Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Sunday, August 06, 2021

Esperanto was a washout, despite the best efforts of William Shatner.

So now, those wishing for a universal tongue are pinning their hopes on Globish. Far from being an polyglot of equivalent linguistics ala Esperanto, Globish is a vocabulary-simplified version of English, riding on that language’s dominance in today’s world.

That doesn’t mean that native English speakers would get a free ride:

As the world learns to deal with the domination of English, whether through Globish or the more-intensive language training proposed by the British Council report, it is native English speakers who could be in need of extra preparation. Though English fluency can seem like the key to the kingdom today, in the future, if there are two billion people who can speak English, the English speaker without knowledge of another language will be at a disadvantage.

[Swiss linguist Jacques] Lévy, who reviewed Globish for an online journal, said he liked its idea of reminding native English speakers that they cannot assume that the entire world is as fluent as they are. “The global English world is not a world where Anglophone people speak the same as they would at home,” he said. “We have to force native English speakers to limit the use of these tools.”

This assumes the average American or Aussie is verbose enough to have a need to ease up on his/her linguistic razzle-dazzle — not bloody likely.

This is premised upon the continued ascension of English on the Web and in business circles. That’s fine for now; what about later this century, when Chinese and Indian economic and political influence is expected to come to the fore? (In which case India might be expected to carry on the English-language continuity, albeit in a less-familiar strain.)

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 08/06/2021 11:40:04 PM
Category: Creative, Society
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I ain’t gonna lie: I’ve been quite happy with the revenue trickle that Google AdSense has been delivering on this site over the last several months. It hasn’t been enough for me to get into the blogging business fulltime, but it’s been enough to ensure a direct deposit from Mountain View every month (and that’s all the tipoff I’m going to give as far as precise amount).

Until this past month, that is. July brought a precipitous drop in AdSense juice. And so far, August is sucking just as hard. I can’t tell why — traffic is more or less the same as it’s always been. From what I’ve seen, the ads themselves have been no more or less relevant than usual.

So, what to do? Time to start experimenting.

The number one suggestion I uncovered, both from Google and elsewhere, was to integrate the ad boxes into the page by blending the color pallette to match the site’s layout. Since that really only applied to the wide skyscraper ad unit in the left sidebar, I applied this treatment just to there. So instead of the former white box with grey title borders and black/gray fonts — all of which I was rather fond of, actually — there’s the emerald green background with text style to match the rest of the page’s.

Part of me has misgivings. When you get right down to it, this is nothing but sneakiness: An attempt to make the ads look like they’re not ads, but rather another content section of the blog. I guess you could argue that the previous presentation of that adbox didn’t really provide much of a separation, though. On the other hand, I already decided to delve into this territory when I decided to put ads on this space in the first place. So if I’m going to continue with that route, I might as well maximize the effectiveness.

This might or might not be a permanent change, based on performance. If it works the way others claim it does — something like 60-90 percent increase in clickthroughs — then it’ll be here to stay.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 08/06/2021 11:04:22 PM
Category: Advert./Mktg., Bloggin'
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boomer broke
This weekend, I found an open field in which to try out my newly-bought boomerang.

I positioned myself properly, went through the optimal throwing motion, flung the ‘rang — and watched it plant itself into the ground.

No sweat; I figured I’d need a couple of tries to get it right. After all, it’s been something like 15 years since I last tossed one.

About twenty tries later, I still wasn’t able to get the damned thing to break right. And by that point, my arm felt like spaghetti, and I was tired of the abject failure piling up. So I took my curved stick and went home.

I still can’t figure out what I did wrong. I thought I was throwing it with the right angle and force. The only thing was, I was conscious of the relatively limited space I had, so maybe I wasn’t flinging it as hard as I could have. Still don’t know why it didn’t break at least a little. Obviously, I need more practice, and maybe more area.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 08/06/2021 10:11:40 PM
Category: General
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Last night, I went out with a bunch of relatives to celebrate my cousin Billy’s big 4-0 birthday. I’ve been spending most of the day recovering (not sure why, as I didn’t drink more than I usually do on a night out; must be getting old).

My godbrother Paul was along for the show. Although I don’t recall him mentioning it this time around, the last couple of times I’ve seen him, he’s gently clamored for a mention on this here blog.

I didn’t have that in mind when I shot the accompanying cameraphone video of him. But I figured it was a good opportunity to set myself up with my own YouTube account, while fulfilling the godbro’s wish.

The snag: For some reason, YouTube uploaded the 3g2 file of the video with the sound missing. I guess this problem is unique to me; there are plenty of other 3g2 files on there.

I tried re-uploading it a couple of times, and no dice. I then tried to convert the 3g2 file to an avi or mpg, hoping to upload that instead. I tried that with a couple of converter programs; I ended up with conversions that preserved the audio, but mangled the video. Plus, they would eventually freeze up and take WinXP with them.

It’s always something, isn’t it? Obviously, if I can’t post my phone videos on YouTube, then I have little reason to make use of the service. Hopefully I can find a workaround.

But anyway, Paul now has his moment in blog history. Too bad you can’t hear him, as he let go of a pretty funny little quip, that still cracks me up when I hear it.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 08/06/2021 09:43:50 PM
Category: Internet
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