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Monday, April 25, 2011

Potato, Potahto: Linguist Uses Internet To Take A Language Census

(nicasaurusrex/Flickr)

(nicasaurusrex/Flickr)

How do say “roof”? How do you pronounce “caught”?

The way you say certain words might have something to do with your ethnicity or where you live, according to Claire Bowern, associate professor of Linguistics at Yale University and co-creator of the North American Dialects Survey.

The project uses the Internet to collect samples of how people around North America say a list of short English words. Bowern hopes that the results will give a portrait of how English varies with geography, ethnicity and across time.

Bowern has updated results from the census online.


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