narfiknarfik (narfiknarfik) wrote in linguaphiles,
narfiknarfik
narfiknarfik
linguaphiles

Two popular theories

1 Asians, in particular Chinese and Japanese, are so good in math because words for numbers are very short in Asian languages. So in short period of time Chinese can remember significantly more digits than a person who speak European language. Chinese and Japanese language expose a very strict structure to name the numbers without all those exclusions typical for European languages ("eleven", "twelve", "fifty").
Another fact, I do not if it is relevant to this theory, in Japanese language, 4 digits split numbers units instead of 3 as in European languages (thousand, millions, billions=milliards, etc)

2 One of the reasons why Americans won the war in Pacific is that they military command language is much more concise then Japanese language. Basically, it took less period of time to give a command or to answer a command to American pilot, then to Japanese pilot. So the American pilots had a significant time advantage in tactical fights.

Are these theories confirmed by any kind of research or they are urban legends? What kind of experiments can prove or disprove these theories? Are there any other theories similar to these theories?
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