And the Happiest Language in the World Is…


According to the Pollyanna principle, formulated in the ‘70s by two social psychologists, people tend to use positive words more frequently than negative ones. Furthermore, we tend to remember in greater detail and describe more exhaustively those memories with a positive rather than a negative association. Based on this principle, researchers at the University of […]

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Consecutive vs. Simultaneous


When I started working in the industry I had no idea there was a difference between translations and interpretations. On my first day on the job I learned translation dealt with written language while interpretation dealt with spoken languages, easy enough right? Then I came to learn there are different kinds of interpretation, consecutive interpretation […]

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North Korea and Language


The Guardian recently published an interesting piece that to a certain degree removes the mantle of impermeability that covers North Korea. In other communist nations the study of a foreign language might (now or previously) be taken as a matter of prestige, however, it is mandatory for all students in hermetic North Korea, from primary […]

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Where do our alphabets come from?


In today’s day and age we take a lot for granted, making use of what we have without actually digging a little bit deeper to see where these things come from. One of those things has to do directly with language, the way we communicate and the tools we use to get our messages across. […]

Why Children Aren’t Better Language Learners than Adults


Everybody’s favorite stereotypical excuse to not learning a foreign language is that adults can’t learn languages as well as children. The common misconception is that children’s brains are more elastic and more capable of remembering new languages and that our adult brains are rigid and incapable of adapting to the new language’s structure and remembering […]

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A Different Way of Communicating


In today’s day and age, where social media and smart phones are about as commonplace as ever before, it’s hard to imagine a way of communicating that doesn’t involve instant access to information. That information includes short messages in text, pictures, videos, and internet content – all sent at a speed unimaginable to people a […]

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The Advantages of Speaking Several Langauges


During our modern times, almost all professionals are encouraged (or required) to master more than one language fluently. In primary and secondary school as well as university, students have to take language classes in order to meet the requirements for graduation. However, the advantages of speaking more than one language go well beyond the professional […]

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The Subtle Gap Between Being Bilingual and Being a Translator


Have you ever been asked to translate a short text or to edit a translation simply because you know how to speak or are a native speaker of that given language? If not, then you will at least have probably heard someone you know mention that a friend corrected a document translated into English because […]

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Europe’s Contribution to the Future of English


In my last post “Translating…The Future” I wrote about one possible aspect of the future of the English language; the probability  that it will become more and more simple over time. As I mentioned in that post, it is a natural phenomenon for complicated grammatical structures to be progressively and slowly discarded from widely-spoken languages, […]

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And the 2014 Spanish Word of the Year Is… “selfi”!


For the second year straight, the Fundación del Español Urgente (“Foundation of Urgent Spanish” – Fundéu BBVA) chose its Word of the Year, which, as indicated by the Foundation, represents the word that had the greatest penetration in the media and in common language. In 2014 the word chosen was… “selfi”! It is the Spanish adaptation […]

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