Would you like preformatives with that?

I had a conversation with my dad last night which went something like this.

Dad: ‘How’s work?’

Me: ‘Busy. Tiring. Interesting. I went to watch a language assessment for a child; I’m going to a preschool on Friday and next week I’m observing some more auditory-verbal therapy sessions to understand audition better.’

Dad: ‘What’s that got to do with databases?’

Me: ‘Good question!’


At the moment I’m in ‘sponge mode’, soaking up information left, right and centre regarding services in order to understand how best people may be supported by a clinical database. There are days I’m sure that I’ve been teleported to another universe. In this land, people use words like ‘phonemes’, ‘suprasegmentals’ and ‘spondees’ in everyday language. They seem obsessed with auditory hierarchies, feedback loops and access to sound. This is all before they start with their speechie language re: fronting and gliding. (If I didn’t know better, I’d think that sounded very suspicious indeed!)

All these terms resulted in a funny exchange between myself and two very experienced auditory verbal therapists today. It went something like this…

Me: ‘I learnt that stuff yesterday – manner, place and voice… yes it’s easier to hear the difference between two words where they are differ in all three… maximally different…’

AVT1 to AVT2: ‘See, she’s getting it. And we talked about bilabial sounds…’

Me: [making sounds] – ‘p, p, p, b, b, b…’

AVT2: ‘Well I think the students coming today are well past manner, place and voice.’

Me: ‘I learnt some other terms too! 4 item auditory memory… and fricassees…’

AVT1: [Confused look].


AVT1: ‘I think that’s something you cook.’

Humpfh… minor technicality! Apparently, the word I was looking for was fricative, which, AVT2 promptly explained could be put together with bilabial to make a ‘fricative bilabial’… or at least that’s what I think she said… followed by a breathy demonstration.

Oh for a fundraising database. Donation. GST applicable. Gift in Kind. Merchandise. Hmmm…. understandable!


Posted on October 20, 2011, in Allied health, Data and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. The recurring theme is it always comes down to terminology and definitions whether its a database or a project – its always underscored.

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