As people tend to look for "ideological heroism" in politicians, politicians inevitably become inflexible and dogmatic.
In other words, they become more extreme and rigid, never taking the middle ground, what the old British word "trimmers" denigrated.
However, in the real world, where everything is a spectrum, a continuum, and a mixed bag, ideological heroism that strongly holds one view does not help at all.
That may be why we can resolve so many of our political issues, because we cultivate ideological heroes, who are fools that cannot deal with any continuum of viewpoints, and we elect them to deal with continuums of real world problems.
We need flexibility, variety of Shakespeare and Obama in politics to deal with the world's problems, to which there are no straightforward, simple solutions.
Although I have never completed a fully functioning language, I have worked on conlangs of my own. I have studied Korean, Japanese, Spanish, English, Latin, Mandarin Chinese grammars, and I looked at many conlangs such as Ithkuil and Esperanto.
What I have realized from studying languages and studying conlanging is that conlanging is a very minor and almost esoteric hobby that very few people enjoy. Conlanging requires a lot of time and effort because language is a tool that attempts to cover every aspect of human thinking, which it does quite well (better than any other tool available now). It is rewarding to create a language of your own. Or to create a language so exotic and weird that you yourself have a hard time grasping (like Ithkuil). However, it still remains a hobby for very few people because language does not really work when you have only one or two people interested in learning it.
Language required a community of human users, and conlangers can't usually get a community of speakers. For most of us, language learning is a daunting task and even those who dare to learn a new language usually chooses some "useful" language. One in which you can read interesting books. One in which you can watch a movie, enjoy a song, enjoy a poetry, etc. However, conlangs usually lack culture. Thus, to most people, conlangs are not worth learning. And that is the fundamental hindrance to creating your own language.
As I worked on my conlangs, I wanted a community of speakers of my conlangs. But who would learn a language that nobody uses? As of now, conlanging is like producing bullets when there are no guns around.
As a very futuristic and idealistic solution, I have looked at artificial intelligence.
To have a computer speak a human language we need to make an AI as smart as humans (this means that an English-speaking robot is an AI-complete problem).
But I really wanted a community of beings speaking my conlang. Wouldn't it be fun to watch intelligent agents having conversations in the language of your own creation?
That is why I have decided to become an AI researcher and to do that I gonna be majoring in computer science.
Quite a unique reason to study CS, but I don't think CS is the only way to help develop AI. Neuroscience, scanning technology, computer hardware component research will all have to combine to achieve such a great feat.
So, as of now, my conlanging is on hold as I try to make beings that will speak my conlangs.
대부분의 사람들이 그러하듯이 나 또한 미루는 것을 밥먹듯이 한다. 어쩌면 삼시세끼보다 미루는 것을 더 자주할지도.
미룰 수 있다는 것은 미래가 있다는 것. 이 글을 읽고 있는 당신도, 이 글을 쓰고 있는 나도. 얼마나 긴 미래인지는 모두 다르겠지만 지금 이 순간의 귀찮고 하기 싫은 잃들을 미룰 미래가 있다.
하지만 꼭 하기 싫은 잃들만을 미루는 것은 아니다. 옛날부터 가고 싶었던 여행, 옛날부터 해보고 싶었던 여러가지 일들, 옛날부터 마음 속에 깊이 묻어두었던 하고 싶었던 일들. 그런 것들도 우리는 미룬다.
하지만 지금 이 순간에 미룬다는 것은 얼마나 길지 모를 그 알 수 없는 미래라는 존재에게 자신이 하고자 했던 일들을 미룬다는 것이다.
하고 싶지 않은 일을 미뤄도 되겠지만 하고 싶었던 일들을 어쩌겠는가. 미래를 위해 현재를 희생하는 것도 필요하다. 하지만 미래는 언제나 알 수 없기에, 현재에 그 동안 생각해놓았던 일들을 현재라는 확신성에 맞겨 해보는 것을 어떨까.
I had a chance to learn about major religions in the world including Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, and Buddhism and here are some of my thoughts.
I do believe that religions are very comforting things to believe in and it is my personal choice not to believe in any of them.
Some thoughts that I jot down after religion presentations at my school:
However, after all, we cannot yet verify the existence or nonexistence of any higher being. So we don't really know, if there's a god or gods or God that overlooks all of us. I wish that were true but I just don't think that the possibility of human-like higher being is very feasible. The idea is too anthropocentric to be true.
As a native speaker of Korean and as a person who is learning Japanese quite seriously (through anime and Memrise), I share a bit about what I have thought about the differences and similarities between Korean and Japanese languages.
Seems like random words meshed up, but well I hope this interests some people.
It is very interesting to watch anime with Korean subtitles, because certain Chinese loanwords in two languages sound almost identical (most of them sound similar) and I can understand about 30% of Japanese perfectly while being always able to identify which Korean words cluster (word + particle grouping) goes with which Japanese speech that was just spoken by an anime character.
It's pretty amazing how much Japanese I can learn from just watching anime. How similar and also different the two languages are interests me a lot.
I am also learning Mandarin Chinese, so I think I'll write about the three major East Asian languages soon.
Good night! Or maybe I should say good morning (it's 2:41 in the morning).
Here are some of my aims in doing language construction:
These are some of my goals that comes to head right now.
Just as a side note, I like agglutinative languages such as Korean and Japanese, while I like the morphosematical features of Chinese vocabulary. I personally like tonal language, but I am no good at it :(
Currently learning Mandarin Chinese and Japanese for some conlang insights and to gain access those cultures.
Some random thoughts for the day it was.
I used to believe that procrastinating is bad as everyone says.
But now I think it is not, being a procrastinator myself. We evolved to do things better, including things like doing homework and other things that we decide to do it tomorrow. So I think evolution made us procrastinators. Here is a kind of characteristics of things we procrastinate: things we don't have to finish right now; things we don't want to do because of it's boring nature or other factors.
Even looking at this crappy characterization, we can make out the merits of procrastinating. First, it allows the most urgent matters to be done. Since things we procrastinate are things we don't have to get done right away, it allows our time to be spent on things we have to get it done.
Second and much better reason is that procrastinating allows us to get things done more efficiently. If you do an English essay that is due next week, you are much more likely to be unfocused. It is not a very good use of the time. But if you are finishing you essay midnight before the essay is due, you are probably gonna be working your butt off. This is extremely efficient use of the time. Much more so than doing it a week before.
Of course there are downfalls of procrastination. You can get too lazy as to not do the things at all. But I think, for the most part, procrastinating gets things done more efficiently and allows us to make good use of our time as well as help us do things we don't want later.
Procrastinating is good if you get things done eventually. I guess.
Jin Woo Won
An undergrad at Columbia University, studying Computer Science and in particular artificial intelligence.