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Category Archives: literature poetry art culture history

In 2011, this author lived in the Middle East and learned that his Egyptian friends often texted, emailed, and Facebook chatted using latin characters. They wrote in Arabic, but they didn’t use Arabic letters. Instead they transliterated Arabic words into the same alphabet that English uses. Many shops already wrote their signs in English. Did this portend a decline of the use of the Arabic script?

New research suggests that the digital future of Arabic is secure. But thousands of other languages may never make the leap into the digital age. A full 96% of the world’s 6,000+ languages appear to be dead when it comes to use on cell phones, laptops, and tablets, meaning that the Internet could be to languages what a certain comet was to the dinosaurs. 

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Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes “For many education advocates, the arts supposedly increase test scores, generate social responsibility and turn around failing schools but research that demonstrates a causal relationship has been virtually nonexistent. Now the NY Times reports that with the opening of the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, a large-scale, random-assignment study (abstract) of school tours to the museum has determined that a strong causal relationship does in fact exist between arts education and a range of desirable outcomes. Students who, by lottery, were selected to visit the museum on a field trip demonstrated stronger critical thinking skills, displayed higher levels of social tolerance, exhibited greater historical empathy and developed a taste for art museums and cultural institutions. Moreover, most of the benefits are significantly larger for minority students, low-income students and students from rural schools — typically two to three times larger than for white, middle-class, suburban students — owing perhaps to the fact that the tour was the first time they had visited an art museum. Further research is needed to determine what exactly about the museum-going experience determines the strength of the outcomes. How important is the structure of the tour? The size of the group? The type of art presented? ‘Clearly, however, we can conclude that visiting an art museum exposes students to a diversity of ideas that challenge them with different perspectives on the human condition,’ write the authors. ‘Expanding access to art, whether through programs in schools or through visits to area museums and galleries, should be a central part of any school’s curriculum.'”

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Microsoft announced Monday that it overhauled its music video search function for users to explore, discover, and browse more music on Bing. The search engine has brought in more than 1.7 million songs from 70,000 artists and 500,000 albums from all across the Web, including YouTube, Vimeo, MTV, Artist Direct, and more.”Our new music video experience was designed with music lovers in mind,” Bing’s Multimedia team, Ryan Becker and Deepak Santhanam, wrote in a blog post. “Whether you’re looking for videos of songs and artists you are already familiar with (like Led Zeppelin and Justin Timberlake) or you’re looking to discover the next up-and-coming artist or revisiting the classics, we’ve got you covered.”

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http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/25/russia-anti-gay-law-tchaikovsky-sexuality

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http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/cnet/JhqR/~3/jDk_CAiCIqo/

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Columnist Sonia Farid writes on the “scorched earth” strategy: http://t.co/fA4riG6rwP

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http://m.media.smh.com.au/system/ipad/the-language-of-love-4559537.html