Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

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creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Thu Nov 08, 2018 12:50 am

Drawing correlations between different things is precisely what all thought/belief consists of... language-based thought/belief notwithstanding. All attribution of meaning is existentially dependent upon something to become sign/symbol, something to become signified/significant and/or otherwise symbolized, and a creature that is capable of drawing correlations between the two. Drawing correlations does some remarkable things. It attributes meaning where none previously existed. It presupposes the existence of it's own content(regardless of subsequent further linguistic qualification). It presupposes spatiotemporal distinction. It presupposes a plurality of things.

There was once a group of geckos that would walk around on an outside table I once owned. After some time, I began to recognize one of them in particular. It had a few distinguishing markings on and/or around it's face and mouth. This gecko became so accustomed to me that it allowed me to touch it's back. I fed it daily. This gecko was much more fearful than that for a long time. In the beginning, the slightest movement by me was perceived and reacted to. The geckos would quickly scurry around the outside edge of the table onto the underside towards the base. So, it took several months of interaction between the one gecko and me before it gradually lost nearly all of it's fear of me. I would strongly argue that that was solely as a result of an 'experience' based 'sense' of familiarity accompanied by contentment. Familiarity is something that is built up over time. It consists of the same correlations being drawn time and time again. In this case, the gecko was drawing and/or had drawn correlations between it's own hunger, the satisfaction thereof, the butter mochi I fed it, along with other things including but not limited to my presence at the table. The geckos came because I fed them regularly. They lost their fear because I didn't do things to startle them and/or otherwise invoke it.

The gecko perceived me and other surroundings including the butter mochi on the table. The gecko needs no language to do this. The gecko's survival requires eating(gathering resources). The gecko developed expectations of eating butter mochi. This was clearly displayed by the changes in behaviour over time. It began going to the location on the table where I always placed the mochi. It would look towards me. It would do these things even when I did not have mochi ready at hand.

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by TimeSeeker » Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:08 am

creativesoul wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:10 pm
To talk of "sign" or "symbol" as though the words themselves can be meaningful without their significant other is to speak nonsensically. What makes a sign what it is is the fact that it is a proxy for something that it is not. The same holds good for a symbol. The same holds good for a name. The same holds good for a definition. The same holds good for any and all abstraction by proxy.
That words/signs/symbols are meaningless is true. It is also a red herring.
You are necessarily talking about the Symbol-grounding problem ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symbol_grounding_problem ). It is solved.

How words are INTERPRETED and who they are interpreted BY matters. Natural languages are open to interpretation. Programming languages are not. They are deterministic and they contain no ambiguity/contradictions/grammatical errors.

And so the meaning of a symbol (while still open to interpretation by observers) is immaterial. The computer/robot/automaton takes action/makes decisions/has measurable effect on reality based on language.

Agency and real-world consequences MAKES it significant (meaningful?). Airplane autopilots. Factory robots. Artificial Intelligence. 21st century society is heavily dependent on automation therefore programming languages are significant without a "significant other". This very forum works because language!

Whether "the symbols of programming languages are themselves meaningful" becomes just another topic of philosophical masturbation.

We simply fail to distinguish the various use-cases: language for reasoning/decision-making (computation) versus language for communication (communication protocol). Language for self-expression (poetry)

Language is a tool. It serves a purpose in a particular context.

surreptitious57
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by surreptitious57 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:42 am

When machine intelligence replaces human beings as the dominant evolutionary species then it should in
principle be able to interpret language more flexibly and less rigidly than mere automatons currently can

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by TimeSeeker » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:01 am

surreptitious57 wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:42 am
When machine intelligence replaces human beings as the dominant evolutionary species then it should in
principle be able to interpret language more flexibly and less rigidly than mere automatons currently can
The inner workings of natural language relies on shared lived experience and intuition to set the interpretive context implicitly. Programming languages can relay/reproduce context (memory!) explicitly and perfectly so automatons don't actually need this feature. And if they do - it is yet to be invented/engineered.

For all other things that they may share with us "experience' may or may not be one of those things and so automatons may never actually be able to conquer the implicit/explicit distinction. Until they map out a model of how human brains work...

surreptitious57
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by surreptitious57 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:39 am

TimeSeeker wrote:
For all other things that they may share with us experience may or may not be one of those things and so automatons may never actually
be able to conquer the implicit / explicit distinction . Until they map out a model of how human brains work ...
There will probably be an interim period between humans and machines where the latter acquire understanding of how
the former think with amalgamation in the form of androids or cyborgs before the eventual transition to total machine

Our lives are already dominated by machines but because they are passive and incapable of passing a Turing test we do not notice
But when they become self sufficient and can think and act and replicate for themselves and no longer need us then we will notice

Could you tell the difference between a synthetic human form machine that was Turing capable and a human being ? No me neither
But this is academic as we will be long dead before it eventually happens but some future generation will have to confront it though

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by TimeSeeker » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:40 am

I am far more scared of a machine that fails the Turing test intentionally than one that passes it...

