Chez Soi

Adventures of a Year Abroad




The last two days, Kiddo and I have been taking language immersion class.

Our heads hurt to no end. But a good friend, Doug, recently reminded me that learning a new language is to also look at the world anew. He said he has a friend who is a professor of computer linguistics in Hong Kong and that he teaches computers to translate between languages by comparing large bodies of written works in different languages. Along the way, the professor realized that he has discovered something key in the way a human mind works. 

Language defines the way we think, which can also limit thinking.  And that one of the richest things a human can experience is learning a new language, and the cool insights will come from ideas that you can’t translate. His note said he envied me, because “You will learn a new way of seeing the world.”

To which I can only say… “on puet esperer” — one can hope.



Author: nilofermerchant

Strategist. Passionate about igniting cultures of innovation. HBR Writer, O'Reilly Author (published January 2010) of The New How, and former CEO of Rubicon.

2 thoughts on “Encoded.

  1. We say “Lost Property.” In France they say “objets trouves” – found objects! Enjoy a new way of seeing the world.

  2. Pingback: So, How’s It Going? | Chez Soi

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s