User talk:msh210

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Kham, efshar, kal, etc.[edit]

Hi msh210,

I've been thinking we should have a category for adjectives like חם (kham), אפשר (efshár) (sp?), קל (kal), etc. that frequently lead off sentences. ("Kham bakhútz." "Efshár mei-ha'ugá?" "Kal l'havín otó.") Does that seem like a good idea to you? If so, what do you think of the name Category:Hebrew impersonal adjectives?

Thanks in advance,
RuakhTALK 21:15, 8 December 2008 (UTC)

I assume you mean "that frequently start sentences" as a handy description, not as the criterion for inclusion in the category. (Can any adjective start a sentence, somehow? I suspect so.) What is the criterion, then? Cham (and kar) seems different to me from kal and efshar (and naim (google:נעים-לפגוש) and kashe), in that the latter are followed by l'- verbs and the former not. But maybe that's incorrect. (I've never heard efshar mehauga, but assume it's an elision of leechol, yes?) Why do you want to call them "impersonal": is that what they're usually called?—msh210 21:26, 8 December 2008 (UTC)
Re: handy description vs. criterion: Er, I kind of did mean it as the criterion. :-/   It's true that any adjective can start a sentence, though with most I can only think of sentences that would sound either poetic ("Khakhamim hem she-yod'im l'sameakh et nashoteihem") or ridiculous ("U-m'fugarim hem she-lo"). These adjectives are notable in that it's normal for them to start a present-tense clause, and in other clauses for them to be preceded only by a form of hayá. (Not counting adverbs and such.) Though, they can be preceded by l'- phrases — basically subjects in the dative case, if Hebrew had cases — as in "Lama l'Yosi mutar v'lo li?" I'll grant that I haven't given a very formal criterion, but to me these words seem to form a natural class; do they not to you? (N.B. most of them also have non-sentence-starting uses — "Ein mayim khamim" — just as in English many adjectives are also nouns, etc. But, not all: I can't think of any sentence using "efshar" as a normal adjective; in all cases I'd prefer "efshari" for that.)
Re: infinitivity vs. not: Maybe. google:"חם לגעת" does get some hits, though admittedly it's not the most natural phrase in the world. BTW, I'd "translate" "Efshár mei-ha'ugá?" as either "Efshár l'kabél mei-ha'ugá?" or "Efshár lakákhat mei-ha'ugá?", depending on the situation, but I suppose "Efshár le'ekhól mei-ha'ugá?" is basically the same.
Re: "impersonal": *shrug* They're always masculine singular, and they seem analogous to the impersonal constructions in English ("it's hot outside", "it's easy to understand it/him"), though of course not every such Hebrew expression translates to such an English one and vice versa ("I'm hot" = "kham li", "Can I have some?" = "Efshar?"; conversely, "It's raining" = "yored geshem"). I don't know what the usual name for them is.
RuakhTALK 23:48, 8 December 2008 (UTC)
Re "I haven't given a very formal criterion, but to me these words seem to form a natural class; do they not to you": Well, yes and no, for two reasons. (Well, yes, for the reasons you state, and no, for two reasons.) (1) The "infinitivity" (?) business. It seems like two classes, not one. Note, though, that you can say זה-לא-אפשר also (although I think "bilti efshari" is more common now). So maybe it's just one class. (2) It seems (contradicting what you said above) that every one of these adjectives can also be used in the normal adjective fashion (can you find one that's not?), which kinda dilutes the strength of the category. Perhaps call it "Hebrew adjectives that can be impersonal" or something.—msh210 17:38, 9 December 2008 (UTC) Small edit in light of Google's no longer supporting that syntax.​—msh210 14:43, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
I'd be down with two categories, if you can clarify them well enough that I can apply them accurately. Re: "'infinitivity' (?)": It's not a real word, if that's what you're �ing. Re: normal adjective use: Yeah, maybe. I mean, they are adjectives, and I'm not suggesting otherwise. Re: "Hebrew adjectives that can be impersonal": That seems a bit wordy, and it also risks bringing in non-grammatical senses of "impersonal" (mechanical/robotic; distant/standoffish); are you saying that "Hebrew impersonal adjectives" would be misleading? —RuakhTALK 20:29, 9 December 2008 (UTC)
Somewhat misleading, yes. No?—msh210 21:01, 9 December 2008 (UTC)
Or maybe not; we seem to have several such categories with such names; e.g., English uncountable nouns and English abstract nouns (which latter include fireside).—msh210 21:16, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
Did we reach a conclusion here? I can't tell. —RuakhTALK 19:07, 31 December 2008 (UTC)
There were a few issues we discussed:
  1. What words get included? Criteria? — This seems to be the (somewhat subjective, but that's okay) criterion that it's usual for such words to start sentences (preceded by "to be" in past and future).
  2. Are there two categories: things followed by "to" verbs and things not? — You think not, and, even if yes, we can always fine-tune later.
  3. What to call the category. — I have no objection to you original suggestion, Hebrew impersonal adjectives, if that's what they're called in English and they have no English name in Hebrew. (By that latter I mean, of course, that Anglophone grammarians/linguists have no name for this type of Hebrew adjective.)
So we seem to be good to go. I assume, incidentally, that yesh and en will be in this category (even though they aren't preceded by "to be" in past and future but are instead replaced by it)?—msh210 19:19, 31 December 2008 (UTC)
So, we did decide to create at least one category?
  1. Sounds good.
  2. O.K.
  3. I don't know if there's an English name for them, period, applied to either language. google:"impersonal adjective|adjectives" gets only 68 hits (257 raw), and most of them aren't in this sense (though some are). I'm suggesting this name because I don't have a better one; because these are adjectives; and because impersonal verb, impersonal expression, and impersonal construction are standard terms. (In a lot of languages, including at least English and French, you can't use an adjective like this on its own — you have to say something like "it is good/understood/obvious that [] " or "it is cold/hot/rainy in [] " or "it is easy/difficult/interesting to [] " — so it makes sense to view the construction or expression as a whole as impersonal. In Hebrew, you just say "tov/kamuvan/barur she [] " or "kar/kham/[n/a] b'- [] " or "kal/kashe/m'anyen l'- [] ", so it seems like the adjective itself is being used impersonally. And we're a dictionary, so it's more convenient for us to describe these as properties of individual words. (If this were standard category with a standard name — which it may well be, but if so I don't know it — then I don't think it would have occurred to me to ask anyone about it, I would have just created the category. I'd like your opinion because I'm not sure about this, it's just an idea I had. And I think it's a good idea, but maybe not, and anyway not all good ideas work out in practice.)
And I wasn't thinking that yesh and ein would be included, since they don't seem to be adjectives at all, but more like quasi-verbs. For example, they (especially ein) can function as copulas in formal Hebrew (as in שבכל הלילות אין אנו מטבילין אפילו פעם אחת or אם תרצו, אין זו אגדה). Funnily enough, my Hebrew–English dictionaries all give yesh as an adverb, which I think they're using a catch-all POS, and my Hebrew dictionary seems to give it only as a noun, apparently on etymological grounds. (Speaking only of the grammatical/existential use here. Certainly it has lexical uses as a noun, as all dictionaries agree.)
RuakhTALK 16:14, 1 January 2009 (UTC)
Hm. I maintain that yesh and en are used the way adjectives are, and seem to be adjectives. But having thought about it some more, I suppose they're not adjectives of the sort we're discussing here. After all, yesh li sefer is like kasha li handasa=handasa kasha li: still an adjective, just not of the sort we're discussing. Or so it seems to me at the moment.
More importantly: I suggest that the fact that these adjectives are "impersonal" is perfect material for a usage note; perhaps draft a usage-note template that can be included in all these pages and that categorizes.—msh210 19:59, 1 January 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for all your advice. I've gone ahead and created Category:Hebrew impersonal adjectives. I haven't written the usage-note template yet — I've thought a bit about what it should say, but it's still kind of vague in my head — so right now the category is still empty. I know how you like to keep your talk-page clean, but I'd kind of like to keep this conversation around. Is it all right if I copy it to the category's talk-page? Thanks again. —RuakhTALK 00:46, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

