Mikhail wrote:Since I am learning German now, I read a lot of texts in it. I have noticed that readability of german text is significantly worse than, say, english text.
linguoboy wrote:How do you determine readability?
Mikhail wrote:But without going into details, I would determine it simply so: readability is how easy (or how fast) can I acquire information when I read the text. Or so: how little eye-strain I become when I read text.
This of course applies to solid amounts of text and reading at high speed (not letter-by-letter :D ).
And how would you determine it? It is not a hard science, but I would be surprised if someone determine it in other way.
linguoboy wrote: those with them (e.g. Latin, Cyrillic, Armenian)
linguoboy wrote:... I've never noticed an appreciable difference in speed,
Mikhail wrote:In this case, when new spelling makes it easier to read, even if very little, why not use it?
linguoboy wrote:Interesting experiment.Mikhail wrote:In this case, when new spelling makes it easier to read, even if very little, why not use it?
I think such benefits would only accrue to beginners. I've been reading German for most of my life; by now I expect nouns to be capitalised, and when they aren't, it slows me down a bit.
linguoboy wrote:... every now and then I come across a word which could be read as either a noun or another part of speech and I end up having to reread the sentence in order to make sure I'm parsing it correctly.
Mikhail wrote:Within the scope of spelling reform, for example, there will be always amount of those who are against. I think in this particular case arguments like "I don't want the new one because I got used to the old one" must be declined right away. Anyway, writing developement is for next generations, not for current.
Mikhail wrote:linguoboy wrote:... every now and then I come across a word which could be read as either a noun or another part of speech and I end up having to reread the sentence in order to make sure I'm parsing it correctly.
Ok I accept this as an argument. But it is only one, and rather weak one. Even though
I was a beginner back then, I had absolutulely no problem with those equal noun/verb words. Man read not word-by-word, but rather by groups of words, like pronoun-verb-noun.
And how do you think, if written text (without caps in nouns) would end in confusion why there is no confusion in the same speech?
Mikhail wrote:I never like to speak like a 'smart ass', but for me it's obvious, that using two different character sets in one text can't be good for readability in any case. I understand it without any theory or experiments, and I made an experiment only to feel how _big_ is the difference. And for me it is enough noticeable. So when I will read significant amount of text I'll definitly make those changes, all the more, as it doesn't cost me a thing.
linguoboy wrote:you aren't seriously suggesting 100 million German-speakers should change their habits, only that a few thousand learners should.
linguoboy wrote: it's a concrete example of what I experience when I read texts written in that way, furnished to explain why I think switching to them would not only bring me no benefit but would actually constitute a hindrance.
linguoboy wrote:It would be interesting to find out if any other learners consider your proposal both helpful and practical. I really can't imagine you'll find anybody already comfortable with written German who will.
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