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.
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 loops 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.
1. What is stuff?
Stuff is anything that exists out there. We don't know what actually exist out there and have no way of directly finding out. The best explanation for what the stuff actually is, is that it is a multidimensional, holographic or in some other way interconnected mess of electromagnetic vibrations, kind of like a song of songs, or the word of god or just a giant never-ending fart. But really we have no clue what is out there. There is another problem with the stuff which is out there. We cannot use any words we have to describe it, because by naming it turn it from what it is to what we think it is, or to what we see it as. For instance if I start talking about matter, I will then have to talk about energy and space and time and so on. All of these are just attributes of stuff. They tell us things we are able to observe about stuff, but not what stuff is. So for lack of a better word I choose to call it stuff, because this is my little son's favourite word which he uses for things he has proper names for.
2. What is transformation system?
Transformation system is any system which can transform, change any type of input into any type of output. Our digestive tract is an example of a transformation system. It converts food and water into energy and waste. Our brain is another example of a transformation system. It converts input data arriving through our senses into the reality. Computers are another example of a transformation system, and so on.
3. What is input?
Input is anything that is allowed into a transformation system. Lots of stuff can reach the boundary of the transformation system, but only stuff that the transformation system lets into itself becomes input. Example: flying bugs can hit us in our face, but our digestive system will make sure they don't become input into it. Infra-red light comes to our eyes but our visual transformation system ignores it.
4. What is algorithm?
Algorithm is a description of a logically linked set of steps used for transforming input of any kind into output of any kind. Example is recipe for making vegetable soup, which tells us how to transform raw ingredients into soup. Another example is algorithm for translating collection of sounds into words and from words into meaning.
5. What is input data?
Input data is input into meaning transformation systems whose output is information. Input data is not actual stuff, but set of other stuff representing the actual stuff. For instance, bunch of electromagnetic vibrations which bounce off a surface of the sea and arrive to our eyes are not the see, but stuff telling us some stuff about the sea. Word "sea" is not the sea, but set of sounds or letters linked in some way to what we perceive as sea. Input data is presumed to contain encoded information. To extract the information from input data, meaning transformation systems use algorithms to translate, decode input data into information. Example: light coming into our eyes is input, pictures in our mind is output, the visual cortex and associated brain parts are processing system. Example: 111010100001110001 is input, "funny" is output on the computer screen. Example: collection of sounds is input, meaning is output, and language processing system is transformation system.
6. What type of input data do we have?
We have various input data: visual, audio, tactile, smell, taste but all of these different types of data are in their essence electromagnetic vibrations. What we perceive as data, is actually the detectable effect of the changes of the stuff that is out there. Without stuff changing, no one would be able to detect its existence. For instance if there was no change in the pressure in the air because of the vibrational disturbances caused by a vibration of some object surrounded by air, we would not have what we call sound. If there was no change in electromagnetic field around us caused by sun's radiation and it's interaction with what we call matter, in which part of the sun's radiation is absorbed and the rest is reflected, we would not have what we call colour and without it we would not have what we call sight.
7. What is message?
Message is a set of input data which is presumed to contain encoded information. This presumption is based on perceived pattern of change within the data. It is the receiving transformation system that chooses what stuff to let in as input data and what stuff to ignore. Therefore it is the receiving transformation system which decides which part of the incoming stuff is a message and what is not. The receiving transformation system decides this based on some algorithm for transforming stuff into messages. It then groups some stuff together and calls it a message. This does not mean that the perceived group of data called "message" actually contains any meaningful information. Or that the transformation system has the appropriate algorithm which will allow it to extract the information out of the message even if it exists.
8. What is sending of a message?
Sending of a message is perceived passing of a message from sender to recipient. It is perceived because the decision of what constitutes a message is entirely under the control of the receiver transformation system. So there may not be any message sent at all, it could just be that the receiving transformation system's message definition algorithm is faulty. This manifests itself as a common problem of "misreading people's intentions...".
9. What type of message exchange systems do we have?
Messages can be encoded and sent using various mediums: light, sound, smell, vibrations, taste....
10. What types of message exchange we have?
1. Perceived but non-existent sending of a message. Example: Someone's cheeks get red from cold; we interpret it as sign of shyness.
2. Existent but not intentional sending of a message from a sender system which is capable of deciding should it send a message or not. Example: Someone's cheeks get red from shyness; we interpret it as sign of shyness.
3. Existent but not intentional sending of a message from a sender system which is not capable of deciding should it send a message or not. Example: Light reflects from an object, we interpret it as an object.
3. Intentional sending of a message. Example: Someone says "hi", we interpret it as a greeting.
4. Intentional sending of a message. Example: Someone says "hi", we ignore it or miss it.
11. What is exchange of information?
Exchange of information is one way exchange of messages between two systems. The exchange of information is completely defined and controlled by the receiving system. It decides if message exists, where it starts and ends, and what information it contains. This means that following scenarios are possible:
1. There is no actual message being sent, receiving system invents messages and their meaning.
2. There is a message being sent, receiving system only gets part of it, only gets part of the information
3. There is a message being sent, receiving system gets full message, uses wrong algorithm to decode the information, gets no information or wrong information
4. There is a message being sent, receiving system gets full message, uses right algorithm to decode the information, gets information
12. What is an acknowledged exchange of information?
Acknowledged exchange of information is an exchange of information with a return acknowledgement message. Return acknowledgement message allows receiver system to let the sender system know that the message has been received. It also allows sender system to check if receiver system has interpreted the original sent message correctly. The acknowledgement works like a feedback loop.
Let's imagine a simple language in which 1 means "hi", 2 means "how are you", 3 means "no its low". We can have these possible exchanges of information:
Sender thinks receiver is a rude bastard.
<--2 how are you
Receiver got the message and understood it's meaning
<--3 no it's low
Receiver got the message but misunderstood it's meaning
What is communication?
Communication is exchange of messages between to systems.
13. What is feedback loop?
Feedback loop is the most important part of any self-regulating system. It consists of controller, system and sensor.
It works like this:
1. System (plane) sets a goal (fly at 1000 feet)
2. System uses sensory data to determine what height it is on.
3. System calculates offset between the current height, determined based on sensory input, and desired height.
4. If offset is negative, if we are below desired height, system issues command to go higher.
5. If offset is positive, if we are above desired height, system issues command to go lower
Steps 2, 3, 4 are repeated in a loop called feedback loop. This loop will take the plane up from earth's surface to altitude of 1000 feet issuing up command every time the loop completes. Then at some stage the plane will go above 1000 feet. At that point system will issue down command. Then the plane will go below 1000 feet. The system will issue up command. And so on. These types of systems are called stable systems. Their behavior graphically looks like this:
All biological system and all stable non biological systems are self-controlling systems based on feedback loop mechanism. Our sensory organs are self-regulating systems. Eye will refocus on moving object based on the feedback information about the sharpness of the picture. Our sound producing system will re tune our vocal apparatus based on feedback information received from our ears and processed by sound processing part of our brain, about how far what we hear is from what we want to hear. Our hand holding a spoon full of food, will be directed towards our mouth based on the feedback information received from our eyes and processed by spatial processing part of our brain telling us how off we are from our mouth. Feedback loop system can learn how to become better at controlling themselves. We see this in babies who have huge problems directing their hand to their mouth and end up spilling food all over themselves, but who learn how to do it in couple of years of practice. Exactly the same feedback control loop is used to self-regulate groups of systems, where actions of each member of the system is governed by the feedback loop receiving input from all the other members of the group involved in the particular group activity.
14. What is conversation?
Conversation is exchange of information between two systems. The difference between communication and conversation is that conversation contains two-way feedback loop built into the exchange of messages. This feedback loop allows the systems which are exchanging messages to confirm that all the systems can extract the information from the messages using correct algorithm, and that they can understand the meaning of the information. This feedback loop keeps the exchange of messages stable, insuring that all the participants in the conversation are talking about the same thing.
15. What is understanding?
Understanding is ability to extract information out of a message. It can be perceived or acknowledged.
16. What is meaning?
Meaning is the result of the process of logical combining of the extracted information from one or more messages received from one or more sender systems via one or more communication channels.
17. What is knowledge?
Knowledge is database of meanings, a collection of messages - information - meaning trees. This database is used to quickly arrive to meaning without going through complex process of full message decoding and combining. It can be acquired through learning and experience. The easiest way to acquire knowledge is through experience, where messages - information - meaning link does not need additional information. You can also acquire knowledge through learning from a teacher. Basically you are acquiring the experience of the teacher. To pass knowledge through teaching you require a complex language which teacher can use to describe the link found in messages - information - meaning triplet as he experienced it, bypassing the need for actual experience by the student. Knowledge acquired through learning from a teacher is very susceptible to information distortion, because it depends on the ability of teacher to truthfully and accurately describe his experience, and the ability of the student to understand the described experience and store it in his knowledge database.
