Author Topic: The language of old Europe  (Read 117605 times)

Offline freknu

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #180 on: February 19, 2014, 03:07:29 PM »
Can we move this to the "out of the box" now? The further this goes on the less it resembles anything "historical" or "linguistic".

Online Daniel

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #181 on: February 19, 2014, 06:23:57 PM »
Yes, sounds correct to me.

dublin, this is now your thread to post whatever you'd like on the topic. The purpose of this subforum is to allow discussion of any topic, no matter how controversial. It really should have been here in the first place-- it's a discussion about a new and controversial idea that isn't accepted in the linguistic community at all. This is where discussions like that (whether useful or crazy) go on this forum.
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Offline jkpate

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #182 on: February 20, 2014, 12:59:05 AM »
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Why can't they be coincidences?

Because for something to be a coincidence from the statistical point of view it has to have high probability to happen as a random event. If you have 30 sounds in a bag, to your disposal, and you need to create 100 words. What is the chance that you will randomly pick the same sound for all 100 words. For one it is 1/30. For hundred it is
(1/30)*(1/30)*(1/30)*(1/30)*...100 times. Do you see how improbable that is? Now calculate probability of the same two sounds being always picked. But if you deliberately pick the same sound, based on the meaning of the sound, then we have a completely different story. We don't have independent events and probability rises dramatically. If the event is me being able to construct the meaning of a word from its sound blocks. The probability of that event is 1/2. I either do it or not. If I do it, again and again, on hundreds of random words from multiple languages, what is the probability of that happening randomly?

This is a great example! You are of course correct that randomly selecting the same sound 100 times in a row from a group of 30 sounds uniformly at random is small: (1/30)^100. However, by the pigeonhole principle, the probability of never repeating a sound is actually zero. Specifically, there will be 70 total repetitions in this 100-word sequence if all 30 sounds are used at least once, and, under a uniform, independent model, we expect to see each sound appear 100/30 = 3.333... times. An (equivalent mathematically) alternative way to state this is to say that each sound has a 1/30 chance of repeating, and a 29/30 chance of not repeating. The probability of each number of appearances is then given by a binomial distribution, which we can plot in R:


> plot( 0:20, dbinom(0:20, 100, 1/30) ,  xlab = "number of occurrences in the sequence", ylab="P(sequences with x occurrences)" )


(I'm cutting off the long tail of very low-probability sequences). However,  you are not considering only 100 words. You say you've been relying on your intuitions about language, so the words you have been considering are the words that you know. Since you speak two languages fluently, we can (conservatively) estimate your vocabulary at 20,000 words. Here is the distribution over numbers of repetitions (with the long tail of low-probability sequences again cut off):


> plot( 0:1000, dbinom(0:1000, 20000, 1/30) ,  xlab = "number of occurrences in the sequence", ylab="P(sequences with x occurrences)" )


The peak is over 600! And very low numbers of repetitions are also low-probability. Now, this is assuming that all of the words you know are related to "boundary," but, given your flexibility in saying words are related, a few hundred examples are not at all surprising or convincing that your correspondence between particular sounds and particular meanings is real. Simply looking at more words will not be convincing, because the number of opportunities for coincidences rises as you look for words. Methodologies do exist for addressing this: you could randomly sample words related to boundary by asking people with a survey, like djr33 has suggested, or use a corpus that is representative of languages, like I did.

At this point, I don't expect to convince you, but hopefully this discussion (and the R code) is interesting to other readers.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2014, 01:07:01 AM by jkpate »
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Offline dublin

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #183 on: February 20, 2014, 05:39:58 AM »
Hi all

djr33, freknu, lx keep repeating this:

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We've told you that we don't believe you, that your arguments are not convincing, that your methodology is flawed, and that your theories are almost certainly incorrect.

This has been stated again and again without any counter argument.

Then Lx said this yesterday:

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I'm happy to believe you think you've got the answer. Send your hypotheses to some linguistics journals. Let us know what they say. Failing that, try sending the idea to one credible linguist and promise to quote the honest response he/she gives you.