If you like, you certainly can, but it's unnecessary: I'll keep it as long as you like, and archive it thereafter. Nice explanation in the cat.—msh210 15:48, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

If I may intervene, and I apologize for not reading the entire discussion, I might be able to contribute on certain points that I did read:

  • The words yesh and eyn have been baffling Hebrew grammarians for a long time. In Hebrew they function like verbs with null subject. The ultra-conservative grammarians claim the thing stated as existent or non-existent is the sentence's subject (and there is the famous pseudo-philosophic mnemonic: ma she-yésh u-ma she-éyn hu ha-nosé). However, this theory doesn't hold much water for Modern Israeli Hebrew (I don't have enough information regarding Biblical and Mishnaic Hebrew). First, since the unmarked word order in MIH is S-V-O, it is quite remarkable that yesh/eyn sentences are unmarkedly built as V-S and never have direct objects, according to the ultra-conservative theory. It would be more reasonable to assume that yesh marák ("there is soup") is analogous with holkhim habayta ("It's time to go home", lit. "going home"). Furthermore, native MIH-speakers insist (intuitively) on inserting the clitic et before the alleged subject in yesh/eyn sentence, when it is definite, e.g. kvar yésh li et ha-séfer hazé or kvar yésh li ta-sèfer-azé. Since in MIH et always introduces direct object (unlike Biblical Hebrew where et functions in a more complicated way), this implies that the thing stated as existent/non-existent is actually the object of the sentence. Of course teachers at school frown upon saying yesh li et ha-sefer and insist it should be yesh li ha-sefer, but even careful radio/TV announcers introduce et in this position when interviewing rather than reading from the teleprompter.
  • Stepping up to a higher register of Modern Israeli Hebrew, yesh and eyn have nominal inflection (namely, yeshní, yeshkhá and the somewhat peculiar yeshnó; eyní/eynéni, eynkhá, eynó/eynéno). So we see here something that behave nominally but normally occupies the verb slut of the sentence.
  • efshár has a nominal form (in Hebrew nouns and adjective are extremely similar morphologically, so nominal here refers to adjectives too). It seems to behave somewhat like a modal verb in English. It introduces a base-form verb, it has a special negation (namely, í-efshàr, just like you say "can't" and not "don't can"). You've noticed that efshár lagáat is grammatical while kham lagáat is not, because the adjective kham don't have the modality feature that efshár has.
  • To sum it all up, the classification of these words to parts of speech is difficult, and even experienced grammarians differ on this issue. Perhaps a special category of "quasi-verbs" or "modals" or something similar would be a solution. Drork 17:56, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
    • Thanks for that. We (enwikt) seem to use (for any language) "Particle" as a catch-all header when we can't assign a POS. Not ideal, but.​—msh210 18:01, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
That seems to be a common practice. They did the same in the company I used to work for as linguist. Drork 04:47, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

