Place Those Accents Correctly

Many Western European languages use the same alphabet as English, with one significant difference. There can be diacritics (or accents) above certain characters.

For a student of a foreign language, it’s important to place those accents correctly. Sometimes these tiny small markers can be forgotten, for example when conjugating a verb. If the accents are forgotten, the verb conjugation may even fail.

To check that the accents are placed correctly, have a look at the reverse conjugator. There you can write the infinitive without accents and the reverse conjugator tells, whether accents should be added or not.

Check for instance the Spanish verb ‘reir’. (Note! I misspelled it on purpose)

More info:

Reverse Verb Conjugation

Verb conjugation is the process of forming all the verbal forms from the dictionary lookup word. (generally infinitive). Reverse conjugation means getting the infinitive from any conjugated verb form.

In linguistics revers conjugation would rather be named morphological analysis. In morphological analysis the different parts of  word are analyzed: the stem and the modifiers. The modifiers are those parts of a verb that denote mood, tense, number, person, etc.

In Verbix the reverse conjugation (or morphological analysis) is made simple. The user simply enters any verb form, and Verbix tells if it’s a verb or not. If it’s a verb, then Verbix returns the infinitives that can be conjugated.

More info:

Don’t Panic!

The English language has a limited number of irregular verbs. Once you learn them, it’s pretty straight-forward to conjugate all English verbs.

There are, however, a number of verbs that are regular but undergo orthographical changes. Orthographical changes are there to ensure that the pronunciation is preserved in the different forms of a verb.

’To panic’ is one of these verbs. An automated verb conjugator might conjugate the verb in past ’paniced’, but that’s wrong. The correct past is ’panicked’, so there is a ’k’ attached to the stem to preserve the pronunciation.

The dictionary of Verbix knows a half dozen of verbs that are conjugated like panic. And the past forms are marked in blue to denote the orthographic change.

In addition the built-in rules of Verbix also know orthographic rules. So, don’t panic! Verbix knows how to conjugate verbs ending in ’c’.

Links to go:

Where on Earth Do They Speak…

Somewhen in the past I got familiar with a site called Ethnologue. It contains information about all languages in the world.

One thing that I was missing though is the lack of maps that would better show where the languages are spoken. At that time there wasn’t any other site either that would contain many languages plotted on the map.

So where is Muna spoken for instance?

I happened to have alist of languages along with coordinates so I decided to give Google Maps a try. With a minimum amount of (JavaScript) programming I got the languages on the map.


Verb Conjugation

Verb conjugation is the central part of the sentence in most languages.

Verb conjugation is the creation of derived forms of a verb from its principal parts by inflection. Principal parts is sometimes the infinitive like “cantar” in Spanish, but it can also be verb theme like “skriva – skriver – skrev -skrivit” in Swedish.

In Spanish it’s enough to know the infinitive of a verb to get all the conjugated forms; in the case of regular verbs all the conjugated forms are formed with the same set of endings. Unfortunately there is a big amount of irregular verbs that don’t follow the regular verb conjugation patters.

As shown in the example above, in Swedish verb conjugation there’s a verb theme consisting of four verb forms. All Swedish verb forms are formed by applying the same set of endings to the theme. The theme itself must be memorized, because it contains information about irregularities, if any.

Read more: