January 19, 2005


interesting BBC news article on the "extinction" of minority languages. according to the article, one of the world's 6,000 languages will be lost every two weeks. and what's lost is sometimes irreplaceable even by one of the world's steam roller languages (english, chinese, french, etc.). for instance the Inuit language has a bunch of verbs for the word "know", covering various "flavors" of "knowing something"--"utsimavaa" - meaning somebody "knows" from direct experience to something like "nalunaiqpaa" meaning someone's no longer unaware of something.

the article goes on to claim that welsh is a "great example", citing the existance of welsh porn. i guess they forgot about the irish.

anyway something to think about.

Puijilittatuq? why that's an Inuktitut (eskimo) word meaning "he does not know which way to turn because of the many seals he has seen come to the ice surface". man that's some kind of efficient communication.


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