Tag: language


J. Paul Neeley on Puns

December 26, 2012

J. Paul Neeley has done experiments on optimizing happiness, self-control, and most recently, puns! His mom and brother are great punsters, so he decided to measure how many puns happened over Thanksgiving weekend with his family. In the video below, J. Paul explains this fun experiment, shares what he learned about the pattern of puns, and warns…


Jeremy Howard on Language Acquisition Performance

May 28, 2012

Jeremy Howard has been studying Chinese for the last two years. The method he uses is called spaced repetitive learning, found in SuperMemo and Anki, in which you prompt yourself to remember something just before you’re about to forget it. Jeremy wrote his own software to track his learning, including variables such as time of day, what…


Mapping the Complexity of Your Own Language

October 26, 2007

Steven Johnson, author of “The Ghost Map” and “Everything Bad is Good for You”, is the best textual naturalist I know. He has a remarkable talent for parsing literary forms in a fresh way. He was the first person to bring to my attention the sophisicated literary structure holding together modern TV serial dramas such…


Learning a Language: Linkword Method

September 28, 2007

This story from the Christian Science Monitor describes a commercial language learning program called Linkword based on a well known mnemonic technique. “Target words” in a foreign language are associated with sound-alike words in the native language, and the link is represented by a vivid visual image. For instance. The Spanish word for monkey is…