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can you control your cards?

 
ziqiang wu
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This question just detect your ability to predict unknown event such as stock, gambling, etc. Can you predict how many posts will follow your post?
I predict that there will be 1789 posts following this post.
 
Jim Yingst
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I predict zero following mine. Sorry - I can't resist.
 
Jim Yingst
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OK, that was unnecessarily mean of me, so I recant. (For those who missed it, I had closed this thread, preventing further replies.) Y'all may now continue. For my new prediction: I forsee a particularly Meaningless and Drivelous thread to follow this! Enjoy...
 
Mapraputa Is
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a particularly Meaningless and Drivelous post
 
Mapraputa Is
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Ah damn... I read the previous post and Jim said:
Originally posted by Jim Yingst:
I forsee a particularly Meaningless and Drivelous thread to follow this!

Jim, you must be an oracle...
 
Jake the Snake
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I was quite surprised to see that Jim that we know has shut off poor greenhorn like that! At the same time Your post was brilliant and funny.
Well, just to inform original poster, Jim is one of the nicest people here. He and "few" more has been running this site for quite some time now and he has helped and answered questions to tramendeous amount of people. You shouldn't take any offence.
Predictions, anyone ... ?
 
Mapraputa Is
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Hm. Considering Jim's famous passion for snakes, I predict that "Jake The Snake" = Jim Yingst
[This message has been edited by Mapraputa Is (edited August 03, 2001).]
 
John Bateman
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Hmmm
I'm not sur ehow many posts before.. but I predict that there will be about 7 posts BEFORE this one.
(I also predict that this won't be funny!!)

 
Matthew Phillips
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Originally posted by John Bateman:
Hmmm
I'm not sur ehow many posts before.. but I predict that there will be about 7 posts BEFORE this one.
(I also predict that this won't be funny!!)

Good prediction.
Matthew Phillips
 
Matthew Phillips
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I am really good at predicting disasters. I predict that the democrats will gain control of the House in 2002 and that Bush will win re-election.
Matthew Phillips
 
Manku Thimma
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Ziqiang, I am curious about your name. The 'qi' in your name is pronounced 'chi', correct? So why do you use the letters 'qi'?
 
ziqiang wu
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Manku Thimma, u dont like qi? why chi?
 
Jim Yingst
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Oh, Manku's just looking for ideas for his next user name.
All right, I gather that the [current] system for tranliterating Chinese words and names to the Roman alphabet, Pinyin, uses "q" for the "ch" sound. So what I think what Manku is wondering (and I know I am wondering) is why does Pinyin use "q" when, to English speakers at least, it would make a lot more sense to spell with "ch". After thinking about this a bit, my guess is that Pinyin was designed to be as simple and consistent as possible. "C" and "H" probably already had other roles to play, while "q" was unassigned. And frankly "q" has no real role in Western languages that couldn't be taken up by other letters (of course, in English, neither does "c"). So it probably made sense to assign "q" to a common sound that otherwise had no single-letter representation.
This got me thinking about a couple of things though. If this is the case, why isn't China "Qina" now? I mean, we had to learn to write "Beijing" instead of "Peking" - why not rename the country while we're at it? Ziqiang or anyone else who knows - what do you call China in Chinese, anyway? Ummm... let's say in Mandarin, since that's what most of the "official" westernized names are taken from, right?
The other thing I wondered has nothing to do with Chinese, but with the Roman alphabet. Why in the world do we have the letter "Q" anyway? It doesn't seem to actually do anything - in Western languages it always need a "u" after it anyway. You can get the same effect with a "KW" in English, or "CU" in the romance languages. So where did "q" come from, and why was it kept around? (Evidently, it was so there would be an extra letter lying around for the Chinese to appropriate for their own uses.)
 
Manku Thimma
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>u dont like qi? why chi?
It just seems ridicurous to me
Found an explanation of how English got this unnecessary letter: here.

[This message has been edited by Manku Thimma (edited August 05, 2001).]
 
Manku Thimma
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>what do you call China in Chinese, anyway?
It's Zhong Guo. It's amazing so many countries have totally different local names: Nations Online.

[This message has been edited by Manku Thimma (edited August 05, 2001).]
 
Mapraputa Is
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It's Zhong Guo.
I also wondered what is genuine name for China. In Russian we call it "Kitay" (the second syllable stressed). Oh well, at least "Peking" is �Pekin� � close enough.

[This message has been edited by Mapraputa Is (edited August 05, 2001).]
 
Jim Yingst
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But Peking insn't Peking anymore. Or maybe it never was - I'm still about that one.
 
Mapraputa Is
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What are you talking about? I checked Moscow's airport schedule and they fly to Pekin!
 
Mapraputa Is
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But of course, that doesn't mean anything. My parents, for example, have E-mail address in .su domain. What is it if not Soviet Union? If I daily send E-mails to Soviet Union, why cannot Moscow's planes fly to Pekin... Never mind - just thinking aloud.
 
Thomas Paul
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Originally posted by Jim Yingst:
But Peking insn't Peking anymore.
And Constantinople in now Instanbul.
 
Thomas Paul
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You have to remember that English is a complex language that has borrowed words from almost every other language. English evolved greatly during the Middle Ages. Have you ever tried to read Beowulf in the original Old English? It is a foreign language. Even the English of Chaucer sounds foreign to modern ears.

Ye purs, that been to me my lives light
And saviour, as in this world down here,
Out of this tonne helpe me thurgh your might,

English as we know it today is a combination of the Anglo-Saxon and Viking language merged with the French that came over with the Norman conquest. (For quite a few years, French was the first language of the aristocracy in England.)
The result of all this is that English has a very rich vocabulary. It also means that English is the best language in the world for designing crossword puzzles.
 
Jim Yingst
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All very true. But the thing is, Q has been around since the Romans at least, and they didn't really need it either. A word like "quarto" could have been spelled perfectly well as "cuarto", but for some reason they retained this useless letter, and for thousands of years no one has been able to get rid of it.
Sorry, just had to rant some more...
 
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