Philosophical language vocabulary?

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Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by OTʜᴇB » 26 Jul 2016 14:49

I promise this is the last thread I make about not being able to do vocab :mrgreen: (it probably won't be but hey ho)

I have kind of figured out now that I like all the stuff everyone else here doesn't so that's a thing. I just like how everything in the vocab of a (good) philosophical language (philosolang?) can be perfectly justified, like it all fits together neatly like a jigsaw. I want to be able to make vocab like that, but a lot of you will know I have this strange unexplained inability to even start making vocab (particularly elemtilas [;)] ). I could just use random generation but I just really don't like it as there's no order to it at all.

So er... help? I like John Wilkins' attempt and I've tried a similar thing before using the Universal language Dictionary but I just ended up with loads of reeeeealy long words that all sounded the same.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by shanoxilt » 27 Jul 2016 04:16

Have you tried ditching the spoken aspect of it? You could make a pasigraphy or even a musical language.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by elemtilas » 27 Jul 2016 04:41

OTheB wrote:I promise this is the last thread I make about not being able to do vocab :mrgreen: (it probably won't be but hey ho)

I have kind of figured out now that I like all the stuff everyone else here doesn't so that's a thing.
A good thing to have learned! We don't all share the same gustibuses!

For what it worths, I find philosophical languages, while inherently nutty and utterly unusable, to be considerably more interesting than auxlangs. As I see it, a philosophical language is to engelanging what a heartlang is to artlanging. It serves as both mirror upon and window into the mind (more than the heart) of the glossopoet. The usual strings of mumbo-jumbo vocabulary are uninteresting at best -- what I find much more interesting is the process of creating a philosophical language and the systematic workings of the glossopoet's own mind. Questions of how are you going to structure your language, how finely can categories or articles within categories be discriminated.
I just like how everything in the vocab of a (good) philosophical language (philosolang?) can be perfectly justified, like it all fits together neatly like a jigsaw. I want to be able to make vocab like that, but a lot of you will know I have this strange unexplained inability to even start making vocab (particularly elemtilas [;)] ). I could just use random generation but I just really don't like it as there's no order to it at all.

So er... help? I like John Wilkins' attempt and I've tried a similar thing before using the Universal language Dictionary but I just ended up with loads of reeeeealy long words that all sounded the same.
Well, take a look at that link I posted for Ygyde. Absolutely horrible, horrible as an auxlang, unless you really think sentences like 'bako beko puku lato tato tatty pipi' are really so much easier than even E-o!; but as I recall, rather more philosophical in its jigsawery. You might find some inspiration there. Also see this article on philosophical languages. There are some links there to other languages as well, ancient and new.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by shanoxilt » 27 Jul 2016 05:27

For what it worths, I find philosophical languages, while inherently nutty and utterly unusable, to be considerably more interesting than auxlangs.
Until the nineteenth century, most auxiliary languages were philosophical/taxonomic languages. They were intended to be used among the scientifically-literate as an alternative to Latin.
As I see it, a philosophical language is to engelanging what a heartlang is to artlanging. It serves as both mirror upon and window into the mind (more than the heart) of the glossopoet.
What do you think of Jim Henry's gjâ-zym-byn?

Although these fit more into the category of philosophies of life rather than knowledge representation systems, the world needs more ways to express "alternative" worldviews. This is why I would like to see more languages like Láadan and Toki Pona.

Maybe someone could make a language based on Queer Theory, or green politics, or Afrofuturism.
-- what I find much more interesting is the process of creating a philosophical language and the systematic workings of the glossopoet's own mind. Questions of how are you going to structure your language, how finely can categories or articles within categories be discriminated.
Does anyone have any examples of languages that deliberately abstract into broader, vaguer categories?
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by WeepingElf » 27 Jul 2016 10:30

An alternative to be considered is the arithmographic language.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by OTʜᴇB » 27 Jul 2016 12:44

WeepingElf wrote:An alternative to be considered is the arithmographic language.
That's awesome. I love that idea. So now I just need to define all the prime numbers... ... help?
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by Keenir » 27 Jul 2016 15:29

OTheB wrote:
WeepingElf wrote:An alternative to be considered is the arithmographic language.
That's awesome. I love that idea. So now I just need to define all the prime numbers... ... help?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_prime_numbers
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by OTʜᴇB » 27 Jul 2016 15:33

Keenir wrote:
OTheB wrote:
WeepingElf wrote:An alternative to be considered is the arithmographic language.
That's awesome. I love that idea. So now I just need to define all the prime numbers... ... help?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_prime_numbers
That's helpful, but for the wrong half of the problem. But I've come up with a solution that you happen to have participated in. So er... thanks [:)]
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by elemtilas » 27 Jul 2016 21:14

shanoxilt wrote:What do you think of Jim Henry's gjâ-zym-byn?
Textbook implementation of the personal language. I don't write journals or such, so I can't really say Queranaran is a "personal language" in the usual sense. It's definitely more at the "expressing private thoughts in a way that natlangs or other conlangs aren't suitable for" end of the polygon.

