Dr. Goodword’s Language Blog

Archive for the 'Introduction' Category

On Vacation

Monday, August 14th, 2006

This short note is to let everyone know that I will be on vacation this week and am not sure of the nature of my access to the Internet.  I am returning to my origins in central North Carolina, in and around Fayetteville, including a visit to my sister in Beard, NC.

I will, therefore, be in what I think is the cradle of uptalk, my blog of last Thursday, and will be taking notes.  I will return refreshed and with fresh topics next Monday, August 21.

Welcome to Dr. Goodword’s Blog!

Thursday, July 13th, 2006

Dr. Goodword contemplates a Good WordWelcome to the blog of Dr. Goodword, as I call myself on this website. The person behind Dr. Goodword is me, Robert Beard, the guy over there on the left. Yes, I am a real doctor and my specialty is language (PhD Linguistics). For 35 years I taught language and linguistics at Bucknell University, where I conducted research in the behavior of words, developing a theory of their behavior called Lexeme-Morpheme-Base Morphology (LMBM). You can google “robert beard language” and find out more about what I’ve spent my life doing. 

Now I run The Lexiteria and its popular website,, writing about a much broader range of linguistic phenomena from my perspective as a morphologist. I started with a website called A Web of Online Dictionaries at Bucknell in 1995 which grew up to become alphaDictionary. Since 1995 I have answered around 25,000 email inquiries and comments about words and language, many of them the same. I am hoping here to expand my forum so that the daily questions I deal with need only be answered once. I will also include unelicited mutterings about language issues that cross my mind from time to time.

Others from the alphaDictionary staff as well as invited guests will also contribute to this blog. Please feel free to comment on anything you read here that tweaks your interest. The focus will vary little, however; our intent is to bring the insights of linguistics (the scientific study of language) to bear on questions of language that arise in our lives every day and do so in such a way that those without linguistic training can understand. 

I think this is enough for today. Over the course of next week I want to back up and touch on some language issues that have occurred recently, before we could get this blog going, such as the use of a German word to stump a finalist in an English spelling bee and the conversion of Google to a common verb, to google, by a process known in linguistics as commonization). Until then, pass the word along that a new commentary on language has arrived in the blogosphere.