A Conversation for Talking Point: Learning Languages


Post 1


English has become the world language.
There are more peoples who speak English as their second language, than those for which it is their native language.

In Holland we are creating a mess, because we try as hard as we can to profile our bureaucracy in English.

Greetings from Amsterdamned smiley - smiley


Post 2


Presumably there are plenty of people who regard English as their third language - I was of the understanding there were more non-native English speakers than are quoted in the article. It's an impression reinforced by travelling, though the people I meet when travelling aren't exactly a representative cross-section of world population!

Incidentally, I have a book on Frank Lloyd Wright written in Dutch (was brought back for me as a souvenier). I've had it for 10 years and still have no idea of the meaning of any of the content, though translating it using 'educated guesses' (as in from my architectural education) has been fun. It's a very satisfying language to guess smiley - smiley Perhaps I'll join the Dutch lessons being advertised in the University and figure it out properly.


Post 3


I wonder what that Dutch book will create in your professional future........

Another Millennium Dutch invention (London)??


Post 4


Indeed, English is becoming the modern-day Esperanto (no matter what Red Dwarf tries to teach us). I think that the spread of computing and, in particular, the Internet has really helped this.

Developers (both for online and desktop) are using languages (like C, Java, HTML, XML, etc.) that were developed in English, particularly US English ("color" is an example of this).

But the Internet is also bringing other languages to us with the dozens of translation services online (of course, they're mostly literal and don't always hit the nail quite on the head, but they're an important stepping-stone).

And, if you think about it, a ridiculous proportion of websites and programs are developed and coded by English speakers in predominantly English-speaking countries (the US, UK, etc.).

However, I'm still trying to devise a way to communicate solely through music. smiley - smiley


Post 5

helga danielsen

Here is a good idea: You can learn German and with your English, you will understand a lot of Dutch! How about it?


Post 6


Maybe after I've finished learning Mandarin Chinese smiley - smiley I'm hoping I'll have more success with that than I did with the last language I tried to learn (which earned me a D in GCSE Russian).

It has to be said that I feel I pick up on French a lot quicker than I used to now that I'm trying to get my brain to learn something completely different to English. Perhaps I'll have similar experiences learning German.

Thinking about computers - given the power that they have, I find it remarkable how backwards they are when it comes to supporting a range of languages and associated character sets. I do understand where some of these limitations come from, but I can't believe the extra space occupied by text in Unicode as opposed to ASCII is remotely relevant today in the way it was on the mainframe systems in the 70's.


Post 7


I once studied Latin for two years at school, so I knew about three hundred Latin words.

I've always had big profit from that in Latin countries like France, Spain and Italy.

And what surprises me too, that if I stay in a foreign country, my subconscious knows far better to deal with that language if I trust it, instead of just using my head and rational knowledge.

Hebrew was my favorite language,(very easy language like Latin) because it reflects a very fysical approach towards life, in contrairy of Greece.

Dutch is even for the Dutch a tough language to learn. Really complex inner system, or no system at all smiley - smiley


Post 8


What is "fysical approach"?

Let me think;

"eternal" = very long time and not the Greec "eternity"=infinite

'virgin" is young girl, even if she is not a "virgan" in medical terms.

"soul" is fully related to "body".
Someone bleeds to death, is "his soul is bleeding out of him".

"Man" is a "man" and "mankind" aswell.

"To honour someone" = "giving someone the weight that that person deserves".

A "day" is not 24 hours. It's a small period of time.

So for a Hebrew religious person "God" is not "almighty", "everlasting","allknowing",in a technical way.". These are words that belong to a man /woman and made abstract in superlative.

These words do exist in Hebrew, but do not have a mathematical meaning.

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