And djr33 then agreed and added:

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What lx was trying to say is: can you find even one credible person (here or elsewhere) who agrees with you? Having an unpopular opinion is fine. Having a theory that absolutely no one believes is probably a sign that something is off.

Again and again you use word believe in. This is what I have been saying from the beginning. You are not scientists, you are teachers, whose only argument is belief in what they learned at school.

And now you have proven that you actually have no thoughts of your own what so ever, and that all you know is to fallow the opinions of credible linguists. What would happen if Chomsky or some other "credible linguist" accepted my theory? Would you then change your "beliefs" and start believing in my theory? Just like that? Is this the extent of your scientific methods?

You are the exact opposite from what scientist should be.

Considering that none of you have distanced yourself from what lx and djr33 have said, I can only conclude that you are all believers and not scientists.

Jkpate

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You say you've been relying on your intuitions about language

This is not what I said. I said that I noticed the consistent appearance of certain sounds in certain types of words with related meaning. I noticed that while analyzing Serbian and Irish. I was using long term stable languages which are distant geographically and historically.
I deliberately avoided English because it is a mixed language which underwent huge changes in last 1000 years.

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the probability of never repeating a sound is actually zero

This is off course true and obvious. But we are not talking about picking endless number of random groups of sounds out of 30 sounds. There is no endless number of words. Also we are talking about only words with particular meaning. So the number of repetitions of the experiment is even smaller.
There are only 284 different word roots in English language starting with N. I extracted the information from the freely available spell checker software world lists.

If say 200 of them are related to boundary, what is the probability that that was an a coincidence, meaning collection of random sound picks which all ended up in making words which start with N and have meaning related to boundary?

I think you are asking wrong questions.

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Now, this is assuming that all of the words you know are related to "boundary," but, given your flexibility in saying words are related, a few hundred examples are not at all surprising or convincing that your correspondence between particular sounds and particular meanings is real. Simply looking at more words will not be convincing, because the number of opportunities for coincidences rises as you look for words.

What you are saying here basically is that even if statistics prove that I am right, you will not accept the results? What is the point of doing all this statistics stuff then? It is only useful if it proves you right and me wrong? What kind of science is this?

I have repeatedly said that I mean when I say boundary related. I explained it not once in detail. I gave you the algorithm to select boundary related words. But you are refusing to accept any of this, because you want to use "my flexibility in saying words are related to boundary" as a wriggle out route in case, as you have seen yourself, statistics proves me right.

But this is not surprising because I deal with believers not scientists. You might fancy yourselves as scientists, you might think that because you use statistics that that makes you a scientist. But your could not be further from being scientists.

Use one of the examples that I have given you, and explain what you see using any other existing theory that you believe in. If the only counter theory that you can come up with is coincidence, they you are the same as people who explain the universe by saying that it was god's will.

I thought that at least in our ability to think, premeditate and act based on our thoughts made us independent from destiny of randomness by god's will, but you obviously don't think so.

jkpate you said:

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Methodologies do exist for addressing this: you could randomly sample words related to boundary by asking people with a survey, like djr33 has suggested, or use a corpus that is representative of languages, like I did.

First there is nothing random about asking people what words relate to boundary. You are talking about people who have their cognitive processes shaped by their common cultural experience. So their answers are not random, they are the opposite from random. You don't understand this because you don't understand how our brains are shaped by our experiences and particularly by our language. The survey has the same randomness coefficient as asking people who all support Man United to give you the list of best football players. 

Of course you can't ask Turkish people to tell you what English words are related to boundary. And this makes the whole argument about random sampling of words through surveys useless.

You could do what I suggested:

Use sound blocks I already used in my analysis. Find 100 random words from this thread, or any random page on the internet, which are built around these sound blocks. Find root words using etymological dictionary. Give the list of modern words and root words to someone with the list of sound blocks and their meanings. See if sum meaning of the original words is close to the meaning of the original word and of the modern word.

You can do this with a computer, you don't need people. But you need to understand what boundary actually is first. I explained that many times, gave you definition from dictionaries, so I will not repeat it again.

As for your wordnet software, It is based on word synonyms and what I am talking about is based on sound block synonyms.  So I can't use it. But thanks for your help, at least you tried.

