Impossible English Grammar

While I was in Mexico, I was walking to the store with a friend, who is also a fellow linguistics student. He was telling me a story. In the course of that story a naturally occurring sentence flowed “out of his mouth”. After he said that sentence I let him finish his thought and I asked him if the sentence was gramatical.

Here is the sentence:

Yesterday, I saw the latin version of one of my friend’s husbands in Sorinana.Sorinana chain of stores in Mexico.

My contention was that the “s” on “husbands” was ungrammatical.

Of course, if the sentence is read:

Yesterday, I saw the latin version of one of my friend’s husband in Sorinana.

The sentence sounds awkward. Perhaps it is not a well formed sentence. But is it ungrammatical? What is the violation which makes the sentence sound awkward? Is it the constrained unit [one of my friend’s] which is embedded in another gramatical unit, which is apparently unconstrained [the latin version of…]?

We tried to move the gramatical units around and did not find a satisfying solution.

Yesterday, I saw the latin version of the husband of one of my friends in Soriana.

Yesterday, I saw the latin version of one of my friend’s husband in Soriana.

Yesterday, I saw a man who looked like my friend’s husband in Soriana.

Yesterday, I saw a man who could have passed as the latin version of one of my friend’s husband in Soriana.

Yesterday, I saw a man who could have passed as the latin version of the husband of one of my friends in Soriana.

Yesterday, in Soriana, I saw a latino version of my friend’s husband.

Yesterday, I saw a the latin version of the husband of one of my friends in Soriana.

Yesterday, I saw in Soriana the latin version of the husband of one of my friends.

All this variation in options of for information ordering has led me to ask three questions of English:

  1. How is Time, Manner and place naturally ordered in English?
  2. What is the prominent element of information in each option and why?
  3. What are the Elements?

SSH, Unix commands & RegEx

This summer I am sitting in on a computational linguistics course. It is the first instruction I have had about UNIX. Pretty Awesome.
This has required me to do some googling looking from terminal commands.

This is kind of a sketch of where I have been.

UNIX:
http://www.osxfaq.com/Tutorials/LearningCenter/

SSH:
http://kimmo.suominen.com/docs/ssh/
http://ss64.com/osx/

TERMINAL:
http://homepage.mac.com/rgriff/files/TerminalBasics.pdf

grep:
http://www.thegeekstuff.com/2009/03/15-practical-unix-grep-command-examples/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grep
http://www.computerhope.com/unix/ugrep.htm

Regular Expressions:
http://www.zytrax.com/tech/web/regex.htm
http://www.regular-expressions.info/tutorial.html
http://gnosis.cx/publish/programming/regular_expressions.html

RegEx and Unicode:
One of the issues that I have had with RegEx has been what is a natural class? i.e. [A-Z], [A-Za-z], [0-9], etc. As a linguist I deal a lot with IPA characters, subscripts, superscripts, unicode, and diacritics. How am I to define a natural class with these? Can I define a natural class based on the phonology of the language?

So I did some more searching:
http://unicode.org/reports/tr18/
http://unicode.org/reports/tr18/tr18-5.1.html
http://icu-project.org/docs/papers/iuc26_regexp.pdf
http://courses.ischool.berkeley.edu/i256/f06/papers/regexps_tutorial.pdf
http://wapedia.mobi/en/Regular_expression?t=5.

RegEx+PERL+Unicode:
http://perldoc.perl.org/perlretut.html

PERL:
http://www.enginsite.com/Library-Perl-Regular-Expressions-Tutorial.htm
http://www.cgi101.com/book/connect/mac.html
http://www.mactech.com/articles/mactech/Vol.18/18.09/PerlforMacOSX/index.html

Python:
http://www.amk.ca/python/howto/regex/

Simple Linguistics software

I often see good (maybe not sexy), software, like iBable designed on the Mac for scientific purposes. I often wonder, “Why hasn’t anyone done something for or with linguistics?” linguistics is a big field. Don’t get me wrong. It is also a field with few standardizations for data interoperability, and even fewer standards for data description and markup. Just seeing something like iBable is inspiring to want to learn Ruby and do something for linguistic data.

The Apple developer program is only $99 a year.
Tutorial on Ruby by Phusion.

Lasting Linguistics: Making a Meaningful Mark

John Clifton, Steve Marlett, and Hugh’s materials can be downloaded below:

The keynote presentations:

Hugh’s files have the title: Acadmic forum [sic] View it: Online
Or download it as: PDF, QuickTime, or as a Keynote file.

Steve’s files have the title: MakingItLast2
View it: Online
Or download it as: PDF, QuickTime, or as a PowerPoint file.