--- Alicia Chang <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Basics:
> Name: Gary Shannon
> Age: 62
> Occupation: Computer Programmer
> Language questions:
> What languages have you created?
Igpaya Ussianruski (Pig Russian in 1950), an unnamed pictographic written
language, Tazhu, Soaloa, Madjal, Kalusa, Mutlak, and several unnamed sketches,
plus dozens of lost languages from my ancient childhood.

> How extensively have you developed them?
My unnamed pictographic language had several thousand words and I used it for
taking notes and writing my personal journal. I became very fluent in it for
reading and writing, but it was a written language only, and could not be
spoken. Tazhu has gone through several incarnations and is fairly extensive.
Kalusa is a colaborative project with several other conlangers. 

> If it is possible, can you give me a few example words from these languages?
You can view the Tazhu lexicon and my other projects at -- FROM McGuffy's Reader in Tazhu:
57. Come here, girls! I see a nest. Reviako tekiri! Vizo seteriagu.
58. Little birds are in it. Shadaradini lentrento eta. (Tizne sharadi lentrento

> If there any, what are the real-life roots/inspirations for your languages?
My pictographic language started out as a way to jot down notes on gestures and
hand positions while I studied American Sign Language for a couple of
semesters. Tazhu was sort of inspired by my high school Latin class.

> What caused you to become interested in creating your own language?
When I was five years old my dad taught me Pig Latin. It was so much fun that I
refined it to create Pig Russian (Igpaya Ussianruski). Between that and my
interest in real languages as well as ciphers and codes I've dabbled in "secret
languages" for over 55 years now. I have formally studied Latin, German and
Russian in high school and college.

> What do these languages/creating languages mean to you? Feel free to 
> interpret this question in any fashion you desire.
Most of all it helps me to understand my own language and languages in general.
I've always been interested in artificial intelligence, and a pet project is
trying to write computer programs that can converse intelligently in English.
To do so requires deep understanding of how language in general works, but
being the curmudgeon that I am, I am not at all satisfied with what has been
proposed by mainstream theorists in this area. They just don't get it, and fool
that I am, I think I do. I guess that makes me a fringe-dwelling crackpot, or
linguistic mad scientist.

> What have these languages given to you? Personally? In terms of a 
> community? Etc.
Nothing more than a way to idle away a few hours here and there and hopefully
come to a better understanding of language in general.

>    Thanks. Alicia