May 21st, 2011

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Time and Language

fayanora pointed me to this interesting article about expressions of time in the Amondawa language.  The language doesn't seem to refer to time in the abstract, to name periods of time such as months or years, or to speak of events as placed in time.  The speakers can, however, pick up those concepts when learning another language such as Portuguese.

While other people are arguing over how accurate or not the current description is, I'm thinking, why don't we just encourage one of the bilingual folks to take up linguistics?  Because they're going to know better than any outsider how their language and culture actually do frame things.
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Lost Mammal Found

The red-crested tree rat was first discovered over a century ago, then never seen until earlier this month.  Yay!

Is it just me, or does this really really look like the thing that ate the dinosaurs?  You look in dinosaur books, especially older ones, and there's usually this little mammal in the pictures right before the dinosaurs roll over and die.

Karavai

Torn World: "Sea Monsters in Southern Waters"

Today's Torn World article covers "Sea Monsters in Southern Waters."  The Southern continent is foreign territory and little is known about it.  The surrounding waters, however, are familiar to the Duurludirj and other Imperial people.  You get to see some interesting contrasts between the fauna of the northern hemisphere and that of the southern hemisphere.

If you like this article and want to see more like it, please consider sending me credits or karma through Torn World's crowdfunding options.  Not a Torn World member, but still want to support the work? I have a permanent PayPal button on my LJ profile page.
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Humans and the Planet

I was initially intrigued by this article, but it falls prey to the very problem it describes.  It's all about how humans have a hard time thinking in large scale.  We're not in control of the planet.  (Anyone who thinks we are should look at the results of recent tsunamis, earthquakes, meltdowns, and the Mississippi River deciding to take a stroll.)  What we have is an unprecedented amount of influence.  We're in charge.  We're not in control.  The difference is crucial and dangerous.  If people don't realize that the Earth requires our care now that we're capable of messing with its systems  on a serious scale ... we're going to wind up crunched under the wheels of evolution.

Oh, and we're not the first species to modify an environment to our own advantage.  Trees do it too -- especially redwoods.  I'd advise studying their methods.  Those work better than what humans have been diddling around with.