ASL index[edit]

I thought you might be interested in Tom's recommendation at User talk:Positivesigner, "... assign Sign Writing pictographs for each [symbol in his sign jotting system]. The lookup would be visual enough to not even need to know English and it would be general enough to isolate a group of similar signs in a few steps. My code would not be seen except by the computer programs we use to create the slightly-inaccurate Sign Writing indicies. Once the entry is located, you can have it translated from a video to Sign Writing, PSE, and English."

I'm excited about the possibility of creating a useable index, as the current system still doesn't seem terribly easy to maintain or even to navigate. Your feedback is welcome. —Rod (A. Smith) 18:41, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

Why use the current system for the index? If we're switching to ASLSJ, do so for the index, too. Or am I missing something? In any event, I think that since SignWriting (the real thing, not our version) will, I hope, be Unicode characters, we'll be switching over anyway, so any current system is temporary and need not be ideal; so we might as well leave it the way it is for now even if we do think ASLSJ is better.—msh210 18:47, 13 April 2009 (UTC)
No, I don't think a full conversion to ASLSJ (temporary or otherwise) is on the table, because it doesn't seem to solve any problems of the current transcription system. Tom's recommendation was to combine SignWriting symbols with ASLSJ just to organize (and automatically maintain) our sign language indices. I'm sketchy on the details, but presumably the reorganized index would make it easier for a reader to find the entry for a sign of unknown meaning. I told him to be bold with one or two of the existing Index:American Sign Language pages, so we can at least see how his vision might unfold.
Browsing around the Internet, I cannot find any new information on the integration of SignWriting into Unicode. The layout issues seem so much more complex than Unicode combining characters can accomodate, so I suspect it will be several years, at least. —Rod (A. Smith) 20:37, 13 April 2009 (UTC)
I have a working solution for encoding Binary SignWriting to Unicode. Binary SignWriting uses sequential 16 bit codes to represent the spatial information needed for SignWriting. You can read about the plane 4 solution. You can view the Hello world. page. You can view the BSW JavaScript library (see function char2unicode). I'm currently rewriting the SignWriting Image Server to use Binary SignWriting rather than comma delimited data. It should be ready next week. -Steve 12:49, 08 May 2009 (UTC)
SignWriting Image Server beta 5 has been released to view and download. Section 3 has the Binary SignWriting definition with ABNF for data and Regular Expressions for tokens. -Steve 19:35, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

Morphology presentation template[edit]

I have prepared a first draft of a morpheme-presentation and -autocategorization template, {{morph}}. It is probably botched in its treatment of he|yi and lacks the categorization of the second morpheme, but its use is illustrated at referentiality. Like confix, from which this is derived, it is limited to three arguments. A variant (or a called subtemplate?), capable of handling more morphemes, at least six for normal English, more for Joycean terms, would be desirable.

It is intended to facilitate the separation of morphology (aka "synchronic etymology") and etymology (aka "diachronic etymology") and complements DoremitzWR's ideas at WT:BP.

Please tell me what you think and fix what needs fixing. DCDuring TALK 15:06, 24 September 2010 (UTC)

Hey, I've been away a little. It looks like this template has been worked on quite a bit since you've posted this request, which is therefore no longer relevant. Right? Thanks for seeking my input, though. —This comment was unsigned.
Hope you're relaxed.
I'm working up the courage and energy to present a proposal about the presentation of etymology, especially historical and morphological etymology using auocategorizing templates like, {{prefix}}, {{suffix}}, {{confix}}, and {{derv}} which requires some resolution of the confounding of historical and morphological derivation that now characterizes our Etymology section. Part of the problem is that different languages are at different levels of readiness for presenting etymology information of the two kinds. A bigger problem is that autocategorizing requires the creation of a lot of categories, even for a deployment limited to derivations within English. And the category-naming convention should be consistent with all-language deployment. DCDuring TALK 22:14, 11 October 2010 (UTC)
I've seen recent talk about categorizing by etymon, and don't quite see the point for the rarer etyma. As I mentioned elsewhere (though I'm darned if I know where now), how many descendants in English are there of Middle English withdrawen (verb)? Presumable just withdraw. Do we need or want an "English descendants of Middle English withdrawen" category? I say absolutely not. (OTOH, do we need or want an "English descendants of Latin canere/cano" category? That, yes, or at least maybe.) I am very much in favor of clearly marking morphological (or whatever it's called) etymology, where we have it, as such.​—msh210 15:51, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

"Artistic works"[edit]

Thank you for reviewing categories of fiction, apparently to reflect the results of a recent poll. However, Asterix, Astro Boy and Care Bears are defined as works of fiction (among other definitions); so, in my opinion, your decision of removing them from Category:Artistic works is not constructive and should be reverted. If you don't mind, I would be happy to repopulate that specific category with these terms. --Daniel. 23:04, 16 March 2011 (UTC)