Here is an example of what I am talking about: in (inside something), on (on something), no (negation of something), un (opposite of something) are all sound blocks which express boundary meaning. If you find them in any word, that word is a boundary word.

And by the way I will contact few reputable and respectable linguists. And let's see what happen. Maybe djr33 will start believing in me and my gospel one day...
« Last Edit: February 20, 2014, 07:03:29 AM by dublin »
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Offline dublin

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #184 on: February 20, 2014, 06:58:47 AM »
I need to explain this in more detail:

Quote
Here is an example of what I am talking about: in (inside something), on (on something), no (negation of something), un (opposite of something) are all sound blocks which express boundary meaning. If you find them in any word, that word is a boundary word.

If you find the above sound blocks in words they become linked to boundary by definition of being linked to boundary word like no. This means that we have to remove them from the lists of words which we are going to analyze. Unbelievable and noncompliance are boundary words but they are not interesting ones. They are obviously deliberately made using negation to create a boundary between what is and what isn't like believable, unbelievable. The same goes  for words expressing continuous action using "ing" and nouns made from verbs using "ion". What is left is words which are not obviously linked to boundary but have N in them. These are the ones you analyze with etymological dictionaries and see what original meaning they had.

They become our test words.

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Online Daniel

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #185 on: February 20, 2014, 11:37:01 AM »
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Considering that none of you have distanced yourself from what lx and djr33 have said, I can only conclude that you are all believers and not scientists.
No. I'd consider myself a skeptic. I tentatively accept the best theory out there as a working hypothesis, but I question it all the time. Your theory is much less credible and therefore a step in the wrong direction. It's not that I'm closed-minded.

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And by the way I will contact few reputable and respectable linguists. And let's see what happen. Maybe djr33 will start believing in me and my gospel one day...
Great. Let us know if you convince anyone. And, if you are actually being honest about this, also track how many people don't accept your claims.
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Offline dublin

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #186 on: February 21, 2014, 04:26:17 PM »
jkpate, I have finished the abstract I have promised you. I know it is a week late, but better ever than never. You can see why it took so long to complete it. I have opened separate thread for it:

http://linguistforum.com/wild-ideas/unified-language-theory/

djr33, I don't want to waste any more time replying to your "i don't like your theory" comments. I know you don't like it, we all do. So go and do something you like. Or produce counter theory that can explain what i have shown you without using words like "it's a coincidence or god's will". Even chaos is not coincidental or random. We know have chaos theory that explains why that is, and how even chaos is governed by rules. But in linguistics it seems that wherever you scratch there is an exception based on a coincidence caused by randomness...

It is the job of scientists to discover laws governing seeming coincidences.

It is the job of priests to keep repeating "it is god's will".
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Online Daniel

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #187 on: February 21, 2014, 04:27:57 PM »
Quote
jkpate, I have finished the abstract I have promised you. I know it is a week late, but better ever than never. You can see why it took so long to complete it. I have opened separate thread for it:
The idea was a clear 300-500 word abstract, as would be found in many publications or as a submission for a conference. What you wrote is MUCH longer than that. At the moment I don't have time to read it; maybe later.
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Offline freknu

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #188 on: February 21, 2014, 04:48:48 PM »
Spray and pray :/

Offline dublin

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #189 on: February 22, 2014, 09:53:39 AM »
freknu, don't worry. You will not be stained by knowledge. It doesn't stick to smooth brains.
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Online Daniel

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #190 on: February 22, 2014, 12:00:52 PM »
Please don't actually get to the level of just throwing out insults. There's a clear problem with your approach here: you make it (intentionally?) difficult for us to read and reply to your posts. Posting four full length posts is just nonsense, when we asked for an abstract. This is going nowhere if you can't cooperate with something basic like that and instead just start making personal insults.
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Offline IronMike

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #191 on: February 27, 2014, 01:33:53 PM »
The first set of words start with "g" and are used only for living beings, people and animals.

....

These are all characteristics of living beings. This connects sound "g" with meaning "alive".
 

