Posts

What is a debt default? And the debt ceiling?

To default on a debt is to fail to make a scheduled payment on a loan.  A sovereign debt default is when a country defaults on money it owes - as happened to Argentina in the early 1990s, for example. What is the 'debt ceiling'? The above video describes the political dimension of the debt ceiling. The US debt now stands at $21 trillion - see debt clock here .  Some economists argue that this debt level is unsustainable in the long term. The key question  Democrats and Republicans battle over is what to do about this.

Ten Key Tech Terms for teachers?

Image
Confusing Tech Terms?   What is a MOOC?   What is BYOD?

What is BYOD?

Image
Bring your own technology (aka BYOT: Bring your own technology) is becoming increasingly popular in the worlds of business and education. Employers and/or students are encouraged to use their personal devices to access company/school/college resources. Does it work? The idea is very appealing but there are potential security/safety issues. Sharing data across different operating systems can also be a technical headache - as this diagram suggests Where is BYOD popular? In the developed economies the take up is believed to be around 40%. But in the Middle East and the BRIC (Brazil, Russia etc) BYOD operates in more than 70% of businesses

Who invented the word boredom?

Image
boredom (n.)   "state of being bored," 1852, from   bore   (v.1) +   -dom . It also has been employed in a sense "bores as a class" (1883) and "practice of being a bore" (1864, a sense properly belonging to   boreism , 1833). The first recorded use of the boredom is in Charles Dickens Bleak House   where it appears six times. After Shakespeare, Charles Dickens has been the most influential writer in the English language. One area where this influence is most strongly felt is in the area of vocabulary. Perhaps his most crucial role has been in popularising words which were previously been obscure. 'Dustbin' was in existence before ' Dombey and Son'  and  boredom  precedes  Bleak House -  but without these novels they may not have come into common usage. Teaching  A Christmas Carol ?   Use coupon code CQDWKF0 to download A Christmas Carol Teaching Pack  for only £1.99 Amazon.co.uk Widgets

Who invented the word chortle?

Image
Louis Carroll's 'Through the Looking Glass' (1872). To chortle is to a laugh at something which amuses or pleases you. It suggests a combination of the sound of chuckling (with amusement) and snorting (with derision). Other Louis Caroll words and phrases in common use include: jaberwocky and galumping  but, perhaps surprisingly, not mad as a  hatter . English Language 100 FAQ Teaching Pack     -  only £1.99 using discount code  CQDWKF0

When do we give a 'heads up' to someone? Why?

Image
When we wish to inform someone about the details of a particular theme, topic, item or person - I'll give you the heads up about the new policy. The idiom   appears to have a military origin -  a heads up indicating that an important announcement was pending. An early citation for the contemporary use of 'heads up from 1977 Early use in the late 1970s stressed the importance of the information supplied: "In a message characterized as a 'heads up alert', intelligence officials warned ... that Arab diplomats had suggested that Ambassador Andrew Young meet with a Palestine Liberation Organization official."  The Washington Post , August 1979 In recent years, however, 'to give a heads-up' has become synonymous with the less glamorous 'inform' English Language 100 FAQ Teaching Pack     -  only £1.99 using discount code  CQDWKF0