As Fiction is a subcategory of Artistic works, categorizing them as Artistic works is redundant and per that poll a Bad Thing.​—msh210 23:11, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
"Fiction is a subcategory of Artistic works" is a complex concept, which I wasn't aware of and was implemented in the category tree minutes ago. Let me try to rationalize it.
As I see it, a title of a work of fiction is among the many terms that fit the umbrella of "fiction", so it may be categorized into Category:Fiction.
Similarly, a title of an artistic work is among the many terms that fit the umbrella of "art", so it may be categorized into Category:Art.
If we have Category:Works of fiction and/or Category:Artistic works, then a number of titles of works may be placed into these two categories and removed from Category:Art and/or Category:Fiction.
In short:
There is not necessarily a relation between the concepts of "artistic works" and "fiction", so my initial opinion remains, and my request too. --Daniel. 23:32, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
Huh? Isn't every work of fiction an artistic work? I do not understand your argument.​—msh210 05:06, 17 March 2011 (UTC)
Oh, wait, I do now. You're saying that the cat "Artistic works" is only for titles of artistic works, and is not a cat devoted to artistic works generally (despite its name). Recall that as a dictionary our entries are terms, not referents, so that Artistic works as the title of a category makes it sounds like either (1) the words in the category are artistic works, which doesn't make much sense, or (2) it's a topical category on the topic of artistic works generally, which would not restrict it to titles. A cat devoted to titles would not be a topical category but a lexical one (though IMO it shouldn't exist) and would be, according to our current naming scheme, named English titles of artistic works. So IMO either switch the current use of the category as now named to the more general one, delete it as overly specific, or rename it per above. Thoughts?​—msh210 16:55, 17 March 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I have been considering Category:Artistic works a good place to have only titles of artistic works. In fact, Category:Art serves well the different purpose of being devoted to art (including artistic works) generally.
As long as we have a certain number of entries defined as titles of artistic works, it seems natural to me having a category for them. (It's roughly like having both Category:Geography and Category:Place names.)
To make the objective of Category:Artistic works clearer, I would support it being renamed to Category:Titles of artistic works, but not Category:English titles of artistic works. It's a topical category to me, like Category:Languages and perhaps Category:Sex positions. --Daniel. 02:33, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

Spelling the unspelled[edit]

You mentioned that someone who doesn't know how to correctly title a page may put it under the "sign gloss" namespace. I feel that I could create a title for a sign-word page. But that does not necessarily make my title "correct." Is it first come, first serve? If someone feels it doesn't match the existing pattern, does that make it wrong? If I feel the pattern is wrong, how would I get a change approved?

I currently don't see how the phoneme / hold-move structures are helping to accomplish the overall goal of being able to "lookup the correct spelling or meaning" of a sign-word in a two-dimensional medium. Indeed, the goal of an orthography is to ease the flow of thought from mind to paper and paper to mind. Does the entry "A@InsideShoulderhigh-PalmBack-FlatB@NearCenterChesthigh-PalmDown Frontandback" help anyone to do that? If a new signer sees a person speaking in ASL, is there any chance they could "sound out" the spelling to find the meaning if they don't understand about the spacial aspect of ASL grammar?

My biggest problem is that I don't know anyone to talk to about some different ideas I have for these issues, or to whom I can express my concerns. I was e-mailing Rodasmith regularly at the end of 2009, but he told me that he had some better things to do. So that's why I'm writing to you here. Thank you for your patience. - Positivesigner 03:06, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Regarding your first point, we need canonical page titles. There's some discussion about this at [[User talk:Rodasmith#another ase entry, and some ramblings about dimensionality]]: what directions can be assumed and not included in titles. If we're keeping our current page-title system, this should be codified.
By the way, as discussed in the past somewhere, if and when SignWriting is included in Unicode, all the entries should be moved to SignWriting titles.
You're 100% right that it's very hard to find an entry by looking it up directly; as you know better than I, [[Index:American Sign Language]] is meant to ease looking up entries. Note incidentally that the difficulty of looking up a word one hears is not limited to sign languages; a Soundex-like search mechanism would be a wonderful addition to this site.
No one to talk with is a function of there being no ASL (or other SL) editors. If you have a specific idea you want implemented, I suggest you raise it at [[Wiktionary talk:About sign languages]] and point to it with a heads-up at the talkpages of the various SL editors (Rodasmith, Di gama, ECUgrad96, Neskaya, me, perhaps others); even absent editors might have an e-mailed notification in place for edits to their talkpages. Seeing support there, implement it; or, seeing no opposition, bring it to the Beer parlour. I think that'd usually be a good way to do it. If what you have is not a specific idea to be implemented but a concern to be discussed, then, again, bring it to [[Wiktionary talk:About sign languages]] with links from editors' talkpages. I don't know what else to tell you, I'm afraid; there just isn't much of a community of SL editors here (to put it mildly).​—msh210 08:07, 13 April 2011 (UTC)
Or just being it straight to the BP, bypassing the SL talkpage, perhaps. Few people will care, and it will clutter up an already cluttered BP, but at least more people will notice it.​—msh210 16:12, 13 April 2011 (UTC)

Maths words[edit]

