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119396.  Wed Nov 22, 2006 5:15 am Reply with quote

dr.bob wrote:
I was reading the entry talking about Olbers' paradox

Just to clarify, this was on p101, "What colour is the universe?".

And I'd like to reiterate that, despite all the niggly little things I've been pointing out here, this is a truly excellent book and I'm enjoying it immensely.

This week I've been given some homework for my Italian class about Amerigo Vespucci. I'm quite looking forward to seeing the look on my teacher's face when I tell her about Richard Ameryk :)

Although, I wonder if she knows that John Cabot was originally Italian.

119400.  Wed Nov 22, 2006 5:32 am Reply with quote

Ah, yes....Giovanni Cabotta (I think the spelling is correct). I remember learning bits and pieces about him at school.



119459.  Wed Nov 22, 2006 7:17 am Reply with quote

Tas wrote:
Ah, yes....Giovanni Cabotta (I think the spelling is correct).

Close, though the surname should be "Caboto".

Tas wrote:
I remember learning bits and pieces about him at school.

Better than learning about bits and pieces of him.

119467.  Wed Nov 22, 2006 7:32 am Reply with quote

I always liked the idea that if I was italian, my name would be Giovanni, and if I was head of a mafia family, I'd become Don Giovanni.



119500.  Wed Nov 22, 2006 8:40 am Reply with quote

Unfortunately, if I was Italian, my name would be exactly the same but with an "o" on the end.

Could be worse. We've got a woman in my class who's learning Italian because her boyfriend's Italian. Her problem is that her name is Andrea. In Italy, Andrea is a boy's name.

Causes her no end of problems when she goes over to visit her boyfriend's family :)

119650.  Wed Nov 22, 2006 2:40 pm Reply with quote

What's the Italian female version of Andrea then?

119765.  Thu Nov 23, 2006 5:09 am Reply with quote

There doesn't seem to be one.

Bit weird, really, since feminine nouns in Italian tend to end with "a" so you'd expect Andrea to be a girl's name.

Pah! Johnny Foreigners. Who can understand 'em?

119773.  Thu Nov 23, 2006 5:40 am Reply with quote

I'd have thought Andre was the blerks name, and Andrea was the girlified version.

Still, what do JF's know, huh?




119839.  Thu Nov 23, 2006 8:28 am Reply with quote

Most male names end with 'o' & most female names end in 'a' in Italy.
I have an Italian name, since both grandparents on my father's side were from there & my father wanted to carry on the tradition.
I named my daughter Shannon, just to break the link.

119883.  Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:34 am Reply with quote

If there is one person's job I don't envy, it will be that of the person whose responsibility it will be to proof-read the second edition of the book.

Oooh, the pressure!

Maybe you ought to get Dr Bob to do it. or should I say Dr Bobo? That sounds like a GP for teddy bears.

Just for the record, I work with a male Italian called Andrea.

119903.  Thu Nov 23, 2006 10:09 am Reply with quote

Neotenic wrote:
Maybe you ought to get Dr Bob to do it.

I'd be more than happy to, especially if I get wages of a couple of hob nobs :)

Then everyone could moan at me when it comes out.

Neotenic wrote:
Just for the record, I work with a male Italian called Andrea.

Tell him he's got a girl's name!

126854.  Fri Dec 15, 2006 9:59 am Reply with quote

Ah ha! Bet you thought I'd forgotten about this thread, eh? Nah, I was just restin'.

Anyway, a couple more I spotted. Firstly a simple typo. Page 213 refers to a mythical country of "Lithuannia". Odd, I thought such things would be spell checked before being sent to the printers.

The other one is a bit more sneaky, though. On page 231 it says:

in 2002 the eu redefined the carrot as a fruit

This is not strictly true. Whilst it can be argued vaguely, I think it should probably come with a healthy dose of disclaimer, particularly since "whacky things the eu did" stories tend to reek of right-wing red tops.

I believe (given it's the only matching report that I can find) that this relates to European Union's "Council Directive 2001/113/EC". Firstly, this was introduced on 20th December 2001, not 2002, but that's a minor point.

The directive regarded the composition and labelling of fruit jams, jellies and marmalades and sweetened chestnut purée intended for human consumption, and imposed compositional requirements such as minimum fruit and sugar content (so you can't sell something as "fruit jam" if it doesn't have very much fruit in it. All very sensible)

Oddly, in Portugal, they make carrot jam which is apprently very popular. For this reason, the EU directive concerning the composition and labelling of jams, etc, was defined to cover carrot jam in Portugal. In order to do this, they added a clause near the end that says:

for the purposes of this Directive, tomatoes, the edible parts of rhubarb stalks, carrots, sweet potatoes, cucumbers, pumpkins, melons and water-melons are considered to be fruit

My emphasis.

So, they're not really "redefining" carrots as fruit. Redefinition implies that, from now on, carrots will be considered as fruit in all circumstances. That's clearly not happening here.

What they're saying is that, when it's made into a jam (in Portugal, mainly), carrots will be considered to be fruit so that carrot jam can come under the same legislation as fruit jam without them having to write a whole new piece of law. However, carrots will not be considered as fruit under any other circumstances.

I guess this comes under the old argument of what is "right" and "wrong", and inspiring debate. However, given the number of completely bogus "whacky eu" stories that have already been perpetrated by the right-wing press, leading to a situation where large swathes of the general public tend to believe any crazy thing they hear about EU directives, it might stimulate more debate to point out that, like a lot of EU scare stories, this one isn't nearly as daft as it at first sounds.

126886.  Fri Dec 15, 2006 10:54 am Reply with quote

Carrot cake - yummy!

128536.  Thu Dec 21, 2006 10:38 pm Reply with quote

These are minor errata.

On Page 184, paragraph 4, the book states about Galileo:
He is most famous for his support of the Copernican (or Aristarchan) theory, that the Sun went round the Earth.


Only on Page 183, is Aristarchus stated to be the man who first said the Earth went around the Sun.

Not enough proof-reading here<_<


128540.  Thu Dec 21, 2006 11:38 pm Reply with quote

Jenny wrote:
What's the Italian female version of Andrea then?

a quick search of the interweb give the female version of Andrea as
Andreina: , meaning "man; warrior

I await in a state of davis (Davis: noun:- something expected as on the basis of a norm) for the klazein or claxon (klaxon being a trademarked name)


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