Why doesn’t Quora have Most Banned Writer category?

For the same reasons presented at Tatiana Estévez’s answer to Why does Quora delete all questions pertaining to the ban of Quora users?

It would be seen by Quora as violating BNBR, and it would be seen by Quora as embarrassing to writers. The scenario brought up recurrently by Quora moderators is the writer going for a job interview, and the prospective employers having Googled ahead the writer’s activity on Quora.

What names were historically used to refer to your spoken language before assuming their current form?

As Names of the Greeks – Wikipedia details, the name that the Byzantines gave themselves, and the name that Modern Greeks traditionally gave themselves as a result, was Romans: Romioi, with Hellene reserved for the Ancient Greeks (or for pagans in general).

It follows that the name Greeks traditionally gave their vernacular was Roman, Romeika, with Hellenic reserved for Ancient Greek. And this term entered 18th and 19th century English as Romaic.

In fact this book written in 1855 explicitly contrasts Romaic and Modern Greek: Romaic and Modern Greek. Romaic is what Greeks called Demotic, the spoken language; “Modern Greek” is what Greeks called Katharevousa, the diglossic written language.

Romaic passed out of usage by the end of the 19th century in English, as Demoticism gained ground and as Greeks grew uncomfortable with anything Greek being called anything but Greek. Romeika is obsolete now in Greek too, though many will still remember when people used to say “am I speaking Romaic to you?!” (same meaning as “English, m*thaf*cka, do you speak it?”). That’s “am I speaking Hellenic [Greek] to you?!” now, of course.

Answered 2017-02-23 · Upvoted by

Steve Rapaport, Linguistics PhD candidate at Edinburgh. Has lived in USA, Sweden, Italy, UK. and

David Minger, Master of Arts, Linguistics, UC Davis

What are some surprising things about you?

Habib le toubib, you already know about me having three cousins also called Nick Nicholas, and that I translated Hamlet into Klingon, so those things I won’t count as surprising.

So what should I count?

  • I can dance. Not just dad dancing as I walk into a cafe, although I certainly do that. I do dance Greek dances, and I can pick the steps up for unfamiliar dances readily—although not if they’re from up north. (I did try to dance along to a 13/8 number from Florina/Lerin once. I really did try.) I have had salsa lessons too, although I think my hips are not yet Latino hips.
  • In high school, the disciplines that fascinated me were mathematics and physics. No, you’re not missing any pearls of wisdom from me in those topics. When I switched to the humanities, I really switched. My engineering education had successfully killed off any love I had for those disciplines.
    • Oh, and word to the Melbourne Uni Physics Department. If anyone thinks teaching students Special Relativity without teaching them Classical Mechanics first is a good idea? Fire them.
  • You would think that, with my prodigious intellect, my analytical background, and my incisive insights, I’d be genius at strategy games, right?

    … Why the hell would you think that?!

    My gameplay in Civ—all iterations of Civ—was best summed up 15 years ago, by my colleague idly watching me play. “You’re not actually playing Civ at all, are you? You’re just randomly moving all the pretty horseys around the screen.”

    I do enjoy escape rooms. Though they’re not a good combination with anxiety disorder.

Is there a way to view my Quora stats from the date I joined instead of from the data Quora was created?

My all-time stats start from 2013, not from 2010:

Of course, given that I joined in 2015, that makes my stats graph nowhere near as usefully granular as it could be.

Is there a way to view my Quora stats from the date you joined instead of 2013?

Not that I know of. Be grateful you can see your all-time stats at all. (Takes me about a minute.)

How likely is it that the Cypriot Greek word for ironing board is related not only to horse but also to the English “apparatus”?

Not likely.

Not impossible. But not likely.

Let’s think this though, and the considerations for us thinking this through are not specific to Cyprus; they are pretty generic in etymology.

English was a donor language to Cypriot Greek while the British ruled Cyprus, from 1878 through 1960, and as an international language since. While there is English in Cypriot, there’s isn’t all that much; there’s a lot more Old French, Venetian, and Turkish. (Btw, if anyone reading thinks that Cypriot Greek tʃaera is a borrowing of English chair, stop that. It’s a borrowing of Old French chair.)

The first question to ask is: could the word be just Greek? The second question to ask is: could the word be English at all? If the answer to both is yes, then you may well be dealing with a contamination of the two sources: words don’t always have a single origin, especially if the two origins sound very similar.

So, first up, could someone come up with the term “horse” to describe an ironing board? Of course they could. An ironing board has four legs, and a flat back that you put things on. From Google, I see that ironing horse is occasionally used in English to refer to ironing boards. I’m not seeing any indication that the Standard Greek άλογο is used to refer to ironing boards, and I wonder whether ironing horse was calqued into Cypriot from early 20th century British English.

Second: could English apparatus have been borrowed into Cypriot, and conflated with the similar-sounding Cypriot apparos, to refer to ironing boards?

