Intense focus on a current project at work, combined with a migraine-heavy week (possibly the subject of a future post), has led to fewer posts than usual. But fret not. Today’s lunchtime post brings together a number of articles on reading, writing, and language that caught my eye:
- How Do You Say… Different pronunciations. Immortalized in the song “You say Tom-ay-toe, I say Tom-ah-toe”, they are everywhere. Here’s an interesting Mental Floss article on the reasons behind three of them, including car-a-mel vs. car-mel. Alas, they don’t touch on my favorite: How do you say “finger” vs. how you say “singer”? Do you pronounce the hard “g”, or the gerund (“ŋ”).
- Where Words are Used. Here’s an interesting use for maps: etymology maps, looking at where different words for the same thing are used. They illustrate some interesting divides.
- Penmanship or Typography. Here’s an interesting question posed by the LA Times: Should we still teach penmanship and cursive writing? There are arguments for both sides, including the ability to read old handwritten documents. Then again, one could just view cursive as a different font, for there is still a one-to-one correspondence to letters (unlike, for example, Gregg Shorthand).
- What Did You Write? Finally, here’s a place where reading cursive comes in useful: Deciphering addresses on letters. Machines have gotten better and better at the job, but humans are still required in the loop.