingualism Really an Advantage?
http://www.newyorker.com/science/maria-konnikova/bilingual-advantage-aging-brain

Ask a Linguist: Will bilingualism affect my child’s intelligence?
http://linguistlist.org/ask-ling/biling2.cfm

Bilingualism: consequences for mind and brain.
“This research shows that bilingualism has a somewhat muted effect in adulthood but a larger role in older age, protecting against cognitive decline, a concept known as ‘cognitive reserve’.”
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22464592

Learning a New Language Stimulates Same Pleasure Centres in the Brain as Sex and Chocolate
http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/learning-new-language-stimulates-same-pleasure-centres-brain-sex-chocolate-1471766

The pleasure of learning new words
http://www.ub.edu/web/ub/en/menu_eines/noticies/2014/10/063.html

The Role of Reward in Word Learning and Its Implications for Language Acquisition
http://www.cell.com/current-biology/abstract/S0960-9822(14)01207-X

Speaking More Than One Language Could Sharpen Your Brain
http://time.com/3581457/bilingual-brain-smart/

How learning a new language changes your brain – at any age
http://www.sciencealert.com/here-s-how-learning-a-new-language-changes-your-brain-at-any-age

Learning languages is a workout for brains, both young and old
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2014-11/ps-lli111214.php

“The fact that bilinguals are constantly practicing inhibitory control could also help explain why bilingualism appears to offer a protective advantage against Alzheimer’s and dementia, said Marian.”
http://www.psypost.org/2014/11/bilingual-brains-better-equipped-process-information-29490

Bilingualism changes children’s beliefs about the world around them
http://www.psypost.org/2015/01/bilingualism-changes-childrens-beliefs-world-around-30786

Saved by song: can singing improve your language skills?
http://www.theguardian.com/education/2015/feb/11/singing-improve-language-skills-spanish-portuguese

The Benefits of Failing at French
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/16/opinion/16alexander.html

Hallo, hola, olá to the new, more powerful Google Translate app
http://googleblog.blogspot.com.au/2015/01/hallo-hola-ola-more-powerful-translate.html

Google’s translation app will soon turn speech into text on the fly
http://www.engadget.com/2015/01/11/google-translate-automatic-speech-to-text/

Google Updates Translate App With Instant Audio, Text Translation http://www.eweek.com/cloud/google-updates-translate-app-with-instant-audio-text-translation.html

404 page uses “up the boohai”. Very NZ.

RT: @sarasavage 10/10 to the @Te_Ara website for its heaps kiwi 404 Error message, lol pic.twitter.com/Z3ioE3iGin @talkrtr

— Grand Poobah Wagtail (@AngryWagtails) February 24, 2015

“Up the boohai”
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/boohai

¿Estos son Reebok o son Nike?


Show tunes

Find the tracks we play on the RTRFM webpage for this episode.

Image credit: http://appointmentsbilanguage.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/bilingual-brain-21.png

Episode 181: Is Aussie Slang Dying out?

Is Australian slang carking it? Dying, that is.

One lexicographer is seeing fewer Aussie terms than ever in contemporary slang. Words are always going in and out of fashion, but if the Aussie lingo is changing, can we see what it’s changing into?

Linguist Daniel Midgley gives it a burl on this episode of Talk the Talk.


Listen to this episode

Or subscribe via iTunes
Click here for more options: How to listen to Talk the Talk


Promo with Kylie Sturgess


Show notes

How arbitrary is language? English words structured to help kids learn
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140813103503.htm
http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/news/articles/2014/how-arbitrary-is-language/

The paper itself
http://rstb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/369/1651/20130299

Linguists Tony Thorne and John Hajek say Australian slang is not what it used to be
http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/linguists-tony-thorne-and-john-hajek-say-australian-slang-is-not-what-it-used-to-be/story-fneszs56-1226955247201

The Dictionary of Contemporary Slang
http://www.bloomsbury.com/au/dictionary-of-contemporary-slang-9781408181799/

“nose to the grindstone”
http://www.worldwidewords.org/articles/miller.htm

Here is a list of Australian slang. If you’re Australian, here is a list comprised partly of normal words, and partly of quaint parochialisms.
http://www.goingrank.com.au/glossary.html

The rise and fall of Australian slang
http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-27805070

Or are Australians taking themselves more seriously?
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/may/26/is-aussie-slang-dying-out