18. What is change?
Change is perceived movement of a perceived entity from one perceived stable state to another. Lots of perceived things here. But Change is the most important thing there is, because without change there would be no existence, or life, or reality or us. All that there is, the stuff, changes from wave to particle all the time. But these changes are not uniform. The stuff changes in patterns. It is this change of stuff in patterns makes stuff detectable and allows us to group parts of stuff into entities. We build our reality out of perceived changes of stuff. Including ourselves. And yet change is not a thing. It is a perceived movement between states in time and space. It is a process which moves state one into state two. Example:
Stable state one changed to stable state two. The change is the process which moved state one to state two. Here is a more complex change:
Here we have three states changing into one another. What is important to understand here is that it is us who are cheating the states. All we really have is the stuff and change.
19. What is an entity?
Entity is set of input data which transformation system decides to group and process as a unit. The input data is the result of change in the stuff. Transformation system makes the decision to group the data into entities based on the perceived long term uniform correlation between data. Basically transformation system decides that two data items define an entity if their changes are in some way correlated through similar patterns. So entity is defined through change. For instance, if we see to lights moving together in the dark while keeping the same distance and level we group them into an entity called car. Of if we see a bunch of lines which define a surface and which all change in uniform fashion fallowing similar patterns we conclude that these lines define a body. This is what optical illusions exploit in order to trick us.
20. What is state?
State is perceived stable pattern of change of entities in time and or space. So we define state through pattern and change.
21. What is pattern?
Pattern is a perceived rule which governs changes. It allows us to predict change in the future. Pattern is based on comparison of the results of observed changes through time and space. Here we get into trouble, because patterns in space only exist because we build space from observed changes in time. For instance:
We see pattern here in space. But it only exists as a product of comparison of a series of observations in a period of time. So pattern in space is really pattern in time. The space itself therefore becomes just a product of change in time. If we observe space around us, we only conclude that we are observing a space after we construct a pattern out of uniform changes we observed in time. This time can be extremely short. During a split second, we can make thousands of observations and comparisons. But nevertheless without that time there would be no space. The stable pattern of change we created, or recognized we then call space. When we talk about patterns we talk about recognizing patterns. More precise explanation of what is happening is that we create patterns, as they really only exist in our mind. Once they are created, named and stored in our memory, patterns can be recognized if they appear again. Humans are extremely good at creating and recognizing patterns. New born babies instinctively recognize patterns and pattern irregularities. This ability makes us who we are and differentiates us from most other species. Human ability to create and recognize patterns and pattern irregularities is so amazing that it cannot be done by even the most powerful super computers. US army uses humans to recognize pattern irregularities in satellite images, when they are looking for enemy. The way they do it is to connect electrodes to someone's head, flash thousands of images before that person's eyes, and record the brain reactions to each picture. Consciously the person who is watching the images is not actually seeing anything. But the brain instantly recognizes pattern irregularities, and the parts of the brain that activate when we watch an image which has something strange light up. Then only those images are studied in detail. It takes analysts hours to consciously figure out, become aware of pattern irregularities, which the unconscious brain recognized instantly. This ability to create and recognize patterns extremely fast and extremely accurately is at the root of our ability to create and recognize reality, to create and recognize our self, and to create and use languages.
Patterns can be one dimensional and multidimensional. They can be simple and complex. They can be recursive. If we talk about languages, every word is a pattern. Every sentence is a pattern. Complex combinations of sounds, movements, colours, smells together can form multi-dimensional overlapping patterns. The amazing thing is that our brain can create, store and recognize these patterns in split second. These patterns are labelled and stored together with attached meaning. These meanings can then form patterns which are labelled and stored. This is why reading is not linear. While we are learning to read, while we are sounding words, we are creating and storing complex audio - visual - message patterns. Getting better at reading means accumulating more and more these audio - visual - message patterns, then building complex audio - visual - meaning patterns from audio - visual - message patterns. Once the structure is in place, we use our amazing pattern recognition ability to instantly recognize the pattern of words and even sentences, or sentence parts which carry meaning, and are able to instantly get related meaning. Reading is pattern recognition exercise. It is exactly the same with speaking and listening. We use exactly the same pattern creation and recognition structure, to translate meaning into words and words into meaning.
22. Who are you and what is self?
The correct answer to this question would be "I am". There is nothing more you can say about who you are as no one actually knows what "I" is. Some people, religious people, say it is god looking through our eyes. Some other people, neuroscientists, say it is a complex stable long term electromagnetic vibration which is located in and around our brains and our bodies as a whole, but we are really not sure... But that is not the answer you are going to get too often. Most people, when you ask them "who are you?" will instead give you an answer to the question "what are you?". They will give you their name, age, place of living, occupation, likes and dislikes, hair colour...All of these are pieces of information we accumulated through time, and for which we concluded that logically goes together and we call it our self. This pattern of changes in reality which we created and which we call self can be later recognized as self. The ability to recognize self-pattern is used as the main test in detecting personality, self-awareness, consciousness. Very few species can pass this this test and recognize themselves in a mirror. But all this test proves actually is that that particular animal species is capable of creating and recognizing complex patterns in time, and has ability to associate one of these patterns with who they are. But self is just our creation and does not really exist. You see this when you compare yourself, the way you see you, with how others see you.
So if your self is a creation, who did the observing and data processing which led to the creation of self? We don't know. And how did that thing decide that something is part of our self and other things are not part of our self? Well we kind of know this. While we are still in a womb, we are aware of our surroundings. Something in there is processing information, even communicating. You can tap on the belly and baby will tap back. But even one year after we are born, we don't recognize yourself in the mirror. We don't even know there is such a thing as our self and the rest of the reality. What there is, what exists, is "I am" which thinks that everything it observes is part of "My self". I believes that other people, animals, objects are all part of it. Sa we grow up, the "my self" shrinks further and further, observation after observation, comparison after comparison, until finally, around the age of two, the separation between "my self" and the rest of the world occurs. What happens is that at that age, kids have enough information about the world to conclude which data relates to things that obey their orders and which don't. The data about things the kid can control is labelled "my self" and the rest becomes the rest. Parents continue for a while to be both part of "my self" and the rest, as the kid is trying to figure out how much control it has over them. But soon, for most kids, the boundary of self becomes clearly defined and from that moment on, "I am" becomes more and more obscured by "My self". Some kids, like some autistic kids, never learn how to create the pattern called "My self" from recognizing which parts of reality they have control of. They stay in the world where "I am" is desperately trying to control the whole world which they perceive as "My self", and which is not listening to them, not obeying. This is the root of their fear of the world and their hatred towards it. It is a horrible state of being.
The fact that self is created from our experience is proven by sensory deprivation experiments. People who are locked in deaf and blind (completely silent and dark) room, start developing all signs of major personality breakdown. It takes less than 15 minutes for them to start feeling as if they are falling apart. All people who participated in these experiments reported a horrible feeling of some unseen presence which was taking over as they were falling apart. Basically what they were experiencing was dissolution of "self" and re-emergence of "I". The reason why "self" dissolves so quickly is that "self" is an entity, a data change pattern kept stable by constant revaluation of data which is perceived to be defining the entity of "self". Once input data stops coming, the state of the data change pattern which is "self" becomes totally unstable. There is no data that can confirm that "self" entity exists, so it starts falling apart. If a person is submerged in a salt bath, to remove tactile input, the dissolution of "self" is even quicker.
Funnily, all ancient meditative techniques have dissolution or dissolvent of "self" and emergence of "I" as their main goal. This is call finding who you are. They talk about returning to the pure state of baby's mind. They talk about letting god shine through. And such nonsense...And the moment of panic described in sensory deprivation experiments is called "the dark night of the soul". It is the moment when "self" realizes that it is falling apart, and start fighting back, in order to preserve itself. This is when most meditators give up or go mad. Only few are able to pass through this and actually return to the new born baby state, where there was only "I am".
It is interesting that words "I" (AI) and "JA" (IA) both mean what is up (A) and continuous, eternal (I). "I am" also has the same vocals meaning the same thing with addition of sound M which means in side, at the core, me.
I am (who) I am.
23. What is sensing?
Sensing is ability of a transformation system to interpret change of stuff which is around it as data carrying information.
24. What is sensory organ?
Sense organ is transformation system, a sub system of a larger system, which is contact with stuff, perceives changes of the stuff as data, groups that perceived data into messages and sends these perceived messages to the "message to meaning" transformation system. For instance visual sensory organs consist not only of eyes, but also of nerves which connect the eyes with the brain as well as the parts of the brain responsible for visual processing and parts of the brain, nerves and muscles which control the eye movement and function. Sensory organs are extremely complex systems which are extremely susceptible to functional damage and distortion.
Just because sensory organ has created the message and sent it to the "message to meaning" transformation system, does not mean that there was actually any change in stuff, or that it was understood correctly or completely, or that it was translated into data correctly or completely, or that the data was grouped correctly.
The main problem with sensory organs is that they are not receiving messages and sending them "as is" to the "message to meaning" transformation system. They create messages based on their perception of the changes of the stuff, and pass these messages to the "message to meaning" transformation system as if they came from the stuff. Which is not true, but the "message to meaning" transformation system is not aware of it. For instance our eyes and ears both take holographic, interference, multidimensional type change patterns which they perceive in the stuff, transform them into message encoded using liner electric impulse sequences, and send it to the central nervous system and our brain.
Different types of sensory organs are capable to perceive different types of stuff changes as data. Take for example eyes and ears. They both perceive vibrational changes of stuff as input. But ears perceive only certain low frequency vibrations from a particular frequency range as input, while they ignore any vibration that has a frequency lower of higher, and don't hear is as input at all. Eyes on the other hand perceive only certain high frequency vibrations from a particular frequency range as input, while they ignore any vibration that has a frequency lower of higher, and don't see is as input at all.
Even the same types of sensory organs from different people perceive different types of stuff changes as data. For instance of two people, one can hear higher frequencies than the other. So what is perceived as input by the first person is completely ignored by the second. Some people cannot see certain colours. A lot of animals see the world in shades of grey. Some other animals can see light frequencies which are invisible to us.
Even the same sensory organs from the same person can perceive different types of stuff changes as data at different times. For instance when young, a person can hear lower and higher frequencies, see smaller things or things which are further away, which he is unable to hear or see any more when he is old. Or the same person after an ear injury will not be able to hear the full range of audible sounds, or see clearly any more. Or when under drugs, alcohol, after exposure to deafening noise, when concentrating on something, when under emotional stress, person will not be able to hear or see the same frequencies he is able to hear normally. Babies do not "see" colours, at least not in the same way adults do, they pretty much see everything in black and white or dark and light, which is why they like black and white patterns so much.
Sensory organs also have an ability to completely switch off and ignore everything that is happening in the stuff around them. Certain animals only perceive changes in stuff which propagate in certain direction; which corresponds to the usual movement patterns of their common pray. Their eyes are blind for everything else around them. Human eyes are switched off during over 70% of the time during which we call ourselves "awake". The way we "see" the world is as sequence of snapshots taken at certain intervals. The data from two consecutive snapshots is compared for obvious gross differences. If there are none found, our "message to meaning" transformations system concludes that there is nothing worth observing happening out there and switches the eyes off. We can train our eyes to be in the switched on mode for longer period of time. This is one of the goals of mindfulness meditation, which is teaching you how to be "budan" meaning awake in Serbian. “Budan” comes from “budi” meaning "to be, be present".
Two things which are most important to understand about senses and sensory organs are:
1. Sensory organs work as transforming filters sit between the "message to meaning" transformations system, our brain and the stuff out there.
2. The "message to meaning" transformations system completely relies on sensory organs for the information about the stuff that is out there. But "message to meaning" transformations system, can choose to completely ignore the messages coming from the sensory organ if it was able to find meaning which matches the message key. This means that as soon as the information which comes to our brain is close enough to "Apple tree" meaning, our brain will be satisfied that it has found the meaning of all the messages coming in and will start ignoring them. This is when we start recognizing the world instead of seeing it.
How many pictures are in a rainbow?
None. There is no such thing out there as colour. Colour is a construct of our "message to meaning" transformations system, our brain and exists only in our mind. Depending on the structure of your visual sensory organs as well as your "message to meaning" transformations system, you can "see" anything from one colour to seven colours. But the colours you see don't exist out there. They exist only in your mind as meaning created from processed information extracted from messages built from data perceived by sensory organs from the changes in the stuff out there.
25. What is absolute reality?
We have no way of knowing if we use our sensory organs to acquire data about it. This does not mean that there is nothing out there.
26. What is personal reality?
Personal reality is dynamic stable state of understanding of what is out there established by our "message to meaning" transformations system based on simultaneous input from all available sensory organs. Our understanding of what is real is constantly rechecked in an iterative process using feedback loop. The current state of understanding is compared with previous state of understanding. If the delta (offset) is within acceptable limits, we confirm that what is out there is as expected. Reality is preserved. The delta (offset) is different for different people and can change as we go through life. As a kid, we are still learning what is "real" and "normal" so out delta is quite large. We accept large changes in our state of understanding of what is out there as normal. But as our experience grows, meaning as our database of previous reality check results grows, our delta (offset) shrinks. Eventually we become very sensitive to even tiny changes in our state of understanding of what is out there, and perceive them as strange, unexpected, unreal, and abnormal. We basically produce our own reality.
Example of personal reality would be reality in which I was able to break two wooden boards stack together with my fist without hurting myself. This reality was a product of my martial arts training. Before my martial arts training I lived in reality in which if I hit a wooden board with my fist, I would break my hand. Or consider the reality of people who can walk on hot coals without burning themselves. Or reality of dervishes who can pierce themselves with needles and swords without feeling pain...Personal reality is local time on your pc, or tablet, or phone. Due to the nature of computer clocks, it can be, and most often is different from the accepted current time. So if your computer clock is five minutes ahead of the current time, and my computer clock is five minutes behind the current time, at midnight between Monday and Tuesday, you will be in Tuesday for 10 minutes while I am still in Monday. So you can send me email from the future.
27. What is group reality?
Our understanding of what is out there is dependent on our sensory system (combined sensory organs) and our "message to meaning" transformations system. Because this reality producing system is so complex, and because all the subsystems are so interdependent, malfunction of any part of this system, will change the output data of the system and the stability of our reality will change. The self-regulating feedback loop will kick in, and if the malfunction is affecting the output in a uniform way, soon new stable state of understanding of what is out there will be established and new reality will emerge.
But if we are part of a group of systems which are all generating their own reality, and if we can communicate our outputs to each other, we are adding another source of input data to our feedback control loop. But this one is not supplying data coming from our own reality producing system, which could potentially be malfunctioning. So if our reality producing system is malfunctioning we will soon realise it when we compare our output results with results coming from other observers. To establish group stable state, the majority of the group needs to agree on what is the current stable state of understanding of what is out there. This is achieved through complex exchange of acknowledged messages, a voting system, which will establish what group as a whole thinks is expected stable state of understanding of what is out there. Then every individual reality creating system steers itself towards that average stable state of understanding of what is out there. Constant cross checks are made between group members to confirm that this is being achieved. Once this group state of understanding is maintained for long enough time (determined again by group through voting system) within the acceptable delta offset (determined again by group through voting system), we have a new group reality which group accepts as true reality. Any personal reality which deviates from group reality is marked by all other group members as abnormal.
Example of a group reality is children's reality in which Santa is real. Or any religious reality in which god is real. Or scientific reality in which black hole is real. Development of a group reality can be observed through the above example of a martial arts reality. In our common reality, it is a fact that wooden board or brick is harder than hand and hitting either with a fist will result in breaking your hand. This can be confirmed by hitting a wooden board or brick with your fist and ending up in a hospital with a broken hand. But then somebody somehow figured out how to break wooden boards, or bricks with bare hands. It requires years of training and conditioning but eventually it can be done. So his reality changed, and in his reality, it is a fact that wooden board or brick is not harder than hand and hitting wooden board or a brick with a fist will result in breaking the wooden board or the brick. He then taught others how to do it and their reality changed. Now we have a group of people who live in different reality to everyone else. We have the same situation with any religious reality.
A good example of group reality is the Himba Tribe. A tribe in northern Namibia, named the Himba, have seemingly unusual names for colours. Those names make it easier for them to see some colour differences that most other people would find very difficult, whereas they have trouble telling colours apart that look quite different to most of us.
Another good example of a group reality, as well as reality evolution is the current time. It is an arbitrary set value which is then propagated to all the members of the group through messages containing time related information. These messages can be clocks faces, clock bells, digital time synchronization messages used by synchronized clocks, or just someone telling you "the time". Everyone who is interested in knowing the current time can communicate with everyone else who is interested in knowing the current time. The current time is a time value which is stable in space and time period used to establish the current time. It is a result of a conclusion reached by one member of a time keeping system, through conversation between it and other time keeping systems which are available to talk to. The whole process of finding the current time is controlled by a complex feedback loop. It works like this:
1. Look at the clock; it says it is 5 pm.
Normally this is where the algorithm will end if knowing the time is not important, or if the value feels ok, based on our own internal feeling of time. But if we need to know exact time, or if the value we got does not feel correct we proceed to the next step.
2. Check the mobile. If it says 5pm, algorithm exits. We have current time. If it says it is 6:10 pm we have a reality problem. We need additional data to determine what is real, 5pm or 6:10 pm.
3. Look around for other clocks. If there is a clock on a church tower, and it says 6:05, and all we want to know if the current time is closer to 5 or to 6, we have current time and algorithm exits. If we need to know exact time or if the tower clock says 10 the reality problem persists and we look for more data sources.
4. Ask the person passing by for time. He looks at his watch and gives you his time. If he says 6:03 we have current time and algorithm exits. If he says 7pm, the reality problem persists and we look for more data sources. You can also say something like: "but my watch says it is 5 pm." Now you have spread reality problem to other members of the group....This reality instability problem propagation can spread until all time keeping systems are looking for real time. And so on.
The loop exits when the majority of time sources around us give us similar enough time. This then becomes our current real time. This is of course completely arbitrary value which we just happen to be satisfied with.
Eventually each of the time keeping systems will settle on their own perceived real time. If time keeping systems are not in constant feedback loop communication, or conversation with each other, their individual real times could be completely different. If time keeping systems are in constant feedback loop communication, or conversation, their individual real times will be very close, which will allow them to coordinate their interactions, such as meeting each other at certain place at certain time.
We can see from the above that group reality is a complex interaction between personal realities of the individual members of the group. It is personal realities which through propagation of reality instabilities change group reality through reality shifts from one perceived stable state to the next. Multiple realities are thus possible within the same group of people if they are organised in multiple reality groups. If we have 3 people, of which 2 are martial artists who can break bricks with their hands, one of which is Buddhist who believes in reincarnation, and the other one is evolutionist atheist, and if the martial artist Buddhist and the third person who is not martial artist both suffer from colour blindness and can't see colour blue, the realities these 3 people inhabit are quite different. They can influence each other's realities through series of reality checks, conversations about the parts of their individual realities which are not the same. Eventually we might end up with 3 Mormon disco gay people. But usually everyone continues to exist in their own private reality, as long as it does not prevent their interaction with other people. Because the purpose of establishing what is real, and when is real is so that we can play together.
A great and my favourite example of a reality evolution is a story about my son and Secret Army of Super Children. It all started last year when I mistakenly showed my 7 year old son Ghost Busters film, thinking we will all have a great laugh together. It turns out he got completely freaked out by the film and the ghosts. Few days later at school, he persuaded another kid from his class that ghost are real and that they are about to attack the Earth together with Decepticons from transformers and Droids from Star Wars. So my son and his little pal formed the Secret Army of Super Children who will protect the earth from the ghost invasion. The Super Children allies are the Clone troopers from Star Wars, and Gogoes (tiny one inch plastic cute toys) special troops. The Secret Army then recruits more kids. One of the kids says that they all come from planet Nibiru and that they have come to earth through space time portal from the past. And that they are half human half robots. A week later, my son, the cyborg, is standing in the middle of a restaurant, with his right hand over his right ear, communicating with the rest of his Super Children friends using telepathy which requires shouting at the top of his voice things like: I am in this weird place. There are ghost masks on the wall and blood red curtains (we are in a Mexican restaurant). I am going to check it out, this place is definitely "so SC" (a new word in Super Children dialect meaning "so related to ghosts and our fight against them"). By the end of the month, most of the kids in my son's class were members of the Secret Army, had super powers, were wandering about looking for weird things, which when you are 7 are not hard to find, and getting more and more convinced that they are right and that the doomsday is coming. They particularly paid attention at what was going on in and around the school, as some of the teachers were definitely the spies working for the ghosts. And not only that the teachers were ghost spies, but the school was the earthly headquarter of the ghost army. So the idea was to attack and destroy the school in a daring night attack using night vision and all the other equipment super agents use, as seen in the film Johny English. The first clash this group had with the rest of the world was when they didn't let some kids (girls) into the Secret Army. Girls complained to the teacher who told the whole class that there is no such thing as ghosts. Because Super Children were talking about their Secret Army and their anti-ghost war to everyone all the time, it was not long before some parents started challenging the Super Children reality with their own. This caused a few Super Children to alter their reality, and accept under the intense pressure from their parents, that there are no ghosts, and that they are not super half robots with telepathic abilities. The concentrated negative feedback from the people outside of the Super Children group, as well as from the members of the Secret Children who started questioning the whole ghost thing and the fact that after so many days no one has actually seen any ghosts, started the reality problem wave within the group. Soon I got involved, after my son gave me a speech at breakfast, accompanied with wild gesticulation, telling me that Secret Army is not a game, and that he can't wait for the ghosts to attack and for the war to start, as soon as the war starts, their super powers will start working, as they only work in the war time, and then...I spent a month trying to explain to my son that ghosts don't exist and he is not a half robot and that if this is a game it is a great game, but in reality...After six months of concerted attacks on Super Children's reality only my son and the first kid who joined the Secret Army still occasionally looked for SC (really weird and related to ghosts) things. There was no more talk about war, and telepathy. Then one day my son came home from school and said that the last kid has quit Secret Army. He was really sad. He still believed in the whole thing, and could not understand how everyone has deserted him. Then he stopped talking about it and stopped looking for weird things. His personal reality is now in sync with the reality of the parents of the kids from his school. Does that mean that ghosts don't exist? No, not really. Just that most people live in reality which does not have ghosts in it.
28. What is a group?
Group is more than one entity of the same kind, which are logically connected from the point of view of the observer. The observer makes the decision that some objects are grouped together based on the fact that their patterns of change are stable and similar from the point of view of the observer. Groups can be actually engaged in some activity together and could be linked in some way other than in the mind of the observer. But that is irrelevant from the point of view of the observer, as grouping is the consequence of data analysis.
Flock of birds. Birds of the same type which are actually engaged in some activity together which involves communication.
Group of birds. Birds of various types which are not actually engaged in some activity together, but rather just happen to be together from the point of view of the observer.
Forest. Trees growing close together perceived as a group. Trees actually communicate using fungi.
Apple trees. A logical group of all trees which bare apples.
Four people coming towards us walking close together. They are perceived as a group, but could be just coincidentally at the same time at the same place.
Family. People of the same genetic tree linked together through their interaction and communication.
29. What is a conversation group?
Conversation group is group of systems which engage building and later synchronization of group reality with other members of the same groups through set of reality check conversations using common language algorithms. Each member of the group perceives all the other members of the group and himself as a group. They confirm that they really are a group on regular bases using available languages. Without this group existence confirmation conversation, group is just a perceived entity, which might or might not exist.
Examples of conversation groups are flock of birds and family.
A conversation group can use any subset of the available languages to synchronize their realities. This subset of languages needs to be synchronizes among the members of the group in order for them to understand each other. Synchronized subset of the available languages used by a conversation group for synchronizing the group reality becomes the group language.
Example of dependence of group reality synchronization on group language synchronization is a group of football fans who meet at the stadium. They communicate through colours and patterns and slogans on their clothes. They form a group based on that language. Without this language they will not be able to communicate and for a group of football supporters. If you want to become a member of the group you need to start speaking the group language and in doing so you begin to synchronize your reality with the group reality. Soon you start learning the songs and swear slogans. The group then coordinates its actions to sing the same songs together, or to beat someone up.
30. What is a member of a group?
Member of a group is a system which synchronizes it's reality with other members of the same groups through set of reality check conversations using common language algorithms. Example: computer on a network talking to the main domain controller and other members of the network. Is the network still there? Are computers 1,2,3 still there....Solder checking where other platoon members are and what they are doing. Then doing the same.
31. What is cooperation?
Cooperation is a group action performed by multiple members of the same group, in order to achieve common goal. In order for cooperation to be initiated and in order for it to succeed, cooperating group needs to be communicating group. The group needs to communicate in order to coordinate individual realities of cooperating members throughout the process of cooperation. This will produce stable pattern of change of the group reality.
Flock of birds flying together. If they did not communicate the flock would disintegrate.
Football team. If they did not communicate they would not be able to play together.
Family. If they did not communicate, they would not be able to live together.
Wolves hunting together as a pack. Ants working together as an army.
32. What is coordination?
Coordination is reality synchronization mechanism used by groups to synchronize personal realities of the members of the group with group reality. The synchronization is done through acknowledged communication or conversation.
Couple coordination: A: Film starts at 5 pm. See you at the cinema at ten to five. B: Ok
Family coordination: A: who needs to go to the toilet first? B: Me! A: Ok. C: No me, me, I am dropping! B: Ok but I am next!...
Work group coordination: A: can you send this letter to John please? B: We are out of envelops. A: Ok. Can you please ask C to go and get some envelops. And then send the letter. B: Ok will do. Hey C can you go and buy some envelops please. C: one sec please...
What is the smallest long lasting conversation group which can build group reality (which can cooperate) through conversation based coordination? It is the family. As a precursor for this family group reality building and as a product of this family reality building we end up with family language.
33. What is a language?
Language is set of algorithms used to transform meaning into messages and to transform messages into meaning. Language is primarily used for reality creation and synchronization.
We can have one way languages and two way languages.
One way languages are invented by the receiver of perceived messages coming from sources which are perceived as information senders, but to whom we cannot send acknowledgement message. The example of a one way language is light and shade language which our visual processing system uses to extract the visual information from the input data supplied by visual sensory organs. We cannot check if our understanding of the message is correct by sending the acknowledgement to the source of the message. We can try to verify validity of our visual data processing algorithm by exchanging output data with other visual data processing systems and comparing them. "Is this a stone in front of us? No it's a lion."
Two way languages are invented by both receiver and sender together, through language synchronization. These types of languages have common message to meaning algorithms which are agreed by a group of information systems and well known to all of them. Only if all the members of the information system group use the same set of “data to message” and “message to data” algorithms, will they be able to have meaningful communication.
34. What types of languages can we have?
The type of encoding decoding algorithms used determines the type of language. So we can have:
1. Visual languages such as body language, sign language, pattern language, tactile language, action language, symbol language, written language
2. Vocal languages
3. Combination of Visual and Vocal languages
4. Smell language
5. Electromagnetic languages....
Because messages or perceived messages are exchanged via multiple messaging systems, usually the combination of languages is used at the same time to communicate. Sounds are often accompanied by actions, signs and body changes.
35. What is language synchronization?
Language synchronization is continuous verification of language algorithms and their adjustment based on perceived quality of information exchange. This is achieved through the use of a feedback loop. During communication with the members of the group perceived to be using the same set of information algorithms, everyone within the group is constantly checking acknowledgments to messages against sent messages from all members of the group. These acknowledgements are compared with the possible expected acknowledgements. If received acknowledgement falls within expected set, the sender is satisfied with the quality of his and receiver's algorithms. If however acknowledgement is unexpected, sender concludes that something is wrong with the set of information algorithms they are using. Sender then engages receiver and other members of the communication group in verification communication. It has as its purpose either confirming that the unexpected acknowledgement was a glitch and was caused by receiver's problem with his algorithms or that the problem was caused by sender's problem with his algorithms. The end result is synchronization of everyone's set of information transformation algorithms to a new set that everyone now agrees is valid.
36. What is language evolution?
Language evolution is continuous language synchronization to new sets of information transformation algorithms. The synchronization can be triggered by anyone in the group, but the change to the new set of information transformation algorithms can only happen if enough information transformation systems within a group agree that that set is the correct one. Then they force the rest of the communication group to accept the new set of information transformation algorithms or leave the group. Usually the change to the new set of information transformation algorithms happens if the synchronization process was triggered by the unexpected messages or acknowledgements arriving from the most dominant members of the communication group. They are the ones who are most likely to persuade other members of the communication group that their information algorithms are correct. But the change can also be triggered by enough weaker systems agreeing with each other on the new set of valid information algorithms and forcing the rest of the group to accept them.
37. What is a language dialect?
This process of language evolution can also be partial. Part of the communication group agrees the new set of algorithms, which is partially different from the old. For instance a border sub group of the communication group 1 living close to, or mixed with a border sub group of the communication group 2. They can both upgrade their languages with new words from the other language in order to be able to communicate with each other. They adopt new set of information algorithms. The rest of the communication groups 1 and 2 decide that their old sets are still valid. If changes to the information algorithms are minor, and relatively meaningful communication is still possible between sub groups and the rest of their communication groups, new and old information algorithms sets can coexist in parallel. This is how dialects are formed. Sometimes both subgroups will eventually upgrade to the new set of information algorithms which contain features from both old and new set of information algorithms. This is how languages grow. Sometimes a sub group that upgrades their information algorithms set is not at the edge of the communication group, but is dispersed within the communication group. The reason why this sub group upgrades their information algorithms set is because they are involved in some kind of activity which puts them into situations which require invention and distribution of new messages, which are not needed by the other members of their communication group. Example are people involved in a religious movement, or sport, craft, science, fashion or music movement...This is how slangs are born. In certain cases some of these group specific messages are added to the main group information algorithm set, expanding the language.
38. How new languages develop?
Sometimes two sub groups will continue with divergent changes to their own information algorithms without any language synchronization. This will eventually reduce the clarity of communication between two subgroups to such a low level that they will not be able to communicate with each other anymore. This is the point where two dialects of the same original language become two new languages. This happens when two sub groups of the original group do not communicate often enough with each other, and therefore have less chance to perform language synchronization. This usually happens due to physical distance between two sub groups, or due to some other obstacle which would prevent members of one sub group to get in contact with members of another sub group. By the time they get a chance to communicate with each other they will realize that they do not understand each other anymore, or that their understanding of each other is very poor. For example a group of members of the communication group 1 is in need of exchanging information with a group of members of the communication group 2. These two communication groups use different sets of information algorithms. The only way for members of these two groups to exchange information is to exchange and adopt part of the information algorithms each of them use. After they upgrade their information algorithms, members of both groups are now able to start exchanging messages and decode their meaning well enough to support the activity that required the communication between them in the first place. This creates local dialects in both languages. Intense communication between these two sub groups, coupled with infrequent communication with the majorities from both groups, will eventually lead to a creation of new language which is a mix of the two original languages.
39. Why do some languages stay unchanged for a long time and some don’t?
Because language is a tool used by a group to create, describe and synchronize its group reality. Every member of a group and the group itself is a self-regulating system controlled by feedback loop, striving to preserve stable state of reality. These entangled feedback loops will resist the destabilizing of the group reality, and there for the group language. So group language is entangled with group reality. If group reality stays mostly the same, if same people live in the same place in the same way, the group language will stay mostly the same. It will evolve as the reality evolves. If climate changes, new reality will force development of new words to describe the new reality. If way of life changes, new words will be invented to describe the new tools and new situations they can create. If new group of people moves into the territory the reality will change and the languages of both groups will change, either creating overlapping border groups with new dialects, or if the new group intermarries with the old, the whole new language will emerge to describe the reality of the new mixed group. If the group moves to the new territory, the reality will change and the language will change with it.
Serbian language. Serbian language is very conservative language, preserved many ancient features. Serbian people's reality has been very conservative as well. Excavated Vinca culture villages from 5th millennium bc, have shown that typical Serbian village has not changed for 7000 years. Exactly the same houses were built in exactly the same way, with exactly the same furniture, ovens, tools, toys in the same area for 7000 years. The same crops were sawn, the same animals were used, the same vehicles were used for transport (sledges), the same clothes were worn, the same jewellery was worn, and the same type of calendar was used. Of course new rulers came and went, new empires replaced the old, new cultures replaced the old. But the population and life of the local villages did not change very much during that time. Then suddenly in 1970's, the life started changing, modern technology, gadgets started to arrive, new culture started replacing the old culture, and the language suddenly started changing as well. But the structure of the language is still the same, and the only thing that is changing is vocabulary. This is because the reality changed, but the group stayed the same, so the language structure used by the group to structure their communication stayed the same. If group's reality does not drastically change through drastic change in group membership, group language does not drastically change. This seems to show that newcomers into the territory were few and far between and were absorbed together with parts of their languages, but the core of the old language was preserved. It seems that newcomers did not mix with the old population but rather they lived side by side. This eventually led to forming of many gradient dialects as the groups formed mixed realities through cooperation.
Slavic languages (R1a languages). These are very stable languages describing reality of a very stable population living the same type of life in the same area for a long time.
Germanic languages. These languages show linear change from east to west due to decrease of R1a population and reality and increase of R1b population and reality.
English, very mixed language, evolved many times in a very short time in vocabulary and structure. This is due to ever changing population of British isles and ever changing reality of the people living in British isles. Not only that the population and culture changed many times, but the way of life changed many times too. This is the main difference between what happened in Serbia and what happened in England. The many overlapping groups had to constantly re-establish their realities and that caused constant change of languages of these overlapping groups bringing them closer and closer together. Once language was codified, through books and schools, and once traveling became easier, the language synchronization accelerated even more.
American native languages. They were a mix even before white people came to America. These languages were preserved for as long as the reality they were used to synchronize was preserved. Once that reality was eroded enough through the pressures of the white reality, the languages died as they had no use any more.
Irish language. Would have ended up like American native languages was it not for the Irish independence and effort Irish state put into forcing people to change their reality to an Irish reality and their language into Irish language. But because modern Irish reality is not much different from English reality, if government changed the law and stopped forcing people to learn Irish at school, the language would die in a generation.
40. What is communication interference?
Receiver system simultaneously receives input data from many real or perceived sender systems. This input data can interfere with each other, affecting the way receiving system decides what the messages are and how to interpret them. Example: the temperature of the drink we are drinking while talking to someone will drastically affect what we feel about that person. Hot drink will make us see them as more positive and cold drink will make us see them as more negative. Example: If we are sending positive messages using words but negative messages using body language, people will not believe our positive vocal messages. Example: we react differently to the same situation if we are in different emotional states. Example: Someone rings our door bell: "ding, dong. can I come in to talk to you about god". We will understand this communication differently, depending on whether the person saying it is an old man wearing priestly robe and holding a bible, or a youth in a hood, holding a baseball bat.
41. Do only people use languages?
No. Animals, plants use languages.
42. What types of languages are there?
People use many different types of languages. I will here give the list of human language types from simplest to most complicated:
1. Natural body language. Involuntary or voluntary set of messages created by postures, facial expressions...Instinctively understood by babies and animals. Is this lion just resting or is he getting ready to jump?
2. Smell, taste (chemical) language. Things that smell nice are good. Things that smell bad are bad. The smell language is actually extremely complex and powerful, except that human sensory organs are not good enough to be able to recognize all the smell and taste (chemical) information which is out there. But animals are able to use this language very effectively. Some types of Catfish which live in muddy waters use taste as their main sense. Plants use this language too. Plants emit smells to attract insects.
3. Texture, tactile language. You are close because I can touch you. Sharp things are bad to walk on them. What is this smooth cold thing that I can feel in the hole? O a snake...Plants use this language to. Carnivorous plants sense presence of bugs.
4. Pattern language. The irregularity in patterns means danger. Tiger hiding in the bush. New born babies focus on pictures which don't belong into a series of pictures containing a pattern. This is extremely important for language processing. Regularity of patterns plays vital role in feedback loop processing because it helps us determine when the system is reaching a stable state.
5. Colour and shade, light language. This is the root of all visual languages, the root of our ability to see. This green thing on which I am standing suddenly turns to brown. This is the boundary of the green thing. “Red sky at night, shepherd's delight. Red sky at morning, shepherd take warning”. Bright dark colours in striking patterns mean danger, poison, bad taste. Certain colours trigger involuntary emotional reactions. We also seek them in certain emotional states. Red - hysteria, purple - depression....Exploited by advertisement agencies. Plants use this language too. Sunflowers turn to face light. Some flowers close in the evening and open in the morning.
6. Action language. It is a language consisting of obvious actions which don't require translation. It allows any two people to communicate with each other no matter what kind of information algorithm, if any, they personally use. Example: pick up pieces of food and put them into your mouth while a baby is watching. Soon baby will figure out that this is how you get food onto you, and will start trying to do it itself. This is how babies learn, through action imitation. Example: throw a stone at the dog barking at you. It will stop barking and run away. Example: grab the other person, turn him towards the lion, point at the lion with terrified expression on your face, and run away while pulling him with you. He will run after you. Example: pick up a fruit, byte into it, give it to the other person. If he is hungry he will pick it up and eat it. Show kids how you do things. They will imitate you. Animals use this language too. Dog arching his back and snarling. Message is "I will attack". Caledonian crow, showing its chick how to make a hook out of a twig and then use it to get a worm out of a hole.
7. Natural sound language. Involuntary noises made by people representing emotions. Sounds of animals. Other sounds in nature. Some of these sounds can be made by people while performing some action or animals performing some action. Example: aaaaaaaa - sound you make when you hurt yourself. ssssssss - sound of slithering snake. rrrrrrrrrrr - sound of scratching of a stone on wood. grooooum sound of thunder. gaaa gaaa - sound of ravens. llaaaaoooou - sound of a lion. prrrrr sound that cat makes when stroked. squealing noise made by a pig in distress.
8. Sound and action combination language. Repeat all the above but add loud shouts and screams. Example: shout "aaaaa" to draw attention to yourself, grab the other person, turn him towards the lion, point at the lion with terrified expression on your face imitating the sound of a lion "lao, lao", run away while pulling him with you. He will probaby run away in front of you. Example: pick up a fruit, byte into it, produce sound of smacking your lips, say "mmmmm", give it to the other person. He will eat it. Next time say "mmmm" and point to the tree. The other person will know what to find there. Make sound "nnnnn" while defending something the other person is trying to take away from you. Example: touch a sharp thing while toddler is looking, make a distressed face and say "auuu". Repeat that with everything which you don't want your child to touch because it is dangerous. This is how kids learn language, from context, meaning from words and associated actions. Say "no" every time you don't want to give something to your child. Soon he will associate "no" with refusal. All sounding animals use sounds in combination with actions. Any mating call, warning call is accompanied with action.
9. Sound language. If you repeat the above sound and action messages enough times, eventually you only need to use sounds to achieve the same result. Example: shout "aaaaa, lao, lao" to the other person, then start running away. He will run after you. Example: shout "mmmm", the other person will know what you have. Example: when someone points at something you have, say "nnnn". This will be enough to let the other person know you don’t want to give it to him. Say no to your child. Some animals are capable of producing and using complex languages, like prairie dogs, or dolphins, or some birds. Animals are capable of communicating with animals from other species using sound language. They recognize sound of their pray or their hunters. Some animals are capable of communicating with humans using sound language. Like dogs and horses, who learn and obey commands. My mother's parrot new hundreds of words, and would "talk" to my mother for hours. What he has learned is that some audio data is linked with some other audio data, in key value pairs. When he detected a particular key he would respond with linked value. For instance: who is the best bird? Sava (the parrot’s name). Where is grand dad? Parrot would fly around shouting "Grand dad". But he would also initiate conversations. When seeing that my mother was laying the table for a meal, he would start shouting "Lunch, Lunch" because this is the word he associated with food. He ate with us at the table, from my plate.
10. Hand symbol language. This language consists of single actions which have certain meaning attached to it, through a set of actions or words. Example: Symbol sign language explained using actions. Giving someone a finger, thumb up. You need to have had the symbol explained to you before had to understand it. Any sign language. Animals can use sign language as well. This is a complex language and is not found in animal kingdom.
11. Written symbolic language. They are identical to the above hand symbol language, just drawn on something. Example: a "man, penis, woman" sequence of pictures will have different meaning from "man, penis, man". Someone draws an apple and an arrow pointing to the direction where you can get apples. Someone draws a cross as a symbol of their religion....Someone draws a shape of a mountain meaning "UP, on top" or a shape of valley meaning "DOWN, at the bottom". Or draw the cut branch, to describe creation of a boundary, separation like this N or like this H. Example: Draw and eye and say "HORUS" and point to the sky. Example: any pictorial symbolic written language. Not dependant on spoken language as it expresses ideas, rather than information. This is a complex language and is not found in animal kingdom. Animals can be taught to use symbolic language, but they are not able to produce it themselves.
12. Written alphabetic language. Develops from a symbolic language by stylization of symbols, as a graphic representation of languages in which the main carrier of information, the basic message is a sound, and in which the words are based on the combined meanings of sounds used to create them. Words are in essence collections of messages carrying meaning. This is a complex language and is not found in animal kingdom.
All of the above languages are used in combination. Human "message to meaning" transformations system will use all available information supplied by our sensory organs to construct the meaning. Deaf people will not use sound based languages to communicate but will use all the other languages. Blind people will not use visual languages to communicate but will use all the other languages... And so on.
43. What is imitation?
Imitation is an attempt by one system to perform actions which it perceived as being performed by another system. This does not mean that the system doing the imitation is actually doing what the imitated system was doing, because the imitation is based on perception. In order for imitating system to actually do what imitated system was doing, two systems need to engage in feedback loop controlled by the imitated system. The imitated system will use this feedback loop to compare what it did with what the imitating system is trying to do. It will then issue synchronizing commands. Imitating system can fallow these commands, which will bring its perception of what imitated system was doing as close as possible to what the imitated system was actually doing. Once the imitating system knows what actually needs to be done, it can, through practice achieved that what it is doing is as close to its perception of what needs to be done which are already close enough to what imitated system was doing.
Example: In martial arts when practicing a new move, students often do what they think the teacher is doing and not what teacher is actually doing. To correct this, teacher needs to engage in the control feedback loop with the students, showing them and explaining them where and why they were doing it wrong. Once students synchronize their understanding of the move with the teacher's understanding of the move, they will perform the move technically correctly and with practice will become good at it.
The imitation is the main way living beings learn new skills. This is how kids learn from their parents. They try to imitate you eating with the spoon, but they hold it upside down and everything falls out. You then engage in the control feedback loop with them, showing them where they are making a mistake and explaining to them how they should hold the spoon and bring it to their mouth in order not to spill the food. Soon they will get annoyed and will start flicking food at you. But eventually they will synchronize their understanding how eating with the spoon works with yours. Then they can practice, train their neuromuscular system to perform, now correctly understood, action of eating with a spoon. This will eventually lead to them not spilling the food all over the floor any more.
Even when you are learning from a book, you are learning how to imitate someone else’s thought processes. You are synchronizing your understanding of reality with the writers understanding of reality. For instance, to learn how to bake bread from a cookery book, you need to first synchronize your understanding of how bread is made with that from the book. Then with practice you can eventually start making something edible.
Animals also learn imitating their parents and the other members of their family, heard. Basic life skills are learned by the young through imitation of their parents. They learn through observing the actions of their parents in context and imitating these actions in similar contexts. This means that animals go through exactly the same process of sensory and cognitive synchronization through child (student) parent (teacher) feedback loop, which allows them to go from what they think their parents are doing to what their parents are doing.
44. Can one animal species imitate other animal species?
Yes. A lot of animal species are able and do imitate movements and sounds of other animal species. They do this to camouflage themselves, to attract pray, or for fun. Most of the animals who do the cross species imitation do that instinctively. Very few actually do it as a premeditated action, and even fewer do it as a changing sustained premeditated action. The problem with imitating other animal species is that you do not have the student teacher feedback loop to help you synchronize what you are trying to imitate with what you are doing. This makes cross species imitation extremely difficult and complex process and this is why we have so few animal species which are able to do it.
45. Are there any animal species which can imitate human actions and sounds?
Primates can imitate human actions. Studies have shown that primates who have been raised by humans, and who have had extensive interactions with humans can learn through imitation from humans a lot quicker than the experimental lab animals. This is because the animals which were brought up by humans became part of the human group. They share, the group reality, and at least part of the group language. They have experience of the same contexts that the humans from the same group have. This allows people and animal from the same group to communicate much more efficiently. This is the same with domestic animals, like dogs, which learn new skills from people from the family they live in, as well as from their parents. Eventually this leads to a very good understanding between the animals and humans. I believe that one of the reasons why dogs and humans cooperate so well together is because of the long history of human canine cooperation, as parts of the same mixed groups within same group reality. We know that some animal species can imitate human sounds. What is interesting is that it is not primates that can do it but birds. Mina bird can reproduce any sound it hears to an astonishing degree. Parrots and crows can do a great job at imitating human voice as well.
46. What is a vibration?
Vibration is an oscillating change in position of a mechanical self-regulating system, away from and back towards the stable equilibrium state. Only self-regulating systems can vibrate. If you push or pull one of those systems from its stable state it will engage in synchronization process which tries to bring current state to desired stable state. We see and experience this process as vibration around the stable state. If the system is not self-regulating, pushing it or pulling it from the stable state will result in the system moving until it acquires another stable state which is different from the original stable state. Moving structures create change in the surrounding space; buy pushing or pulling adjoining stuff, like air or water, or other objects. Vibrating things create repetitive, patterned changes in the surrounding stuff.
47. What is sound?
Once the disturbance wave created in stuff by a moving part of the stuff arrives to a sensory organ which can detect these changes in staff, the sensory organ can perceive these changes of stuff as data. It then transforms this perceived data into a message using some transformation algorithm, and send the message to "message to meaning" transformation system. The meaning extracted from the message is the sound. The process of transforming perceived stuff change to sound is called hearing.
48. Do sounds exist out there?
No. You could ask deaf people to confirm this, but you won't be able to because they can not hear you. Your voice cords will vibrate, they will cause the change in the air, the change will arrive to their ears, but they will not hear the sound. The reason for that depends on the type of deafness they have. If any part of the hearing system is damaged, we will not hear the sound, or we will hear distorted sound. If change sensor is damaged, the changes happening in the stuff around us will be not noticed. If change to message transformation system is damaged, the change will be noticed but the encoding of data to message will not happen or it will be distorted. If message to meaning transformation system is damaged, the message will not be decoded into meaning or the meaning will be distorted.
If there is a vibration out there, which creates pressure change which arrives to ears of multiple listeners, does everyone hear the same sound?
No. What each listener hears depends on how good each individual vibration to sound system is. It also depends on the angle from which the disturbance wave arrives, the distance, other interfering disturbance waves. For instance everyone knows how strange our own voice sounds when we hear it from a tape. This is because the disturbance waves causes by our own sound vibration apparatus, arrive to our ear partially through air, and partially through tissue. This interference changes the final disturbance pattern that arrives to our sensory organ and we hear different sound from the sound we hear when the disturbance wave arrives only through air. What we hear also depends on our previous experience and in particular whether we have "heard that sound before". We are more likely to "hear" something "clearly" if we have heard it before. For instance if we dent see the speaker, and we are talking to someone we know in a noisy place, we can hear him better than if we are listening to someone we never heard before. This is because our listening system can extract sound patterns it recognizes out of the "noise" that we are not interested in or we don't recognize. It is much more difficult to do this filtering if we are only learning how to recognize the new sound pattern.
49. Can hearing ability be passed to our descendants?
It can. Epigenetic changes are caused by our experience. These epigenetic changes can then affect our cells and the way split and change. These epigenetic changes are propagated to our offspring. Then they can add their epigenetic changes caused by their experience, which are then passed to their descendants in combination with epigenetic changes which originate from our life. Extremely complex systems like hearing system are extremely sensitive to genetic changes. We already know that a lot of hearing problems are caused by epigenetic changes and the epigenetics is only in it's infancy. This means that the way we hear things can be passed from generation to generation, causing whole tribes to hear things in particular way. Why is this important? Because if we hear things differently, we will say things differently, because sound generation is directly dependant on our ability to control our sound vibration generation apparatus while it is producing sound vibration. This control of the sound vibration creation system is performed using feedback loop whose main part is sound hearing system.
50. What is speech apparatus?
Speech apparatus is a complex system consisting of vocal cords, sound box (throat and mouth), nervous system controlling the movement of all these body parts, hearing sensory system, control loop coordinating the sound making and listening systems, idea to message transformation system. As we can see this is incredibly complex system which is susceptible to physical defects and malfunction as well as genetic mutations.
51. What is spoken language?
Spoken language is language in which the encoding medium for transforming data into message is sound. It is also an intentional two way language in which messages are deliberately created and sent from one member of a communicating group to another. If messages are acknowledged we have spoken conversation. Spoken language is often used in combination with other languages like sign, symbol, body, action...We can also see that our ability to speak is completely dependent on our ability to hear and understand. These two systems are connected in a feedback loop.
If someone says "say man" and I hear "say man" I will say "man"
If someone says "say man" and I hear "say men" I will say "men"
If someone says "say man" and I hear "say man" but I am unable to pronounce clear sound "aaaa" I may say "meeaaan".
This is extremely important for understanding the process of sound change. Basically it works like a "Chinese whispers" game.
As long as the sounds are close enough and members of the conversation group can understand each other, the sound change is tolerated. Like when you have someone who has speech impediment in the family. Or when you are talking to the kid who cant say "r" so "bird" becomes "bd" and "breakfast" becomes "bekva". But kids will grow up and will, if they don't have a speech impediment, learn how to pronounce "r" and soon bd will become bird and bekva will be breakfast.
52. How did original language develop?
I believe that in spoken languages sound, and sound blocks, carry meaning. Sound block is a vocalized consonant like “ta”, “go”...These sound blocks were used in conjunction with actions to convey messages. The sounds eventually merged together to form words which replaced this audio visual language with audio language. Each one of these words has its own meaning. This meaning can change through time, because word becomes a symbol with which people can associate new meanings. So to find the original etymological meaning you need to go to the oldest known form of the word. This is all we have to work with. But it is not as bad as you think. A lot of words go way back and have survived pretty unchanged, maybe not in English but in languages from which they came to English.
Original languages were not all developed by the same genetic family. There were at least three speaking human sub groups before 100,000 bc: Africans, Neanderthals and Denisovans. They developed in isolation which lasted hundreds of thousands of years. During this time they acquired different genetic traits as adaptation to their surroundings. These adaptations probably included adaptations of language systems, which are directly influenced by epigenetic reprogramming triggered by experience. Mixing occurred in last 100,000 years. During that time additional genetic changes occurred as result of adaptation to changed living condition and experience. This means more changes related to language as well. This continues even today. What latest research is showing us is that our experience can influence our genes which can directly influence how we hear and how are we able to reproduce sounds. This is then passed down to our offspring. If I can hear Spanish or Slavic R but my vocal system is not able to reproduce it as sharply, we might end up with English R or French R. If I can't hear the difference between b and p it is a tossup which sounds you will find in the language I speak. If the whole family is affected by this mutation, you end up with sound changes.
53. What are undifferentiated sound groups and what undifferentiated sound groups do we have?
Undifferentiated sound group is a group of sounds, which can all be produced by the same gross mouth position. The differentiated sounds are produces by tiny variation of lip, tong and throat position and pressure. The sounds from the same undifferentiated sound group are interchangeable. Like baba, papa meaning father. Or ban, van meaning white. Or this, dis meaning this. Or pana, bana meaning bread. Of foot, put, meaning foot and road.
Originally all sounds were undifferentiated, as human ability to speak developed. There was no m,p,b,v,f there was something like mpbvf which is basically undifferentiated sound which is the root sound of the above consonant group. The whole group is produced by the same gross mouth position. The differentiated sounds are produced by tiny variation of lip position and pressure. As people developed their speech abilities, as they used speech more and more, their genes changed, enabling them to control their speech apparatus more and more precisely. This lead to sound differentiation, and mpbvf turned first to diphthongs, like bv, mp, pf and then to individual sound m,p,b,v,f. And because these sounds are so close together, tiniest change in our ability to hear them and to pronounce them will lead to additional sound changes which can then be propagated to the rest of the family and clan...
As babies learn how to speak they start by using undifferentiated sounds, they bubble. As they developed their speech abilities, as they use speech more and more, their control of their speech apparatus becomes more and more precise. This lead to sound differentiation. What used to be bhfabhfa is now baba.
These are undifferentiated sound groups:
Vowels can change through these undifferentiated sound groups:
Consonants can change through these undifferentiated sound groups:
m,p,b,v,f - Slowly reduce pressure between your lips while slowly opening your mouth. You will go through all these sounds one after the other.
g,k,h,j - Slowly move pressure in your throat backwards while slowly opening your mouth. You will go through all these sounds one after the other. Difference between j and h is just in tiny adjustment in the shape of the back of your throat.
r - slowly move your tong backwards while reducing pressure between you tong and the roof of your mouth. You will go from hard to soft r. French r is produced in the throat and is related to Arabic h more than European r. r can also produce w when the tong is moved all the way back.
l,d,n,t, c(ts) - Put tong in starting position. Slide it outward you get L. Pop it lightly you get T. Apply more pressure and pop it you get D. Don't move it and you get N. Don't move it and slowly reduce pressure and you get C(ts)
s,z,ž,š - Slide your tong backward and you will go through all these sounds one after the other.
č, dž - Pronounce the sound with your teeth apart you get č. Pronounce the sound with your teeth touching you get dž
dj, lj, nj, tj - These sounds are all produced by sliding tong forward from original J position.
v,w,u are also interchangeable sounds. The original sound for v was probably undifferentiated wu sound which later became differentiated into v.
m and n are also interchangeable, as you can produce either one of them with the same position of your mouth, by changing slightly the position of your tong.
What about k to s change?
Both k and s are sounds that describe closeness. One through position and surface and the other through movement towards each other.
54. How did words form?
Originally human language was an audio visual language consisting or sound blocks accompanied with gestures. The most precise name for this unit of information that I can come up with is act. Often expressed ideas resulted in often repeated groups of audio visual acts, which were repeated in the same order. Our pattern recognition system would not fail to recognize these patterns and would group them together as complex meaning matrices. Next time someone started to act one of these ideas, our pattern recognition system would pull out all stored meaning matrices which start with the first act, in anticipation of the second act. The Ideas would start forming in our heads, and we would arrive to the correct one through process of elimination, similar to loto draw. Eventually the most commonly repeated sequences of acts would become so well-known and understood that gesticulation was not needed any more to convey the meaning. Sound blocks alone would have been enough. Soon the sound blocks would start to fuse and extra vowels would start to be dropped and we would end up with compressed sound pattern which contained the minimum set of sounds required to still convey the original audio visual message.
55. What sounds were used in the original audio visual language?
Theoretically any random sound could have been used. But most likely the sounds used were natural sounds which already carried certain meaning and were well known to people already. The fact that we still find these sounds in words carrying meaning associated with these natural sounds, confirms that at least some if not all sound blocks were built around natural sounds.
s - sound of one smooth thing sliding across another smooth thing
kr - sound of crashing
bo(a), vo(a) - sound of sheep and cows, which became through the association with white milk, the sound representing white. Through association with sound fvvv, the sound of air escaping our mouth, sound V became associated with transparent, see through, water, air
b - sound of hitting something alive made of flesh or hitting something with you palm. Became associated with solid matter and being.
ga - danger, pointing sound of flocking birds, which, became danger, pointing sound of people. Outstretched arm used to pointing also became ga, as did any pointy stick, like a branch and alter spear.
r - sound of scraping using tooted blade. ri - cut, rista - harvester, ritter - knight
sk - sound of cutting using sharp smooth blade. sek - cut and all related "sk" cut words in many languages
n - involuntary noise made while protecting yourself or something, boundary
k - sound of clapping, bringing things together associated with pointing, going toward
k,g - sounds for pointing
t,d - sound of hitting something hard, solid, not made of flesh
m - the only sound that can be made with our mouth closed and tong relaxed
pl - sound of spitting, splashing
l - sound of gliding your tong on something, really smooth things. Later became associated with horizontal, land, lying through the fact that most smooth lines in nature are horizontal.
lj - sound that activated saliva glands, slimy, watery smooth
pf - sound of blowing
tr - sound of rubbing something with your fingers. Trti - rub with your fingers, truniti - make crumbs, utrnuti - extinguish fire rub burning coals out, trn, tsrn - black, colour of extinguished coals
vr - sound of whirring
vrtr - sound of bow fire drill while producing fire. vrtra, vratra, vatra - fire.
pr - sound of farting. prkno - arshole, prljav – dirty, prnja – soiled rag
pis - sound of pissing, pishati - pis, pisati - write using stick which leaks
dub, dab - sound made by beavers when they cut wood. dubiti - chisel, dub - wood, oak
and so on.
56. How did grammar form?
Human language messages are sent in linear groups. When exchanged message groups became too long and too complicated, people started grouping the messages in particular order to make understanding of messages easier. The grouping follows natural logic of communication during work coordination:
1. get attention of the person you want to send the message (You)
2. tell the person what action you want him to perform (get)
3. tell the person what object he should perform the action against (stone)
Or the other way round. If you have a means to link the words into a meaningful group using some alternative communication system (signign) then you can create different meaningful orders of words in a sentance and agree on them.
The adjective are then added as the answer to a reply asking for clarification which exact object he should act against.
4. stone what?
5. stone big.
4. what stone?
5. big stone.
Each message sequence is separated from the next by an acknowledgement either positive, negative or as a question. This is how sentences formed. This acknowledgement is very important as it confirms that the other person understood you. Intonation is used to convey the tone of the acknowledgement. Raising tone means question. Flat tone means either positive or negative acknowledgement.
The more complex grammatical constructs have formed much later.
And this is where I got bored of this whole thing. I started it because I wanted to understand better the sound change and I am satisfied that I now understand how it works. So I have no more interest in this area. But if you do please continue where I stoped.
I hope you found this discussion interesting.