User Virtualization Emerges As Tonic For Nagging IT Headaches

Garson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Fri Jan 6 03:59:07 UTC 2012

Victor Steinbok wrote:
> Here's a particularly egregious instance of "words for snow"--and one
> trying to escape attention by using "the Sami people of Scandinavia".

The claim that the Sami people "do have hundreds of words for snow" is
contained in a Wikipedia article about "Eskimo words for snow" (on
January 5, 2012).

This Wikipedia article discusses the number of words for snow in
languages in the Inuit language group. However, it treats this as a
distinct question. The article cites a Language Log post by Geoffrey
K. Pullum about this question.

This post is not a claim about the accuracy of the Wikipedia article.
It is useful to know what the "hive-mind" is synthesizing on this
topic I think.

[Begin excerpt]
The "Eskimo words for snow" claim is a widespread misconception
alleging that Eskimos have an unusually large number of words for
snow. In fact, the Eskimo‚ÄďAleut languages have about the same number
of distinct word roots referring to snow as English does.[1][2] In
contrast, the European Sami People, an indigenous circumpolar group,
do have hundreds of words for snow.[3][4][5]
[End excerpt]

[Continuation of Victor's post]
>> The Sami people of Scandinavia are said to have hundreds of different
>> words for snow. The technology known broadly as user virtualization
>> doesn't have nearly this many, but its growing importance in IT
>> industry circles has spawned a number of alternate descriptions, such
>> as 'workspace management', 'persistent personalization' and 'profile
>> management'.
>> However it's defined, there's no question that user virtualization
>> solves difficult problems for IT departments. Its central purpose is
>> managing an individual's data, personal files and applications as a
>> distinct layer that's separate from the hardware, operating system and
>> application layers.
>     VS-)
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

The American Dialect Society -

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