From birch-bark to spellchecker: how it changed science, academician Zaliznyak?
24 Dec died academician Andrei Zaliznyak — academician-linguist, leading researcher of the Novgorod birchbark documents, to prove the authenticity of “the Word about Igor’s regiment”. What else did he do for science?
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He was 82 years old.
Russian service Bi-bi-si has compiled the main achievements of academician Andrei Zaliznyak.
A single algorithm for all spellcheckers
His first monograph — “the Inflection of the Russian language” — Zaliznyak dedicated to a systematic description of the inflection of the Russian language. He brought in single system of one hundred percent declination of nouns, adjectives, pronouns and numerals. In fact, Zaliznyak made the rules, of which there are no exceptions. The result of the work was his dictionary.
The scientist brought a single algorithm for all words — including those that only appear in language — in 1967. The practical application of his work was much later, when the first computers appeared.
Now the system Zaliznyak use all spellchecker (the program to check literacy), programs, translators and search engines. Due to the classification Zaliznyak we score in the search line word, and receive it in the results in all forms, not just the initial one.
They wrote on birch bark
Andrey Zaliznyak — leading researcher of the birch bark letters XI — XV centuries. Birch bark began to find during excavations in Veliky Novgorod in the 1950-ies, but it Zaliznyak in the 1980s prompted scientists to study the peculiar dialect of the ancient language.
Zaliznyak is considered a pioneer in Novgorod dialects: old Novgorod, he studied grammar and published the most complete description in the monograph “old Novgorod dialect”.
The rest of your life Zaliznyak studied diplomas. New birch bark archaeologists find every summer and every fall Zaliznyak read in the Moscow state University lecture about what was revealed in the next season of excavations.
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In 2015, during the excavations found the first known letter, written in Vologda, and not Novgorod dialect linguists have deciphered the meaning of the letter a few months.
“The word about Igor’s regiment” — the original
In 2004 Zaliznyak gave convincing evidence that “the Word about Igor’s regiment” — not later, a fake, a literary monument of the XII century.
The controversy surrounding the work was carried out two centuries — ever since it was discovered.
Academician found that from the point of view of linguistics, “Word” is the same as writing samples of the XII century. According to the findings of Zaliznyak to rig the “Word” at the end of the XVIII century, when a document is found, the author-the scammer had to do a lot of linguistic discoveries about the ancient language, after all, scientific linguistics in those days did not exist, and to anybody then not tell. Even the largest Slavic scholars of that time did not know such subtleties of the ancient language.
“Those who want to believe that somewhere in the deepest secret, there are scientific geniuses, the sheer number of times greater than known to us ahead of their scientific discovery, the rest of humanity for a century or two and wished eternal absolute obscurity for himself and for all his discoveries, can continue to believe in a romantic idea,’ concludes academician. But, of course, should leave the version that “the Word about Igor’s regiment” could be forged in the eighteenth century by someone of ordinary people.”
Using the same tool, a linguistic analysis Zaliznyak proved that the famous in the circles of neo-pagans and nationalists the book of Veles is a forgery.
Expose Amateurs from linguistics
Besides the scientific work for academics was very important educational. He fought with Amateur linguistics, popular beliefs, that we know foreign languages descended from Russian (and modern).
Zaliznyak wrote books and lectured, exposing linguists-lovers like satirist Mikhail Zadornov (who claimed that the hero is the one who is “stealing God”), and, based on the methods of linguistics, refuted the “New chronology” Anatoly Fomenko mathematics (according to the theory of Fomenko, the familiar date of the last correct due to falsification of history: the old Testament describes the events of the middle Ages, and the history of Japan and China goes back more than a thousand years).
Getting Solzhenitsyn’s literary award in 2004, Andrey Zaliznyak said in a speech, actually read the Manifesto of scientists in defense of scientific knowledge.
He noted that in the public mind the value of science is reduced: “of Course, in relation to Humanities destructive role played by the installation of Soviet power in the direct production of these Sciences at the service of political propaganda.”
Zaliznyak was arguing with the assertion that there is no truth, only many opinions, and each of them weighs more than the other.
From the recognition that there is no truth in some kind of deep philosophical question of the transition to the fact that there is no truth in anything, for example, that in 1914 began the First world war. And here we read, for example, that has never been Ivan the terrible or what Batu is Ivan Kalita. If all opinions are equal, I can sit down and immediately send my mind into the Internet, avoiding long and time-consuming teaching familiarity with what you already know about this, those who have devoted long years of study.Andrey Zaliznyak
“The truth exists, and the purpose of science is its search — insisted Zaliznyak. — Apparently, those who have understood the value of truth and the corrupting force of amateurism and quackery and trying to this power to resist, will continue to be in trouble swimming against the current. But the hope is that there will always be those who will still do it.”