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On languages: Light Warlpiri, Volapuk, chatspeak, dialects of English, and possibly Voynich July 31, 2013

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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“There are many dying languages in the world. But at least one has recently been born, created by children living in a remote village in northern Australia. Carmel O’Shannessy, a linguist at the University of Michigan, has been studying the young people’s speech for more than a decade and has concluded that they speak neither a dialect nor the mixture of languages called a creole, but a new language with unique grammatical rules. ”

The Voynich manuscript: possibly not gibberish after all? New analyses find patterns that would show up in encoded language, but be hard to fake at random.

Before there was Esperanto, there was Volapük: “a universal language created in the late 19th century by a German priest called Johann Schleyer.” Its heyday of popularity has long passed, but there is still enough interest to create a Volapük Wikipedia with 100K+ articles.

Mapped data from US-wide dialect surveys. As a nation we are united by shopping carts, but divided by fireflies.

“Goodbye” is a derivative of 14th-century chatspeak. (God be with ye = Godbwye = Goodbye)

“5 examples of how the languages we speak can affect the way we think.”

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