Reasons some Australians give for not using slang.
http://books.google.com.au/books?id=1RORfbdKk-8C&lpg=PP1&dq=mccrindle%20word%20up&pg=PA68#v=onepage&q=unsophisticated&f=false

Ben was curious about the proportion of workers in various sectors. The stats show that people in the production sector have diminished a lot since 1966, and service industries way up.
http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/2f762f95845417aeca25706c00834efa/828adb6574d4875bca2570ec001b1f52!OpenDocument

Rob Pensalfini thinks we should be looking to marginalised communities for our new slang.
http://theconversation.com/aussie-slang-is-as-diverse-as-australia-itself-27973

Many Australian slang words are actually British or Irish.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_English_vocabulary#Words_of_British_and_Irish_origin

Like ‘bludger’
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/bludger

Vale comes from Latin ‘valeo’
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/vale#Etymology_2

It’s related to value, valor, and valiant.
http://verbosum.blogspot.com.au/2011/07/verbum-hodiernum-valde.html

RIP for ‘Rest in Peace’ (or requiēscat in pāce) seems more informal, and used for people known to the speaker.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rest_in_peace


Show tunes

‘Love’ by Hamjam
from the EP Love
Link

‘She Fell into a Safe Pair of Hands’ by Split Seconds
from the album Neil Young and Dumb
Link

Episode 179: Onomatopoeia

Boom, crash, and beep.

These words are onomatopoeic; they sound kind of like the thing they describe. Onomatopoeia has contributed to our vocabulary in some unexpected ways, and may have even helped get language started in the first place. But does it work in all languages? And why doesn’t the word onomatopeia sound like the thing?

Linguist Daniel Midgley makes a splash on this episode of Talk the Talk.


Listen to this episode

Or subscribe via iTunes
Click here for more options: How to listen to Talk the Talk


Promo with Kylie Sturgess


Show notes

#scallopwar: One tweet was enough to set it off.
http://www.buzzfeed.com/jennaguillaume/scallop-war-2014#3jkwsjp

So are they potato scallops, or potato cakes? Or fritters? It depends.
http://www.lifehacker.com.au/2014/10/potato-scallop-cake-or-fritter-actually-it-depends/

Why scallop anyway? Because of the shape.
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=scallop

Other Australian words with variation in them
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/leader/west/is-it-fritz-or-devon-potato-cake-or-scallop-australias-states-and-territories-each-have-unique-ways-of-saying-things-what-side-are-you-on/story-fngnvmj7-1226960966262

Indonesian cave paintings some of earliest human art, Australian-led study finds
http://www.smh.com.au/technology/sci-tech/indonesian-cave-paintings-some-of-earliest-human-art-australianled-study-finds-20141008-1135ka.html

At 40 KYA (thousand years ago), this beats the Lascaux caves on 17 KYA
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lascaux

A list with some onomatopoeic words
http://kathytemean.wordpress.com/2009/12/29/onomatopoeia-word-list/

But there are others you wouldn’t expect
http://www.cracked.com/article_19568_10-common-words-you-had-no-idea-were-onomatopoeias.html

including ‘cliché’
http://www.omgfacts.com/lists/12328/The-word-cliche-is-an-onomatopoeia

Search for ‘imitative’ in the Online Etymological Dictionary, and you’ll find a lot more.
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?allowed_in_frame=0&search=imitative&searchmode=none

Fun: Animal noises in different languages
http://www.dailybest.it/2013/10/22/versi-animali-tutte-le-lingue/#

And more for Korean
http://domandhyo.com/2014/04/korean-onomatopoeia.html

Onomatopoeia was an early contender for how language got started.
https://freelanguage.org/general-language-info/linguistic-hypotheses-on-the-origins-of-language

Ding-Dong, Pooh-Pooh, Bow-Wow and Ta-Ta
http://originsofhumanlanguage.blogspot.com.au/2011/04/ding-dong-pooh-pooh-bow-wow-and-ta-ta.html

Sound Symbolism in the Languages of Australia
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0092852

How Sound Symbolism Is Processed in the Brain: A Study on Japanese Mimetic Words
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0097905

‘fauxhemian’
http://www.thelmagazine.com/TheMeasure/archives/2010/03/24/on-gawkers-replacement-term-for-hipster-fauxhemian

And a whole lot more
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=fauxhemian


Show tunes

‘Boom Boom’ by Trio
from the album Trio and Error
In English

In German

‘Suit’ by Boom! Bap! Pow!
from the album So Heavy

Photos from “Dinner with Daniel and Ben” at the Classroom in North Perth

 

 

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