LINGUIST List 3.479

Thu 11 Jun 1992

Qs: TV, Software, Predicates, Good, X-Bar

Editor for this issue: <>


Directory

  1. Ron Smyth, TV programme
  2. , Re: 3.470 Qs: Lx and Lit, Software, Nat. Phonology, SF
  3. Ronnie Wilbur, Query on predicate nominals
  4. "Barbara.Abbott", "that good of..."
  5. Judith Dick, Re: 3.469 X-Bar and VP's

Message 1: TV programme

Date: Mon, 8 Jun 92 20:04:48 EDTTV programme
From: Ron Smyth <smythlake.scar.utoronto.ca>
Subject: TV programme


I had a call today from Susan Perry-Ettel, a writer/producer for TV Ontario,
which is an educational network. She wants to do a programme on language and
thought, and has received the go-ahead from her producer. Given the recent
discussions about how linguistics is portrayed in the media, I thought this
would be a good opportunity for us to affect what goes into the programme.

I spoke with Susan for about an hour, and spent much of that time trying to
convince her of what NOT to do. She was interested in the fact that German
makes you wait until the end of the sentence for the verb, so you have to have
a good memory and maybe that's why they have such success in technical domains
.... So I told her about the Whorfian hypothesis, the colour term work, and
so on, but I really tried to steer her away from that and into the innateness
issue, syntactic complexity in people with low IQ's, universal constraints
that also don't show up as children's errors, and the whole question of
modularity. Then I suggested that instead of trying to settle the issue
in one conversation we should broadcast her request to the nearly 2500
subscribers to LINGUIST for ideas.

Let us put the question as follows: given the opportunity to provide TV
Ontario with a set of issues for a programme on language and thought, how
should the linguistics community respond?

I will receive responses (smythlake.scar.utoronto.ca) and turn them over
to Susan, then summarize to the list. Please give this some careful thought,
and try to keep your replies short.

Ron Smyth
smythlake.scar.utoronto.ca
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Message 2: Re: 3.470 Qs: Lx and Lit, Software, Nat. Phonology, SF

Date: Mon, 8 Jun 92 16:10:36 -07Re: 3.470 Qs: Lx and Lit, Software, Nat. Phonology, SF
From: <zbarlevsciences.sdsu.edu>
Subject: Re: 3.470 Qs: Lx and Lit, Software, Nat. Phonology, SF

does anyone know of software for speech synthesis on the MacIntosh,
especially with HyperCard?

i am especially interested in anything comptatible with systems 6 OR 7, i.e.
just about anything.
 this includes information on MacInTalk, which i was once able to obtain,
but couldn't get to work -- partly because of no documentation. if i was
just missing some simple piece of information (like where to click), that
would be a big help.

the basic english-phoneme via special spelling approach of MacInTalk (which
fortunately included [x]) is basically all i need. but of course i need
something that works! (we once had a "store-boughten" synthesizer in the
dept., but it disappeared terminally from the disk.)

if anyone knows of a more modern solution, but hopefully as simple as
possible. but really, anything will help!

thanks in advance!

zev bar-lev, san diego state u.
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Message 3: Query on predicate nominals

Date: Tue, 09 Jun 92 09:19:59 ESQuery on predicate nominals
From: Ronnie Wilbur <WILBURPURCCVM.bitnet>
Subject: Query on predicate nominals

In ASL, predicate nominals have no overt verb:
 ____hn
 JOHN DOCTOR

the predicate nominal has a head nod on it (without the head nod, the
sequence is supposed to mean "John's doctor"). The facts about ASL predicate
nominals appear to be very similar to those of Russian, as far as I am
able to determine. Essentially, you can negate the predicate nominal ("John
is not a doctor") or you can modify the nominal itself ("John is a good doctor"
) but attempts to modify the "missing" verb (with tense-aspect-modality, for
example) are unacceptable without an overt verb.

My question concerns what the analysis of e.g., the Russian case would be. Is
there a V slot that is unfilled?

There is a related construction in ASL:

 _____________rhq ___hn
 JOHN PAINT WHAT? CHAIR

"What John painted is the chair". I contend that this is a single sentence
with a sentential subject (which happens to be in the form of a rhetorical
question). Is CHAIR dominated by VP? The facts parallel the predicate nominal
- can't modify missing verb, can modify the chair. The prosodic facts support
this as a single sentence, and there exists a version which is clearly NOT
a single sentence (for example, inserting "I think" before CHAIR). What I am
after is analyses from people who wish to offer alternatives to the traditional
approach, because people have challenged my analysis (without offering
alternatives) and I don't know how to have a sentence without a V somewhere.

Please respond to me directly (wilburvm.cc.purdue.edu) and I'll summarize
the results if there is sufficient interest. Thanks. ANY SYNTACTIC APPROACH
WELCOME!
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Message 4: "that good of..."

Date: Wed, 10 Jun 92 12:30 EDT
From: "Barbara.Abbott" <ABBOTTMSU.bitnet>
Subject: "that good of..."

My brother just noticed his son saying something like "I didn't know
they had that good of advertising", and realized he had heard a lot
of that construction lately. Anyone got the low-down on this kind
of thing?
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Message 5: Re: 3.469 X-Bar and VP's

Date: Mon, 8 Jun 1992 11:21:01 Re: 3.469 X-Bar and VP's
From: Judith Dick <dickcs.toronto.edu>
Subject: Re: 3.469 X-Bar and VP's


In response to the following:

> Date: Tue, 2 Jun 92 11:25:57 CDT
>	From: Eric Schiller <schillertira.uchicago.edu>
>	Subject: Re: Query: X-bar and VP
>
>	framework as a whole. I am working on a review and may post bits
>	as I go along.

Pls do post - I am also befuddled and liked the sound of your suggestions.

	The notion that case and theta theory apply accross some sort of
	bridge between syntax and morphology is one which needs better
	working out. Morphology played a significant role in Syntactic

This is the problem that interests me in particular. I would be interested
also in any comments on some of the more complex case systems, eg. Finnish,
as well, if they occur to you.

Many thanks,

Judy Dick
dickcs.toronto.edu

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