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19 July 2009

an experiment in arabic

i just made a list of friends' names and did my very best to write them in arabic. i had some trouble with a few since, for example, arabic doesn't have a letter "P" so i have to use "B". also, it doesn't have a "V" so i have to use "F". also, the vowelage in arabis is pretty nuts. they kinda don't use short vowels. there is a letter for "A" but the same symbol is at times a long "A" and at other times, it's short. there is a long "U" of sort, and a long "E". but, there's also a letter that can sometime sound like a long "O", "E", or "U". it's nuts. and again, keep in mind if you are an arabic speaker and want to refute this, please do. i'm just going from what i've learned from a few books and native arabic speakers who aren't really qualified to teach it. apparently, you can (and proper arabic does) have short vowels, but they aren't letters proper as they are similar to commas and apostrophes in between consonants that lket you know the connecting vowel sounds. i guess arabic could be described (syntactically) as the precursor to txt language. remove the vowels and we get (in english): tomorrow = tmrw; never = nvr; thanks = thx. we know immediately that "tmrw" means "tomorrow" without the vowels, but an ESL student might not know what vowel sounds go between those letters. that's my best description.

so, i guess in short, i've written some names, i'm going to check them over to see if they read correctly tomorrow with native speakers, correct what needs corrected, then i'm going to e-mail those people with their arabic names. yeah, i know, i'm bored. still, if i wrote my last name written correctly, it looks badass! if you want me to try to write your name in arabic and send it to you, send me an email from the address in my profile (linked at the top right), so i can have you e-addy, and this, i can email you your name back to you, and i'll do my very ASL (arabic as a second language) best to write it for you.

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