AI has a long way to go

Twitter just recommended for me a tweet that it labeled as being on the topic “filmmaking.” It was a tweet by Ana Mardoll about a doctor behaving badly. It had nothing to do with filmmaking. But it did include the phrase “right before he wrote the script.” Dear Twitter: Words have multiple meanings. In this […]

oy vey and uff da

My favorite comment thread I’ve seen this morning is on a Gizmodo article about the Morbius movie’s end-credits scenes. (The article was published last week.) One commenter wrote: oi vey Another commenter replied: ditto And a third commenter added: oofta I have long thought that oy vey (from Yiddish) and uff da (from Norwegian) were […]

rôle

I just started reading a Poe book which is the third book I’ve picked up in the past week that spells role as rôle. Given the publication dates and authors of the books in question, it’s been unclear to me whether the use of the circumflex was (a) British, (b) old-fashioned, or (c) both. So […]

Dramatic and undramatic

Dramatic and evocative nouns are often used in common phrases, and in titles of works of fiction. And they apparently become even more dramatic and evocative when paired with other such nouns and linked using and. For example: Blood and fire Thunder and roses Lace and steel Sword and sorcery So I’m amusing myself with […]

My aardvark lady

Over at “These Lyrics Do Not Exist,” I prompted the AI with the topic “aardvarks,” the genre Pop, and the mood Happy. Here is part of the song it generated for me: Verse 1 When you move like aardvark creature My heart, you belong to me Aardvark, midnight best friends She heard a scream Pre-Chorus […]

Pandora’s jar

About Pandora’s box, Wikipedia says: The word translated as box was actually a large jar (πίθος pithos) in Greek. […] Many scholars see a close analogy between Pandora herself, who was made from clay, and the clay jar which dispenses evils. The mistranslation of pithos is usually attributed to the 16th century humanist Erasmus who, […]

Typos that reverse meaning

It’s fairly common for a writer to accidentally leave out the word not and thereby write the opposite of what they intended. But I feel like it’s less common for other kinds of typos to result in a reversal of meaning. I just came across one: It was an intense feeling of fatherless. Based on […]