This is the homepage of Dik Bakker, professionally linked to the Linguistics departments of the University of Amsterdam (The Netherlands) and the University of Lancaster (England).
My linguistic interest concerns languages rather than language. I rely on utterances stemming from speakers rather than on observations in grammars . The former type of data is crucial for my workon functional theories of grammar, and on language contact and language change. For my work in language typology, grammars are often the only source. Given the complexity of linguistic data, I think the use of the computer is indispensable, and so is interdisciplinary cooperation.
I was married to Anna Siewierska, whom I lost in a horrible traffic accident in Vietnam on August 6th 2011. She had the same profession, but was obviously the more talented linguist of the two, apart from being the prettiest, as verifiable on the photo below.
I am the proud father of Vanessa and Kirsten, and the even prouder grandfather of Mila and Miguel (see below under Dutch Transport Facilities), and Evi-Jolie.
When not at work I divide my spare time between collecting (and also listening to) chamber music, reading (mainly Anglo-Saxon and Latin American authors; and there is the never ending backlist of Famous Authors from the Past), reading none too complex books on the cosmos and evolution, and bidding at stamp auctions. In the summer, I am training for some future Tour de France or one of the Classics (against all odds; but see under Pinarello and De Rosa below). In the winter, I prepare for the next Elfstedentocht on the Amsterdam Jaap Eden skating rink (with the same odds against). Some of my friends have seagoing yachts, and fortunately need a crew on a regular basis. The Mauritshuis in The Hague is my favorite museum. Every second weekend I will be sitting in area 403 of the Amsterdam Arena stadium to watch Ajax battle for their next championship. And I am constantly reminded of the relativity of it all by a couple of small pieces of amber on the mantel piece containing 40.000.000 year old insects (see the Diptera couple).
The professional page gives an overview of my linguistic activities.
The unprofessional page gives an impression of some other activities.
My early work is mainly in the field of computational linguistics. Over the last fifteen years, my research has concentrated on issues in theoretical linguistics. Currently, the following areas are central:
A. Language Typology , mainly agreement, alignment systems, constituent order, grammaticalization, and canonical typology.
B. Language Contact and Change , more specifically between Spanish as a source language and several typologically different Amerindian languages as the target languages (currently Otomi, Quechua and Guarani)
C. Linguistic data bases and computational tools for language sampling, data collection and exploration, lexical analysis, simulation and monte carlo methods
D. Language classification , especially lexicostatistics and mass comparison
The link below gives access to a list of publications.
The links below give access to some recently published articles.
The link below gives access to the Agreement Database, built and maintained by Anna Siewierska and myself over the last ten years. It is embedded in the Typological Database System, to which the second link gives access. The third one links to the homepage of the Automated Similarity Judgment Project, and the available resources.
I have developed a number of computer applications which support research in language typology, language contact and the simulation of linguistic processes. Most of these require data input formattedaccording to the .CSV format of Excel files, and run on a Unix machine. Linguists interested in their use are free to contact me via electronic mail. The links below give output examples of some of the programmes.
Under the links below one finds the powerpoints of some more or less recent conference presentations.
The links below give access to some of the courses I have taught recently.
The files below are adapted versions of the powerpoint presentations used for the courseat the Universidad Chileno-Britanica de Cultura, Santiago de Chile 23-27 October 2007
Below you find the powerpointpresenations related to the summer course on the use of the computer in language typology, Campobasso 23 - 27 july 2007
I am the secretary-treasurer of the SocietasLinguistica Europaea. The link below connects to the home page of the SLE.
I play several instruments (accordion; acoustic and electric guitar; harmonicas) but I am much better at listening and letting other people play by collecting their output on CD. This is one of the few areas of interest (but see Philately) where collectors with just an academic salary can still be relatively successful. I concentrate on chamber music , and more specifically on string quartets , alternatively plus or minus one player (string trios and string quintets) and possibly plus the piano (piano trios, piano quartets and piano quintets). Currently, the collection contains around 2500 different string quartets, the most important ones in several versions, on a total of around 6000 pieces of chamber music, over the period 1750 to today. The complete list of all works, and of the string quartets alone may be found below. Since I aim for (impossible) goal of completeness of the string quartet collection, I would be greatly indebted to anyone pointing out a string quartet available on CD which is not in the quartets list, as well as chamber works of the major composers not in the overall list.
Both surveys list the works alphabetically on composer name. Towards the end of the lists totals per type, country, year and key may be found. Thirdly, I add my list of works to be taken to that desert island. And finally, in a carreer that never really took of ... The guitarist on the right is linguist Dan Everett.
The picture on the left shows the world's stamp #1: the Penny Black of 6th May 1840. Note that it does not carry the name of the country. Until today, the portrait of the current sovereign is supposed to be enough identification for stamps of Great Britain.
Below I inserted a few particularly nice pieces from the countries of my major interest.