There is another way to test how usable Fith or the like is... to learn it or probably a relaxed version of it as iirc the documentation got eaten by a bug and attempt to converse in it. Given that I wanted to learn such a language, I would offer to be a conversation partner :) Va'il veka, Mechthild Am 2011-sep-24 um 18:19 schrieb And Rosta: > R A Brown, On 24/09/2011 08:33: >> On 24/09/2011 04:57, Alex Fink wrote: >>> On Fri, 23 Sep 2011 21:17:19 +0100, And >>> Rosta wrote: >>>> Fithians could speak human languages far better than >>>> humans (i.e. produce and comprehend grammatical >>>> sentences of far greater complexity than humans can >>>> cope with in real time). >>> >>> That also seems not to strike at the main point, which I >>> take to be human comprehensibility of full-blown Fith. >> >> AMEN! >> >> And's statement above is, of course, scientifically >> untestable as Fithians are a fictitious race. > > However, it is trivially simple, with a mere second or two's reflection, to translate my statement into something substantively equivalent that is scientifically testable: A machine with the processing abilities attributed to Fithians could speak human languages far better than humans (i.e. produce and comprehend grammatical sentences of far greater complexity than humans can cope with in real time. > >>> I dropped the ball on the last conversation on Fith, and >>> so this will be a retread, for which I apologise. >> >> No apology needed. The points you make are IMO very >> relevant. It was not Jeffrey Henning's intention that Fith >> be human-usable and AFAIK it is _generally_ accepted that >> full blown Fith is not. I really need to see firm evidence >> to the contrary and, so far, I have not seen it. > > It can also be demonstrated that full-blown English is not human-usable either. The lack of human-usability of full-blown Fith does not in itself prove that Fith is "a language with some kind of mathematically/grammatically implausible syntax structure". > >> On 23/09/2011 21:17, And Rosta wrote: >> [snip] >>> I have claimed that there are three different and >>> discrepant Lojbans: (1) the formal definition, (2) the >>> langue internalized by the ablest speakers, (3) the >>> langue inherent in actual mainstream parole. (1) is >>> unspeakable, but (2) is speakable and is functionally >>> equivalent to (1); if (1) had been created by people >>> with some kind of reasonable understanding of human >>> language, it could have been like (2) and hence >>> speakable. >> >> This IMHO is hair-splitting. By Lojban I mean and understand >> the language developed by the Logical Language Group and >> used by the Lojban community. > > You can fudge these together in your mind so that to you they appear to be one thing, but in that case there's no point in discussing the human-usability of Lojban. Only by splitting the hairs you disdain to split, and drawing the distinctions I drew, can one judge the human-usability of Lojban (-- i.e. how close are the three types of Lojban). > >>> I find it rather annoying when people cite the existence >>> of (3) as being of linguistic, rather than strictly >>> social, significance: it is as if one were to study the >>> French speech of english schoolchildren trying to speak >>> French to each other, >> >> The analogy is simply false. French is the language of _la >> Francophonie_. English schoolchildren are attempting to >> speak that language. Lojban, as I understand it, is the >> language of the Lojban community. > > Some Lojbanists think as you do, probably a minority of them nowadays. Most think of (1) as the true Lojban. Certainly it's (1) that has given Lojban most of its kudos, as the most explicitly defined of all languages. > >> Your comparison above could just as well be expressed as: >> "I have claimed that there are three different and >> discrepant Frenches: (1) the formal definition of L'Académie >> française, (2) the langue internalized by the ablest >> speakers, (3) the langue inherent in actual mainstream parole." >> >> Sorry - I know I am only an amateur linguist, but to me (3) is what I >> understand as the main manifestation of French, with (1) and (2) >> being artificial dialects. > > For your own purposes it's fine for you to think that (3) is the true Lojban, and to apply the name Lojban to it. And I can kind of see why you said "people do actually both write and speak Lojban" in response to the question of whether Lojban exemplifies "a language with some kind of mathematically/grammatically implausible syntax structure" -- because if, for you, Lojban is whatever people do when they claim they are speaking Lojban (i.e. Lojban Type 3), then of course it is human-usable. But I would have hoped that you'd have realized both that I too knew that Lojban Type 3 is spoken, and that it was the distinction among the three types of Lojban that made pertinent the question of whether it exemplifies "a language with some kind of mathematically/grammatically implausible syntax structure". > > --And.