Problems of Symbol Congestion in Computer Languages

Cthun cthun_117 at
Thu Feb 17 22:49:21 EST 2011

On 17/02/2011 10:29 PM, rantingrick wrote:
> On Feb 17, 8:40 pm, Cthun<cthun_... at>  wrote:
>> What does your aversion to cultural diversity have to do with Lisp,
>> rantingrick? Gee, I do hope you're not a racist, rantingrick.
> Why must language be constantly "connected-at-the-hip" to cultural
> diversity?

Language is a part of culture, rantingrick.

> People have this irrational fear that if we create a single
> universal language then *somehow* freedom have been violated.

No, it is that if we stop using the others, or forcibly wipe them out, 
that something irreplaceable will have been lost, rantingrick.

> You *do* understand that language is just a means of communication,
> correct?

Classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim. A language is also a 
cultural artifact, rantingrick. If we lose, say, the French language, we 
lose one of several almost-interchangeable means of communication, 
rantingrick. But we also lose something as unique and irreplaceable as 
the original canvas of the Mona Lisa, rantingrick.

> And i would say a very inefficient means. However, until
> telekinesis becomes common-place the only way us humans have to
> communicate is through a fancy set of grunts and groans. Since that is
> the current state of our communication thus far, would it not be
> beneficial that at least we share a common world wide mapping of this
> noise making?

What does your question have to do with Lisp, rantingrick?

> <sarcasm>  Hey, wait, i have an idea... maybe some of us should drive
> on the right side of the road and some on the left. This way we can be
> unique (psst: SELFISH) from one geographic location on the earth to
> another geographic location on the earth.

Classic illogic. Comparing, say, the loss of the French language to 
standardizing on this is like comparing the loss of the Mona Lisa to 
zeroing one single bit in a computer somewhere, rantingrick.

> Surely this multiplicity
> would not cause any problems? Because, heck, selfishness is so much
> more important than anyones personal safety anyway</sarcasm>

Non sequitur.

> Do you see how this morphs into a foolish consistency?

What does your classic erroneous presupposition have to do with Lisp, 

>> Classic illogic. Evolution depends upon diversity as grist for the mill
>> of selection, rantingrick. A genetically homogeneous population cannot
>> undergo allele frequency shifts, rantingrock.
> Oh, maybe you missed this paragraph

What does your classic erroneous presupposition have to do with Lisp, 

>   . Now don't misunderstand all of this as meaning "multiplicity is
> bad",
>   . because i am not suggesting any such thing! On the contrary,
>   . multiplicity is VERY important in emerging problem domains. Before
>   . such a domain is understood by the collective unconscience we need
>   . options (multiplicity!) from which to choose from. However, once a
>   . "collective understanding" is reached we must reign in the
>   . multiplicity or it will become yet another millstone around our
>   . evolutionary necks, slowing our evolution.

Classic erroneous presupposition that evolution is supposed to reach a 
certain point and then stop and stagnate on a single universal standard, 

> Or maybe this one:
> . I think in theory the idea of using Unicode chars is good, however
> in
> . reality the implementation would be a nightmare!  A wise man once
> . said: "The road to hell is paved in good intentions". ;-)

Classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim. I read that one, rantingrick.

> Or this one:
> . If we consider all the boundaries that exist between current
> . (programming) languages (syntax, IDE's, paradigms, etc) then we
> will
> . realize that adding *more* symbols does not help, no, it actually
> . hinders! And Since Unicode is just a hodgepodge encoding of many
> . regional (natural) languages --of which we have too many already in
> . this world!

Classic unsubstantiated and erroneous claim. I read that one, too, 

>> What does any of that have to do with Lisp, rantingrick?
> The topic is *ahem*... "Problems of Symbol Congestion in Computer
> Languages"... of which i think is not only a lisp issue but an issue
> of any language.

Classic illogic. The topic of the *thread* is *computer* languages, yet 
you attacked non-computer languages in the majority of your rant, 
rantingrick. Furthermore, the topic of the *newsgroup* is the *Lisp 
subset* of computer languages.

> (see my comments about selfishness for insight)

What does that have to do with Lisp, rantingrick?

>> And you omitted the #1 most serious objection to Xah's proposal,
>> rantingrick, which is that to implement it would require unrealistic
>> things such as replacing every 101-key keyboard with 10001-key keyboards
>> and training everyone to use them. Xah would have us all replace our
>> workstations with machines that resemble pipe organs, rantingrick, or
>> perhaps the cockpits of the three surviving Space Shuttles. No doubt
>> they'd be enormously expensive, as well as much more difficult to learn
>> to use, rantingrick.
> Yes, if you'll read my entire post then you'll clearly see that i
> disagree with Mr Lee on using Unicode chars in source code.

Classic erroneous presuppositions that I did not read your entire post 
and that I thought you weren't disagreeing with Mr. Lee, rantingrick.

> My intention was to educate him on the pitfalls of multiplicity.

Classic illogic, since "multiplicity" (also known as "diversity") does 
not in and of itself have pitfalls, rantingrick.

On the other hand, monoculture has numerous well-known pitfalls, 

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