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Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Scientists discover oldest words in the English language

The oldest words in the English language include "I" and "who", while words like "dirty" could die out relatively quickly, British researchers said Thursday.
clipped from www.physorg.com

Scientists discover oldest words in the English language, predict which ones are likely to disappear

Scientists at the University of Reading have discovered that 'I', 'we', 'who' and the numbers '1', '2' and '3' are amongst the oldest words, not only in English, but across all Indo-European languages. What's more, words like 'squeeze', 'guts', 'stick', 'throw' and 'dirty' look like they are heading for history's dustbin - along with a host of others
Evolutionary language scientistsfrom the University of Reading
have been investigating how languages evolve, and whether that evolution followed any rules. Until recently they believed they would not be able to track words back in time for more than 5,000 years, however their new IBM supercomputerhas enabled them to go back almost 30,000 years, and finally provide the answers
Supercomputers are enabling the world to become increasingly interconnected, instrumented and intelligent
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