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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

New from Cambridge University Press!


Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: Liminality in Multitasking: Where Talk and Task Collide in Computer Collaborations
Linguistic Field: Discourse Analysis
Abstract: This article investigates the effect of computer activity on talk during collaboration at the computer by two pairs of high school students during a web-based task. The work is located in relation to research in the wider world of the workplace and informal settings where multitasking involving talk and the operation of artifacts is known to occur. The current study focuses on how, when two students are working at the computer, talk continues or is disrupted during multitasking. Five examples are described in detail, beginning with a relatively straightforward case of serial multitasking and leading up to an example of complex simultaneous multitasking. Overwhelmingly in our data, only routine on-screen actions accompany talk, whereas complex actions occur with hitches or restarts in the talk, and true simultaneous multitasking happens on just three occasions in the data set. (Collaborative activity, computers, Conversation Analysis, interaction, language and technology, multimodality, multitasking)


This article appears IN Language in Society Vol. 41, Issue 5.

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