And Another Thing: Thinking Deeply About Pixar & Theme

Well… since I’m sharing links today, here’s one that might be relevant to readers of this blog.

I’m going to go out on a limb here – okay, I don’t really think I’m actually taking a risk here in saying this, because it’s probably true – and say that you, dear reader, probably enjoy Pixar films. 

I know I do.

One thing that always strikes me about Pixar films (I have now seen all of those currently extent, thanks to the magic of Netflix) is just how well-written and frequently genuinely moving and touching these films are.  Pixar films almost never fail to pull a heart-string or two along the way.  I think that’s a particularly valuable lesson for all creative folks.

But this article (“The Hidden Message in Pixar’s Films“) offers another perspective on Pixar films: Continue reading

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Tidbits of Inspiration: Bad Writing System

I found this article over on Language Log fascinating, so I thought I’d share it with you.

The article is about whether a better orthographic writing system – the way a language is written down – hurts or hinders either (a) the economic potential or (b) the literacy of its speakers.  English, for instance, is often considered to be a notoriously difficult language to learn because of the inconsistencies of its spelling.  (In fact, I believe English is quite consistent in the way things ought to be pronounced – but there are a lot of arcane rules that one must learn in order to understand how things should be pronounced, and there is a series of precedents for which rules are more important.  I saw this demonstrated once by someone who created a program for making sound changes to conlang words using systematic formal rules, and used the same program by setting up pronunciation rules for English, running english words through it, and outputting a “pronunciation guide” for the words.  It was a powerful demonstration of how systematic English pronunciation really is, and only a few words fooled his codified approach.  Alas, I no longer have a link to that site.  But I digress… a lot.)  Continue reading