Archive for June, 2013

Wytn Awake — Wytn Jteni 2013-06-28 01:54:00

Friday, June 28th, 2013
After David J. Peterson provided a link to an intriguing instant dictionary-program making resource, I dropped my conlang dictionary into it! The name of this service is Lingojam.

It appears that I have far too many words in Sandic (the capacity of this service only allows me to reach down to words starting with "r", and my dictionary in total contains around 1.5K words), but other than this issue (which isn't even an issue, since most people won't try to use so many words) the service works flawlessly. It doesn't have the capability of understanding conjugated verbs (or accusative worms or plural forms of words, I'd imagine), but this is a minor hiccup and not important for anyone (me and two others) who'll likely be using the resource for Sandic anyway.

The Sandic-English instant dictionary can be found here. Check it out! If the developer keeps improving on this resource, it could eventually be something quite amazing for conlangers everywhere. I'm excited and happy to have found it.

neck is leka

Thursday, June 27th, 2013
leka = neck (noun) (some things Google found for "leka": a very common term; an unusual last name; an unusual first name that is often masculine; name of several pretender princes to the Albanian throne; LEKA baby toys by IKEA; means sledgehammer in Finnish; means "drip, leak" in Icelandic; name of an island and municipality in Norway and multiple places in Poland)

Word derivation for "neck" :
Basque = lepo, Finnish = kaula
Miresua = leka

This is the word for the part of body and the tapered part of a bottle.

Doma av D.O.M.A.

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013
In the Yal Dawo language, Doma means Good-bye {from Domod'éä (n.) a farewell}.

This linguistic pun is delivered in celebration of the Supreme Court striking down the Defence of Marriage Act. This just so happens to have been announced at the onset of a Mercury Retrograde, which will screw up communications until July 20th, a day that ought to be commemorated as Moon Day at least Federally, if not internationally.

This said, I am over the moon about the Supreme Court's decision.

Language Needed for Children’s Book Series

Monday, June 24th, 2013


Children’s Book Publisher is seeking a new language for a children’s book series in development. The series targets kids ages 7-11. It takes place in present day, based on a family of activists and a hidden community of talking bears. The bears communicate with their human counterparts through the use of translation devices, but among themselves they have developed a complete language. An exciting component of this is interactivity between kid readers and the language. The goal is to foster a community of readers who contribute to the lexicon of the language through an interactive online site. With this in mind, the language should strike a balance in complexity; simple enough that kids can participate, yet complex enough to still be an interesting puzzle. Please email Elizabeth Grojean (see below), including a summary of experience and qualifications. The fee is a minimum of $2,000 negotiable based on qualifications, with the potential for further translation work under a separate contract as new books in the series are developed.


Elizabeth Grojean

Application Period

Open Until Filled


Request a few words (1-2 sentences) by mid-June to use as a sample in a pitch presentation. Final language due date is flexible based on standard development times.


Fee starts at $2,000; negotiable based on experience.

To Apply

Email – “dot” – “at” – “dot” – to express your interest in this project.

Note: Please assume that comments left on this post will not be read by the employer. All comments left on this post will be deleted after the job has closed.

Conlangery SHORTS #11: Phrasebook: What time is it?

Monday, June 24th, 2013
George continues his phrasebook series with a few musings about telling time. Long form episodes returning soon.

stairs is esparat

Sunday, June 23rd, 2013
esparat = stairs (or staircase) (noun) (some things Google found for "esparat":an unusual term; L'Esparat is a restaraunt in Vogue, France; a very rare last name; Esparat (aka Esparat-e Bala and Esparat-e Pa'in) is the name of a place in Iran)

Word derivation for "stairs (or staircase)" :
Basque = eskailera, Finnish = portaat
Miresua = esparat

The Basque word is similar to the Spanish word for stairs, escalera.

I know that I'm not making profound progress, but I'm continuing to add words. I found four occurances of the word stairs in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Kahami daniab utorai

Saturday, June 22nd, 2013
A quote from a book that a friend recommended to me.  I think I'll be saying this to myself quite often in the coming days.

