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Old November 29th, 2012 #81
Donnie in Ohio
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hans Norling View Post
Do all major cities in the US have one of those colourful, alternative names? I am familiar with some of them but I have no idea if large cities commonly get slapped with an alt.
Pretty much, yeah. I can't think of a large city that doesn't have a well-known nickname, some have several. All the states have nicknames as well. Ohio is "The Buckeye State". The 'Buckeye' is a distinctive looking inedible (poisonous, actually) nut from the Buckeye tree.

Is the same true in Europe?
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Last edited by Donnie in Ohio; November 29th, 2012 at 03:39 AM.
 
Old December 22nd, 2012 #82
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Fiskars, the company that makes those orange handled scissors, was founded in 1649.
 
Old December 22nd, 2012 #83
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That it's impossible to find a 36DD bra.
 
Old December 26th, 2012 #84
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why Armenians have names that end in -ian:

The Armenians were easily identifiable. Centuries earlier, the conquering Ottoman Turks had forced them to add the "ian/yan" sound to their last names. They were dispersed throughout the empire, so they did not possess the same kind of geographical concentrations and strongholds that other Christians did in Greece and the Balkans. They never did organize armed resistance forces. That was what led to their destruction. They could not fight back.

http://www.lewrockwell.com/north/north367.html
 
Old December 26th, 2012 #85
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Armenians were the wealthy merchant class of the Ottoman Empire, they were like a low-rent Jew in other words.

Many Armenians look very similar to Jews, they have common racial origins. Of course , there are some exceptions.
 
Old January 13th, 2013 #86
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Something I came across I've never read before:

Men's feet typically get larger as they age, go up in shoe size.

All I've ever seen is that the cartilage in your nose and ears keeps growing, so your nose and ears get bigger as you age.
 
Old January 13th, 2013 #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Linder View Post
Something I came across I've never read before:

Men's feet typically get larger as they age, go up in shoe size.

All I've ever seen is that the cartilage in your nose and ears keeps growing, so your nose and ears get bigger as you age.
I've never officially heard or read that men's feet get larger as they age, but I've suspected as much because that has been my personal experience.

In my case, I can't tell if it's age or weight gain that's caused the increase in size.

I've also read that bare-footedness is associated with increased in foot size.

More and more I am persuaded by the wisdom of the Chinese, who are said to select shoes on the basis of cost per square inch.
 
Old January 23rd, 2013 #88
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First man made object to break the sound barrier was the bullwhip, the sound of the bullwhip is actually a sonic boom.
 
Old January 29th, 2013 #89
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penĚtiĚmenĚto [pen-tuh-men-toh] Show IPA
noun, plural penĚtiĚmenĚti [-tee] Show IPA . Painting.
the presence or emergence of earlier images, forms, or strokes that have been changed and painted over.

Behind the tragic elements of Regina's story, like some kind of pentimento, I saw my own.

http://www.gq.com/news-politics/news...printable=true
 
Old January 30th, 2013 #90
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double-gaitedness - for faggotry

Scandal sheets like Confidential magazine took exceptional delight in outing the prominent, publishing cruel, mocking exposes littered with snide references to “tearoom arrests,” “lavender stripes,” “double-gaitedness,” and “forbidden satisfactions.”

http://www.slate.com/articles/life/h...s_.single.html
 
Old January 31st, 2013 #91
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actinic

Actinic light is either light that affects photographic film,[1] or will facilitate photosynthesis or stimulate light sensitive species.

Actinic lights are also common in the reef aquarium industry. They are used to promote coral and invertebrate growth. They are also used to accentuate the fluorescence of fluorescent fish.

The term was first commonly used in early photography to distinguish light that would expose the monochrome films from light that would not. A non-actinic safe-light (e.g. red or amber) could be used in a darkroom without risk of exposing (fogging) light-sensitive films, plates or papers.

Actinic_light Actinic_light
 
Old February 3rd, 2013 #92
Leonard Rouse
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Masshole

N: Generalized term for a resident of Massachusetts......has evolved to mean any obnoxious loudmouth. The most genuine Massholes are so ignorant and belligerent that they think Masshole is a compliment.

