Geoff Nunberg

Geoff Nunberg appears in the following:

So, What's The Big Deal With Starting A Sentence With 'So'?

Thursday, September 03, 2015

It has been called the new "um" or "like," but linguist Geoff Nunberg says starting sentences with "so" isn't a new trend. People have been doing it for years. We're just noticing it more now.


Tracing The Origin Of The Campaign Promise To 'Tell It Like It Is'

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

It's a common pledge of candor for a roster of presidential hopefuls. As linguist Geoff Nunberg explains, the promise to "tell it like it is" has its roots in black speech from the '40s and '50s.


What's A Thamakau? Spelling Bee Is More About Entertainment Than English

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Linguist Geoff Nunberg says it's fitting that the Scripps National Spelling Bee is broadcast by ESPN. (And, by the way, a thamakau is a kind of canoe used in Fiji.)


From TED Talks To Taco Bell, Abuzz With Silicon Valley-Style 'Disruption'

Monday, April 27, 2015

Linguist Geoff Nunberg considers the roots and resonance of the latest tech buzzword to catapult into the mainstream. "Disrupt" may be ubiquitous now, but could the term be on the eve of a disruption?


Don't You Dare Use 'Comprised Of' On Wikipedia: One Editor Will Take It Out

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Wikipedia editor Bryan Henderson has made it his crusade to edit out the phrase "comprised of" in more than 5 million articles. While his quest is harmless, it shows that zealots can dominate the Web.


Feeling Watched? 'God View' Is Geoff Nunberg's Word Of The Year

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Uber's "God view" shows a map of the cars in an area and the silhouettes of the people who ordered them. Linguist Geoff Nunberg says Uber-Santa doesn't just know when you've been sleeping, but where.


The Language That Divides America: From Red And Blue To Percents

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Nobody knows what was in the president's cup when he saluted the Marines last month, but it became known as the "latte salute." Do people still use "red" and "blue" when discussing a cultural divide?


Do Feelings Compute? If Not, The Turing Test Doesn't Mean Much

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

For the first time, a computer passed the test for machines engaging in intelligent thought. Linguist Geoff Nunberg says the real test is whether computers can behave the same way thinking people do.


150 Years After Marx, 'Capital' Still Can't Shake Loose Of 'Das Kapital'

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Thomas Piketty's Capital in the Twenty-First Century evokes another famous tome with "capital" in its title, and makes comparisons inevitable.


Hackers? Techies? What To Call San Francisco's Newcomers

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Linguist Geoff Nunberg lives in the Mission and says young tech employees have been pouring into the neighborhood. But what to call these new residents? He says the term "techie" used...


Sorry Assiduous (adj.) SAT-Takers, Linguist In Dudgeon (n.) Over Vocab Flashcards

Monday, December 23, 2013

Many students prepare for the SAT by drilling themselves on esoteric, arcane and recondite words — like esoteric, arcane and recondite. Linguist Geoff Nunberg doesn't discourage these...


Narcissistic Or Not, 'Selfie' Is Nunberg's Word Of The Year

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Linguist Geoff Nunberg says he feels a little defensive about choosing "selfie" — a word that wears its ephemerality on its outstretched sleeve — as the word of 2013. But not only was...


The Internet's 'Twerk' Effect Makes Dictionaries Less Complete

Thursday, September 12, 2013

When dictionaries add trendy words like "twerk," they're prioritizing the fleeting language habits of the young, says Geoff Nunberg. And our fascination with novel words tends to ecli...


Bracing For Google Glass: An In-Your-Face Technology

Monday, August 05, 2013

The new eyeglass frames allow you to take pictures and browse the Internet while you wear them. Early adopters focused on the tiny screens have already been dubbed "glassholes." Fresh...


'Horrific' And 'Surreal': The Words We Use To Bear Witness

Friday, April 26, 2013

After more than a week of gruesome media coverage, linguist Geoff Nunberg takes a close look at the words we use to describe events that mesmerize and horrify, that sensitize and dese...


Even Dictionaries Grapple With Getting 'Marriage' Right

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Lexicographers know they're in the hot seat as they confront the changing use of the word "marriage." Linguist Geoff Nunberg says the key to getting the new definition right is to cri...


The Great Escape

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Are you dreaming of a big summer vacation — on a staycation budget? Time Out’s Billie Cohen has suggestions for cheap weekend getaways. Hellooooo, Palmyra! Also: Mark Zandi of Moody’s takes a look at the history of subprime mortgages — and what we can do to avoid the next ...