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From:Jim Grossmann <steven@...>
Date:Wednesday, July 18, 2001, 6:27
To be honest, I hadn't thought explanation this clearly, but now that you
mention it, your point seems sound.   If a given linguistic theory
delineated all and only features of natural human languages, and
successfully predicted the constraints on newly discovered natural human
I suppose the theory would be a good one.   (At least, I think so.)

Jim G.

(excerpts from And's post)

"It seems to me that even if Yehudi is used to explain only the fridge
light it is still a crap explanation, and it doesn't get that much
crappier when applied to everything else. The explanation is poor because
it has no predictive value and because we have no model of Yehudi's
caprices, and hence we can't understand why Yehudi does things this
way rather than that way."

"Maybe what you both mean that 'everything' includes what doesn't occur
as well as what does occur. In that case, I agree."

"That is, it's right and proper that a theory of what the rules of
chess are covers every possible game of chess, but it is also desirable
that they cover no impossible pseudogames."


jesse stephen bangs <jaspax@...>
Marcus Smith <smithma@...>