It is interesting to note that we share several design goals in mind, notably #s 2 4 5 & 6: numerous relatively simple root words for complex or deeper ideas that in English might could require paragraphs or pages to thoroughly describe; a grammar much different from what I'm used to (OVS, some incorporativefixation, spatial-temporal affixation, symmetrical-spatial deixis, extremely sparse verbal morphology compounded with rather more baroque nominal morphology); definitely nòt an IAL (and I doubt very much even you, my auxaficionado friend, would care to foist Q on an unsuspecting world!); I find it fun to discover and use.
Although these fit more into the category of philosophies of life rather than knowledge representation systems, the world needs more ways to express "alternative" worldviews.
Yes. This is one of the hallmark distinctions between the personal & heart language on one side and the classical philosophical language on the other. The philosophical language seeks to express a world view based on (I suppose) observational criteria, a logical plan and a serious case of pigeonholing every conceivable thing. Personal and heart languages seek to express the world views of individuals, may lack logical planning and may well skew the usual categorisation schemes we're used to. Not a bad thing at all!
This is why I would like to see more languages like Láadan and Toki Pona.
Sure. I've never looked into Láadan, though I find it interesting to note that is has a system of evidentials & perceptual markers. Not a whole lot different from Queranaran in those respects.
Maybe someone could make a language based on Queer Theory, or green politics, or Afrofuturism.
Whatever floats yer boat!
Does anyone have any examples of languages that deliberately abstract into broader, vaguer categories?
What do you mean?
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by Frislander » 27 Jul 2016 21:24

elemtilas wrote:
This is why I would like to see more languages like Láadan and Toki Pona.
Sure. I've never looked into Láadan, though I find it interesting to note that is has a system of evidentials & perceptual markers. Not a whole lot different from Queranaran in those respects.
Well here's the Conlangery episode on it and here's the Wikipedia page.

Personally I think the phonology is an interesting start (I'd probably even the consonants out a bit), and is rather appealing given its possible Navajo inspiration (the language Elgin's thesis was on), and some of the sentence particles look like they could be useful, but some of its grammatical bits look a bit, I don't know, stereotypical maybe?

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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by elemtilas » 27 Jul 2016 23:56

Frislander wrote:Well here's the Conlangery episode on it and here's the Wikipedia page.

Personally I think the phonology is an interesting start (I'd probably even the consonants out a bit), and is rather appealing given its possible Navajo inspiration (the language Elgin's thesis was on), and some of the sentence particles look like they could be useful, but some of its grammatical bits look a bit, I don't know, stereotypical maybe?
Ya, I was actually just looking at the WP article. I dislike the forms some of those particles take -- the bo-be-bi-ba-bu thing, but the underlying natures are of interest. Evidential marking, while not mandatory for every utterance in Queranaran, is certainly common and there are many more possibilities than in Láadan:

This pay heed! liyieram high importance fact or order
A thing known: eiyem factual
Doubtless true anni-anni reasonably doubtless
Uncertain I tell it: anuwam dubious factuality; possible errors
A falsehood is it: cuaiyamme non-factual
A thing desired: ossetiyas counterfactual but wished for
A thing wished for: lalayam counterfactual but wished for
A thing to hoped fof: romilayas unknown, uncertain but hoped
A universal truth: rurayam gnomic logion; poetic
A thing wondered: lusereyas unknown, but speculative truth
A thing seen: lestaroam first hand knowledge
A thing heard: cuchului
A thing felt by fingers: sandaywi
A thing felt by toes: yaradandui
A thing smelled: rorongui
A thing intuited: hrestayam
A thing deeply felt: crhruacanyu felt deep in the heart
A thing gut-felt: sheltasi making one ill at ease
A thing bone-felt: hwustasi very deeply felt, instinctual sense
A thing else-seen: accuyu
A thing assumed: quereleram unknown but reluctantly assumed
A thing reported: fadayam secondhand but reliable
A thing reported: fadayshram secondhand but of less repute
A thing said: angmaoam hearsay, not a direct report

Those are the more common ones I'm aware of.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by shanoxilt » 28 Jul 2016 00:45

The philosophical language seeks to express a world view based on (I suppose) observational criteria, a logical plan and a serious case of pigeonholing every conceivable thing.
Ideally, a well-constructed taxonomic language should do for words what mathematical systems do for numbers. That is to say, they should provide a consistent formula for finding and expressing meanings and their interrelations.

