Please identify the language

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mōdgethanc
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Re: Please identify the language

Postby mōdgethanc » 2017-07-05, 6:11

I have a doctor's handwriting so that's one more reason not to use it. Meanwhile, I've been complimented on how neat and precise my printing is lots of times. Obviously I'm going to use the one that's readable.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Johanna » 2017-07-05, 7:05

Cursive made sense in the days of quills and reservoir pens, since it was impossible to write with any speed using print letters without dropping ink all over the page. The thing is, the ballpoint pen was invented in 1888, and pencils have been common for quite a while as well, so there is absolutely no practical reason to enforce cursive on people who aren't comfortable using it.

Also, even if you can read one type of cursive, it doesn't mean you're that good at deciphering another. My grandmother for example, she privately only uses cursive, she used to be a primary school teacher and taught both that and print letters, but she's still absolutely shit when it comes to reading 19th century handwriting. I'm way better at reading her generation's cursive, despite only using print letters myself.

One undeniable advantage with print letters is that if you catch yourself starting on the wrong letter, you only have to erase that one and not the whole freaking word. And even if you use pen rather than pencil, it's not that hard to turn some letters into others without it looking ridiculous, while that is much, much harder when you write in cursive.

Also,the cursive I learnt is really irritating when it comes to capitals, as I was always told that the advantage of cursive is that you don't have to lift your pen and that increases speed. Yeah, most capitals in that style are very similar to their print forms, so you have to lift your pen just as much... I played around with cursive quite a lot a year or two back and managed to tweak a lot of them in a way that made them look similar enough but where I usually didn't have to lift my pen once, or at the very least only had to add an extra stroke after the word was done. That and I stole a couple of forms from other countries' styles :P

Edit: The word "cursive" is from Latin, and in that language it had separate letters, they were simply for writing by hand rather than chiseled out in stone or similar. In other words, it was more like the difference today between actual print and handwritten print letters, what we think of as cursive where all letters in a word are connected came way later. Probably somewhere after the invention of the printing press, when literacy increased and writing by hand became solely a mundane task, leaving the days of painstakingly copied manuscripts behind.
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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Car » 2017-07-05, 9:14

mōdgethanc wrote:I have a doctor's handwriting so that's one more reason not to use it. Meanwhile, I've been complimented on how neat and precise my printing is lots of times. Obviously I'm going to use the one that's readable.

No real doctor uses the one that's readable. :P
Please correct my mistakes!

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Johanna » 2017-07-05, 9:37

Car wrote:
mōdgethanc wrote:I have a doctor's handwriting so that's one more reason not to use it. Meanwhile, I've been complimented on how neat and precise my printing is lots of times. Obviously I'm going to use the one that's readable.

No real doctor uses the one that's readable. :P

There's a reason electronic prescriptions have become the standard :P
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Re: Please identify the language

Postby mōdgethanc » 2017-07-05, 10:30

Handwritten prescriptions lead to medical errors and kill people. Electronic prescriptions are way better.
Johanna wrote:Cursive made sense in the days of quills and reservoir pens, since it was impossible to write with any speed using print letters without dropping ink all over the page. The thing is, the ballpoint pen was invented in 1888, and pencils have been common for quite a while as well, so there is absolutely no practical reason to enforce cursive on people who aren't comfortable using it.

Also, even if you can read one type of cursive, it doesn't mean you're that good at deciphering another. My grandmother for example, she privately only uses cursive, she used to be a primary school teacher and taught both that and print letters, but she's still absolutely shit when it comes to reading 19th century handwriting. I'm way better at reading her generation's cursive, despite only using print letters myself.

One undeniable advantage with print letters is that if you catch yourself starting on the wrong letter, you only have to erase that one and not the whole freaking word. And even if you use pen rather than pencil, it's not that hard to turn some letters into others without it looking ridiculous, while that is much, much harder when you write in cursive.