Hi there. I see you are a mathematician. There are lots of difficult maths words in Category:Citations of undefined terms - (autoconvolution, biorthonormal, coinvariant and so on). It would be good if you could shed some light on any of them. Cheers. SemperBlotto (talk) 08:19, 3 December 2012 (UTC)

There are also a few mathematical terms to be found at User:Metaknowledge/Todo, like position vector and θ-intercept, although I daresay I could define those (but not without fear of having forgotten my geometry and thus of making a definitional error). —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:51, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
I know of an SOP meaning, and of no non-SOP meaning, of position vector; same for θ-intercept. I can look at the two lists mentioned; thanks for the links. Any way the math terms from the undefined-but-cited list can be listed separately? (Not sure how that can be done: is there some criterion that marks them, like a citation from the arXiv or a particular editor?)​—msh210 06:24, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Well, we do have x-intercept, you can RFD it if you like. Similarly, "position vector" is about as SOP as unit vector, IMO. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 06:26, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, x-intercept is IMO SOP also. As for unit vector, that's a vector with unit length, not at all clear IMO from the parts; position vector OTOH is a vector that signifies/marks a position.​—msh210 07:14, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
What, will they get it confused with all those vectors floating around with a direction of 1? What else could it be? —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 07:21, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
If someone started talking to me about a "2 vector", I'd have no idea what he meant, and would have to guess it were a vector all of whose components were 2.​—msh210 07:26, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for going through my list! (octachoron too?) —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 07:04, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Hm…. I see various online sources and just two bgc books are defining it as a hypercube in four dimensions, and I see no other definition for it, but I'm not sure it's attested. But if it means anything, then I suppose it means that  :-) .​—msh210 07:10, 4 December 2012 (UTC)

N-gon too, if you please. —Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 19:46, 3 January 2013 (UTC)

Nah, it's SOP: see -gon.​—msh210 00:42, 4 January 2013 (UTC)
But compare [[talk:n-tuple]] and [[talk:n-dimensional]].​—msh210 02:51, 4 January 2013 (UTC)
You wouldn't happen to be able to define "pseudocodeword", would you? - -sche (discuss) 08:13, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm afraid not. It seems to be used in the mathematical theory of error detection/correction, and to be defined in terms of some sort of graph (in the graph-theory sense, not like the graph of a function from analytic geometry) — but that's about all I can say. (It's also sometimes spelled pseudo-codeword, unsurprisingly, and I didn't check which is more common, or was at various times.)​—msh210 18:30, 15 February 2013 (UTC)


The English word minyan will go live as WotD later today, but I noticed that the Hebrew etymon has no entry. . . there's just Yiddish. Could you oblige? --EncycloPetey (talk) 22:02, 13 November 2013 (UTC)

I see Ruakh's added it. There's a homograph mináyin, too; I'll try and add it when I have a chance.​—msh210 20:39, 17 November 2013 (UTC)

template grepping[edit]

see also

-- Jeremyb (talk) 06:20, 12 February 2014 (UTC)

Many thanks.​—msh210 18:33, 14 February 2014 (UTC)


I've read a few actual adult books in Hebrew now (as opposed to just newspaper articles and whatnot), and I've found that a number of things I'd thought were archaic, because I only knew them from the liturgy, do actually occur in formal-but-not-archaizing Modern writing. For example, you asked about nitpa'el once, and I recently came across a real example, on page 173 of Memories After My Death, Yair Lapid's first-person biography of his father Tommy Lapid. After mentioning that Abba Eben was going to a secret meeting in Argentina, he explains why; he states that relations between Israel and Argentina were tense at the time, due to the abduction of Adolf Eichmann, and writes:

אבן, שכיהן כסגן ראש הממשלה, נתבקש לגייס את יוקרתו הבינלאומית הידועה כדי לפתור את המשבר.

I do still think it must be pretty rare, though, firstly because I think this is the only Modern example I've come across, and secondly because after you brought up nitpa'el, I asked my father about it, giving some forms listed in my dictionaries, and he said that he would only understand those forms as 1p future, never as 3ms past. (I'm sure that he actually would have understood them in context, but he didn't recognize them on their own.)

