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bio website perl.com
location Boulder, CO
age 51
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profile for tchrist on Stack Exchange, a network of free, community-driven Q&A sites

I’m Tom Christiansen, author of Programming Perl and Perl Cookbook from O’Reilly. I’m a freelance instructor giving courses in Perl programming, including Unicode and regular expressions. I’ve been using BSD Unix for 30 years now; like your maid, I don’t do Windows.

I’ve undergraduate degrees in Spanish and in Computer Science, and a graduate degree in compsci focusing on operating systems design and in natural language processing. I’ve studied Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese, Latin, and German, with a smattering of other languages thrown in. For the last few years I’ve been dabbling in computational linguistics.


1h
revised “The more, the merrier!” — Is this a sentence? If not… what?
edited tags
6h
reviewed No Action Needed What does “take” in this sentence mean?
6h
reviewed No Action Needed “Don't teach somebody to do bad things” - is there any expressions in English?
6h
reviewed Looks OK Equivalent of “Excuse me” for “you're not in my way”? Pedestrian bump avoidance
6h
reviewed Delete Is “A pair of two” redundant?
12h
reviewed Approve suggested edit on What does “over time” mean?
14h
comment Teaching of smuh?
Outside of interjections, English words don’t normally end with -uh, so this doesn’t look Englishy.
15h
reviewed Reviewed How do I rephrase this?
15h
reviewed No Action Needed What does “over time” mean?
15h
reviewed Looks OK Equivalent of “Excuse me” for “you're not in my way”? Pedestrian bump avoidance
15h
reviewed Looks OK Don't you do this vs Don't do this
15h
reviewed Looks OK What's a common phrase that means “To put it simply though not 100% correctly”?
15h
reviewed Looks OK What is the basic meaning of 'dozy pillock'?
2d
comment Is a schwa ever stressed?
I’ve looked into this a bit more carefully, and I discover that with Oxford Dictionaries Online, their IPA for UK English is /bɪˈkɒz/, which agrees with the OED (well, in part) and is to be expected. The /bēˈkəz/ you find there under the American English entry for that word is not written in actual IPA, as its first vowel reveals. It uses some misleading faux-pronunciation respelling system, and therefore its schwa isn’t a real one.
2d
comment one word for “the desire to feel special to someone”
I have a hole in my head where codependency is supposed to sit. I cannot read its unhyphenated form without my brain turning it into code-dependency, some software architecture thing. :) I do not expect anyone else to share my learning disability, however.
2d
comment Is a schwa ever stressed?
You cannot — by definition — have a stressed schwa. The OED has /bɪˈkɔːz/ or /bɪˈkɒz/ there, and those with the cot–caught merge get /bɪˈkʌz/ with /bəˈkʌz/ in fast speech due to reduction. Yes, those can all reduce to schwa when unstressed, but when stressed, they get different identities. And the second syllable, being stressed, howsoever you should fold, spindle, or mutilate it, you cannot get to a schwa. Only when in very fast speech where the entire word loses stress (and most of its first syllable) can /b(ə)kəz/ occur. So it can occur in fast, connected speech but not otherwise.
2d
reviewed Leave Closed What do you call someone who uses Twitter?
2d
reviewed Leave Closed Can I use TL;DR in a formal email?
2d
comment How many syllables are in “nights 'n' days”?
Nights ’n’ days is just like Days ’n’ nights, the latter of which rhymes with raison bites, which clearly has three syllables, and so too must then they all.
2d
comment Why do people pronounce “f***ing” like “f***en”?
@JanusBahsJacquet Linky linky?