[ExI] Universal languages (was: wta-talk Voting Members ...)

Kevin H kevin.l.holmes at gmail.com
Sat Dec 29 01:19:42 UTC 2007

On 12/28/07, Bryan Bishop <kanzure at gmail.com> wrote:
> I hope it doesn't (and I can't see how). I agree with your disagreement.

I thought I might have misunderstood that point, hence the conditional.

> It most definitely is already happening. But that doesn't mean we can't
> find our own places in the growing context of the world. :)

Right.  That was something I wanted to get around to, but when a post
achieves a certain length I'm less willing to make it longer.  But the World
Core dictionary was an idea to that end.

> Why must their be a change to languages? Naturally, languages change
> over time, but it sounds like you want to have a new language-standard
> published and so on.

Okay, sorry for the confusion.  I meant that world languages must change,
but on their own, not externally.  I'm not talking about a new language
standard being published by some committee.  What I'm saying, basically, is
that whenever two cultures and languages meet, this causes a change to both
languages.  Part of this change is that the two languages begin assimilating
each other.  On the global scale, this will eventually mean all major
languages incorporating elements of each other.  This is sort of the idea of
World Core, but is limited to what global citizens find that they require in
order to communicate their own needs.  While learning an entire foreign
language is probably enriching on it's own right, but more widespread will
probably be parts of those languages that are needed for, for example,
government, commerce, technological and scientific cooperation, and not
aspects of a language that are valued for their own sake.

> As communities grow larger, they tend to shift from "we should try to
> understand and accomodate an increasingly larger section of
> everything/everybody else" to "everybody else should respect our
> monumental size, rawr!" A global business language will only come about
> dynamically, or from grassroot operations, and if something else does
> pop up, you'll get lots of other smaller, competing operations.
> Competition is good! Microsoft bad! (Sorry.)
Yeah, sorry about the miscommunication.  I should have taken greater effort
to explain that what I had in mind *wasn't* an attempt to force a language
standard onto people.  World Core is rather a sort of mix-mash of languages
that will occur on it's own as a consequence of the inner necessity of
communicating in an increasingly globalized world, and we can't say, before
hand, what form it will take.  There, do you agree with that?

> Miscommunication is otherwise known as an opportunity to learn.

Now you're just being a smart ass :)  When foreign branches of the same
company lose millions of dollars on a simple misunderstanding, what a great
opportunity to learn that was!  When scientists over seas inadvertantly
destroy decades worth of research due to some parody of language, how
educational!  Sorry, now I'm being the wise guy, but it's all in good humor

The computational linguists have been trying for ages. The online
> translators are barely functioning. But perhaps you can recommend some
> other tools to add to the set? And some people are arguing that ai
> would be needed for true language-language translation, but why not
> just have a person (like it is now) to do that? To actually learn a new
> language.

Well, I agree that automated translations are horrible, and even human
translators have difficulties given the incommensurability of languages.  At
some point, there's always going to be something that is impossible to
translate completely given that languages don't always share the same
meanings.  But the World Core dictionary idea isn't a translator, but it's
meant to be, just like any other dictionary, a description of that common
international language that develops on it's own.  So rather than having to
learn pretty much every major language out there, and perhaps several minor
ones (not to make a value judgment on any language) in order to do our
business in a globalized world, the idea is just to learn World Core and
your own primary language to get by.  Maybe it's not a good theory, but it's
what I'll contribute to this list for now.

> You'd end up with another Wikipedia with even less user review/access.

It might be Wikipedia, for all I know.

Anyway, thanks for responding.

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.extropy.org/pipermail/extropy-chat/attachments/20071228/0322de7d/attachment.html>

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list