Designing Handwriting

When I was in elementary school, I liked to experiment with handwriting modification: redesigning how I formed the letters to be more elegant, or cleaner, or so forth.  It was an interesting body/mind exercise. Now, as an adult, I have my handwriting and it’s not too beautiful but it is fast.  I always admire people who…

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Book Launch Tonight

Tonight: book launch party for Dead Still Dream, ميت مايزال يحلم by Kifah Abdulla. This is a book of poetry written in Arabic and translated to English by me. Please come by if you are in Portland!  Maine College of Art, first floor, 522 Congress St. 5pm. And if you can, please stay for the Art…

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Language Dark Matter

I’ve got to thank a linguist for that title (Thanks Conor!) There’s a popular blog called Fluent In Three Months (hook right there in the title) about language learning.  Generally, we all agree that one can become fluentish in three months given immersion in a target language or culture that is similarish to your own.…

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Language Reactivation Projects

It’s well recognized that increased exposure to new things can make a person feel tired.  For example, language (my favorite subject.)  When I began Arabic lessons with Kifah, I would find myself quite tired by the last ten minutes of the session.  After about 18 months, that tiredness disappeared. Now I can function for hours on…

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Efficient Language Learning

Efficient and effective language learning is one-to-one.  If you’ve ever watched children grow up, just imagine how many hours of one-to-one language instruction (by largely unqualified instructors) they’ve had by the time they were four years old.  It’s probably thousands of hours of primarily one-on-one conversations.  I’m picking four years old because that’s about when…

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An Overview

I made a new youtube channel introduction yesterday, with an attempt at switching back and forth between languages, which is actually a little more challenging than I expected. Red lipstick helps.

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Zero-effort Language

Really, how often must you speak to keep the production aspect of a second language active? My mom and I have decided to do a language exchange once a week: one hour of Arabic followed by one hour of German. Now, there was a point in time, as recently as two years ago, when I…

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Titles Matter

I’d like a better name for the concept of nouveau luddite. Something optimistic rather than adversative. You know, like people call themselves tiny house lovers, not big house haters.  Or we say minimalists, not rejectors of materialism. Is a good word analogist? (It has a meaning already however: one who reasons from analogy.) To summarize the original post, I enjoy modern technology but…

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