Questions tagged [written-language]

Questions which apply solely or mostly to the written forms of languages as opposed to their spoken forms.

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7
votes
4answers
939 views

Is a text with orthographic or grammatic mistakes in a language X still a text in that language X?

Let us suppose that we have a text that in its majority follows the orthographic or grammatical rules of a language X, but 10% of the words have orthographic mistakes, and 10% of the sentences have ...
5
votes
0answers
71 views

Are there studies which attempt to quantify the information conveyed by written languages - especially Japanese/Chinese?

I'm curious as to whether anyone has attempted to come up with a quantitative measure of information conveyed by written words, symbols or graphs, and particularly curious if anyone has studied ...
1
vote
3answers
368 views

Alphabet size affects complexity of written ideas?

Do relatively simple alphabets (Rotokas, Hawaiian) limit the complexity of written ideas? Example: could Rotokas be used to write a technical manual for the space shuttle?
33
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2answers
10k views

Why is “ß” not used in Swiss German?

What are some of the historical reasons why the orthographic symbol ß is not used in Swiss Standard German and “ss” is used instead?
-1
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2answers
83 views

Do any languages allow merging of two sentences without punctuation?

I teach some students who are not native English speakers and commonly make this mistake in their writing: They often combine two complete sentences without any punctuation or break between them. ...
2
votes
2answers
186 views

What language(s) should I learn to read the Epic of Gilgamesh?

I wasn't sure where to ask this question. I hope this is the right place... My question is a little more complicated than the title suggests. I'm wanting to read the Epic of Gilgamesh in the ...
-1
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1answer
57 views

What are all of the possible punctuation that are used within words in the majority of languages?

I know it's potentially a bit of an odd question, but I am working on an app that needs to analyze text that can be written in any of the most common languages. What I need to know is what punctuation/...
8
votes
1answer
93 views

Does (or should) the terms “spoken language” and “speech” include signed language?

And if not, is there a term, accepted by both the Deaf and linguistic communities, that includes both spoken and signed language, in contrast to written language? Reputable linguistic sources, ...
2
votes
0answers
105 views

Ontology of logogram, pictogram and ideogram

Is it fair to say that a pictograms are a subset of ideograms which are a subset of logograms? What is an example of an ideogram that is not a logogram or pictogram?
1
vote
1answer
349 views

If there is a pattern to Chinese characters

Many people say that written Chinese is a difficult language to learn because the characters don't have any relation to the sound of the word, like in English and other languages, even Japanese. But I'...
-2
votes
1answer
52 views

Does a written language exist with 1 symbol for every word?

We could create a dense written language with 1 symbol for every word. Lets say that it is read by a computer aloud or translated into normal language.(Like a QR code) I know that QR code does ...
0
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1answer
84 views

The reason some languages write down the accents while others don't

This may be a difficult question to answer but I'm curious as to the reason for this. The word película in Spanish is pe-LEE-cu-la. It has an accent to mark how to say the word. The word peninsula ...
2
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1answer
143 views

Do any languages not have the concept of “words”?

I'm wondering if there are any languages that are basically just streams of basic sound blocks, like letters or syllables, and they don't have words.
0
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1answer
59 views

Is punctuation necessary in written language?

I'm wondering if punctuation is necessary for written languages. I can't quite tell if in spoken languages we use "punctuation". It seems like "we say multiple words without pauses, breaks, or other ...
3
votes
0answers
66 views

Are there written languages that commonly start direct speech without marking?

In English and many common languages nowadays, punctuation marks are used to introduce direct speech. This makes it possible to start direct speech without lexical clue, as in the second example here: ...
-1
votes
1answer
115 views

Is ending a sentence with a possessive considered informal? [closed]

Does corpora show any genre preferences for ending sentences with a nominal possessive? Does it occur more in spoken and informal written texts than in academic texts? I really appreciate your input.
2
votes
2answers
134 views

Is capitalization a recurring feature across writing systems?

