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Creuset of Ideas
A collection of various ideas



Archives of 2006-01

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4072

2006-01-31 @ 9:02

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Well, another New Year just went by (the Chinese one, this time). So let me wish you a Happy Year of the Dog (mine); I thought I’d also point out some of my discoveries of 4072 (year of the Rooster).

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Oblivious

2006-01-26 @ 15:08

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I confess, I watched the auditions for American Idol. One of those guilty pleasures I guess, watching someone make an ass of themselves. But what I find most interesting is seeing people who are so convinced they’re good – even though they have absolutely no talent. Oblivious: that is what they are. They cannot see, cannot comprehend that they’re not good. It just doesn’t register.

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On Universality

2006-01-24 @ 12:29

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Warning: this post talks about theoretical linguistics and could be quite boring for some.

I talked somewhere else of people’s propensity to accept at face value what their teachers tell them at the beginning of their professional training (e.g., the first couple of years of college) and never after challenge these assumptions. These statements become an integral part of their scientific thoughts for the many years to come. This was observed by Kuhn and I have seen it often enough in my studies. This “habit” probably comes from our need for certainty and gives a stable basis to science (we wouldn’t go far if we kept challenging everything).

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Can we think without language?

2006-01-19 @ 11:33

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A friend recently asked me: Can we think without language?

First of all, what do we mean by that? I can see two interpretations: (1) Can we think without using language? and (2) Is thought possible without a prior language?

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Blank

2006-01-18 @ 14:32

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Well, deciding to have an English counterpart to my French blog is all fine and dandy, but I would have to start writing, now wouldn’t I. Strangely enough, these days it’s hard for me to start writing. I mean, I can comment on other people’s blogs, take part in discussions; but it seems that I can’t take my pen (yep, still using the old-fangled pen-and-paper: better feel than a keyboard and gives me the opportunity to reread myself before posting, not that I always do…) and start rambling about a topic of my choice.

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Consciousness

2006-01-13 @ 12:39

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At a certain stage of our evolution (Homo Habilis?), a rudimentary structured language developed. Probably holophrastic (i.e. one-word sentences) to begin with, then with two-word sentences. This contributed greatly to an increase in communication, and a perpetuating memory.

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Let’s go English

2006-01-13 @ 12:39

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And so it happens that I came back to the blogosphere, after a holiday break far from computers, by commenting on two interesting discussions in English, one on faith, the other on God (there seems to be a pattern here). In the latter, I ended up giving am English summary of one of my posts from last year. And I thought: why not translate that whole post – and maybe a few others. Hell, why not have an English blog. Wouldn’t be the first, and it’s not like I’m afraid to write in Shakespeare’s tongue…

So, for the New Year, here goes.