"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
The World Wide Web constitutes the largest existing source of texts written in a great variety of languages. A feasible and sound way of exploiting this data for linguistic research is to compile a static corpus for a given language. There are several advantages of this approach: (i) Working with such corpora obviates the problems encountered when using Internet search engines in quantitative linguistic research (such as non-transparent ranking algorithms). (ii) Creating a corpus from web data is virtually free. (iii) The size of corpora compiled from the WWW may exceed by several orders of magnitudes the size of language resources offered elsewhere. (iv) The data is locally available to the user, and it can be linguistically post-processed and queried with the tools preferred by her/him. This book addresses the main practical tasks in the creation of web corpora up to giga-token size. Among these tasks are the sampling process (i.e., web crawling) and the usual cleanups including boilerplate removal and removal of duplicated content. Linguistic processing and problems with linguistic processing coming from the different kinds of noise in web corpora are also covered. Finally, the authors show how web corpora can be evaluated and compared to other corpora (such as traditionally compiled corpora).
For additional material please visit the companion website: sites.morganclaypool.com/wcc