Also,the cursive I learnt is really irritating when it comes to capitals, as I was always told that the advantage of cursive is that you don't have to lift your pen and that increases speed. Yeah, most capitals in that style are very similar to their print forms, so you have to lift your pen just as much... I played around with cursive quite a lot a year or two back and managed to tweak a lot of them in a way that made them look similar enough but where I usually didn't have to lift my pen once, or at the very least only had to add an extra stroke after the word was done. That and I stole a couple of forms from other countries' styles :P

Edit: The word "cursive" is from Latin, and in that language it had separate letters, they were simply for writing by hand rather than chiseled out in stone or similar. In other words, it was more like the difference today between actual print and handwritten print letters, what we think of as cursive where all letters in a word are connected came way later. Probably somewhere after the invention of the printing press, when literacy increased and writing by hand became solely a mundane task, leaving the days of painstakingly copied manuscripts behind.
Why I hate cursive, an essay:

1) I'm salty about cursive because I'm tired of being nagged by boomers about how kids these days don't use it, when I never liked it to begin with and more importantly, I don't need to use it. So I see it as a symbol of the generational divide like Bob Dylan and avocado toast. To me, this is like complaining that millennials don't use typewriters anymore - we don't because they're obsolete.

2) In my line of work I have to read a lot of handwritten notes and the older workers almost always write in cursive, and worse, the elaborate flowery kind that I find impossible to read. Mercifully, those closer to my age tend to print or type them up. I read those much, much faster. So this reinforces my existing bias against cursive.

3) No one my age needs to worry about speed anyway when everyone types and/or has autocorrect and predictive text. Besides, I can print very fast using shorthand.

4) As an aside, I kind of hate pens as well. They're more aesthetic because they come in different colours, but I prefer to write using mechanical pencils. They're neater, don't take forever to get started, don't leak, and are erasable. Pens are good for cursive, but bad for printing because they leak and smear when you print. I don't know why it was a big deal in grade school when we were allowed to write in pen, just because it's "grown-up". Fuck pens. I only ever use them when I need to write in colour.

5) I've tried messing around with my cursive hand to make it look better and even though it's a little less messy, I still hate cursive. I only ever use it to sign my name. Fuck cursive.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Johanna » 2017-07-05, 10:47

Yeah, I only really use pen for filling out forms that have to be physically submitted, and everything except my signature is always in print letters. And even so, I use ballpoint pen, which doesn't smear really, not if you scribble on some spare piece of paper for a second before you start writing.

Also, I'm lazy, so you can't tell that my signature is supposed to represent my name, unless you already know what my name is.

I think that's the thing, inertia only got cursive going for so long once the practical reason had disappeared.
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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Aurinĭa » 2017-07-05, 11:30

Johanna wrote:
Car wrote:
mōdgethanc wrote:I have a doctor's handwriting so that's one more reason not to use it. Meanwhile, I've been complimented on how neat and precise my printing is lots of times. Obviously I'm going to use the one that's readable.

No real doctor uses the one that's readable. :P

There's a reason electronic prescriptions have become the standard :P

Another reason being that electronic prescriptions are much harder for patients to tamper with.

Johanna wrote:One undeniable advantage with print letters is that if you catch yourself starting on the wrong letter, you only have to erase that one and not the whole freaking word. And even if you use pen rather than pencil, it's not that hard to turn some letters into others without it looking ridiculous, while that is much, much harder when you write in cursive.

I'm not quite sure what you mean with the first sentence. As for the second, that depends on the specific letters involved. To give just one example: a and o are very similar and easy to turn into one another in cursive, but have a completely different shape in print.

I like cursive. I was taught to write in cursive at school, and I've experimented a lot with my own handwriting, trying out both cursive and print. My current handwriting started out closer to print, but started gliding towards cursive pretty quickly; it's now a mixture of both—more print-like for clearly filling out forms, more cursive-like when I need to write faster.

