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Re: Think Again, Lojbab
For obvious reasons due to length, i will have to read your posting offline
in order to respond to it in greater detail. I will address the first point
1. I save all postings that I receive, and especially Minilesson replies.
Comments that come with minilesson replies get read fairly immediately.
2. Athelstan, who wrote the minilesson 4 years ago, was severely injured in
an auto accident shortly thereafter. He never wrote up a set of answers,
and no one else has done so either. We thus have no answer key and thus cannot
QUICKLY evaluate minilesson replies.
3. These days I am grossly overcommitted. I skim incoming email and reply to
things that catch my immediate attention. The rest gets captured and I again
skim things offline with the intent of doing a careful read later. I am
running over a year behind in my email backlog, so right now that is a black
hole. I simply do not have time to support every Lojbanist who sends email
to me, and rely on people to ask questions and get answers from the list
insofar as is possible. This is a serious regret for me, because I do feel
some responsibility to the community, but I am a human being with too many
limits on my Lojban time.
4. By direction of the membership at the last several LogFests, my Lojban
prioirties are limited to getting the Lojban books out and doing what is
necessary to maintain the organization. I am not doing well at those
rather limited tasks, and keep farming jons out to people in order to try
to get back on top of the job. Snail mail orders these days are running
as long as a year late as well, and some of those people have paid money to
us. Thus I cannot in good conscience put a lot of time into an email query
that does not come with a paid order for our materials. (I should say that
MOST orders are not a year in being processed, but one order has been
backlogged that long, and my priority at the moment is in getting the rest of
them that I have paper mail orders for caught up. Email orders of course
are buried in my email backlog.
5. Theoretical debates about how the language SHOULD have been designed are
interesting in their own way, but for better or for worse the language is
essentially done, and arguing for radical change is a purely intellectual
exercise. having gone through the process of reinventing Lojban once in
the split from JCB, I am reasonably sure that no one will want to repeat
that effort in order to make what would inevitably be small technical
improvements. Several person-years of effort have gone into the language
design, and while novice Lojbanists often ask intriguing questions about what
might have been, very seldom do we get questions that cause us to even
seriously worry about whether we made the right choices.
If this comes across as a dismissal, I am sorry. Your comments WILL be read.
But having said that you are a Lojban novice, I hope that you will acquire a
bit more mastery of the language, at which point you may or may not come to
feel that the flaws in the language design are indeed minor.