Friday, August 24, 2012

Mapping the spread of languages


If you haven't already read it, take a look at this article in the New York Times describing a study applying statistical tools used for developing family trees to the spread of Indo-European languages. (And even if you've already read it, take a look at the graphic online - the screenshot is only part of it - it's much larger and clearer than the one in the printed paper.) And - this is a nice example of what Steven Johnson meant by the term "exaptation" - taking technology or a resource and using it in another - in his excellent book "Where Good Ideas Come From." More about that book here.

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