Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

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Deinonysus
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Wed Nov 18, 2020 1:36 pm

Ogrim wrote:Deinonysus and PM, you make fair points, and I am not saying you should not care about pronunciation or even tones, my point is just that Norwegian is not a tonal language in the way that Mandarin or Cantonese are. But by all means, try to get your pronunciation as perfect as possible, that is only a plus (as long as you don't neglect the other parts of the language). :)

Sure, I think the case of Xhosa is actually fairly similar to Norwegian in that there are very few minimal pairs based on tone (one example is that ithanga can be either thigh or pumpkin depending on tone), and in actual speech the tones are buried in the prosody of a sentence and the tones are not very transparent unless you hear the word in isolation. Also, the tones are not written and most learning materials do not write them either except maybe in an initial section introducing the tones.I ended up getting frustrated and giving up on Xhosa for this reason, but there is a dictionary set that has the tones and I want to see if I can eventually get my hands on it for the next time I'm working on Xhosa. Luckily, there are much better resources for working on Norwegian tone, so I am not getting frustrated and I'm having fun seeing how words of different tones might get worked into a Norwegian sentence.

With Navajo, on the other hand, the high and low tones are very clear and it is easy to tell which tone each mora has within a sentence, so maybe that is a good example of a fully tonal language while Xhosa might be somewhere in between tonal and pitch accent (there is some debate by academics as to which one actually applies). I may be wrong but I think that tone might not be pronounced on every word in a sentence in Xhosa, but the problem with labelling it as a pitch accent is that there isn't a limited number of tone patterns that a word can have, any syllable could potentially have a high or low tone (and a long vowel can also have a falling tone; if I remember correctly, only the stressed syllable of a word can have a long vowel).

WALS classifies Norwegian as a "simple" tonal language, meaning that there are only two pitch levels. But from what I have heard so far, Norwegian has more of a contour tone system with two contour tones, and in tone two I hear at least three levels: falling from mid to low on the stressed syllable, and then rising up to a high level by the end of the word or phrase. I have a much easier time hearing the different accents in Swedish and I think the reason is that on tone 2, the two peaks have around the same height and there doesn't seem to be a mid level that I might mistake for a low level which is what I struggle with in Norwegian even when I hear a word in isolation.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Thu Nov 19, 2020 3:51 am

Det var ei mus i huset!

Yesterday was pretty crazy. The kid decided it would be fun to wake up at 4 am, then we had to call an exterminator and deal with a problem with our heating. By the end of the night I was too tired to finish my Assimil lesson, the first time in several days that I've missed a lesson. I've also been doing a Pimsleur lesson a day but I'm still not back to where I was before I decided to restart. Not much progress with Anki.

Not much progress today either. I've been working on my custom multilingual keyboard layout. It can write most languages that use the Latin alphabet. I recently gave up on Microsoft's free Keyboard Layout Creator and bought KbdEdit, so I'm adapting my layout to take advantage of some new features. KbdEdit allows chained deadkeys, so for instance I don't have to have ư, ơ, or ă on my keyboard as separate letters anymore to support Vietnamese because now I can have the deadkey for the breve or horn activate a second deadkey to combine it with a tone mark. With the extra keys freed up, I was able to add deadkeys for things like upside down letters or letters with loops or hooks, so I have much better IPA support than I did before. I was also able to bring back keys for ï and ÿ so now I can brag that I can write French without using any deadkeys (except for punctuation), although in practice both of those letters are quite rare, especially ÿ.

The downside to the changes is that Norwegian is now slightly harder to type. Å takes one stroke less now, but ø takes two extra strokes, although it isn't at the edge of the keyboard any more so maybe that makes up for the extra stroke. But now I can type:
/ˌ vʊɖɑnˈ hɑː ɖʉdɛ/ without going to the character map or googling an IPA chart!

(depending on your browser and theme /ˌvʊɖɑnˈhɑːɖʉdɛ/ might look better)

We've been really into Thai food lately. I have Assimil Le Thaï in my basement but so far I'm resisting. Also it seems that spelling is hard if you don't know Hindi or Sanskrit because they preserve a lot of sound distinctions that don't exist in Thai for Sanskrit or Pali loanwords, so that means Thai comes after Hindi on my list of languages to learn. And I have a lot of languages in my queue ahead of Hindi. Dear medical researchers, once you're done with a Covid vaccine could you please start working on immortality so I have time to get to all these languages?
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Thu Nov 19, 2020 1:30 pm

I think I'm getting even more comfortable with the tones. Not only am I able to identify the tone of a word in isolation, I am also able to guess the tone of a word when it is used in a sentence. This morning I was not paying attention during my Pimsleur lesson when they said "å drikke" in isolation, but I was able to guess based on the intonation of the sentence that it was tone 2, and I confirmed that by looking it up later on NAOB. I am also getting pretty good at predicting how the general intonation of a sentence should go based on what the tones of the words are. When Pimsleur asks me to translate something from English, the intonation that I use tends to match the intonation that the Norwegian speaker will use after the pause, within a normal amount of variation.

