Jun 22, 2009

some thoughts on language.

Speaking forces information to be transmitted in a such a special way. Broadly, it forces us to encode information as a stream of characters knowing that the receiver has a very limited buffer. Speaking is unfortunately, sequential in nature.

Semantic chunks of knowledge have to be ironed flat and then reconstructed later with only a small amount of processing. Like ive pointed out in earlier posts maybe about a year ago, this forces a convention of sequentialy on our math notation, the result being that our math notation is speakable but possibly a bad influence. Order free logic is a clear example of where no easily speakable notation can be made, maybe why something so obvious was overlooked. Order free logic is inherently a nonsequential type of thing.

A similar principle holds true even for story telling. Stories are still told sequentially even with the capabilities of hyperlinked text. Of course speech pragmatics are involved. Its easy to mark time by having older things happen in the end of the text and new things later. Temporally sequential things are written sequentially.

The only form of knowledge transmission i can think of that isnt restricted by this squentialness are diagrams. Unfortunately a well formed syntax for them is not availible.

I like to think of information as abstractly a graph of nodes (either being a primitive concept or a graph themselves) with connecting thematic roles. In our normal communication, we take a region of the graph, cut it out, flatten it and then speak it. We force a sequential representation. Its interesting, but hard to imagine a writting system that isn't sequential like language. We should resist an attempt to fill in an N by N grid with characters and then attempt to ascribe some meaning. Instead my graph concept works fine. The image is the representation of green ideas sleep furiously.

need to get sleep. not even gonna see if anything i typed made sense.