Either way - the Turing test is the least of our concern. The fact that we are gullible and susceptible to emotional manipulation is another risk.

https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/FmxhoWx ... t-and-lost

surreptitious57
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by surreptitious57 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:58 am

TimeSeeker wrote:
I am far more scared of a machine that fails the Turing test intentionally than one that passes ...

Either way - the Turing test is the least of our concern . The fact that we are gullible and susceptible to emotional manipulation
We have been gullible and susceptible to emotional manipulation ever since we evolved but have
not till very recently had to worry about something else replacing us at the top of the food chain

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by TimeSeeker » Thu Nov 08, 2018 8:25 am

surreptitious57 wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:58 am
We have been gullible and susceptible to emotional manipulation ever since we evolved but have
not till very recently had to worry about something else replacing us at the top of the food chain
One could argue this hasn't been true at least since the 15th century when Machiavellianism became a popular term and tactic.

surreptitious57
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by surreptitious57 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:06 am

TimeSeeker wrote:
One could argue this hasnt been true at least since the 15th century when Machiavellianism became a popular term and tactic
Machiavellianism only applies to those who are in positions of power and influence not the general population at large
Also the sheer diversity of opinion made possible by the internet makes gullibility and manipulation even more likely

TimeSeeker
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by TimeSeeker » Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:37 am

surreptitious57 wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:06 am
Machiavellianism only applies to those who are in positions of power and influence not the general population at large
It doesn't. One can practice Machiavellianism within any circle of influence. Your family, friends, community, business partners. Any human interaction is par for the course. One can work their way to greater positions of influence over time - by using Machiavellianism.

It's a strategy. It applies wherever anybody chooses to apply it.
surreptitious57 wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:06 am
Also the sheer diversity of opinion made possible by the internet makes gullibility and manipulation even more likely
DIsinformation warfare is a Machiavellian approach too. The Russians perfected it. The Internet amplified it.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:17 am

TimeSeeker wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:08 am
creativesoul wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:10 pm
To talk of "sign" or "symbol" as though the words themselves can be meaningful without their significant other is to speak nonsensically. What makes a sign what it is is the fact that it is a proxy for something that it is not. The same holds good for a symbol. The same holds good for a name. The same holds good for a definition. The same holds good for any and all abstraction by proxy.
That words/signs/symbols are meaningless is true. It is also a red herring.
Oh, come on. Do you really believe that?

:?

What I wrote is not irrelevant. Red Herrings are. What you've written directly above is not true, and that, my friend, is not up to you. Your belief is unnecessary.

For the readers' sake alone...

Saying that words/signs/symbols are meaningless is unnecessarily confusing speech based upon gross misconceptions of thought/belief and meaning. While it is perfectly acceptable in everyday parlance to say that a word is not meaningful, in and of itself... the reason that it's ok to say that is because no thing is. I would only point out that no thing is a word/sign/symbol in and of itself either.

All meaning is attributed. All attribution of meaning is existentially dependent upon something to become sign/symbol, something to become significant/symbolic, and a creature capable of drawing correlation(s) between different things. The difference between words/signs/symbols and meaningless marks/things is precisely the fact that they are and/or have been a part of a correlation. Being a part of a correlation is precisely what makes anything and everything meaningful...

There are no exceptions.

What I wrote is not irrelevant. Red Herrings are.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:36 am

TimeSeeker wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:08 am

How words are INTERPRETED and who they are interpreted BY matters. Natural languages are open to interpretation. Programming languages are not. They are deterministic and they contain no ambiguity/contradictions/grammatical errors.
Programming languages use rigid designators. So what? Latin isn't a programming language, and it's not open for interpretation any more or less than binary code. All language can be interpreted. It is all 'open for interpretation'...

Surely you're not claiming that computer language(s) do not use signs/symbols that stand in for what they are not themselves? Surely you would not deny the fact that all the signs and symbols used to write computer language and/or code stand for something else... say... a command to perform a specific operation?

8)


TimeSeeker wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:08 am
...And so the meaning of a symbol (while still open to interpretation by observers) is immaterial. The computer/robot/automaton takes action/makes decisions/has measurable effect on reality based on language.

Agency and real-world consequences MAKES it significant (meaningful?). Airplane autopilots. Factory robots. Artificial Intelligence. 21st century society is heavily dependent on automation therefore programming languages are significant without a "significant other". This very forum works because language!
:mrgreen:

And you actually had the gall to accuse me of irrelevancy and Red Herring...

Pots and Kettles.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:53 am

Novelty's a bitch... and not at all impossible using pre-existing language. Why? Because thought/belief consists of meaningful correlations between different things, and an already existing language can be used to draw novel correlations...

All paradigm shift includes exactly that.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:54 am

:mrgreen:
Last edited by creativesoul on Sun Nov 11, 2018 3:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

creativesoul
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Re: Is It Possible To Think Without Language?

Post by creativesoul » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:56 am

The reason why AI will never happen is because machines cannot draw original/novel/new correlations...
Last edited by creativesoul on Sun Nov 11, 2018 3:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

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