RuakhTALK 07:56, 25 February 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for the info. I don't think this changes AHE policy at all, though; do you?​—msh210 15:52, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
I haven't looked; I'll take your word for it. The purpose of my comment here was merely to correct something that I think I once told you and that I now think was mistaken. (Oh, and to provide a possible quotation, if one would be useful.) If this correction results in an en.wikt policy improvement, then great; if no such improvement is needed, also great. —RuakhTALK 07:58, 26 February 2014 (UTC)
Incidentally, while I have your ear eye: FYI, I've just RFVed a sense you added.​—msh210 15:57, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
Just thought I should mention that I recently accidentally came across an article titled “Developments in the Hebrew verbal system of Israeli children and youth” by Aaron Bar-Adon (1978) and it had this to say about nitpa'el:
nitpaˀel (nitCaCeC) is rare in younger Hebrew, although it is in frequent use in formal Hebrew, and to some extent also in the informal speech of adults. Sometimes one has the impression that the speaers conceive of nitpaˀel (which was originally a variant of hitpaˀel, under the impact of Aramaic, since the time of Mishnaic Hebrew) as a ‘combination’ of nifˀal and hitpaˀel, as if to enhance the passivity of hitpaˀel (which, as mentioned above, is now taken to be mainly a reflexive and reciprocal binyan, while originally it did have the passive meaning!). Thus, in hitka(b)bed ‘he honored himself; he had the honor; he was honored’, some speakers perceive more the first one or two meanings, while in nitka(b)bed they will perceive more exclusively the last connotation, ‘he was honored’, in the passive. At any rate, nitpaˀel has so far been rare in younger Hebrew. One would expect some productivity in that area too.
--WikiTiki89 17:34, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
Interesting; thanks. AHE says we treat it as a separate entry if its meaning differs from the hitpael. Apparently, that's most often true — at least according to Bar-Adon.​—msh210 22:54, 25 February 2014 (UTC)
I don't know if you can say that the meaning "differs", they just have different connotations. I think the definitions in the entry for הִתְכַּבֵּד, based on Bar-Adon's definitions should look like this:
  1. (usually hitpa'el) he honored himself
  2. (usually hitpa'el) he had the honor
  3. (usually nitpa'el) he was honored
Splitting the definitions onto separate pages will make it harder to convey this information. --WikiTiki89 06:10, 26 February 2014 (UTC)

Context label templates[edit]

Please don't restore all of them, and delete the ones you restored. They're no longer used and should be deleted. —CodeCat 12:55, 7 April 2014 (UTC)

Note: The following of mine was copied hither from user talk:CodeCat, where I'd posted it before seeing the above.​—msh210 02:40, 8 April 2014 (UTC)

diff doesn't seem wrong exactly, except that the intent seems AFAICT to be to empty category:All context labels by deleting its contents, and (a) I don't want anyone to mistakenly delete regional context labels, seeing them in that category and not realizing that they're regional, and (b) if the only context labels that will remain are regional then who needs the high-level category 'All context labels'?—msh210℠ on a public computer 22:03, 7 April 2014 (UTC)

On another but related topic, why did you redelete template:Holland and template:Hollandic? From the deletion summary I'd assumed the deletion was only because of the existence of the module; in that case, the template should stay to help template:eye dialect of and template:alternative spelling of. Was there some other reason to delete those two?—msh210℠ on a public computer 22:03, 7 April 2014 (UTC)

All context label templates are being deleted, so I'm not sure why you don't want some of them "mistakenly" deleted. I'm quite confused why you restored so many of the templates again without any discussion. —CodeCat 22:32, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
It is a mistake, as the regional templates are the only way to mark a regional "from" in the two templates I mention above so are needed. That's why I restored them. (Therefore, too,) I don't know why they were deleted in the first place.​—msh210 02:40, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
All the templates that were deleted had no transclusions. They are being migrated to Module:labels/data. So there is no reason to keep them. —CodeCat 02:53, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
I think instead of arguing for no reason, let's just figure out how to integrate the from= into Module:labels. --WikiTiki89 03:15, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
...because regardless of whether or not {{eye dialect of}} should have a from= parameter, one is indispensable to {{alternative spelling of}} and particularly {{standard spelling of}}, so there does need to be a way for templates with from= parameters to access Module:labels/data and retrieve information on what label to display and what category to add. - -sche (discuss) 04:08, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
That sounds like a great idea.​—msh210 05:17, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
Then why are you obstructing efforts to make it reality? Keφr 14:21, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
I have no idea what you're referring to. I did not, as far as I know, obstruct any efforts to make template:eye dialect of et al. access module:labels/data instead of the individual templates; I made no recent edit to template:eye dialect of et al. at all. (Nor was I aware of such efforts.)​—msh210 17:36, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
It is incorrect that all the deleted templates had no transclusions. See e.g. [1]. (Those without transclusions at this time should be retained for future use anyway.) And I don't see how you can say "So there is no reason to keep them." in light of the above discussion.​—msh210 05:17, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
That template wasn't deleted, though. —CodeCat 12:44, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
Oh, quite right. But, as I said, those without transclusions at this time should be retained for future use in light of the above discussion.​—msh210 17:36, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
But there won't be any future use. These templates will all be changed within the coming week(s) so that they no longer need the label templates to work. —CodeCat 17:42, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
When it's done and working, of course the superfluous templates will be worth deleting. But as of yet they shouldn't have been deleted.​—msh210 03:44, 9 April 2014 (UTC)
Could you please re-delete any label templates that have no transclusions? —CodeCat 11:47, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
User:CodeCat: Is the {{alternative spelling of}} issue solved? Keφr 12:54, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
No, that's why I said only delete the ones that have no transclusions. —CodeCat 13:48, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
Msh210's objection to deleting them was that {{alternative spelling of}} and other templates have not been migrated to Module:labels/data yet. And so new transclusions of these templates may appear, even of those which are currently unused. How about addressing that first? Keφr 14:12, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
What Keφr said.​—msh210 03:39, 23 April 2014 (UTC)
I put something together at Module:labels/templates (on hindsight, Module:form of might be a better place), and changed {{eye dialect of}}, {{alternative spelling of}} and {{standard spelling of}} to use it. Then I deleted the label templates again. No objections this time, I hope? Keφr 17:34, 24 April 2014 (UTC)
If the templates work as they did, then no objections from me — only thanks for doing the work on this. Why, though, does the module indicate that the code is temporary?​—msh210 03:38, 25 April 2014 (UTC)

