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170760Re: Plan B variations

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  • Jörg Rhiemeier
    Mar 5, 2010
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      On Thu, 4 Mar 2010 07:16:17 +0000, R A Brown wrote:

      > Salvete omnes!
      > Jörg Rhiemeier wrote:
      > > Hallo!
      > [snip]
      > > The FrathWiki page on X-1 is still pretty much up to date, and I
      > > have no intention to abandon the self-segregation scheme as I feel
      > > it is at the core of the language. The idea behind X-1 is "Plan B
      > > done right"; without that self-segregation scheme, it would no
      > > longer be the same project.
      > Oh yes, self-segregation is a must in such a project.

      For an oligosynthetic language, however, it is sufficient that no
      morpheme is a prefix of another morpheme, i.e. there are no strings
      A and B that both A and AB are morphemes. If that condition is
      fulfilled, the text can be segregated on the basis of a simple list
      of morphemes.

      > I also
      > had the idea of "Plan B done right", but quite frankly the
      > more I looked into Plan B the more I felt like that little
      > kid looking at the "Emperor's new clothes.' :)

      Yes. It is neither a loglan nor a loglang, only a relex of English
      with a phonology that is both naive and bizarre, and a self-segregation
      strategy that is original but unwieldy (and not even done logically,
      as 1111 0011 ... counts as "6 consecutive ones" while 1111 1100 ...
      does not!) X-1 is meant to be "Plan B done right", but I now feel that
      there is no way to do it right at all, and I have quietly abandoned
      that project. (I have just removed the "work in progress" remark from
      the FrathWiki page, and instead installed a "This project has been
      abandoned" sign on the top of it.)

      > [...]
      > > I dimly remember such a page, but I am not sure. I think it is
      > > worth putting back online.
      > I've now done so.
      > http://www.carolandray.plus.com/Exp/Appendix2.html

      Thank you! It may have only historical relevance to what the project
      has transmogrified into, but it definitely interesting to read.

      > >> But I know of no other conlang that uses it. Basically, it
      > >> seems to me that using Huffman-like encodings is fine for a
      > >> computer and, maybe, extra-terrestrial aliens but not for
      > >> human usable languages.
      > >
      > > Indeed. With X-1, I feel that this encoding scheme is something of
      > > a morphological straitjacket. You get severe constraints on morpheme
      > > shape, and as I also use morpheme length as an indicator of valency,
      > > it means that I can have no more than 512 unary predicate words (and
      > > that class includes most common nouns),
      > Yes, Plan B didn't have the valency problem. Its "case"
      > system merely labeled each morpheme for its place in the
      > binary tree that the C program would parse.

      That's a *weird* morphological device, which perhaps makes the parsing
      algorithm simpler, but is not of any use to a human being trying to
      understand what is going on, I think.

      > As you know, I
      > gave up on the loglang idea. In any case, Plan B is not a
      > loglang or a loglan, as we now understand these terms. It
      > would seem that way back in 1990, the term Loglan was being
      > used basically to mean what we now call an engelang; and
      > Plan B is certainly an engelang (whether 'optimal' or not is
      > debatable).

      I don't know how the terms were used 20 years ago. _Loglan_ started
      as the name of a particular language, and I think the Loglan Institute
      has always used it that way, and would have objected to Prothero's usage
      if they had noticed. The Lojbanists use _loglan_ (with a lowercase L)
      in the sense of 'a language based on the principles laid down by J. C.
      Brown', and have been using it that way since the 1987(?) paper titled
      _Lojban: A Realization of Loglan_. No Lojbanist would have ever
      recognized Plan B as a 'loglan', I think. At any rate, today we have:

      _logical language_: a language based on a system of formal logic
      _loglang_: short for _logical language_
      _loglan_: a language based on the principles laid down by J. C. Brown
      _Loglan_: the original language developed by J. C. Brown
      (sometimes called _TLI Loglan_ to distingish it from other
      loglans such as Lojban)

      Plan B certainly is *none* of these! One could call it an _engelang_
      for sure, but "engelang" is a rather hazy notion, I would say, more a
      kind of making a language than a well-defined class of languages.

      > > so I am getting at something
      > > pretty oligosynthetic. That, I feel, is the main reason why I make
      > > so little progress with it.
      > Having abandoned the ""Plan B done right", my 'experimental
      > loglang' has now indeed transmogrified itself into an
      > oligosynthetic language ;)
      > The main reasons for slow progress on it are:
      > - I still find that not all browsers will display the Yì
      > Jīng hexagrams;
      > - I seem to be busier in retirement than I ever was when
      > working!

      I know what you are talking about (I am too young to retire, but I have
      been unemployed for years). The more time you have at your disposal,
      the more will the various things you care of expand into it. Having
      only a limited amount of time at your disposal causes you to do things
      more focusedly, and you actually get *more* done. I have observed that
      I seem to achieve more in my spare time during the week, than on weekends.

      ... brought to you by the Weeping Elf
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