ScienceDaily: A new and better way to create word lists. “Word lists are the basis of so much research in so many fields. Researchers have now developed an algorithm that can be applied to different languages and can expand word lists significantly better than others.”
CBS News: “Petfluencer” and “rage farming” among new words added to Dictionary.com. “The update, published on Feb. 28, includes 313 new words. Many words address modern situations. For example, ‘rage farming’ is the tactic of using inflammatory content to garner a response on social media and ‘pinkwashing’ refers to the way corporations superficially acknowledge and support LGBTQ+ rights while also supporting anti-LGBTQ causes.”
Datamuse Blog: Our 2022 Waterloo co-op term: In which organising words is a labour of love!. “This past Fall, Datamuse hired three talented computer science students from the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada. Over the course of their three-month co-op they improved our word-finding apps and built a new game. These projects required a diverse set of skills, spanning topics in natural language processing (NLP), data visualization, distributed data processing, design, and web application development. In this post, we will showcase eight of the projects the students completed during the Fall term.” I use the Datamuse API for one of my Search Gizmos, Smushy Search. If you like words and word games, you definitely need to check out the Datamuse site.
NPR: How ‘goblin mode’ became Oxford’s word of the year. “It’s mindlessly binge-watching television without worrying about the time. It’s eating snacks in bed without a care about leftover crumbs. And it’s wearing the same pair of pajamas all week while working from home. Welcome to ‘goblin mode.’”
CNET: Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Year Is as Grim as You’d Expect. “Lookups for gaslighting increased by 1,740% for 2022, with ‘high interest’ throughout the year, according to Merriam-Webster. In this age of conspiracy theories, Twitter trolls and deepfakes, it isn’t surprising gaslighting topped the list.”
CNET: Don’t Stress, but ‘Permacrisis’ Is the 2022 Word of the Year. “Over the last few years, it’s seemed like the ‘new normal’ keeps getting weirder and darker as historical events pile up. This month the Collins Dictionary acknowledged our apparent spiral into ever darker timelines by naming ‘permacrisis’ its 2022 Word of the Year.”
Associated Press: Happy hygge! Scrabble dictionary adds hundreds of words. “Here’s the sitch, Scrabble stans. Your convos around the board are about to get more interesting with about 500 new words and variations added to the game’s official dictionary: stan, sitch, convo, zedonk, dox and fauxhawk among them.”
Mashable: Dictionary.com adds ‘antiwork’ because it, too, does not dream of labor. “For those who dream of a four-day workweek, Dictionary.com feels your pain. And to give you the language to express your woes, it’s added a slew of work related terms — plus a few internet faves, climate terms, and accurate Ukrainian endonyms.”
Engadget: Merriam-Webster just yeeted a bunch of internet slang into the dictionary. “The list of new words includes additions that clearly illustrate how these past years have gone for everyone. ‘Booster dose,’ which became a commonly uttered phrase because of the pandemic, gets its own Merriam-Webster page, so do ‘false positive’ and ‘false negative’ lab test results.”
New-to-me, from Boing Boing: New BB series! “Updating the Historical Dictionary of Science Fiction”. “The HDSF — based on the OED Science Fiction Citations Project, a 2001 effort to crowdsource quotations for the Oxford English Dictionary — is a full-fledged dictionary of SF on historical principles, meaning that every entry is illustrated with contextual quotations showing exactly how a term has been used over time.”
Scientific Data: Lexibank, a public repository of standardized wordlists with computed phonological and lexical features
Scientific Data: Lexibank, a public repository of standardized wordlists with computed phonological and lexical features . “Inspired by the GenBank database, where scholars can deposit nucleotide sequences publicly, we have created Lexibank, a collection of cross-linguistic datasets in standardized formats, which offers access to word forms, sound inventories, and lexical features for more than 2000 language varieties derived from 100 individual high-quality datasets. The Lexibank wordlist collection is a first attempt to integrate the wealth of language data assembled during the past centuries.”
Boing Boing: This website turns text into music. “Typatone assigns musical tones to letters. Start typing (or paste in any text) to hear original music.” I tried it. The music I made reminded me of some of those trippy Sesame Street animations from the early 70s.
Mashable: Amanda Gorman kicks off new ‘Word of the Day’ series with ‘Sesame Street’ muppets. “On Monday, poet Amanda Gorman taught Sesame Street’s Grover about a new word, ‘upstander.’ Gorman is the first guest in a new “Word of the Day” video series from Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit behind Sesame Street. Produced in partnership with media company WarnerMedia Kids and Family, the series ‘harnesses the power of language to nurture children’s positive and healthy senses of self,’ according the announcement.”