August 27, 2008

Europe of the future: Germany shrinks, France grows, but UK population booms

Aug 27 2008: Britain to be biggest country in EU by 2060 according to survey of demographic trends
“Immigration is singled out as the sole mitigating factor, seen as crucial to maintaining population growth. But the report says this probably will not be enough to reverse the trend of population decline in many countries.”
One of yesterdays’ best Comments from CIF
“…he hopes to impose a treaty that will permit Europe to snatch food from the mouths of some of the world’s poorest people.” “The rich world’s governments will protect themselves from the political cost of shortages, even if it means that other people must starve.”
Yesterdays’ articles from FT

The lure of opportunity

Companies that move staff abroad must combine it with rapid promotion

Lately, I got the interest to brush up back, my 3rd and 4th language: Arabic and Spanish. I was quite interested by a fact from a book by BBC titled Lingo!, that mentions, to be a converse speaker you just need 2000 words. To be a well-versed non-native speaker you need 10000 words. By the way I’d checked the number of English words form Wiki. It ammounts to less than half a milion words (should include scientific, legal and all other jargons due to the lingua-franca). This comment should shed more perspective to language learners.

Come on 2000 words only!!! (for vocabulary) Go for it but don’t forget the grammar and syntax! For speakers the pronounciation! Maybe more than 2k words?

A word in your ear: Keep it slow and simple

How many words would a non-native speaker need to understand simplified English? The answer is: fewer than 1,000, says