This is why Ithkuil and Lojban excite me. They have such untapped potential, not just in themselves but also as catalysts for entirely new genres of language and thought.
Does anyone have any examples of languages that deliberately abstract into broader, vaguer categories?
What do you mean?
I am not certain of the correct terminology, but "holistic" and "emergent" seem to be relevant.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by k1234567890y » 28 Jul 2016 00:56

how about trying to sort things into different categories, then assign affixes or words for each category, like "verbs that describe change", "verbs of movement and giving", "nouns of big animals", "nouns of natural phenomena", etc.?

I don't think there's a perfect way to describe things, maybe every way has its strengths and weaknesses, and speakers may actually use a lot of different ways to describe different things.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by elemtilas » 28 Jul 2016 02:48

shanoxilt wrote:
The philosophical language seeks to express a world view based on (I suppose) observational criteria, a logical plan and a serious case of pigeonholing every conceivable thing.
Ideally, a well-constructed taxonomic language should do for words what mathematical systems do for numbers. That is to say, they should provide a consistent formula for finding and expressing meanings and their interrelations.
Yep. I think that is rather the point of the classical philosophical language!
This is why Ithkuil and Lojban excite me. They have such untapped potential, not just in themselves but also as catalysts for entirely new genres of language and thought.
And why they excite me not in the least! I've no real interest in a language designed to pigeonhole every little thing, that provide clear and consistent formulas for expressing meaning & relationships.

I like things rather messier!

Now, I'm certainly down with new genres of language and thought.
I am not certain of the correct terminology, but "holistic" and "emergent" seem to be relevant.
I understand what holism is; what I meant was where were you heading with a language that abstracts to broader and vaguer categories?

Do you mean like Inverse-Inuktitut?
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by Keenir » 28 Jul 2016 03:20

shanoxilt wrote:
The philosophical language seeks to express a world view based on (I suppose) observational criteria, a logical plan and a serious case of pigeonholing every conceivable thing.
Ideally, a well-constructed taxonomic language should do for words what mathematical systems do for numbers. That is to say, they should provide a consistent formula for finding and expressing meanings and their interrelations.

This is why Ithkuil and Lojban excite me. They have such untapped potential, not just in themselves but also as catalysts for entirely new genres of language and thought.
what are some "genres of thought" that already exist? (so I and we can understand what you mean by that)
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by shanoxilt » 28 Jul 2016 03:57

Keenir wrote:what are some "genres of thought" that already exist? (so I and we can understand what you mean by that)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outline_o ... isciplines
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Social_theories

But even as mere procedural generators of aesthetics, these languages have value.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by shanoxilt » 28 Jul 2016 04:40

And why they excite me not in the least! I've no real interest in a language designed to pigeonhole every little thing, that provide clear and consistent formulas for expressing meaning & relationships.
I like things rather messier!
Now, I'm certainly down with new genres of language and thought.
Given what mathematicians have done with chaos theory, those are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Unpredictable and messy behavior can easily arise from simple, rigid rules.
I understand what holism is; what I meant was where were you heading with a language that abstracts to broader and vaguer categories? Do you mean like Inverse-Inuktitut?
Perhaps something more akin to the semantic equivalent to category theory.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by OTʜᴇB » 28 Jul 2016 16:57

I've been thinking about how to go from numbers to letters and aren't entirely sure where to start. These are the ideas I have so far:
  1. Convert to base 12 (I have 12 written consonants) then use the vowel that is the number of prime factors mod 5 (I have 5 written vowels).
  2. Convert to some strange multi-based system for the number of possible onsets, nuclei, and coda and get each syllable from there.
  3. Use a random generator to give each prime a few letters, then atom-smash them into a word (I love that term).
I'm rather in favour of option 1 as it is guaranteed to produce valid words and will create a nice vowel harmony in each word as this vowel will be the same throughout the word, though option 2 would mean more clusters and diphthongs which is nice. There's also likely a far better way of doing it but I can't really find anything on Google.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by WeepingElf » 28 Jul 2016 17:11

OTheB wrote:
That's helpful, but for the wrong half of the problem.
Yes. A list of prime numbers is the easy part. The difficult part is to find a set of semantic primes that all concepts can be broken down to - if such things exist at all! It tells a lot that I have never seen an actual arithmographic language.
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Re: Philosophical language vocabulary?

Post by OTʜᴇB » 28 Jul 2016 17:16

WeepingElf wrote:
OTheB wrote:
That's helpful, but for the wrong half of the problem.
Yes. A list of prime numbers is the easy part. The difficult part is to find a set of semantic primes that all concepts can be broken down to - if such things exist at all! It tells a lot that I have never seen an actual arithmographic language.
I've figured out the primes bit. I'm just using them as roots then A combination of some of them just multiplies them and you get a unique number. I'm just trying to figure out how to take a number which has a certain meaning, and then use maths (because I like maths) to somehow derive a string of letters from it that is not only unique, but fits my phonotactics.
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