Another thing I have noticed is that even though the Norwegian long "o" is usually written as /uː / it actually sounds almost exactly like the German long "o" sound which is written as /oː / because it contrasts with the German /uː / sound which is even higher. Unlike the "o" sound in a lot of other languages, the German long "o" is very high and close to its long "u" sound, so it was hard for me as a beginner to tell the difference between the two sounds, although I did figure it out eventually.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:18 am

Musa er tilbake! Kona min kalte den Barnaby, men hun liker den ikke. Jeg vet ikke hvorfor den er ikke død. Kanskje har den ikke spist gifta.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Mista » Fri Nov 20, 2020 6:36 am

I'd like to say I hope you get rid of the mouse soon, but now that it has a name, I'm not so sure ;)

Do you want corrections on your writing?
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Fri Nov 20, 2020 11:23 am

Mista wrote:I'd like to say I hope you get rid of the mouse soon, but now that it has a name, I'm not so sure ;)

Do you want corrections on your writing?

The exterminator was horrified that we named it but my wife has the habit of naming all of our pests. Barnaby is cute but unfortunately my wife is very allergic to rodents so he can't be our pet.

Corrections would be great, thank you!
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Mista » Fri Nov 20, 2020 11:53 am

Deinonysus wrote:Musa er tilbake! Kona min kalte den Barnaby, men hun liker den ikke. Jeg vet ikke hvorfor den er ikke død. Kanskje har den ikke spist gifta.


Corrections:
- kona min mi
- [hun] kalte den Barnaby, men hun liker den ikke: depending on the intended meaning (habitual or one time), I would use either present or perfect here: hun kaller den, hun har kalt den, hun har gitt den navnet Barnaby. The preterite seems to imply that it's already dead, which it isn't (or wasn't). You can also use the preterite if you state a specific time.
- hvorfor den er ikke ikke er død: subordinate clause word order
- not really a correction, but an alternative construction that I personally would prefer (also, it's one of my favorite quirks of the Norwegian language): In the last sentence, you can also say: Kanskje den ikke har spist gifta. Here, "kanskje" doesn't work like a normal adverbial, like you would expect (and which it can), but it introduces a subordinate clause. Etymologically speaking, this is because "kanskje", just like "maybe" in English, is originally a (compound) verb.

In case you don't know, the constituent order of a subordinate clause is: (subjunction) - subject - (sentence adverbial, f. ex. negation) - verbal - rest of the sentence
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Fri Nov 20, 2020 3:01 pm

Mista wrote:
Deinonysus wrote:Musa er tilbake! Kona min kalte den Barnaby, men hun liker den ikke. Jeg vet ikke hvorfor den er ikke død. Kanskje har den ikke spist gifta.


Corrections:
- kona min mi
- [hun] kalte den Barnaby, men hun liker den ikke: depending on the intended meaning (habitual or one time), I would use either present or perfect here: hun kaller den, hun har kalt den, hun har gitt den navnet Barnaby. The preterite seems to imply that it's already dead, which it isn't (or wasn't). You can also use the preterite if you state a specific time.
- hvorfor den er ikke ikke er død: subordinate clause word order
- not really a correction, but an alternative construction that I personally would prefer (also, it's one of my favorite quirks of the Norwegian language): In the last sentence, you can also say: Kanskje den ikke har spist gifta. Here, "kanskje" doesn't work like a normal adverbial, like you would expect (and which it can), but it introduces a subordinate clause. Etymologically speaking, this is because "kanskje", just like "maybe" in English, is originally a (compound) verb.

In case you don't know, the constituent order of a subordinate clause is: (subjunction) - subject - (sentence adverbial, f. ex. negation) - verbal - rest of the sentence

Tusen takk!

I'm getting interference from "konan mín" in Icelandic. I even looked up the chart for Norwegian and saw that the proper word was "mi", but I still wrote "min"! Hopefully this will go away once my Norwegian starts getting better than my Icelandic, which shouldn't take long since I barely speak any Icelandic.
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Re: Bønder og Bønner - 6 Norwegian courses in 4 languages

Postby Deinonysus » Mon Nov 23, 2020 3:39 pm

Norsk

I was disappointed when I was doing my Pimsleur lesson and I kept mishearing that "gjerne" sounded like it was tone 2 when I knew it was tone 1. But then I looked it up when I got home and it was tone 2 after all, I just wrote it down wrong in my Assimil Norwegian tones Anki deck! I appreciate that Assimil writes the tone for every word in a dialog that has one, but the way they represent it is really stupid. The stressed tone is bold, and for tone 1 that's it but for tone 2 the vowel at the end of the tone phrase is marked with a vowel in italics. But it's really hard to tell a single italic letter from a single plain letter!

