[Corpora-List] QM analogy and grammatical incompleteness

Rob Freeman lists at chaoticlanguage.com
Wed Dec 21 03:12:00 CET 2005

On Wednesday 21 December 2005 11:23, Yuval Krymolowski wrote:

> Rob, the uncertainly principle derives from deeper concepts as John Sowa

> writes. These have to do with the basic symmetries that physical laws have

> to adhere to. One of these, for example, is invariance with respect

> to translation (in space ;-) from which the momentum/position

> conjugacy originates. Have a look at the textbook

The momentum/position conjugacy is obvious to anyone who tries to fix the
position of a wave, while at the same time fixing its frequency.

What you are talking about is where those waves come from (and perhaps the
exact nature of the tension in terms of waves.) This is an interesting study,
but relevant to physics, not language. We are not talking fundamentally about
waves here, we are talking about ways of collecting properties together:
waves in physics, word associations in language. Such collections have
limitations, and I suggest these limitations are the cause of analogous
behaviour between physics and language.

The analogy is not limited to language.

Try a simple thought experiment, Yuval. Try to line up a random group of
people according to their height and their IQ (golf score, etc.) You will
find you get a sort of uncertainty principle. The group cannot be perfectly
ordered with respect to both at the same time.

The analogy is not limited to language, but it applies to language, or at
least grammar, defined distributionally.


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