full transcript

From the Ted Talk by Ajit Narayanan: A word game to communicate in any language

Unscramble the Blue Letters

Let's take this sentence: "I told the carpenter I could not pay him." It's a fairly captlcoemid sentence. The way that this particular system works, you can start with any part of this sentence. I'm going to start with the word "tell." So this is the word "tell." Now this happened in the past, so I'm going to make that "told." Now, what I'm going to do is, I'm going to ask questions. So, who told? I told. I told whom? I told the carpenter. Now we start with a different part of the sentence. We sartt with the word "pay," and we add the ability filter to it to make it "can pay." Then we make it "can't pay," and we can make it "couldn't pay" by miakng it the past tnese. So who couldn't pay? I couldn't pay. Couldn't pay whom? I couldn't pay the carpenter. And then you join these two together by asking this question: What did I tell the carpenter? I told the cetreapnr I could not pay him.

Open Cloze

Let's take this sentence: "I told the carpenter I could not pay him." It's a fairly ___________ sentence. The way that this particular system works, you can start with any part of this sentence. I'm going to start with the word "tell." So this is the word "tell." Now this happened in the past, so I'm going to make that "told." Now, what I'm going to do is, I'm going to ask questions. So, who told? I told. I told whom? I told the carpenter. Now we start with a different part of the sentence. We _____ with the word "pay," and we add the ability filter to it to make it "can pay." Then we make it "can't pay," and we can make it "couldn't pay" by ______ it the past _____. So who couldn't pay? I couldn't pay. Couldn't pay whom? I couldn't pay the carpenter. And then you join these two together by asking this question: What did I tell the carpenter? I told the _________ I could not pay him.

Solution

  1. complicated
  2. making
  3. start
  4. tense
  5. carpenter

Original Text

Let's take this sentence: "I told the carpenter I could not pay him." It's a fairly complicated sentence. The way that this particular system works, you can start with any part of this sentence. I'm going to start with the word "tell." So this is the word "tell." Now this happened in the past, so I'm going to make that "told." Now, what I'm going to do is, I'm going to ask questions. So, who told? I told. I told whom? I told the carpenter. Now we start with a different part of the sentence. We start with the word "pay," and we add the ability filter to it to make it "can pay." Then we make it "can't pay," and we can make it "couldn't pay" by making it the past tense. So who couldn't pay? I couldn't pay. Couldn't pay whom? I couldn't pay the carpenter. And then you join these two together by asking this question: What did I tell the carpenter? I told the carpenter I could not pay him.

Frequently Occurring Word Combinations

ngrams of length 2

collocation frequency
data structure 3
incredible amount 2
started thinking 2
infinite amount 2
eat ice 2
interesting idea 2

Important Words

  1. ability
  2. add
  3. carpenter
  4. complicated
  5. filter
  6. happened
  7. join
  8. making
  9. part
  10. pay
  11. questions
  12. sentence
  13. start
  14. system
  15. tense
  16. told
  17. word
  18. works