Podcast #128: We chat with Kent C Dodds about why he loves React and discuss what life was like in the dark days before Git. Listen now.
130

Yes, it actually is a Finnish word used by the Finnish people. ThisisFinland is a site for the promotion of Finland: It is associated with the Finnish Government. Produced by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and published by the Finland Promotion Board This is Finland - About Us Regarding kalsarikännit, they claim: The feeling when you are ...


72

I agree with @RedGrittyBrick's negative answer to the strict interpretation of @Carlo_R's question, i.e. whether reading Classical Chinese is no more difficult than reading modern Chinese for a person educated in modern-day China. However, I think that the question, in spirit at least, admits a looser, but still interesting interpretation, that is "Whether ...


62

The name, Arkansas, is a French pronunciation of a Siouxan word meaning "land of downriver people". It is pronounced: /ˈɑrkənsɔː/ ar-kən-saw In 1881, the Arkansas General Assembly passed Concurrent Resolution No. 4. The resolution was further modified in 1947 as Arkansas Code 1 April 105, and reads thusly: Whereas, confusion of practice has ...


52

It's a real word (a compound word fromed from kalsari(t) (underwear) and känni (drunkenness), both rather colloquial versions of these words) and can be found in the online dictionary of the Institute for the Languages of Finland (the institute in charge of standardization of languages used in Finland). The word is described as: kalsarikänni ark. ...


48

No. Thomas Edison is in fact credited with the first use of the word Hello on the telephone, and the etymology of the word is well documented. Furthermore, Graham Bell was engaged to Mabel Gardiner Hubbard at the time of the first phone call (and in fact had been courting her for some time), who he eventually went on to marry. There is, in fact, a Snopes ...


43

Can Chinese people read the literature of 2,500 years ago as easily as yesterday's newspaper? No Simplified Chinese The communist government of China changed the writing system to a simplified form. Consequently, Chinese people educated in communist china cannot easily read Chinese material written in pre-communist times or in non-communist regions†. The ...


38

Doesn't look like it. The most likely source of the quote is The Science of Swearing by Timothy Jay and Kristin Janschewitz or possibly Dr. Neel Burton's Hell Yes: The 7 Best Reasons for Swearing or possibly the summation by Psych2Go which draws on both of them: The basic premise that is put forth is that those who cuss are seen as more loyal, trustworthy,...


29

SUMMARISED ANSWER To be able to answer the question, a baseline measurement needs to be established. What does it mean to be multilingual/monolingual? How do you measure populations? Where does the data come from? Who is being compared in a "more likely" scenario? American to another Westerner, or to an average global citizen? There are no reliable ...


27

Bill Bryson did not make this claim. In Chapter 12 of his book he writes: As one congressman quite seriously told Dr. David Edwards, head of the Joint National Committee on Languages, "If English was good enough for Jesus Christ, it's good enough for me," [Quoted in the Guardian, April 30, 1988] Dr J. David Edwards was the former Executive Director of ...


27

Melania Trump can speak English perfectly well, well enough for the American news media. Here are examples of interviews with her with and without Donald. In all of them she speaks English without any trouble and is perfectly understood: She does have an accent MSNBC interview with Mika Brzezinski ABC interview with George Stephanopoulos ABC interview ...


26

According to the US government publication 14th Annual report of the Bureau of Ethnology (1896): It is very doubtful if the "pale face" of romance ever existed in the Indian mind Instead, the publication gives the names various tribes used to refer to whites, and the nearest English translations. Terms translating as "yellow hides", "white skins", "...


20

According to Google Translate, "Homeland is Racist" will translate to "الوطن عنصري", which you can compare to the graffiti: From this article These do look very similar. In fact, the only difference is the ي - or yā’. The written one is underlined, and the printed has two dots. This is likely a frequent difference, as there is no letter in the alphabet ...


19

No. As explained in the 1970 book Politics in India, page 146, endnote 11: A myth has gained currency that Hindi became the official language of the Indian Union by a majority of only one vote. That this is no more than a 'legend," based on a controversial vote at one stage in the discussion in the Congress Assembly Party on what numerals to use in ...