Hebrew transliteration[edit]


I realise Hebrew can't be transliterated 100%, even with vowel marks but which one is incorrect - Module:he-translit or WT:HE TR? Maybe one or the other should be fixed or both? --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 06:25, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

@Atitarev: Can you point out where you see a problem? --WikiTiki89 20:12, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I'm not aware of the problem. I'm referring to the maintenance notice on the module. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 20:22, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
Nothing is "incorrect". The module simply cannot transliterate words that have ambiguous letters or vowels, or lack vowels entirely. The consensus thing is less of a problem, since even though there is no consensus, there is a current common practice. --WikiTiki89 21:05, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
OK. So, you agree with the wording of the maintenance notice? --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 21:45, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I personally don't, but I don't care about it that much, as long as the module is not used until it can somehow be fixed (such as by using separate Unicode characters for the two qamatses). --WikiTiki89 21:50, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
WT:HE TR, even ignoring the 'scholarly' column, is not followed: consensus I think is to transliterate פ as f, which it doesn't seem to indicate, and I don't think anyone transliterates ח as kh. (And there may be more errors, also. Those two jumped out at me.) Module:he-translit copies the latter of those two errors and introduces its own: (a/o) for kamats, which is (pretty much) never ambiguous but always either a or o, and h for ה even word-finally. (And, again, there may be more errors, also. Those two jumped out at me.)​—msh210 04:39, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
The פ error at WT:HE TR was my fault from when I added the scholarly column to the table; I just fixed it now (the scholarly transliteration is actually used in some etymology sections). But "kh" is used for ח quite frequently. I don't think that the "(a/o)" thing implies that any individual kamats is ambiguous, but that a script cannot possibly distinguish them without knowing the morphology of the word; I don't think that "(a/o)" was actually intended to be used as a transliteration, but as an indication that the transliteration is not known by the script. Omitting word-final ה was probably just an oversight in the script and not intended to be a change to the transliteration system. To me, all this is an indication that the Hebrew cannot as of yet be automatically transliterated, and not that the module is flawed. --WikiTiki89 06:55, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
Ping. Fair enough. But the distinction in your last sentence is one without a difference: if Hebrew can't be machine-transliterated, then any script that attempts to do so is automatically flawed.​—msh210 03:42, 25 April 2014 (UTC)
Ping. Oh, and another error in the module is that it doesn't mark stress.​—msh210 05:44, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Stress and kamatz (a/o) are not errors, it's simply not known for sure. Cyrillic based languages, BTW, use acute accent to mark stress, in Arabic, marking stress has been abandoned, as it is predictable or may differ substantially in dialects and depends on whether ḥarakāt are pronounced (very formal or Qur'anic Arabic) or not. The purpose of this and similar modules would be to transliterate as close as possible and match WT:HE TR to the maximum, in cases when people are not familiar with the script and no manual transliteration is provided. Any omissions were not intentional. I prefer "kh" for ח, as "ch" is misleading and it seems that "kh" is used quite often here and elsewhere. Any missing characters should be added to the module and for (a/o) we could use a default "a", a more common reading, which could be manually replaced with "o", same with other ambiguous cases. Please consider creating "{{he-xlit}}" (with a disclaimer). If we have an approximate pronunciation tool, it would be easier to find the correct one. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 06:35, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Unlike in Arabic, in Hebrew stress is phonemic. Usually it can be determined from the vowels, but not always; consider the minimal pair בָּנוּ (bánu, in us) vs בָּנוּ (banú, they built). And stress of borrowed words is all over the place in Modern Hebrew. --WikiTiki89 18:39, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
I understand this. Stress is another thing that has to be done manually. Still, "banu" (without a stress indication is better than no transliteration at all, don't you think? --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 22:28, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Yes, but "b(a/o)nu" is not. --WikiTiki89 22:34, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
I tried to explain the usefulness of such a (automated) transliteration method below. I'm not suggesting to use it in the main space. However, if one sees "b(a/o)nu", a person (like me) may search for "banu", "bonu" and find the right transliteration. Especially if one knows that most likely it's "banu", not "bonu". I have transliterated a number of Hebrew words that way in the past - found basic letters, then searched and edited (can't remember the exact words). User:ZxxZxxZ seems to agree with this or has a similar opinion. I can now transliterate with some level of certainty ביומטריה - "biyomet'riyah" (?) (do you think it's better than nothing?). Finding forms with all vowels always helps (I found בִּיּוֹמֶטְרִיָּה on Hebrew Wiktionary). I'm not actively working with Hebrew and not learning it but I don't like so many words having no transliteration. Does it make sense? I know some people will say - don't touch Hebrew entries, if you don't speak it. I don't hold such views for editing in any language - mistakes do happen, someone may correct them. If an editor makes a lot of mistakes, he/she should stay away and learn. I'm very thorough with languages I don't know or don't know well and I welcome any corrections - everything I edit is on my watchlist (huge). --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 23:11, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
One counterpoint is that it is much easier to find and fix entries that don't have transliterations than it is to find and fix entries with incorrect transliterations. But I agree that you don't have to know a language to do basic editing in it. Just to point out one mistake I've seen you make: words in the construct state almost always have internal vowel changes (unlike Arabic where only in rare cases the last vowel changes, ignoring the loss of nunation), for example דָּבָר (davár) > דְּבַר (d'vár). So be careful when transliterating or adding vowels to compound words. --WikiTiki89 23:27, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Thank you. Yes, that's a valid point. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 00:14, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
Re "I'm not suggesting to use it in the main space": where, then? By the way, a kamats is always a except before a dagesh or sh'va or maqaf or mater lectionis + maqaf or word-final unvowelized non-mater: only before one of those is it ambiguous. I assume Lua can capture that? In any event, I think a transliteration with "(a/o)" is awful in any public-facing (i.e. content) namespace.​—msh210 06:54, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
I think there are more exceptions, and it would be impractical to take them all into account. For example שָׁרָשִׁים is an alternative of שֳׁרָשִׁים (also, can you give an example of "mater lectionis + maqaf"; I'm not sure what you mean). --WikiTiki89 07:19, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
I think the first kamats in שָׁרָשִׁים is disputed a/o (and, funnily enough, this might be the one reasonable use of "(a/o)" in a translit  :-) ), but I take your point. Re mater lectionis + maqaf, see e.g. בראשית ל א, havo-li.​—msh210 07:34, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
I always thought that הָבָה־לִּי is háva-li, with the doubling of the ל being similar to the doubling of the מ in לָמָּה (láma). --WikiTiki89 16:09, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
Here's what I mean. Current entry @בִּיּוֹמֶטְרִיָּה doesn't provide transliteration or vowelisation. By using the translit module I can see it's something like "biyomet'riy(a/o)h". It's obviously "biyomet'riyah", at which one can arrive using a translit module. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 06:53, 27 April 2014 (UTC)
Actually it's biyométriya (sh'va nakh after the tet, no mapik in the hei). —RuakhTALK 05:28, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