A Masshole takes pride in his aggressive and illegal driving habits. They are too cool to use turn signals. They will nearly wreck you as they cut you off pulling out of the local strip mall, and then drive 30 miles an hour in a 55 zone while they try to light their cigarette while screaming at their children.

A Masshole's car could be a brand new BMW or a beat up 88 Chevy Caprice. It will probably have a "My Kid is an Honor Student" sticker and a sticker endorsing some Irish or Italian local politician you've never heard of.

Massholes infest the nicer northern states of New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine during the summer months and, ironically, do nothing but complain about the lack of malls once they get there.

For Christmas, Santa brings New Hampshire thousands of Massholes on vacation.

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Masshole
 
Old February 3rd, 2013 #93
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Default bassholes

They drives us insane with their bass noises from vehicles equipped with sub-woofers.
 
Old February 3rd, 2013 #94
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Default Classholes

Grammar snobs.
 
Old February 6th, 2013 #95
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Missouri is 1/3 forestland, and 83% of that is privately owned.
 
Old February 18th, 2013 #97
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[never heard of 'lexemic frequency dictionary']


How many words do I need to learn?
Home > Guide > Vocabulary > How many words?

One of the most common questions I get asked is 'How many words do I need to learn?'. The answer is of course to learn any many as you can, but I can be more precise.

Some words are very common while others are rarely ever seen. This means that you can understand a large part of mosts texts with only a limited number of words. How many exactly is a question that you can answer with a lexemic frequency dictionary. These dictionaries are made by taking an extremely large corpus of texts (books, newspapers, etc...), grouping each words by lexemes and listing how many times they came up in the corpus. A lexeme is a 'unique' word that does not depend on conjugation or plurals or declensions. For instance the lexeme 'to be' would cover 'am, is, are, were' etc...

These lexemic frequency dictionaries were made during the Cold War for the purpose of computerized automatic surveillance of other countries - especially Russia.

I have one such dictionary in digital format for Russian. With the files I was able to create a graph of frequency versus rank:



The result is that:
the 75 most common words make up 40% of occurences
the 200 most common words make up 50% of occurences
the 524 most common words make up 60% of occurences
the 1257 most common words make up 70% of occurences
the 2925 most common words make up 80% of occurences
the 7444 most common words make up 90% of occurences
the 13374 most common words make up 95% of occurences
the 25508 most common words make up 99% of occurences

This shows clearly that vocabulary frequency follows both the law of Pareto (80% of occurences by only 20% of words) and the law of diminishing returns.

So yes you can probably read any text with only 3000 or 5000 words, but you will always miss some key words. You can't really say that all you need is 3000 words although this certainly gets you to a more or less autonomous stage in your learning, from which you can learn many words by their context.

Lexemic dictionaries also exist for other languages but are hard to find. Non-lexemic frequency dictionaries are useless as they would list you every single variation of words. They are not usable by a language learner.

You can use such a dictionary (with the words and the frequency) to discover new, frequent words which you can learn, or to estimate the size of your vocabulary.

http://how-to-learn-any-language.com...any-words.html
 
Old February 18th, 2013 #98
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Linder View Post
[never heard of 'lexemic frequency dictionary']
]
This is the first time I've seen the lexemic adjective.

I know what a frequency dictionary is. Routledge publishes a French one.

Maybe the theory with lexemic is that they rank by the stems rather than the words themselves. So they wouldn't have two dozen forms of (their version of) a common verb like 'eat' clutter the rankings, differing by tense, number, mood, voice, etc.
 
Old March 8th, 2013 #99
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I did NOT know that

dour

is pronounced as it is. I thought it was D-ower like hour. But it's not. It's doo-r.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/dour?s=t

It occurs to me I've never heard anyone speak the word; only seen it used in writing.

I will say I do know what many do not, which is the way err is pronounced.

Not air. But urr as in burr.
 
Old March 8th, 2013 #100
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Cuttlefish
Clams
Pill bugs
Horeshoe crabs
Octopui
Squid
Tarantula
Emperor scorpions
And
Lobster
All use copper in thier blood to collect, and transfer oxygen rather than iron.
 
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