I agree with mōdgethanc's love for mechanical pencils, though.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby vijayjohn » 2017-07-05, 12:18

I like cursive, too, but my dad made me stop using it when I was still in elementary school for many of the same reasons mōdgethanc mentioned.
mōdgethanc wrote:As an aside, I kind of hate pens as well. They're more aesthetic because they come in different colours, but I prefer to write using mechanical pencils. They're neater, don't take forever to get started, don't leak, and are erasable. Pens are good for cursive, but bad for printing because they leak and smear when you print. I don't know why it was a big deal in grade school when we were allowed to write in pen, just because it's "grown-up". Fuck pens. I only ever use them when I need to write in colour.

My dad actually made me use pens more, too, because...I'm not sure how to put this, pen marks show up more clearly on paper? Whereas when you write in pencil, it has this dull, gray color that fades more easily (even without being erased). Also erasable pens are a thing.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Aurinĭa » 2017-07-05, 13:20

I use a pen when writing something other people have to read, or something that should last a while. For myself, I prefer to use a pencil (mechanical or not). It's a habit I developed when studying interpreting, as IME pencils flow more easily (read: faster) over the paper than pens, and I was the only who'd need to read my notes anyway.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby vijayjohn » 2017-07-06, 0:09

Aurinĭa wrote:It's a habit I developed when studying interpreting

You studied interpreting? :o I've always wanted to know how that works. I wanted to do this for so long but never knew how to go about it.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Vlürch » 2017-07-06, 20:16

Johanna wrote:Also, I'm lazy, so you can't tell that my signature is supposed to represent my name, unless you already know what my name is.

I'm even lazier; my signature changes so much that a receptionist at the police station told me to put some effort into it to make it more consistent when I went to renew my ID. :lol:

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Aurinĭa » 2017-07-06, 20:41

vijayjohn wrote:
Aurinĭa wrote:It's a habit I developed when studying interpreting

You studied interpreting? :o I've always wanted to know how that works. I wanted to do this for so long but never knew how to go about it.

You wanted to know how studying interpreting goes? It's fairly straightforward: you go to uni/college and study interpreting. :P Just like with translating, a lot of people who know two or more languages quite well think they'd be able to do it, but if you haven't had proper training, don't attempt to. There are all kinds of tips & tricks, as well as lots of pitfalls and common mistakes, you have to be taught how to avoid, and of course, properly supervised practice, practice, practice is essential.

If you wanted to know how interpreting works, I'm not sure I can help. Firstly, it'd depend on the kind of interpreting you're thinking of; and secondly, while we were taught some theory, it's actually not all that clear what really goes on in the brain of someone who's interpreting.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Vlürch » 2017-07-06, 21:46

Aurinĭa wrote:Just like with translating, a lot of people who know two or more languages quite well think they'd be able to do it, but if you haven't had proper training, don't attempt to.

Wait, are you saying that people who haven't gotten education for it shouldn't even try to translate anything? How can that position make sense to have for someone on a linguistics forum, let alone an admin of one? :shock: Or are you saying that people think they could translate stuff because they haven't tried, but that if they tried, they'd fail because they haven't had specialised education to learn it?

The latter doesn't sound like authoritarian assholery, but still pretty elitist and condescending if the implication is that people who haven't had specialised education are inherently less capable than those that have; I'm not saying it's not true for a lot of things, but for anything linguistics-related, it doesn't really make sense since self-learning is increasing and online lessons and dictionaries and whatnot are easily accessible, etc. and most importantly, because pretty much literally everyone speaks at least one language, so they already have a bae. Learning a second language in is really common around the world for various reasons, so translating between the fist and second language is generally not that hard. Boring at times, maybe, headache-inducing in some cases, sure, but it's not rocket science.

If I completely misunderstood what you meant, sorry.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby IpseDixit » 2017-07-06, 22:50

Vlürch wrote:Learning a second language in is really common around the world for various reasons, so translating between the fist and second language is generally not that hard.


