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 Yearling
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Jul
12
comment How crazy can “and” be?
Yes, this is exactly the point of the constructions, they violate RNR because the parts of speech change between the two reconstructed sentences. The last part of your answer where "John is" has category S/NP gives the sentence the interpretation that "John is cooking" not as a noun, but John is "cooking", as in John is being cooked (something which Sally naturally hates), or else John is "cooking", as in, John is a pile of food that has been cooked. I meant the verb interpretation, where the two phrases have wrong parts of speech, as you naturally interpreted it.
Jul
12
comment Can “if”, “while”, “whenever”, “when” recurse deeply? How deeply?
@Jay: "Good", "comprehensible" and "grammatically correct" are three completely distinct things, they are mixed up by your intuition as related. They are not related and I am not looking to describe either of the first two. The BNF works for "grammatically correct", it produces sentences which, with effort, are seen to be grammatically correct. it doesn't work for "good" or "comprehensible", which are human things that require understanding the sentence. The structure of English grammar is relatively simple, it is not at all related to semantics, and it can be described by a simple algorithm.
May
13
comment Is it true that iambic pentameter is “natural” to English? If so, why?
@PeterShor: NO! Tone and stress are the EXACT same thing. My wife is Chinese, I learned to pronounce it comprehensibly when I realized that "high tone" is what we call in English "stressed", while low tone is "unstressed". This is a product of experience with Chinese. It is not a trivial insight, it was the single most important thing for me to learn (it was hard because nitwits told me nonsense exactly like what you are saying). The rest is syllables like a metronome and avoiding using tone/stress to indicate questions, or emotion, rather use instead the particles in the language (like MAH).
May
12
comment Is there an EBNF that covers all of English
@Inversus: Perhaps start a facebook chat group and invite me? All you need to do is sit down with a newspaper for about 100 hours and look at all the sentences and make sure they get generated. You need to also make sure that all the generations are ok intuitively. Once you have commutativity of adverb lists and adjective lists the hard problem is essentially solved, because this removes the combinatorial explosion. The rest is fiddling with the details, which is necessary but boring.
Mar
2
awarded  Yearling
Feb
7
comment Is there an EBNF that covers all of English
@Inversus: The main idea here is the commutative context free grammar, which I explained in more detailed in a linguistics question/answer I wrote. That answer also found a reference to what is essentially the same idea (although somewhat more/too general) in the then recent linguistic literature from Poland (~2012). It's only been two years, but I haven't thought about it actively. I think I understand the "John Jameson/Hawk" ellipsis now in terms of a model, but it's not presented in terms of grammars. I can say why, but I don't like SE anymore, so not here.
Sep
24
awarded  Autobiographer
Aug
27
comment Where did the term “OK/Okay” come from?
@PeterShor: You misunderstood--- I agree that the initialism is an 1830s construction (or if you like "fabrication"), the word does appear as ok or OK all the time, but this should not be considered a fabrication in 1830s, because the origin of the word in Choctaw was common knowledge at the time, the word is associated with frontier people in Choctaw territory and has Native connotations. The Choctaw etymology remained more esoteric common knowledge until Woodrow Wilson's time, and continued to be common knowledge until Read purposefully substituted a cock-and-bull fake etymology for it.
Apr
30
revised Where did the term “OK/Okay” come from?
fix link
Apr
30
comment Where did the term “OK/Okay” come from?
A minute googling produced this link: datasync.com/~rsf1/ok.htm . I am really, really annoyed that the original link is dead now, I'll try to find it on wayback.
Apr
30
comment Where did the term “OK/Okay” come from?
For a quote of a dictionary saying it is Choctaw as late as 1961, see Wikipedia: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Okay#Choctaw . This is really the correct etymology, there can be no dispute, it was a ridiculous, bald-faced, absurd (and completely unimportant) lie by Read, it was his own pet discovery in etymology, and nobody wanted to contradict him because he ran a top journal. I can't believe people actually believe his bullshit, otherwise I would argue against it more persuasively. When something is this stupid, you can't argue against it persuasively.
Apr
30
comment Where did the term “OK/Okay” come from?
Yes, this is the consensus opinion, and the consensus opinion is moronically wrong. It was established by one idiot named Read who happened to edit a major journal on etymology, which goes to show you how much damage one mentally challenged academic in a position of power can do.
Mar
2
awarded  Yearling
Feb
3
comment Where did the term “OK/Okay” come from?
@Oldcat: Yes, except that's not where it comes from. It obviously, without any possible doubt, comes from Choctaw. It's as if you made up an acronym to explain people saying "muchos gracias", ok is as obviously Choctaw as "gracias" is obviously Spanish. The joke came from playing on the similarity to the letters "O" and "K".
Aug
14
awarded  Popular Question
Mar
2
awarded  Yearling
Sep
18
comment When do I use “I” instead of “me?”
@Malvolio: I don't have a problem with "Jane and I", as antecedent, this is not the point. Just say "Jane, me, Arthur, and his middle school classroom walked to Sweden." The question is what to do in lists.
Sep
12
comment When do I use “I” instead of “me?”
@Malvolio: That's not true--- "Jane, me and all those people working beside us, contributed greatly to this movie." vs. "Jane, I and all those people working beside us, contributed greatly to this movie." My rule is correct, it is internalized by all English speakers, it just does not appear in any books. It's not my fault the books are incompetent, this isn't rocket science.
Aug
14
awarded  Critic
Aug
14
comment Where did the term “OK/Okay” come from?
-1: Read my answer, and the linked article to see why this is a terrible answer. This Read guy invented the stupidest cock-and-bull story for this word, and it became established and taught in schools. One must not tell lies.