Archive for November, 2008

Watching the English

Saturday, November 22nd, 2008

… is the title of a book by a British anthropologist I read last summer before visiting the UK. The author, Kate Fox, takes a close look at her fellow countrymen, and to this foreigner at least, her observations were both interesting and amusing.

Of course, queuing is a particularly English habit which I’ve often observed. The English do it everywhere and consequently get cross if someone tries to jump a queue. What I have never seen, though, is what they do if someone actually jumps a queue, but MeFi user garius explains it in this comment, which I urge you to read:

“If you ever want to see British queuing at its best, go to Victoria Station in London during the rush hour… “

Hilarious!

The rest of the thread about queueing is worth a read if you are interested in queueing habits around the world.

How do you pronounce…

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

It’s not always easy to find out how to pronounce something in a foreign language. If you don’t know a native speaker you can ask and are not familiar with the phonetic alphabet, you can try the Acapela Text to Speach Interactive Demo. You can enter words or a sentence (or use their demo text), and the software will read it to you. There are 24 languages available, from Arabic to Turkish, and they’ve got the most common ones like English, French, Spanish and German, of course.

Found in this Ask MeFi thread.

Antarctica

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

Boston.com: The Big Picture: News Stories in Photographs. Scenes from Antarctica has some breathtakingly beautiful photos from – you guessed it – Antarctica. Summer is just starting down there.

Link via Rushme.

Ausreden

Wednesday, November 12th, 2008

Oft hört man als Lehrer ja interessante Ausreden, warum ein Schüler z. B. seine Hausaufgaben nicht gemacht hat. Der Lehrerfreund bietet jetzt gute Ausreden für Lehrer, die ihre Hausaufgaben nicht gemacht haben – sprich, die Klausuren/Klassenarbeiten noch nicht korrigiert haben: Drei gute Ausreden für nicht gemachte Korrekturen.

Flying to the moon

Thursday, November 6th, 2008

André found this link to a video of a Saturn V rocket launch on Hinterm Mond gleich links. Great music, too.

Did you know that the first stage of a Saturn V rocket has around 160 000 000 horsepower?