http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

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http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby Destructicus » Wed Mar 23, 2016 2:50 pm

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None of today's languages existed 10 000 years ago, so they shouldn't be able to communicate after the penultimate panel.
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Re: http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby Guest » Wed Mar 23, 2016 3:35 pm

The one before actually. The word "Stupid" wasn't in the English language 1000 years ago. It was, kind of, in french (as "stupide", with a silent E,) but it meant "stunned" (think "in a stupor"), rather than "of low intelligence".

P.S. also, he says he's setting "technology" back one year. It could be argued language is an art.
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Re: http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby DonRetrasado » Wed Mar 23, 2016 4:10 pm

Destructicus wrote:None of today's languages existed 10 000 years ago, so they shouldn't be able to communicate after the penultimate panel.

Language is not a technology, but written text is
Guest wrote:P.S. also, he says he's setting "technology" back one year. It could be argued language is an art.

It's more that language can develop spontaneously, and that it appears that there is some sort of specialized human faculty in the brain for it. The same cannot be said for written text.

EDIT: But this is still pretty pedantic and irrelevant to the comic
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Re: http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby Sorryforbeingthatguy » Wed Mar 23, 2016 9:52 pm

So has anyone else noticed "behvior" in the first panel?
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Re: http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby math guy » Thu Mar 24, 2016 9:25 am

DonRetrasado wrote:
Destructicus wrote:None of today's languages existed 10 000 years ago, so they shouldn't be able to communicate after the penultimate panel.

It's more that language can develop spontaneously, and that it appears that there is some sort of specialized human faculty in the brain for it.

There is a specialized brain part for it, but language (as opposed to semi-intelligible audio communication, like grunts or barking) does not develop spontaneously.
...or so my linguistics PhD friend explained to me, I'm more of a math guy myself.
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Re: http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby DonRetrasado » Thu Mar 24, 2016 7:38 pm

math guy wrote:
DonRetrasado wrote:
Destructicus wrote:None of today's languages existed 10 000 years ago, so they shouldn't be able to communicate after the penultimate panel.

It's more that language can develop spontaneously, and that it appears that there is some sort of specialized human faculty in the brain for it.

There is a specialized brain part for it, but language (as opposed to semi-intelligible audio communication, like grunts or barking) does not develop spontaneously.
...or so my linguistics PhD friend explained to me, I'm more of a math guy myself.

I also studied linguistics and I'm not sure what your friend is getting at, as there is an example of this very thing happening: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicaraguan_Sign_Language
The only counter-examples I can think of are children of extreme neglect or isolation who aren't exposed to any sort of language or children who grow up with severe language disorders, but that can hardly be considered a typical case with typical brain development. A healthy child in a community is going to develop language.
Another key difference is that in general children will learn a language just by enough exposure, whereas most children will require some instruction in reading and writing. (I am aware this is not a hard and fast rule)
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Re: http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby Constructicus » Tue Mar 29, 2016 10:36 am

Guest wrote:The one before actually. The word "Stupid" wasn't in the English language 1000 years ago. It was, kind of, in french (as "stupide", with a silent E,) but it meant "stunned" (think "in a stupor"), rather than "of low intelligence".

P.S. also, he says he's setting "technology" back one year. It could be argued language is an art.

Indeed. I was being lenient and assumed this could actually be an English translation of some other language that remained sufficiently constant in the last 1000 years.
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Re: http://smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4058

Postby Constructicus » Tue Mar 29, 2016 10:38 am

Sorryforbeingthatguy wrote:So has anyone else noticed "behvior" in the first panel?

Heh, I had not!
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