35,403 reputation
4105171
bio website languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll
location New York
age 34
visits member for 4 years, 3 months
seen Nov 8 at 23:11

I am a linguist working on my dissertation. I specialize in morphology and phonology. I studied computer science as an undergrad.

I am from the United States, and have lived in the Midwest and both coasts.


Nov
7
comment Types of things vs. types of thing
@AlanGee: If I am going to pick apples, what is the reason for removing the plural marker when I say I am going apple picking? You do it because that is how it works in English. Outside of some rare special cases, you don't have a plural marker prenominally in that construction ever, so pointing out that it is not present in "apple types" doesn't tell us anything about the "types of" construction.
Oct
31
awarded  Nice Answer
Oct
31
comment Types of things vs. types of thing
@AlanGee: So, you allow an extra word to show up and you allow a change in the word order -- and yet at this stage there is now a rule that "the rest of the clause should remain unchanged"? Doesn't that seem really arbitrary to you? Especially since the loss of plural marking prenominally in noun-noun compounds is so common in English that we even singularize "pants", a word that is always plural, when we say "pant legs".
Oct
31
comment Why haven't we used “it” instead of “he or she”?
@supercat: If someone asks "who's there", the choice of "who" over "what" presupposes that it is a person, no?
Sep
30
awarded  Explainer
Sep
23
awarded  Good Answer
Sep
11
comment How does one pronounce “nihilism”?
@PeterShor: You are right. This was too broad. It happens with unstressed front vowels (/e,i/ and their lax counterparts) and not the others.
Sep
9
awarded  Good Answer
Aug
24
awarded  Enlightened
Aug
24
awarded  Nice Answer
Aug
21
awarded  Good Answer
Aug
13
awarded  Yearling
Aug
6
comment Which is correct: “Set up something” or “Set something up” or “Setup something”?
@Jack: That is a good observation, and true of all particle phrasal verbs in English. It's probably related to the fact that you can say "give him the ball" but you can't say "give him it". There are certain structures where English doesn't like to leave a bare pronoun at the end (because it's too "weak" or some similar stipulation). Note also that you can say "give it to him" and that's okay, because him is inside of a prepositional phrase.
Jun
28
awarded  Enlightened
Jun
28
awarded  Guru
Jun
28
awarded  Nice Answer
Jun
13
comment What is the correct plural form of the word “forum”?
I don't. Just because the application of irregular plurals is an inconsistent mess with respect to their language of origin doesn't mean I disavow it in the slightest. On the contrary, it illustrates how a language finds a way to incorporate foreign elements and make them its own, using borrowed patterns in unexpected places or at unexpected times; in words where the plural pattern is undecided today, we will see that the language will naturally sort itself in a systematic way out over time, whether scholars weigh in with their opinions or not. This is the kind of thing I love seeing.
Jun
13
comment What is the correct plural form of the word “forum”?
@LeoKing: "My main point is this: there is only a weak, inconsistent application of this -us to -a or -us to -i to begin with. So forums (like statuses and others) is a word even though we also sometimes have this other rule."
Jun
12
awarded  Nice Answer
Jun
3
awarded  Good Answer