Is it a common feature for a writing system to include a capitalized variant of itself? What is the purpose of capitalization in itself? Is it ever truly necessary for comprehension?
4
votes
2answers
39 views

What's a good resource where I can publish some narratives in a minority language?

During my fieldwork, I recorded, transcribed and translated a dozen or so narratives in an indigenous language of Central America, in close cooperation with a couple native speakers (including some ...
0
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0answers
70 views

Where might the given name Xelefon originate?

I was recently reading some historical records wherein a lady was mentioned, Olga Malar (née Cuch), born in "Napodiwka," Poland, in 1922. She was said to be the daughter of Xelefon Cuch and Jewdokia ...
1
vote
1answer
80 views

How do languages which prefix proper nouns (by case marking, clitic article, etc) do capitalization in Latin Alphabet?

There are languages which put a prefix or a clitic before a noun to mark definiteness or case. How different languages using Latin alphabet which have this declension or marking deals with ...
-5
votes
1answer
99 views

Why no 'i' in Albanian for digits from 0 to 9? [closed]

According to OEIS the only other alpha language that has no numbers 0 to 9 with an i is Albanian. http://oeis.org/A159878 1 – një 2 – dy 3 – tre 4 – katër 5 – pesë 6 – gjashtë 7 – shtatë 8 – tetë 9 – ...
-2
votes
1answer
84 views

What is the language on this bracelet? [closed]

I found this silver bracelet in the early 1950's and cannot identify the language, even after checking several help sites on the internet.
4
votes
1answer
191 views

How are algebraic operations written in a right-to-left language?

Arabic is a right-to-left language, so when using Google Translate to translate this expression: x/y from English to Arabic, it returns س / ص where 'x' is on the right, 'y' is on the left. ...
-2
votes
1answer
130 views

Can someone assist translating a handwritten note I found? Possible Devanagari script [closed]

EDITED: I found a handwritten note that was folded. I don't know where it came from. It was located in a trash can in my home. I live in rural United States. No one in my house claims to know where ...
3
votes
3answers
188 views

Can one “sentence” belong to multiple languages?

I am a machine learning developer who is currently working with natural language processing. Today, I was thinking about language identification. I have a couple of ideas how to do so for the ~200 ...
2
votes
1answer
399 views

Significance of 'ฯ' in English orthography

The special characters page of my English keyboard on Android contains what appears to be a Thai character (ฯ). I've so far found that it is used as a kind of punctuation or phrase-shortening particle ...
1
vote
1answer
87 views

Trying to find language written on item [closed]

I have an item that has text on it, written in a different language. Ive been doing research trying to find it or something similar, but no luck. Anyone know what it says or the language? Much ...
-5
votes
1answer
320 views

What language is this? And, what does it mean? [closed]

I've been trying to figure out the meaning of this image, but I couldn't find anything. Anyone knows?
1
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0answers
103 views

What only native speakers and native writers (?) know

Even after many years, even after getting proficient in a foreign language, non-native speakers won't lose their foreign accent. Is there an equivalent to this for non-native writers? Will be ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

required standards for US domestic foreign language education

In reference to my earlier post, I'm going to be teaching foreign languages in some capacity and was advised by a board of education that I ought to understand and incorporate foreign language edu. ...
7
votes
3answers
314 views

Are non-spoken elements, such as capitalization and punctuation mark usage, part of the English language?

On the English Language Learners SE meta site, I'm involved in a conversation that I find somewhat bizarre. In the order in which they appear, here are the assertions (paraphrased with supporting ...
6
votes
0answers
122 views

Are there literate speech communities for Sign Languages?

I am aware of some systems of sign writing (e.g. Sutton SignWriting). They are used in dictionaries, teaching materials, or scientific documentation. But did some Sign Language speech communities ...
9
votes
6answers
925 views

How would someone begin translating an unknown language?

