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SpookyWriter
02-09-2007, 01:21 AM
Will they have a language all their own and how will we deal with mechanical devices that apply heuristic logic? Will there be a time when machines like a toaster or dishwasher are culturally diverse enough that we will need to rethink our approach to dealing with them?



noun1. a commonsense rule (or set of rules) intended to increase the probability of solving some problem




I don't think it's too far down the timeline to believe that some devices will have the ability to communicate (oral and written) with humans. So how will we communicate with them? Will language evolve as does mechanical devices?

robeiae
02-09-2007, 01:27 AM
"What I really need is a droid who understands the binary language of moisture evaporators."

"Evaporators? Sir, my first job was programming binary load lifters, very similar to your evaporators in most respects."

SpookyWriter
02-09-2007, 01:49 AM
I believe there are (or will be in the near future) an abundance of appliances and other mechanical devices that are language and cultural specific.

If you are in Mexico the dish washer will tell you the temp in Spanish. The same goes for other geographic regions, I believe. I need to study this more, but what would be interesting is if in ten or twenty years from now we in America have appliances and other mechanical devices that are language specific. So would you buy a frig that only spoke Vietnamese?

The second part of this is: Would language specific mechanical devices help us to learn other languages.

Just a thought.

Haggis
02-09-2007, 02:02 AM
And more to the point, might you offend one if you accidentally used a culturally inappropriate phrase?

robeiae
02-09-2007, 02:05 AM
"Stay away from me, canner."

Higgins
02-09-2007, 05:52 AM
Will they have a language all their own and how will we deal with mechanical devices that apply heuristic logic? Will there be a time when machines like a toaster or dishwasher are culturally diverse enough that we will need to rethink our approach to dealing with them?





I don't think it's too far down the timeline to believe that some devices will have the ability to communicate (oral and written) with humans. So how will we communicate with them? Will language evolve as does mechanical devices?

Suppose some of these devices enable you to construct mental visualizations that can be fairly well communicated to an audience. Would this place "writers" (those people who have merely used letters as memory markers) in the same category as oral raconteurs ( who have merely used their own brains) vis-a-vis the much more marvelously advanced people whose very mental visualizations would have flooded the world with real and directly imposed significances? No more shoddy written or memorized stories, but instead the direct and significant mental experiences of people far more wonderful than mere arrangers of linguistic dribs and drabs.

Aeryn
02-09-2007, 06:21 AM
Why do we need the machines to talk to us?
Why do we already have machines that talk to us?
Faux interaction. Bizarre.
But if they end up being able to make more intelligent decisions for us, then I'm all for it. ;)
We would be able to devolve our ears and mouths, and just be happy egg-heads, communicating (what??) via three layers of electronics. Yay.

I have a dishwasher I never use, and a toaster I never use. If they start talking to me....they might gain back a little favour I guess - depending on their personalities.

kdnxdr
02-09-2007, 06:33 AM
Hey Spooky,

I highly recommend a book by Ray Kurzweil, The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence

I think you will find it most intriguing. I also read an interview with Mr. Kurzweil in Seed magazine.

There are other books along the same vein but this is the one I read and Mr. Kurzweil is out in front on this subject.

Also, I suggest you go to the Honda website and check out Asimo. "He" went on sale to the public market in Japan in 2005 or '06. The opted for a rental program as 'he' is so exorbitantly expensive to purchase.

kid

Kate Thornton
02-09-2007, 06:56 PM
Spooky, I think about this very topic sometimes - I think a more universalization of language in general is in store for us as mass communication hits new high points. A sort of "babelfish" for the droids may evolve in which household appliances are filtered through the Bluetooth on your ear - and with the more expensive translator, perhaps even carefully-preserved foreign languages like French are translated, too...

SpookyWriter
02-10-2007, 02:21 AM
Kate,

I was thinking more along the lines of mechanical devices that help or assist human (speech) evolution by communicating with us in proper diction and language. I wonder if we will be dragged along by our own devices into a new starting point for language.

The other thought I had was what happens when we do use devices that are language specific. If we have to buy a new or used wash machine will it be programmed into our native language? But then again, if we purchase a device with a foreign language will that encourage us to become bi-lingual by the very nature of our purchases?

LaceWing
03-08-2007, 12:41 AM
And just yesterday there was a news story somewhere about software for filling out bankruptcy forms: a court determined it goes beyond mere clerical assistance and therefore banned it for practicing law without a license.

benbradley
03-08-2007, 03:55 AM
Kate,

I was thinking more along the lines of mechanical devices that help or assist human (speech) evolution by communicating with us in proper diction and language. I wonder if we will be dragged along by our own devices into a new starting point for language.
This brings back a memory of the movie ET. From my memory ET may have used a "Speak and Say" or some such in his "phone home" transmitter.
Those old speaking toys sounded horrible, in every way! It wasn't just a small speaker or distorting amplifier, the data compression they used, LPC, made spoken sounds barely understandable. Prompted by your question, I'd be afraid such toys would negatively influence how children learn to speak or hear speech, but I haven't heard anything about that.

The other thought I had was what happens when we do use devices that are language specific. If we have to buy a new or used wash machine will it be programmed into our native language? But then again, if we purchase a device with a foreign language will that encourage us to become bi-lingual by the very nature of our purchases?
I imagine any language-using device that sells to more than one country, or even for US-only (which is becoming more bilingual, English and Spanish), will have several languages programmed into it, and there will be a small jumper installed inside that tells it which language to speak. Or there might be a menu on a screen when you first turn it on, or it might speak "Press one if you speak English, dos habla Espanol, tres parlez vouz France',..." Having something interact in several languages isn't much beyond handling speech in one language, and users won't need to be "culturally diverse" outside of needing to understand bad translations such as "Engrish." (http://www.engrish.com) Goodness help us if we have to say an obscenity to start up the microwave oven.

As far as becoming bi-lingual, I can imagine intentionally setting the microwave to understanding Spanish and learning how to say numbers in Spanish as well as a very few command words. This won't really help one learn another language unless they do some other method of study. Microwave ovens won't really be useful to me until they can be programmed with macros, so I can put one of those Reddenbacker's things in it, say Popcorn, and come back in three and a half minutes to nearly perfectly popped popcorn.

But all these are just the vocal equivalent of the turning dials and pushing buttons we've been doing for decades. Things won't be interesting until another decade or two when you can have a real conversation with a machine.

benbradley
03-08-2007, 04:09 AM
Kate,

I was thinking more along the lines of mechanical devices that help or assist human (speech) evolution by communicating with us in proper diction and language. I wonder if we will be dragged along by our own devices into a new starting point for language.
To give a slightly different answer:

This "proper diction and language" will be dictated by the programmers of the device (or most likely, software on a personal computer). Presumably they will hire linguists to make things really proper. When computers become powerful enough, they will learn from whoever they're listening to, much like a child learns. Shortly after, they'll learn faster than a child, learn from one another, and begin to teach people what they want us to learn.

I'm in the middle of reading Kurzweil's "Spiritual Machines" and it's interesting enough, but I've read most of the ideas elsewhere as well. Google singularity and ignore all references to black holes.