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Re: [glosalist] Sound "U" in Glosa

Konstantin Aleksandrov (Konstantin Aleksandrov <kaleksandrov@...>) on July 15, 2005

Robin Fairbridge Gaskell pa grafo:

*** Nothing strange about Glosa’s English-like grammar.


 Technically, Linguists describe this as "head final" structure.  It  works both for NOUN PHRASES and VERB PHRASES in Glosa.  The catch: in  Glosa, a word represents a concept, and, within reason, a word can be used  as any 'part of speech.'  So, for descriptive purposes, in Glosa, a word -  according to its position in the sentence - can be a 'noun' = a word  functioning as a noun, or a 'verb' = a word functioning as a verb.  The  word "modifier" covers adjectives and adverbs, with modifiers in NOUN  PHRASES doing what adjectives do in English, and those in VERB PHRASES  doing what English-language adverbs do.    ~ridi~ = 'laugh'   to laugh - ridi ;  do laugh - akti ridi ; he laughed  - an pa ridi ;
                       give a laugh - don u ridi ;  the laughing man -  u ridi andro ;
                       she told it laughingly - fe ridi dice id

“akti ridi”, “don u ridi” are good examples.

Yes, it is similar to “do laugh” and to “give a laugh”, but in my native lang there are no such speech tokens, so they couldn’t understand this without knowledge of English. In Esperanto it is called “anglismoj”. I’ve just asking my co-workers (their native language is also Russian) to translate the phrases “do laugh” and “give a laugh” - and they are at loss of it in despite of >10 years of studying English.

It would be possible to agree with those and similar to them idioms but we are speaking about the international auxillary language. It must be culturally neutral! Why they simply do not have similar problems of understanding in Esperanto?

Actually difficutly translatable speech tokens of Glosa were the only reason why I’ve lost my interest to the language.

 Also in the Net there are Seminar #1 and Seminar #2, giving more  detail on this.

 Logically, if a language has "Syntax-based Grammar," then a set of  guides to good syntax (not to good grammar) should be available to  learners.  I did produce a set of non-verbal symbols to reduce language to  a somewhat algebraic formula --- to analyse the syntax without getting  caught up with the words --- but this concept was not in the ordinary  Grammar Books, so it was completely ignored.  Anyone with a strange mind  can find it on the Net as GAS (Gaskell Analysed Syntax).

Suprisingly, during last several days at (it’s the russian forum about Esperanto) they debate on Glosa’s grammar defects.

*** It is a shame I don’t read Russian: this would be interesting.

This is my question: is Glosa an open project and is it possible to modify it’s grammar if there will be concrete suggestions?

*** Basically NO! However, Ron Clark died with his gift to the world still a work in progress.

Yesterday at e-novosti forum someone who call himself “okruzhor” has started “Glerus”, the Glosa-based language project. The reason was “They don’t allow to modify Glosa’s rules, but we don’t like many of ones which exist in the current language version, so we have to found our proper project”. I don’t misdoubt that the project is only botchery :-), but “basically no!” is very-very-very bad politics.

Look at Esperanto - in 1892 it was only Zamenhof’s suggestion, open for modifications, and now it is the most successful conlang with millions of speakers.

Don’t wonder if after 10 years will exist dozens of Glosa-versions and each of them will have less than 100 fluent speakers. That is bad destiny for such an interesting language which Glosa is.

  When you push something to an extreme, Glosa is possibly the only  "civilised" language completely without inflections, then its a bit hard to  compromise and have just a little bit of inflection.
  On the other hand, Glosa could be augmented with one or two more  categories of affixes, which modify the MEANING of a word [not alter its  grammar].  At present we have the two-letter affixes, which change the  category of a word; there probably is ample space for a list of four-letter  affixes to modify meaning at a higher level. EG  pani = bread
    pani-bo  -  baker's shop  (bread shop)
    pani-bo-pe  -  baker (bread shop person)

Thanks, I’ve read the Glosa’s manual :-)

  Meanwhile a person can tinker with Glosa and re-make it in his own  image, but I suspect that Ron is a hard act to follow.  Presently Glosa  does not appear to be going anywhere, and the idea of finding a language  that is easy for the vast majority of mankind to speak seems an altruistic  one, which is quite off the radar of Economic Rationalism.  On a scale of  one to a hundred, of problems in urgent need of solution, Glosa, and the  whole International Auxilliary Language story, rates about a one, while  Depleted Uranium scores a ninety-nine.  When, or if, peace ever descends on  the land, it will be time for me to dust off the Glosa books, and resume  where I left off.

 In pure linguistic theory, however, there are still a few things to say:

 In its strict form, Glosa appears to be an ideal Meta-language; its  syntax and 'no-nonsense' grammar make it very suitable for communication  with intelligent machines.

 There is the continuing niggle about the possibility of there being a  "Universal Grammar". Chomsky's writing is so dense that a UG might be in his books; but, reading  through his impenetrable prose to find it is virtually impossible.  I have  learnt from Chomsky, and have dedicated myself to writing very clear prose,  so that if there is a glimmer of truth within my writing, then it will be  accessible to those who try to find it.
 The UG will be found when we come to terms with the syntactical  elements of language: I believe that, of all of the Planned Languages,  Glosa is the one that comes closest to revealing the nature of a Universal  Grammar -- if one exists.

 And even more heretically, I imagine that there really is a "language  of thought."  It might be close to the concept of a UG; it could be a  picture language; or it might even be an articulation of concepts.  Come to  think about it, Glosa is concept-based.  Hmm!

  In a stand up fight, however, everyone know Esperanto wins: it's got  the books, the academy, and the armies of speakers.  And it's got the  organisation.  Glosa has none of this: no contest!

  There are just one or two matters.  Some people simply can't stand  all of Esperanto's inflected endings.  For those who love its old-world  feel, and have the capacity to juggle the possibly multiple affixes,  Esperanto is fantastic.  Something at the other end of the linguistic  spectrum, might, on the other hand, suit the mental gearing of a larger  fraction of the world's people.  We may never know.

That all is good, but the practical problem is that without precise grammar rules the language cannot be learned well by ppl who do not speak English.

*** Also a nice idea. I did have an idea once for teaching Glosa using Glosa! this would be quite a challenge, but highly possible. This has overtones similar to those of the “immersion teaching” of a foreign language. But… there is no Glosalandia, so I’ll have to improvise.

Oh. Glosa is NOT Interlingua or Slovio :-) IMHO this is not ‘highly possible’.

The establishing of this habit, and the restraining of the mind from its thought-form-making tendency, results eventually in the constant power to contemplate. 117

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Re: [glosalist] Sound "U" in Glosa - Committee on language planning, FIAS. Coordination: Vergara & Hardy, PhDs.