Author Archives: matthewdeanmartin

Dictionaries for toki pona

I read about the dictionary making for Algonquin, a highly synthetic language with few unbound morphemes. Everything of interest is a bound morpheme. Full words necessarily drag along with them a lot of other cruft, as if a dictionary had … Continue reading

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Paragraphs and machine assisted conlang work

When you are teaching a machine to do something with a language, you get a surprising set of challenges that are not mentioned much in your traditional reference grammar. On the internet, people post texts and line breaks are unreliable … Continue reading

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Inferences from toki pona utterances

So I’m noodling again the idea of knowledge representation with toki pona. If I say: jan li laso. And then ask: seme li laso? Then it should be easy enough to look up jan. (That is to bind seme to … Continue reading

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The Heart of Esperanto

So I was wondering what a parser for Esperanto would look like if I only used the 14 rules. I re-read them and quickly decided that actually, at the time of the 14 rules, the bulk of the language specification … Continue reading

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Math and logic subsystems in languages

So I can open a novel, and as part of being a human raised in an English speaking community, I pretty much understand everything. I can open a textbook on Calculus on Logic and while I can read the whole … Continue reading

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Observations While Editing Toki Pona

1) People create incorrect proper modifiers constantly. 2) People give up trying to use proper modifiers and just use their native language for all proper modifiers. 3) li get dropped for 3rd person subjects. 4) People essentially invent new constructions … Continue reading

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Abusing the word morphology as a pragmatic matter

So I have a syntax that relies on sentence templates like this: [subject] li [verb phrase] li [verb phrase] [Prep Phrase] [Prep Phrase]. Phrase are made of words and phrases have their slots. Then come along negation, emphasis, and uncertainty … Continue reading

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toki pona minutia

These are all unsettled, controversial ideas in toki pona. 1) kule lon palisa li pona tawa mi. 2) kule pi lon palisa li pona tawa mi. Prepositional phrases as modifiers. These are most obvious when they appear in the subject. … Continue reading

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Object Oriented Conlanging

If you don’t write code, you may feel like the wrong audience. So recently I’ve been on a kick of learning about object oriented library writing, especially for the most basic types. I notice that MSDN’s advice for writing basic … Continue reading

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Corpus linguistics and little sins

Soooo, this toki pona project of mine. I’m parsing community generated texts. I’ve got incompatible goal. On one hand, I want a parser that will work. So if you type English, it should blow up. But if you type toki … Continue reading

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Edge cases of grammar

These things will make your grammar more complicated, but you can expect them to show up in any community generated corpus, like immediately Onomatopoeia. Fart noises and the like. In English, they get italicized and I’m sure someone has written … Continue reading

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Puctuating toki pona- Community Proposal

toki pona has a few constraints, without which the game of toki pona is rendered silly. Foremost is that there are only about 125 or so morphemes (fairly non-bound). This isn’t as much of a problem and I think tp … Continue reading

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Robot Languages

By the way, it looks like Dothraki has a published spec. Now on to other topics. As someone with the facial expressions of a robot, I’ve always been partial to robots and some of my earliest attempts at programming were … Continue reading

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The 5 Word Langage

Finally, I sort of have the time to do a quick review of the 5 word language. I’m a big fan of small languages (as in small vocab, small numbers of rules, small number of morphemes) This is really, 5 … Continue reading

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Undeveloped Public Domain Conlangs

Barsoomian is public domain, unless it is the most recent movie version. But here is one that I just notice: Parrot from Doctor Dolittle: “Ka-ka-oi-ee, fee-fee” “Is the porridge hot yet?” Oh, boy. How shall we do an interlinear gloss … Continue reading

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