Archive for September, 2009

Cole Porter: Don’t fence me in

Posted by Anne on September 30th, 2009

I always thought this was a cowboy song, knowing the version Roy Rogers sang sitting on his trusty horse, Trigger. But in fact the very singable Don’t fence me in was written in 1932 by the urbane jazz great Cole Porter. It’s not a “typical” Porter song – it uses a poem by an unknown […]

Signs: On communication

Posted by Anne on September 29th, 2009

A simple short film about communication. About the transition from writing to speaking and from virtual to face to face. Created by Publicis Mojo and @RadicalMedia. Director: Patrick Hughes, A Cannes Lyons winner. Found through B. Schmidt-Hurtienne,

Grammar Guru: Needless or needlessly?

Posted by Anne on September 28th, 2009

Last week, 9 out of 11 chose “take a break” over “make a break”. In German “Let’s take a break” is “Machen wir doch mal eine Pause.” When pairs of words in different languages are very similar but have different meanings, they are called “false friends”. Similar collocations (or word partnerships) don’t always mean the […]

Asimov deconstructed

Posted by Anne on September 25th, 2009

What Is Intelligence, Anyway? by Isaac Asimov What is intelligence, anyway? When I was in the army, I received the kind of aptitude test that all soldiers took and, against a normal of 100, scored 160. No one at the base had ever seen a figure like that, and for two hours they made a […]


Posted by Anne on September 25th, 2009

Far, far away is a beautiful island of enchanting lakes and green, dreaming pastures. In other lands, the houses were lonely or crowded or crippled or else could not breathe. The birds heard their sighs, and flew to them crying: ‘Travel with us to the isle of contentment.’ Three little towers first had the courage […]

How I learned Latin… and French

Posted by Anne on September 24th, 2009

Since I grew up bilingual in German and English, Latin was the first foreign language I learned. My dad taught me Latin when I was 5, using the Nature Method, a book of texts featuring a family with kids my age on up, talking about everyday life, with a brother beating up on his little […]

Net neutrality

Posted by Anne on September 23rd, 2009

It’s not always easy to follow the bureaucrats, but Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski outlined actions he says the FCC must take to preserve the free and open Internet. The FCC’s existing case-by-case enforcement of communications law is already guided by four open Internet principles that say that consumers must be able to […]