On Fri, Mar 8, 2013 at 2:45 AM, R A Brown <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> On 07/03/2013 22:42, Matthew George wrote:
> [snip]
>> Even in the simplest scenarios involving time travel,
>> you can no longer speak of the past or future as
>> something that will be the same for everyone and
>> everything. Instead of an absolute perspective, it's
>> relative.  So grammar that permits only that absolute
>> view excludes most possibilities. And alternate time
>> lines?  Forget it.
> Adding extra "tenses" IMO is going to make the situation
> even more complicated.  It would seem to me better to follow
> Chinese and scrap tenses, and verbs only (optionally) to
> show aspectual difference.

The main issue is that, in the real world, we will rarely even need to deal
with this scenario because time travel does not exist (and may indeed may
be impossible).  I don't see much point in optimizing a language for a
specialized domain that many people will never use.

If you were making Gallifreyan, you might need this.  Esperanto won't
though, unless you are writing some fiction with Esperantist time travelers.

> But there's no way I'd interfere with Esperanto.

Why not?  Esperanto is effectively a living language.  It was always
intended to be a community project, and I don't think Zamenhof would mind
people tinkering with it, as he didn't really mind when he was alive.