Excuse my ignorance. I'm writing a work of fiction wherein an archeologist finds a tomb that contains not only the bodies of an unknown/unstudied society, but also samples of writing in that society's ...
2
votes
2answers
67 views

Comparative Methodology

Firstly many apologies if this question is not appropriate for this forum; I am a mathematician and a mathematics education researcher. However, I am posting on this forum because I am doing research ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

How to identify a foreign language from handwriting?

As asking language-ID-questions on this site seems off-topic I'd like to know whether there is a resource on the internet which can help me. I found a the curious snippet attached to a balloon which ...
4
votes
2answers
475 views

Can we predict written language's evolution due to technological advances?

Using the "shortcuts" that are used nowadays (emoticons, internet abbreviations, email formatting, memes, social media sharing [Pinterest, Facebook, Google Plus, "tweets" and the like) as a base, can ...
2
votes
1answer
144 views

Sources on average retention rate of language based on time [closed]

I am creating a language learning app and am interested in sources/publications which offer statistics on retention rate of languages over time. For example, I have data that my product taught ...
2
votes
0answers
173 views

Saying words aloud to confirm/disprove accuracy of written language

I had a really interesting thought the other day: Is oral language dominant/superior in some way to written language? I bring this up because every time I need to correct or edit my written words (I ...
4
votes
1answer
483 views

Did Latin have lower-case letters and a full stop at the end of sentences in the 1st century AD?

Did Latin have lower-case letters and a full stop at the end of sentences in the 1st century AD? Googling doesn't seem to yield a definitive answer.
1
vote
3answers
1k views

Is a letter a linguistic unit?

According to vocabulary.com a linguistic unit is one of the natural units into which linguistic messages can be analyzed. So, can a linguistic unit be a letter, a syllable, a word or a sentence? ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Is it possible to create a new language for faster communication?

The problem: reading textbooks / nonfiction takes too much time. Solutions: Don't read. Obviously flawed. Learn speed reading. Retention rate will go down, which is undesirable. Design and implement ...
-1
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2answers
459 views

What language is this and what does it mean in English?

Please help identify what this means in English. I cannot read this language and cannot determine what language it is.
0
votes
1answer
152 views

Help identify unknown language [closed]

Got this $5 bill stamped with a message in a language I cannot identify.
2
votes
2answers
294 views

Base language of Mitanni Texts

I was going through the sources for early indo-iranian and according to B. Fortson the first documented manifestation of this branch are the proper names in Mitanni Texts. Since the indo-iranian word ...
2
votes
1answer
60 views

has there been any research conducted on formality and language learning?

I wanted to know if there has been any research regarding F-score or CF-score (Li, Haiying, "Comparing Two Measures for Formality." 2013.) affecting learning and/or language learning?
1
vote
1answer
116 views

What linguistic concepts reveal changes, in writing from different time periods? [closed]

Explicit Question (TL;DR): I exemplify with English, because it has changed more than e.g. the Romance Languages, for a given time period. For brevity, I use the noun 'disquisition' to mean any decent,...
10
votes
3answers
6k views

What is the Mongolian vowel separator for?

I've heard of the Mongolian vowel separator from programmers, who regard it as an interesting quirk in Unicode. When I google for it, most of the hits are from those revelling in its geekiness. But ...
4
votes
3answers
729 views

Which methodology is use for comparative study between two languages?

I want to study between two languages. In that one is classical language and other is tongue language. How can I compare that two category? Which criteria is used for comparative study? I want to ...
2
votes
0answers
198 views

Early Modern English spelling variations dictionary

I am building a web application that allows users to transcribe, word by word, Early Modern English manuscripts. I want to tell users when a word they transcribed may be a new spelling variant of ...
3
votes
1answer
150 views

Language-dependent glyphs other than CJK?

For those not familiar with Han unification, Unicode uses the same codepoints to encode CJK characters as used in Chinese and Japanese, even when they look slightly different. This has spurred some ...