Wordsmith Ben Zimmer talks about the year in words—from "occupy" to "supercommittee" to "bunga bunga" to "tiger mother." He'll also look at some of the phrases, like "leading from behind" and "win the future" to tell us what the national vocabulary reveals about 2011. Ben Zimmer writes a biweekly language column for the Boston Globe and is the former "On Language" columnist for The New York Times Magazine. He's also executive producer of VisualThesaurus.com and Vocabulary.com.
Let us know what your words of the year are! Leave a comment below!
Ben Zimmer, executive producer of VisualThesaurus.com and Vocabulary.com, and New York Times contributor, explains how forensic linguists try to detect "fingerprints" in e-mails and other digital writing. His article "Decoding Your E-Mail Personality" looks at the how it's done and what your e-mails and digital writing reveal about you.
Tonya Gonella Frichner, president and founder of the American Indian Law Alliance, recent North American Regional Representative to the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, and Ben Zimmer, executive producer of the Visual Thesaurus and Vocabulary.com, discuss the controversy over the use of an American Indian hero, Geronimo, as the code-name for the Bin Laden operation.
Ben Zimmer, Executive Producer of the Visual Thesaurus and Vocabulary.com is putting John and Celeste to the test by asking them to identify the real definition of words with truly American origins. Could you identify absquatulate, callithump and copacetic? If so, you might do well on producer Kristen Meinzer's quiz.
On Language columnist for the New York Times Magazine Ben Zimmer and Stephen Baker, author of Final Jeopardy: Man vs Machine and the Quest to Know Everything talk about how the IBM's super computer won last night on Jeopardy! and what it means when artificial beats human intelligence.
Ben Zimmer, "On Language" columnist for the New York Times and executive producer of Visual Thesaurus and Vocabulary.com, takes a closer look at some of the words and phrases that the president used in his State of the Union speech. Also, we get more insight into the president's smoked salmon joke from Niki Russ, fourth-generation co-owner of the Lower East Side fish shop staple Russ & Daughters, who explains the difference between smoked salmon and lox.
Ben Zimmer, New York Times magazine’s “On Language” columnist and executive producer of the Visual Thesaurus, discusses the worst words of 2010—from “enhanced pat down” to “anchor baby” to “mama grizzly.” We’ll be speaking with listeners about the words they hope disappear with the year’s end.
Leave a comment to share your nominations for the worst words of the year!
The "World Wide Web" has become the central way most people interact with (and describe) the network of text and media on the internet. Twenty years ago today it was a temporary name given by British computer scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee to an information management project he was working on. Ben Zimmer, linguist, lexicographer and “On Language” columnist for our partner, The New York Times Magazine, joins us to discuss how language describing the Web has evolved over the last two decades.
Ben Zimmer, the On Language columnist for the New York Times Sunday Magazine, discusses recent invented words: from Sarah Palin’s recent use of the word “refudiate,” to words like "ginormous," which have become part of the popular lexicon. We’ll be taking calls!
What are some of your favorite—or least favorite—made up words? Tell us by leaving a comment!
Legendary announcer Bob Sheppard is being honored at Yankee Stadium today. We follow up on a particular quirk in his delivery. Ben Zimmer, writer of the "On Language" column in the NY Times Magazine, talks about Sheppard's voice and why people spoke so differently way back when. Plus, did Ronald Reagan really make your car's bumper less effective?
Stories of unintended consequences -- from a psychologist who may have helped create a terrorist, to a toxic lake that spawned new life.
For more than two months, we've tracked news and developments of the Gulf oil spill. But is it technically a "spill?" The broken pipe is spilling (or gushing, or spewing, or leaking) as many as 30,000 to 60,000 gallons of oil a day. Is it time for some new terminology? What would you call the oil spill, and why?