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jimmydasaint
Post  Post subject: The Elephant that Speaks Korean  |  Posted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 3:50 pm
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I have only one comment at this article - bacause I am not fully convinced of the reliability of the results and therefore can find no other place for this :D :D :D :D :D :D

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An Elephant That Speaks Korean
ScienceDaily (Nov. 1, 2012) — An Asian elephant named Koshik can imitate human speech, speaking words in Korean that can be readily understood by those who know the language. The elephant accomplishes this in a most unusual way: he vocalizes with his trunk in his mouth.

The elephant's vocabulary consists of exactly five words, researchers report on November 1 in Current Biology, a Cell Press publication. Those include "annyong" ("hello"), "anja" ("sit down"), "aniya" ("no"), "nuo" ("lie down"), and "choah" ("good"). Ultimately, Koshik's language skills may provide important insights into the biology and evolution of complex vocal learning, an ability that is critical for human speech and music, the researchers say.


http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121101121534.htm

http://www.cell.com/current-biology/retrieve/pii/S096098221201086X

http://www.eurekalert.org/multimedia/pub/49235.php?from=224898

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marnixR
Post  Post subject: Re: The Elephant that Speaks Korean  |  Posted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 4:45 pm
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for some unknown reason ,this brings the story of Clever Hans to mind

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marnixR
Post  Post subject: Re: The Elephant that Speaks Korean  |  Posted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 6:18 pm
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my impression was that it had used the same sounds on various occasions, so may not just be a fluke or coming from over-imaginative expectation

i could be wrong though, i'm not that familiar with the details of the story

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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: The Elephant that Speaks Korean  |  Posted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 6:25 pm
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There was also a recent story about a beluga whale that could speak and understand language. In my opinion, it is not as far fetched some people might think. Most animals are naturally social, and social settings bring with them the need to communicate with others.

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jimmydasaint
Post  Post subject: Re: The Elephant that Speaks Korean  |  Posted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 6:53 pm
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iNow wrote:
There was also a recent story about a beluga whale that could speak and understand language. In my opinion, it is not as far fetched some people might think. Most animals are naturally social, and social settings bring with them the need to communicate with others.


I am sure that animals want to be sociable and it is clear that birds are superb mimics of the sounds around them. However, the article is a subjective assessment of the animals speech. I would regard this as pseudoscience unless one can perform an experiment to establish, in a double blind study, what the sounds are. I would also count all the sounds the animal makes in context. Is it possible that it also speaks Serbo Croat words if Serbs or Croats listened to its speech patterns? Maybe...I don't know but I would be wary of agreeing with the conclusions of the researchers.

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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: The Elephant that Speaks Korean  |  Posted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:57 pm
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FYI - Video of the aforementioned whale: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/v ... eech-video

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jimmydasaint
Post  Post subject: Re: The Elephant that Speaks Korean  |  Posted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 10:39 pm
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iNow wrote:
FYI - Video of the aforementioned whale: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/v ... eech-video


That is very touching and amusing at the same time, in the same way that a baby is observed trying to speak words. However, a study of this apparent trait where an animal mimics human language is a subjective study and any deductions are likely to be so biased that objective study becomes difficult. In the clip, the animal seems to be rapping - I wonder if they can expose it to Immortal Technique and Lowkey and get it "spitting some bars". :D

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