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Re: Conlanging with constraints

From:Adam Walker <carrajena@...>
Date:Tuesday, February 19, 2008, 17:22
--- MorphemeAddict@WMCONNECT.COM wrote:

> In a message dated 2/16/2008 23:54:49 PM Central > Standard Time, > ollock@GMAIL.COM writes: > > > > But (at least) one freedom I wouldn't have with a > human languages: Kesatans > > can change the color of their skin at will (which > could be used to > > compensate for the lack of hand-shape > distinctions). > > Changing skin color as a language medium is explored > in "The color of > distance" by Amy Thomson, and also in its sequel > "Through alien eyes". The aliens > communicate by creating graphic images (essentially > writing) by changing the > color of their skin. > > stevo </HTML> >
I have that book on my shelves, but hadn't bothered to read it. Your comments just raised it to the top of my TBR list. I worked on an alien-lang years ago called B-G-2-3 which was "spoken" by aliens who resembled large fleshy chunks of olivine when silent, but thier language involved colors and patterns displayed on their skin. I got the idea, of course, from chameleons, but refined my ideas as I learned about the much more tallented octopuses, squid and cuttlefish. To write the language I used letters to represent the colors and numbers to represent the paterns. B-G-2-3 means blue on top, green on the bottom. I had character names like Gold-Spark Silver-Shimmer and Blue-Wave Red-Wash or Magenta-Flash Tangerine-Stripe. I wrote part of a folktale about searching for treasure in the language. I should still have that somewhere. Adam Ed ñavisud in junu suñu pera nun regrediri ad ul Erodu, regrediruns ad il sustrus provinchi peu'l via aurra. Machu 2:12