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  #101  
Old Aug 10th 2010, 09:17 AM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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Originally Posted by Mind's Eye View Post



Mayhap this thread has lost it's bearings ?
Indeed, it does seem to be so.
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  #102  
Old Aug 10th 2010, 03:17 PM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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Okay, I'm out of this thread now.

Whatever issue you are discussing is obviously outside of my understanding.
Exactly my point! Well, not that you're out of the loop, but that your criteria leads to confusion and misunderstanding.

My point is that one can select the tools that he or she uses, but he or she cannot change the inherent nature of the tool itself.

Telling me that because I use a word I change that word is like asking me to take a hammer and turn it into a kitten. I suppose I could pet a hammer and pretend that it's a kitten, but that won't make sense to anyone else.

My entire premise through this thread has been this:

The relationship between the speaker/writer/user to the words is not nearly as wishy-washy as people imagine. Not only do words have precise meanings with scientifically premised origins (but oh! how the word "science" offends!), but their place in language is also subject to precision. People may misuse words, but that is like trying to pet a hammer, or pound in nails with a kitten. That is bad science, and bad science exists, but the scientific aspect is still there.
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  #103  
Old Aug 10th 2010, 05:47 PM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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Originally Posted by Margot View Post
My point is that one can select the tools that he or she uses, but he or she cannot change the inherent nature of the tool itself.

Telling me that because I use a word I change that word is like asking me to take a hammer and turn it into a kitten. I suppose I could pet a hammer and pretend that it's a kitten, but that won't make sense to anyone else.
Your entire argument hinges on a metaphor, instead of any actual evidence independent of it. The metaphor that compares a hammer to a language, or a kitten to a language, is inadequate. It is a false metaphor, also known as Equivocation among logical fallacies. Its structure goes as follows:

Object A and object B share the property p, for this reason the speaker compares A and B in a metaphor as "the same".

After establishing the metaphor, the speaker continues to claim that A and B are "the same" with regard to their properties q, r, s, and t.

A and B fail to have the same properties q, r, s, and t.

All you are saying this whole time is that natural language is a tool used by human beings to communicate with one another, just like hammers are tools. Hammers and Cats are both objects or tools which are supposed to have some purposes (to nail nails, or to be pet). So if hammers and cats are concrete, visiable, touchable, have designated purposes, do not change forms according to context etc, then so must language. They share every one of their attribute, as long as you insist upon it.

It's like me making a metaphor about how cars and horses are the same- as they are both transportation tools, then conclude cars ought to be flesh and blood animals too, because horses are flesh and blood animals.

Language may be used as a tool of communication, but even its purpose goes far beyond that. It is neither tangiable nor touchable. It is neither concrete nor inmalleable. It is a completely abstract collection of entities (words, affixes, parts of speech, intonation/stress, contexts) and rules which combine them. Hammers have manufacturers, cats have mothers and fathers. If you investigate, you can find out where and who made the hammer, who designed it, and who are the parents of a particular cat. Language on the other hand, is evolved by a community of people, with sub-classes of it being decided and changed by different sub-group of this community, at different times- this evolution is still taking place, the community itself evolves and changes, and this process will never cease, is always ongoing. So there are very little similarities in substance between a language and a hammer or a cat beyond your faulty rhetorics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Margot View Post
My entire premise through this thread has been this:

The relationship between the speaker/writer/user to the words is not nearly as wishy-washy as people imagine. Not only do words have precise meanings with scientifically premised origins (but oh! how the word "science" offends!), but their place in language is also subject to precision. People may misuse words, but that is like trying to pet a hammer, or pound in nails with a kitten. That is bad science, and bad science exists, but the scientific aspect is still there.
Certain language use are inherently ambiguous, even when the interlocutors are being perfectly cooperative. Not every unexpected outcome in language use are due to "wishy-washy" "misuse" of language.

