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Visualizzazione dei post da Maggio, 2010

Top Buzzwords in Healthcare Narrative

In what could presage mounting difficulties for USA healthcare reform roll-out, the top buzzwords associated with the Massachusetts Healthcare Reform ‘narrative’ have been found to be Rationing, Out-of-control-spending, Price Controls, Non-sustainable, and Mandate Failure.

In addition, Gaming the System was the key underlying trend that was discovered. The results of the Healthcare NarrativeTracker Index™ (NTI™) were reported earlier today by The Global Language Monitor, the media analytics company, and OpenConnect, an innovator in defining and improving process efficiency.
The NTI focused on the unfolding narrative about the Massachusetts Healthcare Reform Law since it is frequently cited as a model for the national legislation. The analysis was performed to better understand and help clarify the national healthcare reform discourse.
“There is a very good possibility that what we are learning from the Massachusetts Healthcare Reform can be applied directly to the national healthcare ref…

Twitterature

Retelling the classics through the medium of Twitter

Twitterature by Alexander Aciman & Emmett Rensin. Aciman and Rensin play with the classics, retelling them through the medium of Twitter. Is it essential that you have read the original tales before you read the Twitter versions? No, but you’d probably get more out of the book if you have, because otherwise some of the jokes might be a bit difficult to get. Aciman and Rensin helpfully include a glossary (bromance, LOL, MILF, nose candy, and STFU are just a few of the terms that get defined) and an introduction to Twitter format.

Brave New Words: Twitterature by Alexander Aciman & Emmett Rensin

Puns, put-down and fresh coinages from the white-hot furnace of e-culture

What do you call the loss of productivity caused by too much time spent on Facebook? "Social notworking." A steeply devalued retirement account? "201(k)." A painfully obsolete cellphone? "Brickberry."

These linguistic dispatches from the land of cooler-than-you come courtesy of wit-mongers Cramer-Krasselt, a Chicago-headquartered full-service agency with a tidy billion dollars in annual billables. C-K's notable accounts include Corona beer, AirTran Airways, Levitra and Porsche -- which sounds like a recipe for a wild weekend in Fort Myers, Fla.
For the second year, the firm has published its Cultural Dictionary of the zeitgeist-iest words and phrases, pulling together -- as only an office full of droll and snarky hipsters can -- the slang, puns, put-downs and freshly minted coinages from the white-hot furnace of electronic culture. It's pretty hilarious.
To wait impatiently while the SMS system catches up, for example, is to be "textually frustr…

Learning to speak Generation Millenial

The buzz has a solution to help Baby Boomer or Generation X mangers who "just don't understand the 20-something workers these days with their constant need for praise and their fascination with posting snippets of their lives on YouTube."
Maybe you're using the wrong language to get their attention.
Advertising agency Cramer-Krasselt has compiled a 2008 Cultural Dictionary of new words and phrases culled from magazines, Web sites, blogs and conversations.

Next time you encounter a member of the Millennial Generation, try incorporating these:

Bacn: impersonal e-mails (as annoying as spam) that you have chosen to receive, such as alerts and newsletters.

Bershon: that angry/bored/too-cool-to-care look that 12- to 18-year-olds sport in every family photo.

Compunicate: to chat with a co-worker when you are in the same room using Instant Messenger instead of speaking to them in person.

Defriend: to remove somebody from your established list of contacts, considered the ultimate sn…

L'inglese si impara meglio quando il professore non è madrelingua

tratto da: La Stampa

Professore madrelingua addio, l’inglese si impara meglio da un insegnante con una pronuncia non perfetta. È questa la sorprendente conclusione di un studio realizzato da un professore di psicologia, Zohar Eviatar, e pubblicato sul Journal of Psycholinguist Research, secondo il quale gli studenti che imparano una seconda lingua da un insegnante che ha un accento simile al proprio apprendono più rapidamente e con meno fatica.
Il fatto è che gli studenti, dovendo impiegare tempo ed energia per capire su quello che dice il professore magari con un perfetto accento oxfordiano, possono concentrarsi, con minore frustrazione, sull’apprendimento delle regole e delle strutture della lingua, sostiene lo psicologo israeliano.
Lo studio viene ripreso oggi in un articolo del Washington Post per confutare la recente decisione dell’Arizona, lo stato che ha appena varato una severissima legge in materia di immigrazione criticata dall’amministrazione Obama, di rimuovere dalle classi p…

Onore al traduttore (spesso ignoto)

tratto da: Corriere.it

Bisognerebbe fare un monumento a quel milite generalmente ignoto che è il Traduttore: ignoto anche quando il suo nome compare nel frontespizio di romanzi, racconti, saggi. Un grande linguista come Benvenuto Terracini disse che si tratta di un essere umile e infelice, perché lavora in silenzio, all’ombra del proprio autore e nel migliore dei casi il risultato che ottiene è di essere considerato un pazzo utopista. In effetti tradurre romanzi (e più che mai poesia) è un’operazione paradossale, perché ha qualcosa di impossibile: si tratta di comprendere quel che è stato detto da altri (ma non tutto è comprensibile, in letteratura) e di riprodurlo in un altro sistema linguistico, culturale e testuale che rispetti anche le zone oscure dell’opera di partenza. Il fatto è che il traduttore letterario lavora con una materia che per partito preso gli oppone resistenza.La gente che pontifica sulla pratica del tradurre si spreca. Ci sono centinaia di saggi teorici sull’argome…

