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Re: THEORY: SV: THEORY: What IS language anyway?

From:Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...>
Date:Thursday, June 29, 2006, 15:28
--- Kalle Bergman <seppu_kong@...> wrote:

> Hi there! New on the list! > > I reckon one obvious thing must be added to the > model. > If brains just executed any old language-command > that > reached them through the ears, their > world-simulation > would pretty soon start to appear pretty messy. > Lies, > fiction and mutually incommensurable statements are > obvious examples of stuff that can easily FUBAR a > world-simulation. Brains need a way of keeping tabs > on > several different world-simulations, and to make > judgement about which one is most likely to be true. > > > Maybe all that the language-comprehension mechanism > of > the brain does, is to convert language input into a > part-of-the-world-simulation, and then a > simulation management mechanism takes over and does > its best to fit the part-of-the-world-simulation > into > the overall system of simulations. > > /Kalle B
Hi, Welcome to the list, and thanks for your comments. As a half-baked theory I'm sure my idea needs a lot of work before it could possibly be taken seriously. I think you're right, though. Clearly some simulation scenarios are best rejected, and others are meant to be of very temporary utility. Fictional scenarios would also have to be understood as existing in a separate fictional reality and not in the concrete objective reality we think of as "the" reality. Is it true that Hobbits live in burrows under the ground? Clearly the truth of that statement depends on whether we are simulating objective reality or simulating a fictional reality. Statements that posit attribute values that are in conflict with previously established values must be evaluated in some way. "Abraham Lincoln was born on Mars and migrated to Earth at an early age." We don't want such statements to be taken at face value. Attribute values might have a degree of certainty attached to them. "John is in the shower." We can ASSUME that John is washing himself, but he may, in fact, be fully clothed and working on the broken shower head, so when we assign that assumed value it should be clearly marked as assumed, not asserted. These are all problems that need to be considered. At the present, however, I'm really focussing on the first step, which is parsing out the meaning of a sentence. If I can get that part working to my satisfaction then it will be time to address the deeper issues involved in what to do with the resulting "commands". Comming soon: A web page with more details and a computer program in Java (so it can be run on any computer) to try out my theory in practise. --gary