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What is the Bouba/Kiki effect, and what does it mean for the evolution of language?

What is the Bouba/Kiki effect, and what does it mean for the evolution of language?

What shape do you think of when you hear the words Bouba and Kiki?   Have you ever tried to communicate with someone who doesn’t speak your language? Exchanging frantic gestures and impossible-to-understand words as you both become more and more frustrated? It usually seems like an impossible situation. However, scientists who are interested to learn how sight and sound…

The rise of COVID ‘snowclones’ – the mother of all linguistic phrases

The rise of COVID ‘snowclones’ – the mother of all linguistic phrases

During the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen an explosion of new words and phrases in English (for example, ‘covidiot’) and other languages, e.g. ‘Coronaspeck’ in German (to describe lockdown weight gain) that have helped us make sense of a period defined by social confusion and constant change, as well as global stagnation. The scope of language innovation in relation to…

Australian Navy pokes fun at machine translation in its recruitment campaign for linguists

Australian Navy pokes fun at machine translation in its recruitment campaign for linguists

The Royal Australian Navy needed to recruit 40 Navy Cryptologic Linguists, a priority role whose primary duty is to intercept and translate foreign languages. To generate recruitment buzz, last year they launched a digital campaign that highlighted the need for human translators. Thus they began to enlist the help of Artificial Intelligence, the very technology most job seekers are fearful…

Innovation – the future is already happening today

Innovation – the future is already happening today

The companies CuriousMinds in Munich, providing strategic and technical management consulting, and AVALON Linguistic, with its offering of integrated professional language services in Europe, have in common that, in addition to their focus on the quality of consultancy, performance, and service, they both also consistently and proactively embrace the challenges of the technological development. This courage to innovate directly benefits…

Introducing company CuriousMinds in Munich – our new consulting and innovation partner

Introducing company CuriousMinds in Munich – our new consulting and innovation partner

CuriousMinds in Munich … more than consulting. Today we are pleased to introduce the company CuriousMinds in Munich, Germany, as our new partner in digitalisation, innovation management and management consulting. They are our best recommendation if you want to take your company to the top. The experts from the CuriousMinds team have already helped us highly effectively, and they will certainly…

Our mother language is our identity

Our mother language is our identity

International Mother Language Day 21 February was announced by the UNESCO in 1999 to celebrate cultural diversity and to commemorate the “language martyr” experienced by students 1952 in Bangladesh. These students are now honoured by the encouragement of multiculturalism and the promotion of protective measures for endangered languages. It is hard to imagine the challenges faced by students who have…

How Morse Code still lives on in the digital age

How Morse Code still lives on in the digital age

Samuel F. B. Morse invented his eponymous ‘Morse code’ as a way to communicate via a series of dots and dashes. This elegant system revolutionised communications back in the 1800’s. Under the code, every letter in the English language – along with most punctuation marks and each number from zero through nine – was given a unique, corresponding set of…