I ran into the subordinate clause "kansjke" construction in Duolingo and it was the one they recommended! I had used the V2 construction and they accepted that one too.

One really confusing thing about learning Norwegian after German is that in German, the suffix "en" marks the plural, but in Norwegian it marks the definite singular. So I see something like "damen" in Norwegian and I think it means "ladies" (which it would in German) when in fact it means "the lady" in Norwegian.

I've been distracted from language learning again (see below). But I'm starting to get back into language learning. Yesterday was the first time in a while that I did an Assimil lesson; I also reviewed the audio for all of the previous lessons. I'm trying to catch up on my Anki deck. My highest priority resources are Pimsleur, Assimil, and CALST. If I can also make progress with Nils that would be great, and I'm also doing just enough Duolingo to keep my streak going and not get kicked out of diamond. I've given up on working on Langenscheidt for now but I'm hoping to go through it later.

English

I've been distracted from language learning again. I have a shallow English writing system with no digraphs I've been working on for years. By shallow I mean that it has few if any spelling rules; a deep writing system would have many spelling rules. Over the years I've started to think that deep writing systems and digraphs aren't bad as long as they're consistent and unambiguous, and dealing with Norwegian's rules for long and short vowels inspired me to create a new deep writing system for English. I went through a few iterations over the weekend and I ended up with something I really like. I'll keep practicing it to work out the kinks and formalize the rules, and then maybe I'll make a post about it.

My shallow writing system had something like 50 letters, but the deep system only has two completely new letters (ð and þ are back from Old English, but they are only used about as often as ß in German). There are also five new diacritic marks for the five vowels a, e, i, o, and u:
  • Without a diacritic mark, the vowel can be short or long depending on spelling rules.
  • A grave accent marks an always-short sound; ì would usually be written as "y" as in "happy" unless it could be mistaken for a consonant, as in "strontìàm" (strontium) or "carrìer".
  • A circumflex is used for checked long vowels; unlike other long vowels, these must be followed by a consonant and can't end a word. Examples are "âsk", "ôrànge", and "hûrt".
  • The letter "a" has an additional long sound that is spelled with an acute accent. It is used in words like "pám" (palm) and "fáðer" (father).
  • If the long version of a plain vowel would be used in a place where spelling rules would indicate a short vowel, it is marked with a macron, as in "nōbler" and "mīnd". The final diacritic mark indicates stress. The vowels à, è, er, and ỳ can never be stressed. By default the primary stress goes on the first stressable vowel. If this is not the case a stress mark (vertical line) is placed under the stressed vowel, as in "himse̩lf". A stress mark can occur together with any other accent mark.
Consonants have some complicated rules. Some consonant sounds are spelled differently depending on whether the following vowel is "slender" or "broad". The slender, or front, vowels are any variation of e, i, or y; all the other vowels are broad. Consonants can also have different forms based on position in a word and whether the sound is alone and immediately follows a short vowel.

Most of the 100 or so most common words and their inflected, contracted, or compound forms all keep their traditional spelling, even when a prefix or suffix with new spelling is added. Stress is marked as normal even in irregular words.

Here's a sample text (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights):
  • Traditional: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
  • Deep: All humàn beings are born free and equàl in dignity and rites. They are èndowed with rezàn and conshànce and shùd act tàwôrds one ànother in a spirrit of brutherhùd.
  • Shallow: Ăl hūm·n bēiŋz år bôrn frē and ēq·l in dignitʏ and rīts. Ðā år ᵋndŏd wiþ rēz·n and konʃ·ns and ʃʊd act t·wôrdz wun ·nuðᵋr in a spirit of bruðᵋrhʊd.
Above is the most radical version of my shallow alphabet. It has no spelling rules and only three irregular words. I also have more moderate versions with some spelling rules and more irregular words. I think the shallow alphabet was pretty good for what it was but was maybe a bit too out there. The deep version should be much more readable for users of traditional English spelling, although it would be harder to learn for new learners of English writing because there are so many rules to keep track of.

Progress-o-meter™

Norsk

: 7 / 60 Pimsleur Norwegian
: 56 / 860 Duolingo Norwegian
: 9 / 100 Assimil Le norvégien
: 4 / 26 The Mystery of Nils (Part 1)
: 0 / 15 Langenscheidt Norwegisch mit System
: 11 / 15 CALST long ø drills

English

: 2 / 21 Nathaniel Hawthorne - The House of Seven Gables
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Re: Norwegian Blitz: 5 courses in 4 languages & 4 months

Postby tractor » Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:59 pm

Deinonysus wrote:This is different from French or German where the pronoun matches the grammatical gender whether or not the noun represents a person.

Nynorsk and many of the dialects work more or less like French and German in this regard.

– Kva er klokka?
– Ho er fem.

– Kvar er bilen?
– Han står i garasjen.
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