There’s several problems with such a possibility:

  • How often were English terms borrowed for household items into Cypriot? Was English going to be the language used for household items at all, when relations between Cypriots and the British were nowhere near as intimate as, say, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots?
  • Going from apparatus to apparos requires a slight leap of imagination. Not a huge leap, it’s not impossible, but it’s not tempting either.
  • Why would you borrow apparatus as the word for an ironing board? As opposed to the specific name of the thing, ironing board? Or, you know, ironing horse. You might as well borrow the word beverage to refer to tea. That kind of thing can happen in language, but again it’s not tempting.
  • Does anyone even refer to ironing boards as apparatus? *Googles* Ah they do: Patent US20130192102 – Ironing board apparatus and methods. Well, would anyone within plausible earshot of a Greek Cypriot in 1930, as opposed to someone in the US Patent Office in 2012, be likely to refer to ironing boards as apparatus?

I think coincidence is a more plausible explanation here.

Does Quoran culture exist? If yes, what is Quoran culture?

I’ll start by snarking that the culture Thomas L. Johnson describes sounds pretty nightmarish to me. But then again, for a very long time I refused to follow anyone with more than 1k followers.

The striking thing, reflecting after over a year of being a social butterfly here, is that there is no one culture on Quora. There are several quite distinct cultures going on, and they don’t intersect that much. The Indian Quora and the American Quora work very differently. The Discord teens’ Quora has different norms from the old growth Top Writers’ Quora — although the high school comparison has been raised more than once. Technical questions and political questions get very different engagement.

So there are clearly community norms, and even more clearly norms that Quora Inc seeks to inculcate through moderation and UX and consent. (Yes, I have been reading Gramsci.) But I would caution against regarding them as universally practiced. Or against assuming that old growth Top Writers are somehow more representative of Quora culture than Discord teens, say, or Americans more than Indians.

Are there commonalities? I think so.

  • I think the spirit of BNBR is widely respected. Yes, there are trolls, but there is far, far less flaming here than elsewhere. The letter of BNBR, its implementation by moderation, is more contentious.
  • There is an appreciation of good writing and good expertise. Other aspects, such as banter or clickbait, are again more contentious.
  • Upvoting and following practice varies, but there seems to be a baseline of courtesy to the group, and quite often clustering of friends and users with common interests.
  • Yes, there are also Quora Superstars, although I don’t think they are any universal Quora Superstars. I have no interest in any of the top 15 writers, for instance.
  • There is a culture of helping new users and each other, which the lack of onboarding makes essential. It is exemplified by blogs where users offer to help rewrite questions or upvote collapsed answers. But it is not clear to me whether this is a universal culture.

But again, these days I see many more differences than similarities. Whether Quora is social media; whether the Company enables or hampers; the value of comments; the validity of homework questions or survey questions. I don’t see consensus around these, and I don’t see a unified culture around these.

Could emoticons form the script of a new constructed language?

Obviously, Vote #1/#2 Daniel Slechta’s answer to Could emoticons form the script of a new constructed language? and Daniel Ross’ answer to Could emoticons form the script of a new constructed language?

(I disagree with Daniel Ross’ first point, that the emoji must be conventional and not iconic for them to be a language at all. I think the real issue is his second point, that icons can only go so far.)

(I will hold my tongue about Esperanto diacritics, because I otherwise like Daniel. ;^)

See also: Could emojis ever replace written language? Why or why not?

My concern, as expressed in that question, is what your verbs and syntax are going to look like, if your emoji-based language is not going to be just some rebus—or, as Daniel Slechta argues, extremely restricted in what it can talk about.

The challenge has been addressed in an actual symbol-based universal constructed language, Blissymbols. But I don’t think anyone would argue that Blissymbols’ verbs are intuitive.

Can we change to the name of the Byzantine topic to Eastern or Later Roman, because Byzantine is a erroneous term made up by hardcore Romanophiles?

Your fellow hardcore Romanophobes already have. Roman Empire has already had the following topics merged in:

  • (Merged from Byzantium)
  • (Merged from Byzantine Empire)
  • (Merged from Byzantine)
  • (Merged from Byzantine History)

The lack of any East Roman Empire topic is… not helpful, and it’s probably too much work now to introduce one.

Byzantines is the one remaining topic that allows us to narrow down anything between 330 and 1453. We could rename Byzantines to East Roman Empire, but the real work to be done is to unmerge Byzantine Empire, even if it means renaming it East Roman Empire, to placate Romanophobes. And the merger has been there for a while: it would need a lot more retagging.

Are second Aorist tenses in Ancient Greek more frequent that first Aorist?

More frequent? No. But certainly very noticeable!

The second and first aorists are equivalents of the strong and weak verbs of Germanic. Strong verbs and second aorists form their past tense by ablaut, vowel change. Weak verb and first aorists form their past tense by suffix. The older pattern is the ablaut; the newer and more frequent pattern is the suffixation. There’s more second aorists in Homer than in Attic.

As the new pattern generalises, the verbs that hold out in the old pattern the longest are very frequent verbs, which are quite entrenched in people’s memories, and people don’t feel as compelled to simplify. So εἶδον “I saw”, ἔβαλον “I put”, ἦλθον “I came”. Have a look at this list of frequent second aorists in the New Testament: Second Aorist

And the second aorist was stone dead by Early Modern Greek, but it did in fact enjoy a resurgence in the Koine, particularly with passives in the Septuagint. βασταγῆναι for example instead of βασταχθῆναι. Cf. Modern US English dove for dived: Dove vs. dived – Grammarist