Recent Blog Posts

The idea of untranslatability is captivating for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the chance to try on another culture’s way of experiencing the world. As the popular anecdote goes, how does an Eskimo or Inuit look at snow, when there are dozens of words to […]

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For this edition of 7 Questions to a Linguist, ALTA Language Services interviewed Scott McGinnis, Academic Advisor for the Defense Language Institute, Washington, D.C. branch, and Coordinator of the federal government’s Interagency Language Roundtable. In addition to lending his language skills to support U.S. security, Dr. McGinnis has served as […]

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In this installment of 7 Questions to a Linguist, the focus is on an organization that crafts metaphors for more effectively communicating social issues and scientific topics. The FrameWorks Institute, a recipient of this year’s MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions (the “organizational genius grant” awarded by the John […]

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In the latest installment of 7 Questions to a Linguist, ALTA Language Services had the pleasure of catching up with Vyvyan Evans. Vyv Evans, PhD, is a professor of Linguistics at Bangor University, United Kingdom. The author of more than a dozen scholarly and popular books on language, meaning, and […]

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In the latest entry of 7 Questions to a Linguist, ALTA Language Services caught up with psycholinguistics wunderkind Dr. Steven Pinker. The Harvard psychology professor, frequent TED speaker, and award-winning author staked his claim in contemporary discourse thanks to his user-friendly application of cognitive linguistics to society’s big questions. As […]

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In the second installment of 7 Questions to a Linguist, ALTA Language Services had the pleasure of catching up with language scholar, writer, lecturer, and broadcaster David Crystal. “Those linguistic experiences have long disappeared from my memory now, though I like to think that they might still be neurally lurking […]

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Recently a friend brought to my attention a delightful collection of William Safire’s articles from the New York Times Magazine. Many years ago, my friend wrote Safire regarding the origins of the word “trivia”, which the celebrated journalist had mistakenly attributed to the Latin tri via – the meeting point […]

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Not only does every September bring with it New York Fashion Week, but the month often marks a transition in the way we dress. As the season changes and we tuck away our summer clothes in favor of fall wear, we thought it would be a great time to turn […]

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As intriguingly varied as world languages are, linguists agree that they share certain structural factors that broach continents and cultures. For decades, the roots of this phenomenon have been debated and explored; a study out of the University of Rochester sheds some light on a potential explanation. The study, conducted […]

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These days, we don't always have the time to use full words or speak in complete sentences. The advent of text-speak and internet lingo has conditioned many of us to seek out the most efficient routes of communication. While far from a novel invention, acronyms' prevalence makes knowing the most […]

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