18

A biography of Giuseppe Caspar Mezzofanti was written in 1858. Charles William Russell, Life of the Cardinal Mezzofanti (PDF). In a chapter starting on page 457, Russell attempts to skeptically evaluate the claims. He finds several challenges including: How many words do you need to know in order to claim knowledge of a language? When are two dialects ...


18

According to NPR's Codeswitch, the term racism meaning "discrimination or prejudice based on race", was used before 1927. The term as used in the picture you show seems to have a different connotation from the more common one: The Oxford English Dictionary's first recorded utterance of the word racism was by a man named Richard Henry Pratt in 1902. ...


18

No, the text was not generated entirely by a computer program. Humans worked with the algorithm to generate the sentences, selected the ones they liked best, edited them into a story, and even added some of their own. Botnik's tweet describes their code as "predictive keyboards"--the same sort of technology that phones without full keyboards use to guess ...


16

At least in the case of Europe and the U.S., statistics do exist that directly answer this question. Those statistics simply aren't the ones from the censuses. In 2013, a Gallop poll found that 34% of Americans could hold a conversation in at least one second language. In 2012, a European Commission survey found that 54% of Europeans could hold a ...


15

Yes, Dr. David Edwards was the Executive Director of the Joint National Committee for Languages and the National Council for Languages and International Studies (JNCL/NCLIS) for 31 years. His Ph.D. is in political science. It is doubtful that Dr. David Edwards made such a claim. His organization promotes multilingualism (from the interview linked above). ...


15

Most likely no. X is one of many symbols used for unknowns throughout the history of mathematics, and comes from a notation in the 1600's that used several other letters alongside X. Some Arab mathematicians used the Arabic word for 'thing' to represent an unknown, however it was several hundred years between that and X becoming popular, with many other ...


14

No, Richard Dawkins did not invent the term. "Lord Privy Seal" is a reference to a parody of the practice performed by David Frost, on The Frost Report in 1966. Since then, the trope has been known by other terms, such as B Roll Rebus. Webster's Online Dictionary acknowledges this usage and the etymology: The term "Lord Privy Seal" (as in "not bad, but ...


14

Yes, they did, as far as I can tell. I was looking for references to this in German media/academic publications, but could not find much. I could however find this article from the archives of "Die Zeit", which is a sufficiently reputable/well-researched German newspaper (i.e. not a tabloid). In the article, they quote Heinrich Johannes Diehl, Managing ...


14

According to Justice Department guidelines federal and state courts that receive federal financial assistance only have to "take reasonable steps" to accommodate lingual needs: The Supreme Court has affirmed that the Title VI prohibition against national origin discrimination includes discrimination against [limited English proficient] individuals on the ...


13

According to Cane Fires: The Anti-Japanese Movement in Hawaii, 1865-1945: The Speak American Campaign was launched on October 12, 1942, with much fanfare in the white press. The Service Committee distributed and displayed posters and stickers admonishing the Japanese to "speak American," and committee members held community meetings to organize English-...


13

The question cannot be answered with a simple 'yes' or 'no', be it about Polish or any other language, as "language difficulty" is not readily definable. For example, there is an effort among linguists to use "language markedness" to predict language difficulty. Jakobson (1941, 1963), however, observed that the marked members of oppositions were ...


13

According a 1788 printing of The Works of Aristotle (which wasn't really by Aristotle) "virgin blood" means the blood of a virgin. A third cause of natural barrenness is, the letting of virgins' blood in the arm before their courses come down ... The way to prevent this is to let no Virgin blood in the arm before her course' come down well See ...


12

2018 update: Please see the other two answers for evidence that the photo attached below is of the sign being repainted. Newspaper sources don't directly attest to this, but there was widespread censorship at the time. Although it has been spread far and wide that this occurred, and some even date it to Ginza in 1948, this is the actual sign that appeared ...


11

It is false to say that if [Confucius] he scribbled a message people could read it as easily as they could a shopping list. Two difficulties: (1) Difficulty in recognizing the script. (2) Difficulty in understanding the meaning. Example: This stone inscription is dated circa 374 BC (more than a century after Confucius died, so Confucius's writing would ...


11

While the accepted answer shows that one poster did not misspell election, there were other such posters. Even the caption refers to "signs painted all over Tokyo boosting MacArthur". There was even a different sign on another side of the same building. According to Jack Seward's 1971 book: The Often Misunderstood, Sometimes Surprising, and Always ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible