Yet Another Graphomaniacs Compendium
Monday, March 25, 2002

A quote just for Mish the Mouse.


Because she will love it: overheard in the Tower of Babel:


Santosh points out that in the English language the letters "ough" can be pronounced in no less than nine different ways. "A rough-coated, dough-faced, thoughtful ploughman strode through the streets of Scarborough; after falling into a slough, he coughed and hiccoughed."


"Santosh forgot, it seems, about the ough in 'lough,' that sort of phlegmy 'och' sound, forced on the Scots and Irish by the rain." -- Eoin


I'd like to see her try that on her students!

posted by John Connors at
Monday, March 25, 2002

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The End of the World.


I dreamt yesterday that I had stumbled on an evil plot to destroy the world by burying it under the weight of self - replicating furry toy tortoises. Enough cheese.

posted by John Connors at
Monday, March 25, 2002

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First Gedankenexperiment.


Consider one of the denizens of Heliopolis: the Night Treader. Their eyes are sensitive in the near infra red and ultra violet, somewhat like a Tetrochromat. Unlike the Tetrachromat in the article who notes her colour vision is different, this is a community that shares the difference. Hence it affects their langage; and behaviour for one thing, being able to interpret the differences in infra-red emmission of a human body makes it easier to read emotions. For another, seeing uv would lead to an enhanced perception of sunlight, and probably weather. They would have words for particular lights and shades that indicated different types of weather. They would have words for the sudden flush of heat that you see in a persons face and body when the flight or fight reaction is taking place, or the subtle play of colurs on the features that indicates a person is being less than sincere. We do not have words for these things, not because they do not exist and we cannot concive of them, but because we do not percieve them in our everyday life. Is this a limit of our perceptions, or our langauage? And are these people less limited than us for having these concepts in their language, or because of their perceptions?

posted by John Connors at
Monday, March 25, 2002

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The limits of my language.


In a conversation with Mish the Mouse she asserted that the famous quote attributed to
Ludwig Wittgenstein
was old fashioned and therefore obsolete. Well, it's obsolete like the Newtons Laws are obsolete. ie. not very unless you happen to be very small or
moing at a measurable fraction of the speed of light. Mish says that langage does not limit her: without language, she is herself: she percieves the same things. Which is interesting, as there a some definite observations about perception and language that I want to make in another post. I pointed to the accounts of the deaf pupils of The Abee De L'Epee in their pre-lingual state: they did not have any abstract concepts at all: they were aware of daily life and routines. If they are sad and others do not percieve it, how can they explain to others that they are sad and explain the reason for their unhappiness. How can you follow a chain of reasoning without a langage - is it even possible? One word or handshape follows another: giving us a chain of thoughts we can record and review in our own mind, and use to build internal models of ourselves and others that we are at least partially concious of. How can you describe a feeling or impression that your langauge has no words for? How does written language give an accurate representation of the size and motion of an object that can be given immediately in sign language? How does a signer express the graviational constant and it's associated law of gravitational motion that can be expressed elegantly in a single line of mathematics? Clearly languages have limits, but so do perceptions - but do the limits to our perception describe the limits of our langage? I have been playing with a few gedankenexperiments..of which, more anon..


Of course, linguistics will probably have researched these questions and left them for dead years ago, but they are fun to think about anyway


posted by John Connors at
Monday, March 25, 2002

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Saturday, March 16, 2002

Yes, I am Fred the Frog.



I'm a Golden Mantella Frog!

These frogs occur in several colour forms, each confined to very small locations within the eastern quadrant of Madagascar. They like their habitat with temperatures around 68 - 70*F and high humidity. This species is very showy in captivity preferring elevated positions out in the open. Males are generally smaller, slimmer and more angular in build than females and not as vocal as other species of mantellas. Females can produce eggs at a rate of once every two months given proper care.

What kind of Frog are you?

posted by John Connors at
Saturday, March 16, 2002

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Wednesday, March 06, 2002

Vaster than Empires and more slow.


Strange at Ecbatan the Trees was a novel whose title always haunted me. I wondered where the name Ectaban came from, it's one of those evocative names that somehow get attached to a place, like Los Angeles, or Heliopolis. I finally found it in the poem "You, Andrew Marvell". Which is a appropiate as "To His Coy Mistress" has another equally evocative title-inspirng line "Vaster than Empires and More Slow". So, poets are the unacknowldeged title makers of the world.


posted by John Connors at
Wednesday, March 06, 2002

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Saturday, March 02, 2002

Desires


I don't want love and money.
I want women and credit.
I warn you, you are courting death...

posted by John Connors at
Saturday, March 02, 2002

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Another Blues Conversation from Yesteryear.


(or, the benefits of a private education.)


I haven't written authing for so long I feel I've forgotten how to use a bloody pen.


Hmm, what sort of a school *is* Harrogate Ladies College, anyway?


Well, put it this way, we spend a hell of a lot of time in here!


A Dylan Thomas establishment? Pass(ed) out and died after fourteen straight whiskies?


I never asked you: how was that Alan Aykbourn play you saw ages ago?


Well..I, personally was not impressed by it, but consensus opinion was that it was good. Nay, brilliant.


David is taking me tonight to see 'The Changeling,', Jacobean Tragedy, etc...what can you tell me about it?


I don't know much about it, it's an obscure Andrew Manley revival job. It's Jacobean but will have been thoroughly modified. The plot will probably be completely absurd and perhaps violent, and the modernisation will attempt to imbue the play with a signinficant message about sexual politics. However, the set and costumes will be excellent, but the standard of the acting will be a lucky dip. A typical Harrogate Theatre production. A Midsummer Nights Dream with teeth, perhaps.


This conversation is far too intellectual for my present lobotomised state of mind.


Well, you did ask. I reccomend it. I recomend the theatre, full stop. It's an execllent religon!



posted by John Connors at
Saturday, March 02, 2002

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The Journal



A miscellany of topics that intersest me: deaf culture, game design, politics as soap opera, the cyborg condition and the experience of learning to hear again. Other topics presented are speculative fiction and imaginary cities. There are appearences of snippets of work in progress, public rants, pointless posts and Mish the Mouse.




The Writer

A lower middle class cyborg living an innocous life in a suburban village near Newcastle On Tyne, in the United Kingdom. Mostly autobiographical and creative notes posts and musings on the topic du jour.


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