17 votes
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Character vs. glyph vs. grapheme/morphogram vs. ideogram vs. logogram vs. pictogram vs. symbol vs. syllable

Tl;dr: make sure you understand the difference between form (形), sound (音), and meaning (義). Some terms are also avoided in Chinese SE. Syllable is a terminology of sound. In Chinese, the ...
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  • 5,455
16 votes
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What is an “exoactive” Chinese character?

These terms were devised in the late 20th century analysis of Classical Japanese, originally, for the difference between -(さ)す (glossed as externally instigated) and -(ら)る (glossed as internally ...
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  • 5,638
15 votes
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Does Chinese have an equivalent to “Person A”?

You would say 甲、乙、丙、丁…… which come from 天干, you could also say 路人甲、路人乙、路人丙…… If you know the person's surname, you could also say 李某、王某…… In case if you want the specify that person's ...
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  • 3,054
10 votes
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Difference Between 学校 and 学堂

The connotation of 学堂 is more than "an old expression of school", but "an old-style school in ancient China". A typical 学堂 only has one room and one teacher and few students (compared with a modern ...
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  • 6,013
10 votes
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What other words than 奥 exist for places of reveration?

四隅(four corners of a room) 宧(yí / ㄧˊ):室內東北角(northeastern corner) 窔(yào / ㄧㄠˋ )同“穾”:室內東南角(southeast corner) 奥(ào / ㄠˋ):室內西南角(southwest corner) 屋漏(wū lòu / ㄨ ㄌㄡˋ):室內西北角(northwest corner)
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  • 5,846
8 votes

How do you write “hacker” in Chinese?… (where hacker doesn't have an evil connotation)

黑客 is the Chinese word for Hacker. 黑 can work as a verb meaning to hack. 客 is a suffix that means person here. It does also include the different definitions you're looking for, almost practically ...
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8 votes

How can we translate the term "tone sequence"?

Only the first one is correct (聲調輪廓), as a jargon used in linguistics. The second one is a (bad) word-for-word translation of tone (音調) + contour (曲綫).
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8 votes

Why 中華民國 = Republic of China?

The short answer: because Sun Yat-sen proclaimed it so. In a 1916 speech given in Shanghai, he asks the question: 何以不曰「中華共和國」,而必曰「中華民國」? Why instead of 中華共和國, must one say 中華民國? The reasons ...
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  • 5,638
7 votes
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What does the term "Chinese" mean?

user3306356 provided a good answer for the language, but you need to know that written Chinese and oral Chinese can be quite different. A Mandarin speaker might say yī, a Cantonese jat1, and a ...
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  • 455
7 votes
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Why did China opt for 星期 over 曜日?

The answer to this question is quite complicated, there is a whole website devoted to this subject here. Shrinking things down as short as possible, the idea of seven day periods within a calendar ...
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  • 4,315
7 votes
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Web Developer Vocabulary

access level - 存取權限 (访问级别) algorithm - 演算法 (算法) array - 陣列(数组) array index - 陣列索引 (数组索引) async - (异步) binary tree - (二叉树) build - (构建) catch (like try/catch) - (捕获) char - 字元 (字符) class - 類別 (类) class ...
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  • 186
7 votes
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Any real difference between 句子 and 句话 in Mandarin?

"句话" is not a word. A qualifier is needed before it, like"一句话" or "两句话". No one say "句话" alone, because it is weird.
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7 votes

Why native speakers always say "一块钱" and write "一元钱 "instead of "壹圆钱"?

To begin with, there is one thing called 大写 (daxie, “upper case”), in contrast to 小写 (xiaoxie, “lower case”). 小写:一二三四五六七八九十百千 - 元 大写:壹贰叁肆伍陆柒捌玖拾佰仟 - 圆 Daxie numbers are only used in ...
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  • 1,797
7 votes
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What words are used in Taiwan for a place or person that mends clothing?

We don't use 補 or 縫補 in Taiwan. We use 修改衣服 instead. When you like to get the clothes mended, you should find the 修改衣服/換拉鏈 (Modify clothes/Change zippers) signs as follows. We still call the person ...
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  • 1,579
7 votes
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What does "Fangcang [hospital]" mean?

Edit: After reading fefe's comment, I did more search and found this 方舱医院是什么 方舱医院是以医疗方舱为载体,医疗与医技保障功能综合集成的可快速部署的成套野外移动医疗平台 So "方舱" is obviously referring to those rectangular mobile units. ...
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  • 68.8k
7 votes

What is an “exoactive” Chinese character?

