ForumsThe TavernMost important language/ universal language

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ellock
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ellock
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What language do you think is the most important to learn and why? What are the top three languages you think are most important? I have been thinking about this for a while and cannot get a good, solid answer. From anyone! You would have thought people would be more unified as to what they think the most important language is, but no, I can't fins a good middle ground. So I turn to you, internet (or the small sliver of the internet that is Armor Games) and ask you for your opinion.

I think this depends on how you view it. By population of speakers, Chinese (Mandarin)
By importance: English

By job or governmental use: Spanish or Mandarin

What do you think?
Of course the UN languages are important as well... so any of those six and maybe if you live in Europe German or Russian would be more useful.

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SunPixie
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Actually I'm pretty sure America imports more than China, but China exports more than America.

I am not a fan of a universal language at all. It would be easier to all speak the same language, but more often than not, language connects you to other cultures more than just learning the customs. I do, however, think that everyone should know at least two if not three different languages. English is my first language and it is one of the more popular languages in the world, obviously. But I've also studied Chinese over the past 4 years and it has open up my mind to all sorts of culturally diverse areas. I'm now way more accepting of different political ideas and other things that are polar opposites of America.

Anyways. I think everyone should at least know english, chinese, and a third language of their choice. AT LEAST. Because once you understand the chinese language and culture, a lot of this love-hate stuff we have going on between us will end. It also opens up at least a hundred sub languages and helps you understand other aspects of other asian languages and cultures, which happen to be becoming more popular.

I like European languages, but I would learn those languages more for fun than I would business opportunities. The old continent is full of history I would enjoy, but thats about it.
GERMAN CAN BE A BEAUTIFUL LANGUAGE TOO, YOU KNOW. When spoken by the right person. I don't find French to be romantic at all, unless 80% throaty noises are your thing. Spain Spainish I know nothing about, but Mexican Spanish I know a bit. It helps to know Mexican Spanish when you live by the border, but other than that it isn't helpful. Yes there is a difference in Spanish between Spain and Mexican, just like there is a difference in British and English. A lot of the terms we use and totally foreign to them, because generations after generations have developed without direct influence from their mother country.

African languages would be really fun to me as well, and as soon as I have toured Asia for 5 years-15 years, Africa is next on my list. HUNDREDS of languages and so much culture to learn about. It will be so much fun. But less is know about those because Africa isn't really popular on the global business scale, so there isn't much need to know them unless you're doing long term volunteer work, really.

Alright this is just some of my input on languages and the world and so on and so forth. This is sort of the major I plan on doing in college, so if anyone has any viable information about languages, hit me up yo.

partydevil
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Actually I'm pretty sure America imports more than China, but China exports more than America.

dont forget all the raw materials that china imports cheaply from africa. that it manufacturs to products that they export again. china barely uses their own ground materials.

Africa isn't really popular on the global business scale, so there isn't much need to know them unless you're doing long term volunteer work, really.

asia is becoming to expensive. africa is the future in 10-15 years from now (or south america)
nichodemus
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asia is becoming to expensive. africa is the future in 10-15 years from now (or south america)


Africa is the future already. Certain parts of Asia are too expensive, hence China is shifting production to less developed, inland provinces. Also, watch Vietnam, Cambodia and the other SEA nations.
SunPixie
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Well China had a great run, then. but still i would vote it be known, considering 1 billion people thing. I would be able to talk about China more if I knew anything about it other than the patriotic speeches of my chinese teacher that cant be held as viable.

Well Africa can be used to import cheap things but it depends on which part of Africa, right? there are so many different languages there and it cant become a mass producing country without some sort of large scale unification between areas. you cant totally industrialize one part of africa due to bandits and pirates, right? if the future industrious leaders pissed off the wrong people, their whole operation could be gone within a day. Im not saying Africa couldnt be the next big thing, but without some sort of recognization on a global level for something other than "come here to do volunteer work", a lot of people would probably take it as a joke.

not to mention if americans found out there would be so much crap. we would probably involve ourselves with "revitalizing Africa" for all of the common business reasons. Like we normally do. But then again think of the social outcomes that could happen.

i dont even think we are on topic anymore but this is still good conversation so its acceptable.

please dont take my words as factual, im just pondering it all i do not know anything for certain.

nichodemus
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Haha, well yes, Africa has thousands of languages, but the big few that are universally understood are, English, French, Portuguese, Arabic, Spanish, Mandarin (up and coming). Yes, it's all very neo-colonial, but hey, that's what we colonised folk were bequeathed. So, I do think it will become a success story one day.