"Kahami daniab utorai, kateneot galēn daniab kémania."
"Lacking something given, no one will win/gain anything."
"Nothing ventured, nothing gained."

shelf is hypal

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013
hypal = shelf (noun) (some things Google found for "hypal": an uncommon term; user names; name of a World of Warcraft gaming character; a rare last name; Le Prince Hypal is a convenience Store in Grasse, France; similar hyphal is an adjective for threadlike elements of a fungus; similar hypallage is a literary device which interchanges two elements in a phrase or sentence from a more logical to a less logical relationship)

Word derivation for "shelf" :
Basque = apal, Finnish = hylly
Miresua = hypal

The plural of shelf, shelves, occurs twice in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

The limitations of transliteration into Latin characters

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013
I'm working on my first conlang, a proto-language for a few of the languages spoken by characters in my current writing project. I suddenly feel how inadequate Latin orthography is for expressing phonemes that are foreign to native speakers of English and other Western European languages (sorry, Mandarin and Cantonese!). Who knew that there could be such ramifications associated with the choice of a letter. For example, I somehow had the brilliant idea of making both the un-aspirated "p" and the aspirated "pÊ°" phonemic. Now I'm at a loss as to how to express this difference in English letters. "Ph" would be taken to be "f" and "pk" or "px" wouldn't produce the correct sound. "Pp" would be an idea except for the fact that it would make it appear as though the "p" sound were phonemically longer than it really is, as in Proto-Finnic and modern Estonian. I've looked over the diacritic section of the IPA to see if there might be something that I could use, but other than the superscript "h", there is not. Would some sort of slash through the lower stem of the "p" work? That seems to be the only thing that is suggesting itself to my mind.

This is just one of the challenges presenting itself to me with transcribing the phonology of my conlang.

*Edited to correct spelling*

Ba neousai — The Stranger, by Charles BAUDELAIRE

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013
Found this as I was flipping through a large old book of world classics.  Instantly fell in love.  I've felt like this before- the stranger, the one without attachment except to the beauty of the world.  And who hasn't, at some point in their lives?

It's a simple dialogue, with no new words.  I'm starting to get more confident that the construction "frn ___ kriani" is the proper way to render "full of___".  I'm often lukewarn to such constructions at first (same with "the thirty friends", "ta tasnidan oxahl kee soiran") and then later on accept them.  This one is finally starting to "click", and hardly ever sets off my "this isn't quite right" sensor anymore.  Makes me happy.

<strike>I'll try and get an audio file of this at some point.  As my laptop is still broken, and I'm waiting for news back (talking to YOU, Asus), not sure when that'll be.</strike>   So, I've gotten an audio file done.  Sorry for the poor quality and the mistakes in it.  It was kind of a one-shot thing.  This was my first (and only) attempt.  Normally I edit stumbles out, but no chance to here.

 Hopefully things'll get back to better quality in the future!

Order of texts: Sandic -- Original English


Ba neousai - Charles Baudelaire, The Stranger

Fian olēémî, lēé ba kémâ frn delewan kriani- kiab baahl ân siadra lēése- adab pé, amab pé, kolnúb ú kadab?
Felē adab, amab, kolnúb ú kadab yneot lēlét felē.
Bal tasnidabin pé?
Iné ân ostonéb lēéxmî, frn ba gator felē ysa.
bal metokyab?
Frn mead ba iat yneot sa.
Bal wenab?
Biab yméaig ân se, biab ba jwia gator katemalēli.
Bal albab?
biab yfidaco ŵé jwrab lēéfida.
a kiab baahlra ân lēése, lēé ba neousai ba neoduusniatira?
ta lÄ“yucabin otiab yse ra...  ta lÄ“yucabin ŵak kafacin... pal toa... pal toa... ta lÄ“yucabin deyarain!


Tell me, enigmatic man, whom do you love the best?  Your father, or your mother, or your sister, or your brother?
I have neither father, nor mother, nor sister, nor brother.
Your friends?
You are using a word whose meaning remains unknown to me to this very day.
Your country?
I do not know under what latitude it lies.
I would love her gladly, goddess and immortal.
I hate it as much as you hate God.
Well then!  What do you love, extraordinary stranger?
I love the clouds … the passing clouds … over there … over there … the marvelous clouds!