There are thousands of linguistic phenomena that linguists study and try to explain these ambiguities and logical irregularities. I already gave a simple example of syntactic ambiguity. I can give some more:

"John opened the door again"- does it mean 1. door was closed, now someone opened it? or 2. door was once open by John before, now he re-opened it?

"Every patient sees a nurse once a day"- is it the same nurse they see, or a different one for each?

"We took the picnic supplies out of the trunk, the beer was warm". Is the beer from the trunk? Can we be certain that a latter utterance will not change it's origin?

"I am sorry that your cat died", what if your cat did not die? what if you do not own a cat? and what if I am simply sincere but uninformed? Is this sentence true? or false? Does it have meaning beyond truth conditions?

"Unicorns do not exist"- Isn't this a logical contradiction? If you say something it ought to exist in some way.

"The highest mountains in the world are Mt.Everest, K2, and the second highest mountains are Kangchenjunga and Lhotse..." Now, looking at Makalu- is it the third highest mountain? Or is it the fifth highest mountain? You get different answers from different people. There is no agreement on it.

It goes on and on and on. There is a multitude of extremely complicated and competitive theories in syntax, semantics and pragmatics that tries to explain why these expressions exhibit the problems above. Linguistics, the study of language as a genetic trait, and as a logical construct, is science. But the use of language, is almost arbitrary and never precise, because of the nature of language itself. And for this reason, it cannot be described as scientific. It does not conform in any way what so ever those criterion set up by people who have worked on the question of what is and isn't science, people like the Vienna Circle, Popper, Kuhn, Lakatos, Rothbart, etcetc.
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Last edited by WFCY; Aug 10th 2010 at 06:01 PM.
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  #104  
Old Aug 10th 2010, 06:20 PM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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Originally Posted by WFCY View Post
Your entire argument hinges on a metaphor, instead of any actual evidence independent of it. The metaphor that compares a hammer to a language, or a kitten to a language, is inadequate. It is a false metaphor, also known as Equivocation among logical fallacies. Its structure goes as follows:

Object A and object B share the property p, for this reason the speaker compares A and B in a metaphor as "the same".

After establishing the metaphor, the speaker continues to claim that A and B are "the same" with regard to their properties q, r, s, and t.

A and B fail to have the same properties q, r, s, and t.

All you are saying this whole time is that natural language is a tool used by human beings to communicate with one another, just like hammers are tools. Hammers and Cats are both objects or tools which are supposed to have some purposes (to nail nails, or to be pet). So if hammers and cats are concrete, visiable, touchable, have designated purposes, do not change forms according to context etc, then so must language. They share every one of their attribute, as long as you insist upon it.

It's like me making a metaphor about how cars and horses are the same- as they are both transportation tools, then conclude cars ought to be flesh and blood animals too, because horses are flesh and blood animals.

Language may be used as a tool of communication, but even its purpose goes far beyond that. It is neither tangiable nor touchable. It is neither concrete nor inmalleable. It is a completely abstract collection of entities (words, affixes, parts of speech, intonation/stress, contexts) and rules which combine them. Hammers have manufacturers, cats have mothers and fathers. If you investigate, you can find out where and who made the hammer, who designed it, and who are the parents of a particular cat. Language on the other hand, is evolved by a community of people, with sub-classes of it being decided and changed by different sub-group of this community, at different times- this evolution is still taking place, the community itself evolves and changes, and this process will never cease, is always ongoing. So there are very little similarities in substance between a language and a hammer or a cat beyond your faulty rhetorics.



Certain language use are inherently ambiguous, even when the interlocutors are being perfectly cooperative. Not every unexpected outcome in language use are due to "wishy-washy" "misuse" of language.

There are thousands of linguistic phenomena that linguists study and try to explain these ambiguities and logical irregularities. I already gave a simple example of syntactic ambiguity. I can give some more:

"John opened the door again"- does it mean 1. door was closed, now someone opened it? or 2. door was once open by John before, now he re-opened it?

"Every patient sees a nurse once a day"- is it the same nurse they see, or a different one for each?