"Interpreting" is not exactly the same thing as "translating", and - at least IME - even translating can be so painful sometimes, indeed I can struggle quite a lot when translating from English to Italian, not because I don't understand the English original, but because I feel that the two languages have become two entities independent from each other in my brain, and it's not always easy to "build bridges" between the two.

Funnily enough, exactly today I watched this speech of an interpreter speaking about her job and, at some point, she did mention that there is a tiny minority of interpreters who didn't have a formal education in interpreting, but they're very rare (and I can see why).

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Aurinĭa » 2017-07-06, 23:02

Vlürch wrote:
Aurinĭa wrote:Just like with translating, a lot of people who know two or more languages quite well think they'd be able to do it, but if you haven't had proper training, don't attempt to.

Wait, are you saying that people who haven't gotten education for it shouldn't even try to translate anything?

Sure they can try to translate! For fun, when on holiday for family who doesn't know the local language, in situations like that. But they shouldn't ever attempt any commercial translating, or even work for free.

How can that position make sense to have for someone on a linguistics forum, let alone an admin of one? :shock:

Linguistics ≠ translating. You don't need to know linguistics to be able to translate, and vice versa you don't need to be able to translate to be a linguist.

Or are you saying that people think they could translate stuff because they haven't tried, but that if they tried, they'd fail because they haven't had specialised education to learn it?

Yes. A while ago I participated in a research study, which consisted of judging the quality of short translated paragraphs. Some of the translations were made by professional translators, some by students of translating, some by bilinguals who had no training in translation, but of course you didn't get that information and who had translated what until after the test was completed. The last group (untrained bilinguals) consistently performed worst, much worse than the other two groups. The professional translators performed by far the best. It was a very interesting, albeit easy test.

if the implication is that people who haven't had specialised education are inherently less capable than those that have

That's self-evident, isn't it? People who have had training and practice are better at that thing than those who haven't.

self-learning is increasing and online lessons and dictionaries and whatnot are easily accessible

Self-learning only goes so far. You can't teach yourself tips & tricks you don't now, you can't teach yourself to recognise and avoid common mistakes, you need an impartial but experienced teacher to judge your translation attempts, show you what is wrong or doesn't work very well, and help you improve.

pretty much literally everyone speaks at least one language, so they already have a bae. Learning a second language in is really common around the world for various reasons, so translating between the fist and second language is generally not that hard.

Speaking a language ≠ being able to translate/interpret to/from it.

IpseDixit wrote:Funnily enough, exactly today I watched this speech of an interpreter speaking about her job and, at some point, she did mention that there is a tiny minority of interpreters who didn't have a formal education in interpreting, but they're very rare (and I can see why).

Formal interpreting education isn't all that old (a few decades, and shorter for many languages), so it's possible those interpreters entered the profession before that time, or speak languages for which no formal interpreting education exists.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby vijayjohn » 2017-07-06, 23:44

Aurinĭa wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
Aurinĭa wrote:It's a habit I developed when studying interpreting

You studied interpreting? :o I've always wanted to know how that works. I wanted to do this for so long but never knew how to go about it.

You wanted to know how studying interpreting goes? It's fairly straightforward: you go to uni/college and study interpreting. :P

Yeah, but I didn't even know that until you mentioned it, I think. Now I'm kind of confused about how many colleges have that as an option. For instance, I went to the University of Texas at Austin, and I'm trying to figure out whether it has that option. I see this, but...that doesn't look like it has anything to do with coursework. :?

If I'd known that this was a thing, I would've probably gone into that instead of linguistics.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Aurinĭa » 2017-07-07, 0:13

Yeah, that doesn't look very useful. You might have to look elsewhere, possibly even outside of the US. It'd also depend on which language(s) you'd want to use. If you would want to translate or interpret from French, you could do like JackFrost did and move to Canada, but (especially for interpreting), you'd be limited in where you could make a living doing that after graduating.
You're still young, though, you can take your time to learn a bit more about interpreting, find out what your options are, and decide later.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Vlürch » 2017-07-07, 0:40

Aurinĭa wrote:Sure they can try to translate! For fun, when on holiday for family who doesn't know the local language, in situations like that. But they shouldn't ever attempt any commercial translating, or even work for free.

