Talk:Lincos (artificial language)

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The page says Note the difference between "good" and "bad" and "true" and "false"; 10/4 is a true answer to the question, but it isn't what Ha wanted because Hb didn't reduce the fraction to its lowest terms. However, the reply on the wrong answer 1/4 was also "bad". The entire example doesn't include a single instance of "true" or "false", just "good" and "bad", so how is the reader supposed to note the difference? Abigail 10:44, Mar 24, 2004 (UTC)

It looks to me like that section isn't supposed to address the concept of "true" and "false", presumably those have been established earlier already. It's introducing the concept of "good" and "bad", and the article is pointing out to the reader that this isn't the same thing as true and false just in case the reader misinterprets and thinks that's what this section of Lincos is talking about. I don't really see the problem, I guess. Bryan 15:55, 24 Mar 2004 (UTC)
In that case, it's quite confusing. It points out that "bad" is used in response to the answer "10/4", because while the answer is correct, it's not what was wanted. This gives the impression "bad" means "correct, but not what was intended". However, the response to "1/4" (which is wrong) is also "bad". This gives the impression "bad" means "it's not what I intended, but it may, or may not be correct". Perhaps a definition of "bad" and "good" should be given. Abigail 16:57, Mar 24, 2004 (UTC)
I totally agree that it is very confusing.... So there's no seprate words for "bad" and "false" (both seem to be mal), and yet the passage asks us to distinguish them?!? What's the point? --Menchi 13:39, 21 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I just came into the discussion (obviously), but there are separate words for true/false vs. good/bad. True and false are Ver and Fal, respectively; good and bad, as pointed out in the text, are Ben and Mal. Xihr 19:27, 17 July 2006 (UTC)

Bad means not 'incorrect', it means 'i disaccept'.

However, yes, there is a lot to do on the language.

Could I have an example of Lincos that isn't text? I remember a more symbolic version appearing in a puzzle by Clifford Pickover in his Alien IQ Test. 17:24, 17 July 2006 (UTC) John1728

Yes, Alien IQ Test has a snapshot of some symbolic Lincos. Lincos is highly symbolic, to the point of not really even being representable in Unicode, so coming by a valid respresentation of its symbolic nature is hard to come by without scanned pictures which would have questionable copyright status. The samples typically transcripted on Web pages (and on Wikipedia) are deliberately chosen to be light on symbols, and as it is already eliminate some; for instance, in Lincos, grouping is not done with parentheses, but with a series of three horizontal dots at different levels to indicate spacing. Even this fundamental nature of Lincos is hard to show in Unicode/ASCII. Xihr 19:27, 17 July 2006 (UTC)


Isn't it properly LINCOS? 17:03, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

No. It's all-capitalized LINCOS only on the cover. Everywhere inside -- and even on the list of books by the publisher on the back cover -- it is written first-letter-capitalized Lincos. The all-capitalized version is just typographical emphasis since it's the book title on the cover. Xihr 20:38, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

No actual transmissions have been made using Lincos[edit]

The article currently says "No actual transmissions have been made using Lincos". However, this interview with Yvan Dutil states that the message sent as part of Cosmic Call 1 was written in Lincos. Which is correct? -- Quiddity (talk) 20:10, 28 May 2010 (UTC)

When he says it was written in Lincos, he doesn't literally mean Lincos proper -- Freudenthal's work didn't even specify an encoding into radio waves -- he just means that he was inspired by it. The Dutil-Dumas message has some inspirations from Lincos but is clearly a pictorial based format (like the Arecibo message), which Lincos explicitly is not. Even from this interview it's clear that he doesn't mean Lincos literally:
"However, Lincos has it own drawbacks. Since it is based on pure logic it become rapidly difficult to communicate some complex processes. For this reason many researchers find it impractical. Therefore, we preferred an hybrid method with the addition of schema and graphics to guide the reader. However, even this approach has its own drawbacks since graphical representations is can be somewhat culturally blinded."[1]
The "hybrid method" he refers to is their own message format that has little or nothing to do with Lincos itself. Basically he means that he was inspired by Lincos and invented his own language that doesn't have much directly to do with Lincos. The emphasis on Lincos at all is rather misleading.  Xihr  23:40, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
Ah, much thanks for the thorough explanation. I'll blame my own inadequate reading of that interview on late-night-editing! (I was tangenting over here from a discussion at Talk:Voyager_Golden_Record which you may be interested in). -- Quiddity (talk) 19:08, 30 May 2010 (UTC)
It certainly isn't your fault; Dumas and Dutil have not been clear on this subject. They've been claiming a linage of their work with Lincos that really does not exist; Lincos is quite a different approach that is the opposite of the pictorial approaches they've chosen.  Xihr  01:12, 31 May 2010 (UTC)