"We took the picnic supplies out of the trunk, the beer was warm". Is the beer from the trunk? Can we be certain that a latter utterance will not change it's origin?

"I am sorry that your cat died", what if your cat did not die? what if you do not own a cat? and what if I am simply sincere but uninformed? Is this sentence true? or false? Does it have meaning beyond truth conditions?

"Unicorns do not exist"- Isn't this a logical contradiction? If you say something it ought to exist in some way.

"The highest mountains in the world are Mt.Everest, K2, and the second highest mountains are Kangchenjunga and Lhotse..." Now, looking at Makalu- is it the third highest mountain? Or is it the fifth highest mountain? You get different answers from different people. There is no agreement on it.

It goes on and on and on. There is a multitude of extremely complicated and competitive theories in syntax, semantics and pragmatics that tries to explain why these expressions exhibit the problems above. Linguistics, the study of language as a genetic trait, and as a logical construct, is science. But the use of language, is almost arbitrary and never precise, because of the nature of language itself. And for this reason, it cannot be described as scientific. It does not conform in any way what so ever those criterion set up by people who have worked on the question of what is and isn't science, people like the Vienna Circle, Popper, Kuhn, Lakatos, Rothbart, etcetc.
tldr
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  #105  
Old Aug 10th 2010, 06:35 PM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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tldr
tl;dr version: Margot's intelligence and the intellectual pretentiousness of her thead op, have been proven by herself to be seriously overrated.

always glad to help
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  #106  
Old Aug 10th 2010, 08:22 PM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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Originally Posted by Margot View Post
tldr
Quote:
Originally Posted by WFCY View Post
tl;dr version: Margot's intelligence and the intellectual pretentiousness of her thead op, have been proven by herself to be seriously overrated.

always glad to help
I would have thought the two of you would be familiar with this forum feature... tl;dr.

*Just highlight the word and click on the funky "u" symbol in the post window.

Some of us older folks aren't always up on txt-speak and need to look it up!
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  #107  
Old Aug 10th 2010, 08:41 PM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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Originally Posted by Michael View Post
I would have thought the two of you would be familiar with this forum feature... tl;dr.

*Just highlight the word and click on the funky "u" symbol in the post window.

Some of us older folks aren't always up on txt-speak and need to look it up!
OK,
A) That is neat and I didn't know about that!
B) I was trying to make a joke re: text speak and my own confusion earlier about "ofc."
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  #108  
Old Aug 11th 2010, 09:19 AM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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OK,
A) That is neat and I didn't know about that!
B) I was trying to make a joke re: text speak and my own confusion earlier about "ofc."
I figured you would enjoy that Urban Dictionary toy.

Btw, I had no clue about "ofc" either.

Given the speed that I can type at, the idea of using short form abbreviations for common words seems rather useless to me since it doesn't actually save any time or effort and just introduces confusion for the reader.
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  #109  
Old Aug 11th 2010, 10:33 AM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

Agreed...I have had to Google some of that shit, too. No offense, to either side, but I am just not big on it. If someone says, "OMG" to me in person I swear to god I get this nervous tick going on.

Speaking of Urban Dictionary: Margot, I am shocked you have never heard of it. Bad girl

And, just for fun type in your name in the search box on their site. Lame, I am sure, but it is good for a few minutes of stupid entertainment.

Example

(Sorry, I got a tad excited. Here is the third definition for Margot: a hot french chick who talks like she's drunk all the time and makes you wanna bang her all night long)
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  #110  
Old Aug 11th 2010, 10:54 AM
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Default Re: Literal isnít Lazy

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And, just for fun type in your name in the search box on their site. Lame, I am sure, but it is good for a few minutes of stupid entertainment.

Example

(Sorry, I got a tad excited. Here is the third definition for Margot: a hot french chick who talks like she's drunk all the time and makes you wanna bang her all night long)
Amber definition #5 seems rather appropriate!

As always, definitions of "Michael" are always flattering. Can't go wrong when one's name "He who is like God!"
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