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Greek, smart apps, long life

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July 6, 2010
Greek to go
What does the well-dressed classical scholar take to the beach these days? An iPad loaded with Greek-language tutorials of course! The Odysseas Greek Language Tutor is a popular interactive learning program designed by SFU's Hellenic studies department to teach Greek language and culture online. It's currently used by dozens of international schools and is available free at Or, look for the free iPhone (and coming-soon iPad) app from the iTunes store:

Andre Gerolymatos: 778.782.5597;

Apps = accessibility
There are a number of iPhone apps for languages, but communications prof Peter Chow-White notesmost are for travel-related language learning. SFU’s new iPhone/iPad apps for learning Greek make what is known to be an ancient language more accessible through digital education. It’s also an example of how to reach students in a more mobile and creative way in an academic setting.” Colleague Richard Smith adds that applications for language learning are exploding: “It’s another avenue for academic output if it goes beyond the flash card approach.”

Peter Chow-White, 778.782.7289;
Richard Smith, 778.782.5116, 604.947.9287;

Hitting the DNA jackpot
By analyzing the DNA of the world’s oldest people, New England scientists have discovered a genetic signature to longevity. They’re already talking about making a free test available to anyone who wants to check whether they’ve been born with the DNA jackpot—but it will cost thousands to acquire and supply their genetic makeup for analysis. Gerontologists Andrew Wister and Gloria Gutman have thoughts on the significance and possible repercussions of this breakthrough:

Andrew Wister, 778.782.5044;
Gloria Gutman, 778.782.5063, 604.767.2009 (cell);


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