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seen Oct 16 '13 at 18:04

Sep
18
comment The pronunciation of 'Aryan'
@coleopterist: Then perhaps it's more accurate to say that English is not very consistent when it comes to pronouncing borrowed words correctly (cf. "lingerie", in which we typically get all three vowels wrong).
Sep
17
comment The pronunciation of 'Aryan'
I agree with tchrist. (The German word for 'Aryan' is 'arisch', which is pronounced with [ɑː]. But German - and, for that matter, Sanskrit - have little effect on how words are pronounced in English, surely?)
Sep
17
comment Is it appropriate to use “the” before an abbreviation?
The latter is more appropriate, but not because you can't use "the" before an abbreviation. For example, "I live in the UK" and not "I live in UK". It depends what it's an abbreviation for, and (in the case of names of organisations) how they choose to abbreviate their own names.
Sep
17
comment What does “first thing” mean in “You can change it back first thing tomorrow.”?
@Kris: and that looks like an answer. Why don't you post it as such, instead of being rude?
Sep
17
comment Question about “either and neither”
Both are fine grammatically, but A is now rather antiquated. I think it sounds rather unnatural nowadays. The difference sounds (to me) the same as the difference between: A) I read not a book, but a magazine. B) I didn't read a book; I read a magazine. A is old-fashioned and obsolete (or very nearly).
Sep
17
comment What does “first thing” mean in “You can change it back first thing tomorrow.”?
@Kris: it looks like a question to me, and a perfectly valid one.
Sep
17
comment What does “first thing” mean in “You can change it back first thing tomorrow.”?
Indeed, if he has the power to do anything that requires your password, then he probably has sufficient power that he doesn't need your password. By the way, I would expect a reply "first thing tomorrow" to arrive early. But I understand the sentence "you can change it back first thing tomorrow" to mean "you can change it back any time from first thing tomorrow" (i.e. you probably want to change it back as soon as possible, but regardless, that option will be open to you from first thing tomorrow). I don't understand it to mean "please do so as early as possible", necessarily.
Sep
17
comment What is the appropriate construct for stating that “A and B oppose each other's positions.”?
Or something like "recoiled in horror at". By the way, shouldn't it be "each other's"? (Each only has one other...)
Sep
17
comment What does “first thing” mean in “You can change it back first thing tomorrow.”?
Any time tomorrow morning or later. (Presumably "tomorrow morning" is something sensible, like "any time from 6am", rather than "any time after midnight".)
Sep
15
comment How to read parentheses equation
Also, don't forget that it's often obvious, either from the derivation or from the form, if your audience is sufficiently mathematically mature. If you're quoting a formula as "x plus a times x minus b", you probably don't mean x + ax - b (because this is not written very sensibly). But if you're proving a formula, and you have a sum of three numbers, and the first is x, the second is ax and the third is -b, then it'll probably be obvious from your explanation that x + ax - b is what you mean. Basically, assume your audience is mathematically literate, or write it down (or both).
Sep
14
comment Which is proper: “to debate X” or “to debate about X”?
What a bizarrely angry comment. I also think "debate about" is more common, at least in my own community (though you may argue that a community of British students is not any particular authority on anything). I find it hard to make this sensibly google-able, though, firstly because "debate about" is still correct when "debate" is a noun, but secondly also because "debate about" is clearly more colloquial than "debate".
Sep
14
comment Asking someone to let you know something
I believe the first is incorrect and the second is correct.
Sep
11
comment Non-lexical words
Of course you can - I 'understand' them all. Perhaps you could call them "neologisms" (though that might be granting them a little more of a status than they have).
Sep
10
comment What's the idiom for getting lost in a (malfunctioning) bureaucracy?
@CookieMonster: sorry, I wasn't clear. I agree with your understanding of the connotations of "versanden", but not of "get buried" (which I have also understood to be slow and incremental).
Sep
10
comment What's the idiom for getting lost in a (malfunctioning) bureaucracy?
Cookie Monster: funny - that's not the impression I get from the term. Still, I don't know of a better term. Sorry!
Sep
10
comment Change from to-day to today
I imagine they felt exactly as I feel when pronouncing "e-mail" as opposed to "email". (Not especially different.)