Well, I kind of agree, but like... how could you regulate that without a ridiculously authoritarian monopoly on basically all of society, especially now that multiculturalism is the reality (whether the average person wants it or not), and all kinds of different languages are spoken by all kinds of different people? Preventing regular people from teaching the immigrants the local language is only going to isolate the immigrants even more, completely shutting them off from ever being able to integrate into the society they live in.

I mean, if the government gave every immigrant free (and mandatory) lessons, that'd be awesome, but that'll never work, especially if immigration and multiculturalisation continues at the rate it has been happening; and I'm from Finland, which AFAIK is still fairly homogenous compared to most European countries except for Poland, Slovakia and Hungary... if I wasn't as socially awkward, I'd definitely want to help the immigrants moving here learn Finnish, and a lot of people actually are doing just that. What kind of penalty would you impose on them?
Aurinĭa wrote:Yes. A while ago I participated in a research study, which consisted of judging the quality of short translated paragraphs. Some of the translations were made by professional translators, some by students of translating, some by bilinguals who had no training in translation, but of course you didn't get that information and who had translated what until after the test was completed. The last group (untrained bilinguals) consistently performed worst, much worse than the other two groups. The professional translators performed by far the best. It was a very interesting, albeit easy test.

Alright, but how was it defined what's good and what's bad?
Aurinĭa wrote:That's self-evident, isn't it? People who have had training and practice are better at that thing than those who haven't.

I guess, but I'm pretty fucked over education as a whole because I have none besides primary school myself, and a huge part of that is because of health shit that I had no control over... just allergies along with depression and other mental health problems in my case, though, but I'm definitely not the only one whose life became meaningless as a result of not getting enough education. Don't get me wrong, even if I had the opportunity to study linguistics or whatever else that I'm interested in, even if I wanted it, I couldn't, so it's not like I have any right to complain... but I still complain because it's annoying.
Aurinĭa wrote:Self-learning only goes so far. You can't teach yourself tips & tricks you don't now, you can't teach yourself to recognise and avoid common mistakes, you need an impartial but experienced teacher to judge your translation attempts, show you what is wrong or doesn't work very well, and help you improve.

True, but maybe in the future that's no longer an issue. If everyone had free access to all material ever written on all languages and there were easier ways to find native speakers of various languages to interact with online for the very purpose of teaching each other the languages as equals, that wouldn't be a problem to begin with. My opinion is that all research on every subject should be publicly available for free. Yes, that means I'm a retarded leftist, no matter how "far-right" my views on social matters would be labelled by anyone left of literal Hitler. :roll:
Aurinĭa wrote:Speaking a language ≠ being able to translate/interpret to/from it.

How can that even make sense in any other case except live translation/interpretation and highly technical things that most people don't understand anyway?

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby vijayjohn » 2017-07-07, 0:55

Vlürch wrote:I guess, but I'm pretty fucked over education as a whole because I have none besides primary school myself

I am almost unable to fathom this.

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Re: Please identify the language

Postby Johanna » 2017-07-07, 18:27

Vlürch wrote:
Johanna wrote:Also, I'm lazy, so you can't tell that my signature is supposed to represent my name, unless you already know what my name is.

I'm even lazier; my signature changes so much that a receptionist at the police station told me to put some effort into it to make it more consistent when I went to renew my ID. :lol:

I changed my surname about 5 years ago, so I had to renew a bunch if stuff because if it. I started with my driving licence, and when I did I hadn't got my new signature down yet, so it looks very different from what is on my passport, which I renewed over a year later.

The person at the police station actually commented on that, how different the two signatures are.

Edit: The old one looks pretty much like what my name was back then, I got lazy once my surname gained a bunch of extended loops :P
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