газета starts with a "g" sound but it's not alive. 
Cheers,
Mike

Offline dublin

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Re: The language of old Europe
« Reply #192 on: March 25, 2014, 06:33:02 AM »
Hi guys. Sorry I have been busy doing other things. Here is the abstract you have been so eagerly awaiting.

Unified language theory

I am here going to explain my understanding of what language is, how it works, how it is created, how it evolves and how it disappears.

I believe that the existence of languages is intrinsically connected with the existence of life. I also believe that the creation, sharing, propagation, evolution, replacement, preservation of languages are all governed by the same small set of simple naturally occurring mechanisms and systems in all living organisms.

Abstract

Language is an algorithm created by a system perceiving the world around itself in order to extract the meaning from perceived sensory input data and create a reality. The systems involved in creation and use of languages are:

1. Sensory system which provides data in a shape of multidimensional change patterns. This is data creation system.
2. Cognitive system which interprets data patterns and stores "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs in memory. This is data translation and storing system.
3. Control feedback loop which compares multiple consecutive "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs and adjusts the translation algorithm until the comparison results start falling within a pre-set tolerance boundary, by enforcing the adjustment of the translation algorithm. The resulting stable unchanging translation algorithm which produces consistent results is a language. This is language creation and stabilization system.
Language quality and complexity depends on the quality and complexity of all three systems involved in the language creation. Languages are built from simple "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs which are assembled into complex "sensory pattern - meaning" matrices.
 
The most important system responsible for creation of languages is the control feedback loop.

This is a naturally occurring phenomenon in living systems and is responsible for creation and preservation of stable, biological systems thus making them "living" systems. Multiple control feedback loos exist in all living systems from viruses and bacteria to complex multi organism colonies. They regulate systems and keep them stable. But control feedback loop can only operate on the "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs, the language. This means that control feedback loop cannot exist without a language. This makes a language also a naturally occurring phenomenon, and probably the most important naturally occurring phenomenon in living systems. Without natural ability of living systems to create and use languages there would be no life. For biological systems to survive, they need to be able to make sense of the world around them, and of themselves, and for that purpose they create and use languages. That sense of the world around us is called "the reality". So we can say that without languages there would be no reality and no self.

In order for multiple living organisms to engage in information exchange, they need to be able to:

1. Create some kind of output which can be perceived by the other organism as a sensory input. Ability to create output which can be perceived as sensory input enables us to communicate with each other.
2. Translate the perceived sensory input coming from the other organism into meaning. Ability to translate the perceived sensory input coming from the other organism into meaning enables us to understand each other.
3. Imitate the sensory input to create the output which the other organism understands. Ability to imitate the sensory input coming from another organism enables us to converse. This ability is directly dependant on the quality of the input receiving (sensory) systems, output producing systems and their coordination. It is the different quality of these systems in different members of the same species, which causes the creation of different dialects and for instance sound changes in human spoken languages.
4. Synchronize language algorithms in order to ensure that both organisms produce identical "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs, meaning that they understand each other. This is achieved through the entanglement of the control feedback loops of both organisms. This process is called language synchronization and results in the creation of a common group language. Language synchronization starts by synchronizing the understanding of the simplest well known "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs. This is why the simplest natural sound blocks with their associated other sensory data, are the building blocks of human vocal languages for instance. These are the simplest well known "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs which can be used to synchronize our understanding of more complex "sensory pattern - meaning" key value pairs and complex "sensory pattern - meaning" matrices. Ability to synchronize individual languages enables us to form groups.

Because language is based on the perceived world, change in the perceived world can trigger the change in the language used to create new reality out of the changes in perceived world. Change in the environment, location, circumstances, population can all trigger individual language changes which will trigger group language synchronization changes. These changes are again controlled by the control feedback loop of each organism and the entangled control feedback loop of the group. All these control feedback loops work together to preserve a stable reality. If changes are small, control feedback loops will migrate the languages from a state which is not stable any more to another stable state. This process will result in language evolution. If the changes are severe population changes, this process can result in language replacement. The same control feedback loops will preserve the language if the perceived world does not change.

Details:

http://oldeuropeanculture.blogspot.ie/p/un.html
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