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Re: Non-linear / full-2d writing systems?

From:Ray Brown <ray.brown@...>
Date:Wednesday, May 18, 2005, 18:25
On Wednesday, May 18, 2005, at 12:42 , Sai Emrys wrote:

> Ray Brown: >>> My opinion: row&col format is *more* 2d, but not fully. I suppose I'd >>> call it "linear-plus", or "double-linear" or somesuch. >> >> Yes - linear in 2 dimensions :) > > Actually, what this makes me think of is that Remi's row&col example > was just a different, direct-conversion format for nested parenthesis.
Gosh, yes, so it is. It can be completely re-written, without any loss of data, in one long string in LISP notation :)
> And yes, I am talking CS-term "linear", like a stack or queue.
That is what assumed: non-liner = not using linear data structures. Remi's example is clearly using linear data structures. It even needs more than just the grid of 'semagrams', otherwise you get potential sequences like "[The ] Kingdom of Yferosia, [which is] made of light, [is] burning all [its people]" - which, from the context of the story, is not the likely intent. I gather from Remi's mail on 8th May that: "That's what the thick lines are here for: to prevent such misreading. Do you use such an old browser that it isn't CSS aware? Ad: Mozilla or nothing! " Unfortunately, that is pointless for those of us who use mailers to read & send email. My mailer just turned Remi's HTML stuff into a TIFF and all the thick (and thin?) lines are completely missing. But with care it is fairly obvious where the thick lines should be (I think).
> Whether > or not it involves *lines* - that is, those things one draws with one > stroke of a pen from point A to point B - to me seems wholly > irrelevant.
I agree. I don't know how this misunderstanding came about. I probably referred in one of my mails to a line, meaning either a horizontal line of 'semagraphs' or a vertical line of 'semagraphs', and Remi thought I was referring to one of those lines that I couldn't see! [snip]
>>> That is, what we refer to with language is *NOT* really a description >>> of the thing we are communicating, whatever it is, save for trivial >>> examples. >> >> It's a shadow of what we want to communicate. The current (and past) >> writing systems, which came long, long after speech, is are shadows of >> shadows. > > *laugh* Indeed. Which is why it is so strange to me to have it be > portrayed ad the communication itself, and suggestions for something > else therefore appearing like a desire for telepathy by constrast.
Even if humans had evolved the ability to communicate by thought alone, I suspect our communication would still be a shadow of our real thoughts. I don't think many people would be happy with the idea that their thoughts could all be read by anyone within 'reading distance' - we would most surely still process our thoughts before transmission :) But thinking how telepathic beings might write their 'thought transmission' might be a way of starting - also I vaguely hoped that some other people might get interested because such creatures do turn up in con-worlds, I believe, and it might be a little more convincing if they did not appear to think linearly in Anglo-American :)
>> But altho ideally it would be helpful to know exactly how we think, it do >> not think our lack of knowledge necessarily prevents our making some >> tentative steps towards a NLF2DWS noesiography. After all, some 5 >> millennia ago the Sumerians made a start on the process of committing >> spoken language to writing without any proper understanding of phonology > > Oh, certainly. I just think that a research-based design would turn > out to be superior.
> I don't think that we have that kind of > understanding yet, or will likely have it in the next hundred years > (and I'm a CogSci major, so ought to be optimistic about such > things)
I know medical science is advancing all the time, but somehow I don't think I'll survive that long ;)
> ... but we can certainly use what we know now.
Yes, it's a start.
> For that matter, it might serve as a test of competing theories of > thought. If a system accurately mirrors the theory, then the one that > is more accurate should also be the one with higher comprehension, > retention, quick-comprehension, etc. rates, and be more robust against > a game of Telephone.
A very valid point. My main problem is my lack of knowledge about these competing theories or, indeed, much knowledge about cognitive science - ah well, a bit more research I guess :) Ray =============================================== =============================================== "A mind which thinks at its own expense will always interfere with language." J.G. Hamann, 1760


Roger Mills <rfmilly@...>Non-linear / full-2d writing systems? (Telepathy dept.)