Sound Change Software
|From:||Edward Heil <edheil@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, March 18, 1999, 17:05|
I was interested in trying some computer-aided word derivations using
the extremely simple Chana Philology article I posted some time ago. I
had used LangMaker, which is very easy to use and powerful within its
limitations...but it has serious limitations.
I found something way cool called PHONO.
The only trouble with it (and it's not a trouble with the software, but
with my knowledge), is....
I'm familiar with how to classify sounds according to articulatory
position. Ask me for a velar approximant and by God I'll give you a
velar approximant. But I had not encountered the classifications they
used in this program. Coronal? What?
Turns out that just shows how little linguistics I know. PHONO uses the
"Distinctive Features" theory of phonology from Chomsky & Halle's _The
Sound Pattern of English_, which is itself a mutation of a distinctive
features theory by Jakobson.
While SPE-style linear phonology has, I understand, been superseded in
some ways by autosegmental phonology, phonetic geometry theory, and
Optimality theory (which is really revolutionary), SPE-style distinctive
features is still a pretty good way to codify the basics.
Anyway, I'm gonna have to try it again now that I know what it's all
about, and I recommend it.
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