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R, North & Pheromones

From:Christian Thalmann <cinga@...>
Date:Friday, July 6, 2001, 14:54
Samuel Rivier wrote:

> The uvular R is very easy for me to pronounce (of > course I grew up with that sound), and seems to flow > well in such words as quatre and prendre. But in words > like raccoucher and pere I REALLY want to voice it.
Isn't uvular /R/ always voiced? Otherwise you'd have uvular /X/.
> The North Pole is determined by magnetism.
That would be the Magnetic North, which shouldn't be confounded with the Geographic North. MN is variable through time, and many planets don't have a magnetic field in the first place. GN, on the other hand, is unambiguous and stable through time. It is defined by the direction of the angular momentum vector of the planet. This definition is equivalent to the "the sun always rises in the East" rule. If you look at a global map, you'll see that the MN pole of Earth doesn't coincide with the GN pole -- it sits somewhere else in the arctic ice cap. That makes it kinda sucky to use. The only reason why we use MN at all is because magnetic compasses point there. On the other hand, GN can be easily pinpointed with gyrocompasses, sextants or GPS. Naturally, the geographic coordinate system with longitudes and latitudes uses Geographic poles. We happened to have a discussion like that in our planet Pii mailing list too.
> Hmm a language of pheromones. I think that a species > so dependent on hormonal secretions is probably an > advanced colony race, such as ants, rather than an > advanced individual race.
The fiction forum "Strange Horizons" has a fascinating story about such a race in its archives: -- Christian Thalmann


jesse stephen bangs <jaspax@...>