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Re: VMs: Random Text Generation

I wrote:

> >Here, I am assuming that the numbering system used
> >is a system like Greek or Arabic, where the
> >symbols used are different for units, tens,
> >hundreds etc.

OK, I didn't actually mean that I believe that
the VMs was written like that - it was part of
my example. But I do think that it is an
interesting hypothesis. On Nick's objections:

> (1) this requires probably 27+ active symbols in the
> underlying language

This is close enough. Also, remember that things
like (Eva) 'qo', and 'ain' may quite possibly
be single units. 

> (2) this doesn't by itself produce a binomial
> distribution of word lengths

But 'by itself' it doesn't have to. Since it
seems to have naturally arisen in a langauge like
Vietnamese, I think that the language usage
will have a dominant effect on word length
dsitribution. See also the comment about qo-
and -ain above.
> (3) this would probably produce a more flat symbol
> adjacency distribution than observed?

Yes, I fully agree with that. So if there is
a number system involved, it isn't a straightforward
one, and that makes sense since otherwise someone
would have cracked it long ago.

In addition to the Roman, Greek and Arabic
examples, I am intrigued by the base-60 system
used in Babylonian astronomical sources.
If one takes that, and have components like
o-, qo-, -ch-, -k-, -al, -or, -eey, etc. as
basic building blocks, perhaps one could
get somewhere.
(If only I had some time  :-/  )

Cheers, Rene

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