There was a time, not so long ago, when I fancied myself somewhat of an expert in the ancient Greek language. I learned the Greek alphabet shortly after learning the Roman one, and throughout childhood I studied the language slowly but surely. Upon arriving at university, the Greek professors graciously allowed me to test out of the first year of Greek, which is how I ended up taking Greek 3 during my first semester, and went on to take every Greek class that was available. So imagine my surprise, when, after all those years of acquainting myself with the language, for the first time I recently came across the fact that ancient Greek has phonemic vowel length. I had a foggy notion of Eta and Omega being “long” vowels and Epsilon and Omicron being “short” vowels, but I had chalked it up to being a weak attempt at explaining how they should be pronounced, something akin to how in my native English they say that the A in “apple” is short, whereas the “A” in “acorn” is long. Phonologically speaking, the difference between these two is a difference in quality, not quantity—in fact, the A in “acorn” is a diphthong; not even a simple vowel!Read More
Skinning Cats With AI
Playing with artificial intelligence seems to be the cool thing to do these days, despite the world-changing implications that such technology may bring. And as I was playing around with ChatGPT last night, trying to think of things to ask it, it occurred to me that perhaps it might know the answer to an age-old question: What is the best way to skin a cat? Obviously everyone knows that there is more than one way, but enquiring minds want to know: which is the best? Surely AI would have an answer to this great conundrum.Read More
My Foray Into Cryptocurrency / 𐑥𐑲 𐑓𐑪𐑮𐑱 𐑦𐑯𐑑𐑵 𐑒𐑮𐑦𐑐𐑑𐑴𐑒𐑻𐑩𐑯𐑕𐑦
Today was a normal day. I saw that some of my domain names were about to expire, so I went on Namecheap, clicked “Top-up funds”, and within a few minutes had transferred enough dogecoin to pay for my domain renewals. It always makes me smile when I see the burst of colourful phrases in Comic Sans fly across the screen telling me that my payment went through.
What, not everyone pays for domain names with dogecoin? OK, maybe I am weird after all.Read More
How to buy a car in Mexico with cash
I am a US citizen living in Mexico as a temporary resident, and after going through quite an ordeal trying to buy a vehicle here, I thought I would share what I learned in case someone else in a similar situation is about to go through the same process.
First of all, I use TransferWise to move money from my US bank account to my Mexican bank account, and when I found a vehicle I wanted to buy, I thought I had all my ducks in a row. I live in a fairly small town, so when I went to the big city to buy a car, I just located the nearest branch of my bank and told the seller to meet me there.Read More
Clannad lyrics: “A Quiet Town”
In 2013, Clannad (one of my favourite bands) came out with their newest album, Nádúr, and after seven years, it appears that still no one has taken the trouble to transcribe the lyrics of these songs and to make them available online. I did this song just now, and I thought I would share it here for anyone who may be searching the web for just that.
A Quiet Town
Moraira is an old fishing town
The Christians came here long ago
And they worked and toiled with love and devotion Read More