Some random kid in Africa even shouted Ni Hao! at me.

partydevil
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partydevil
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Well Africa can be used to import cheap things but it depends on which part of Africa, right?

not really.

there are so many different languages there

thats no reason to not do business.
there are about 2500-3000 languages in africa but they often look allot like each other. like german is almost dutch and flemish. or spanish is almost portuguese. here is a map of the major differences in africa.
http://empathosnationenterprises.com/empAthosWebGraphics/AfLang.gif
as you can see the bottom half of africa looks allot like each other.
and on a side note, english in better spread in africa then it is in asia.

there and it cant become a mass producing country without some sort of large scale unification between areas.

eatch country has a government...
and the african union consists of 54 nations. almost all of africa. just 3 or so not.

you cant totally industrialize one part of africa due to bandits and pirates, right?

if we take fast look that would indeed be what one would think.
but if you question yourself why these people are bandits and pirates then you will see that they do not want to be bandits/pirates. in case of the somalian pirates: these people are actually native fishers. their family have for generations after generations been fishers there. but the western large fishing ships literally emptied their fishing area. leaving them whitout fish/money/food.
out of desperation and hate for these fishing ships they start to kidnap them. at 1st for a few 100 thousand dollar. but since they got that way to easy. they have gone the price up to 2kk per person on the ship.
now this attracted more people that are not fishers. you can work in somalia your *** of for 30 dollar per year. or hijack 1 ship and earn around 1kk per 6months... what would you choose if you got no hope in finding a better life?
BUT, what if they do have a option for a good earning job? if you invest in somalia and are able to give them a future then they are the greatest people on earth. they will be happy to leave behind the dangers they face on the sea or hard labor on the land. and work for you.

if the future industrious leaders pissed off the wrong people, their whole operation could be gone within a day.

that is absolutely true.
if you are not accepted in the community then you can forget it.
if you are accepted in the community then you will be defended like the rest.
and trust doesn't come in a day.

without some sort of recognization on a global level for something other than "come here to do volunteer work", a lot of people would probably take it as a joke.

the african nations and it's people are not promoting that. but they dont dislike it either. you come to work for free? sure thing, go ahead. ^^
the "help africa" organizations or promoting to do voluntary work.

let me give you a example of a good market in africa.
its the mobile phone and especially the mobile network market.
in africa about 80% of the people have a mobile phone while only 3% have a home connection. often only 1 connection per village that the entire village is using. but the mobile network in africa is very bad. in most of the places people do not have connection. and they need to bicycle up a hill outside of town. and climb the tree on top to get 1 bar of connection.
a satellite phone would suffice this problem but there are no cheap satellite phones anymore in the western market. so it's to expensive for them.
so we have 2 markets here that can be exploited. 1. the satellite phone: if you can make a cheap phone, you are almost certain to sell them allot. making you millions from it. or invest in the mobile network. and make people to use your connection and make even more millions for a longer period.

and like this, there are many more things that africans have need for and where we can make good money from them.
SunPixie
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Yeah most of my stuff was wild guesses in the dark, but this is informative! Thanks~

I meant the volunteer thing as in, what comes to peoples minds first. which is volunteer work. Not that each area advertises for it and such.

and the languages wouldnt prohibit work from happening, it would just be more difficult if you had a prospective area in mind, that contained 2-5 different language speakers.

but as for that side note you have, id like proof? isnt english taught as a mandatory class in china? thats what my teacher told me, and i trust her a wee bit more than you. but yeah source that side note and ill gladly retract the doubt.

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