[Foundation-l] 1.3 billion of humans don't have Wikipedia in their native...

Andre Engels andreengels at gmail.com
Sun May 22 17:39:27 UTC 2011

On Sun, May 22, 2011 at 7:13 PM,  <WJhonson at aol.com> wrote:

> You're missing my point.
> All the Latin languages "share a common writing system" and "only differ in
> the way the language is spoken".
> Address the point that the "words" within the system have the same semantic
> *meaning* and are formed with the same syntactic rules.
> If Bo Dow Kah means "your dog is dead" in one language or dialect, but Bo
> Dow Kah means "your mother is pretty" in another, than the fact that the
> spelling is the same, has no relevance to the issue at hand.

In Chinese writing a character shows a word, irrespective of how the
word is pronounced. So if we would use a Chinese style writing system,
you could write [your] [dog] [is] [dead], and a Frenchman would write
exactly the same, even though he would pronounce [your] [dog] [is]
[dead] as "Votre chien est mort". Thus, different languages might
write the same sentence the same in Chinese script. This does not mean
that there are no differences - someone who spoke Latin would probably
spell this line as [dog] [your] [dead] [is], and perhaps in yet
another language this would be immensely crude, and the right thing to
say would be "[prepare for bad news] [honorific person] [your] [dog]
[is] [not] [alive]", but the mere difference of being in a different
language with totally different sounds is not enough to conclude that
in Chinese writing the actual written text will be different.

André Engels, andreengels at gmail.com

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