{{he-usage-begedkefet}} and "modern speech"[edit]

This is an improvement for words starting with bet, kaf, or pei, but I'm not sure it works for words starting with gimel, dalet, or tav.

(I guess that problem was already there in the subsequent sentence, but I either didn't notice or didn't remember it till now.)

Should we have two separate templates? Or maybe the template should take the actual first letter as an argument, and do some intelligent stuff accordingly?

RuakhTALK 04:55, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

Re your first paragraph: Oh. Oops. Right. Thanks for catching that. But the truth is that I think my most recent edit was in error and the "modern texts" was correct the first time, since such modern texts as include vowels (kids' books and liturgy and maybe poetry(?)) follows that rule. I'm rolling back. But feel free to disagree and to unrollback. But you're right, certainly, that the remaining instance of "modern speech" is misrepresentative of modern pronunciation for three of the consonants.

Re your last: I like your second idea better. It can default IMO to {{padleft:|1|{{PAGENAME}}}} (if PAGENAME is parsed before padleft).​—msh210 05:29, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

Ping.​—msh210 05:16, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
Sounds good. Is it all right with you if I put that logic in a module? It's unwieldy to make a lot of references to {{{initial|{{padleft:|1|{{PAGENAME}}}}}}}.
Re: "if PAGENAME is parsed before padleft": I imagine that the parsing proper happens in a single pass, and the evaluation/expansion mostly seems to follow a sort of call-by-name strategy that makes it hard to say what happens "before" what, but yes: {{padleft:|1|{{PAGENAME}}}} evaluates to the first character of the page-name.
RuakhTALK 06:11, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
Certainly (in answer to your question).​—msh210 06:23, 24 June 2014 (UTC)

Global account for your bot[edit]

Hi Msh210! As a Steward I'm involved in the upcoming unification of all accounts organized by the Wikimedia Foundation (see m:Single User Login finalisation announcement). By looking at your bot account, I realized that it doesn't have a global account yet. In order to secure its name, I recommend you to create such account on your own by submitting your password on Special:MergeAccount and unifying your local accounts. If you have any problems with doing that or further questions, please don't hesitate to contact me on my talk page. Cheers, DerHexer (talk) 20:17, 3 January 2015 (UTC)


Following up on WT:RFV#ℸ, I asked folks on Wikipedia about that symbol, and in doing so I noticed the preceding thread, about the / symbols, which apparently have been used in books. I see we have an entry for ; does have any fixed / usual meaning that you're aware of? What about ; it is different from ? - -sche (discuss) 21:55, 22 February 2015 (UTC)

I'm unfamiliar with those triply stacked symbols, but certainly in the linked-to picture of text it carries the meaning Quondum ascribes to it there. I'm unfamiliar with also. Sorry I can't be more help. Pinging you because it's been some time since you posted this here.​—msh210 20:16, 26 February 2015 (UTC)
Ah, thanks anyway. I may RFV them if I can't find any information about them online. What about or , do they mean anything to you? I'm starting to wonder how many of these symbols Unicode just made up out of whole cloth... - -sche (discuss) 05:32, 28 February 2015 (UTC)
The latter () is definitely familiar to me: I've seen it (and/or its reversal ) in use. But that was back when I was reading more math than I do now, and I no longer recall what it's used to mean, I'm afraid. (Note though that we do have an entry for .) The other () I'm unfamiliar with AFAIR. And here's another ping, as above.​—msh210 15:02, 17 March 2015 (UTC)