On p. 43 of ABC Etymological Dictionary of Old Chinese By Axel Schuessler we have the following introduction: which is later expound on: On p. 44 we find the exact example that you are asking about: ...
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7 votes
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Why is "tuberculosis" 结核病 in Chinese?

For the same reason that it is called tuberculosis in English, from New Latin: tuberculum + -osis The term is a medical coinage of the 1830s (with the cognate first appearing in German medical ...
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  • 5,638
7 votes
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Translation of Stack Exchange’s “upvote”

In Chinese forum, we use the term 顶 and 踩. 顶 is like upvote and 踩 downvote.
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  • 23.3k
6 votes

Does Chinese have an equivalent to “Person A”?

To refer to someone non-specific, you can say「某某/某人/某某人」. 我廠「某人」偷了東西,我不點他的名字,他應坦白交代。 Someone in my factory was stealing things. I won't mention him by name, but he should come forth honestly ...
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  • 21.2k
6 votes

Does Chinese have an equivalent to “Person A”?

In addition to those involving 某, as explained in other answers, there are some general names used quite often (e.g. in story-telling) like 张三 and 李四. The complete list goes as: 刘一、陈二、张三、李四、王五、赵六、孙七、...
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  • 1,076
6 votes
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Does the word 肉 always mean pork (unless preceded by another word which means a different animal) in Chinese menus?

I worked in restaurants for many years. As I understand it, '肉' in Chinese menus only refers to pork unless it is specifically stated what kind of meat it is. For example: 時菜炒(豬)肉片 = in-season ...
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  • 68.8k
6 votes

What title did Qing China use for US presidents?

Formally, the Chinese title was President - that is, the English word President was transliterated into Chinese as 伯理璽天德. From the Treaty of Wanghia (望廈條約): 以上關涉太平、和好、貿易、海面各款條約,應候各大臣奏明大清大皇帝批准,...
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  • 21.2k
6 votes
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How do you say "do a plank" in Chinese?

The position is called: 平板撑 ping2 ban3 cheng1 平板 meaning literally "plank", or "slab", and 撑 standing for 支撑 "to prop up". The longer form 平板支撑 is also common. About ...
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  • 5,376
6 votes

What's the meaning of 虚化 in Chinese linguistics?

結果補語的「虛」與「實」 漢語動結式(又稱黏合式述補結構)中有一類的補語被稱為「虛化結果補語」,包括「完、好、掉、住、成、著、了、過等」 根據過去的研究,虛化結果補語區別實義結果補語的特點是:皆由實義動詞虛化而來、本身詞匯意義不明顯、語義指向述語、不是動結式的語義中心、主要表示動作事件「完結、結束」等。但是,這些區別特點主要都體現語義層面上,而句法上,無論是對前項動詞的選擇、還是與賓語的搭配,...
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6 votes
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Can the term "老大" be used to call "Boss" in video games nowadays?

“老大” is not often used as the "boss" in video games, but it depends. If there are other smaller enemies around when this "boss" appears, to distinguish between the "boss" ...
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  • 344
5 votes

Web Developer Vocabulary

"constructor": "构造函数" "framework": "框架" "dependency injection": "依赖注入" "content management system": "内容管理系统" Instead of looking for a word table, you can refer to textbooks that cover programming ...
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  • 445
5 votes
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How to say "upregulate" in Mandarin

上调 is the most common equivalent. In your description you are using the wrong character (凋, the radical is different). EDIT: to add credibility to my answer and provide some examples, I have added ...
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  • 7,098
5 votes

Any real difference between 句子 and 句话 in Mandarin?

From Johnzh's answer: "句话" is not a word. A qualifier is needed before it, Qualifiers provide specific detail of the noun. Quantifiers tell how much or how many With a classifier 句 precede the ...
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  • 68.8k
5 votes

What is the phenomenon of putting a verb twice in a sentence called?

I think this apparent phenomenon is more the result of the Chinese propensity for brevity and omission, omission especially of pronouns. I would not say this is unique to Chinese. Both sentences can ...
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  • 14.7k
5 votes

Which one has the correct "lian", 炼功夫 or 练功夫?

According to Zhongwen Chinese Popup Dictionary, 炼 means "to refine, to smelt"; while 练 means "to practice, to train, to drill, to perfect (one's skills), exercise". So obviously 练功夫 is more correct ...
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