Hung Parliament

Hung Parliament:lo scenario in cui, in un sistema bipolare come quello del Regno Unito, nessun partito ottiene la maggioranza assoluta per poter governare da solo.
In inglese, "hung parliament" è un’espressione idiomatica, tanto che molti dizionari inglesi la trattano come voce indipendente o comunque viene inserita sotto l’aggettivo hung e non è associata al participio passato del verbo hang. Il significato di hung infatti è metaforico e descrive una situazione di incertezza, “in sospeso”.
Molti media italiani non sembrano rendersene conto e probabilmente pensano a una collocazione (le singole parole che compongono l’espressione mantengono il significato che hanno al di fuori della collocazione stessa), tanto che la traduzione preferita è "parlamento appeso". Addirittura c’è chi parla anche di "parlamento impiccato", ignorando che il participio passato del verbo hang nell’accezione “impiccare” è hanged e non hung.
Più adeguata e' la scelta di chi ha ma…

Lingue, la nostra università fanalino d'Europa

tratto da: La Stampa

Le autorità italiane, è notizia recente, pretendono giustamente che nei documenti dell’Unione europea l’italiano non venga discriminato. Resta però il fatto che, comunque, negli importanti incontri informali e in molte discussioni ufficiali, si parla inglese, o francese, o magari tedesco, le lingue della comunicazione internazionale e/o del potere economico. Lingue che molti dei nostri rappresentanti conoscono poco e male.
Non è colpa loro. Non del tutto. La cultura italiana a lungo ha ignorato la necessità di conoscere le altre lingue moderne. Si faceva un po’ d’eccezione per il francese - con la paradossale conseguenza che un tempo i romanzi russi venivano tradotti non dall’originale, ma dalla loro versione francese (lo stesso, più di recente, accadde per un dramma di Tennessee Williams). Un pochino si faceva eccezione anche per il tedesco, perché serviva a filosofi e filologi. Ma si trattava di conoscenze per pochi.
L’Università non pensava affatto che valesse la …

Bigots and nutters

published on: Guardian

Should politicians speak their mind, or mind how they speak?

Gordon Brown, who has apologised for calling a Rochdale woman 'bigoted'.
Whether or not this exciting and unpredictable election breaks the mould of British politics, it may be remembered as the campaign in which some leading politicians actually said what they thought: Tory Europhobes are in league with a bunch of nutters, and people who disparage immigrants are bigoted. I can't have been the only viewer to do a double take – did he really just say that? – when Nick Clegg used that particular N-word in the second TV debate. But after all the gibberish about "fairness" and empty rhetoric of the manifestos and party election broadcasts, it was refreshing to hear someone use language that had not been vetted into gaffe-proof blandness by the spin doctors. The excellent Tory blogger Iain Dale has pointed out that, as the party leaders had agreed with the charity Rethink not to use lang…

Little platoons

There's no reference to Hegel in the Tory manifesto, but there is an allusion to one of the founding fathers of conservative thought, Edmund Burke. The "institutional building blocks of the Big Society", the document reads, "[are] the 'little platoons' of civil society".
“Little platoons" is a phrase that occurs in Burke's Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790), the classic expression of conservative scepticism about large-scale attempts to transform society in the image of abstract ideals. The Tories today use it to refer to the local associations that would go to form a "broad culture of responsibility, mutuality and obligation".
The problem is that, for Burke, little platoons weren't groups that you volunteer to join; they were the "social subdivisions" into which you are born - the kind of traditionalism you would have thought Cameron's rebranded "progressive" Conservatives would want to avoid.
The…

Naked Governement

Term in China associated with administrative transparency.

published on: Schott's Vocab

In an article for Inter Press Service, Kit Gillet noted a sixty-year tendency in the Chinese government not to disclose information on budgetary and spending matters and revealed, “this may be about to change”:In January, in what some are calling China’s first case of “naked government,” Baimiao, a small town in the southern province of Sichuan, released its budget to the public. The details were not pretty: they showed that 65% of local government spending had gone to accommodating and entertaining officials.
Then, in March, Guangdong, the province closest to Hong Kong and the manufacturing heartland of China, announced that it would be publicizing its financial budget for this year. This is the first time that a provincial-level administration has decided to release these records since the People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949.
Many feel that this could be the beginning of greater govern…

What is the difference between jargon and buzzword?

published on: Techrepublic

A buzzword is a popular moniker for a phenomenon, idea, or practice. Some buzzwords start out as clever or insightful metaphors, but by the time they’re called buzzwords, any metaphoric value has died; and yet, the word continues to be overused, and it therefore becomes part of the “buzz” about a topic — often more background noise than substance.
Buzzwords represent a subset of a larger phenomenon: words that are used for an effect that lies beyond their strict definitions. The most extreme example of the class is the word, which stretches the definition of the word word. It has no denotation of its own, but its meaning when used is “I’m thinking about what I want to say next, but I don’t want to yield the floor to anyone else in the meantime.”
Another word that relies mostly on meta-meaning is basically. At face value, the word basically denotes the fundamental nature of something, or a summarization. In practice, though, it says “I’m giving you the short ver…

Getting a handle on the language

Thanks to the economy, technology and fashion, there are so many new words being created you'd have to be a "didiot" not to notice them. As a didiot myself, I assumed didiot means someone who's an idiot with digital technology (that would be moi), but no: It is a hybrid of "damn" and "idiot." A "yoot" sounds like either a Dr. Seuss character or the way your cousin Vinny would pronounce "youth," but instead it is a person young enough not to remember life before youtube.
Men were already suffering in the "mancession" -- meaning disproportionately more men are unemployed due to the languishing of traditionally male trades like construction. Now they have to cope with the "Tiger effect," too. That's newly alert wives checking up on them through cellphone, GPS, and e-mail records. And by the way, a GPS is not just a gizmo but also a driver that gives too many directions. I have just bought a GPS myself and lo…