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Re: VMs: Image Source, Accuracy of Transcriptions
He WAS right!
----- Original Message -----
From: "GC" <glenclaston@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: 31 August 2003 10:53
Subject: RE: VMs: Image Source, Accuracy of Transcriptions
> Larry wrote:
> > blah blah blah
> Quite so. I believe I owe you an apology. I was attempting to state my
> mind and my frustrations in one swell-foop, as it were, and got lost. I
> not attempting to dismiss anything you or others have done. In fact, I
> a great respect for most members of this list. Because of that, I'm going
> to answer one of your questions first, though it came last in your post.
> > But, hey, you have all the answers, don't you? Oh, wait, no you
> > don't - you just have criticism.
> If I didn't have any answers I doubt I'd have any room to criticize,
> my many attempts have been at constructive criticism, not divisive
> criticism. At times I do go overboard, there's no doubt. I try to say
> things in a way that does not offend, but if I say what I know, it is
> offensive to others of different persuasions, and I've always been very
> direct in my commentary. But this comes from KNOWING something you don't
> and pointing the direction a multitude of times, not because I hold myself
> higher than anyone else. I'm not nearly as bright as many on this list,
> just a hard worker and unworthy apprentice with a single focus, to solve
> This list is not a group effort, but an exchange of ideas. I have no
> obligation to divulge my knowledge to anyone, but I've always been
> forthcoming when questions are asked. In almost five years, only one
> has demonstrated a durable interest in what I have to offer, and that
> has been granted the information necessary to reach the conclusions I have
> I'm leaving the list for health reasons, which may account for some of my
> testiness, though I take full responsibility for my words. But I'm not
> about to leave you cold. Here it is again, for what it's worth.
> Considering that his name is on it, Askham most probably wrote the
> or at least the A pages. LC Strong's decipherment is fundamentally
> I've shot down my share of would-be cryppies in the Baconian realm, so if
> didn't have proof of this, I certainly wouldn't make the claim and subject
> myself to the same humiliation I've heaped on others. I would have been
> first to take Strong apart if I had discovered an inherent weakness in his
> system, yet instead I discovered far more than I expected in the way of
> It's vogue to dismiss LC's work out of hand, but not one of you has to
> taken his work apart and put it back together, even though it has been
> available to the list for almost 5 years. It's all about the effort one
> willing to go to learn something new. When I first entered into
> correspondence with my dear friend Nick as an example, he had the idea he
> was going to do a study of LC's work, but never did it. Had he done so, I
> would have paved his way with gold. I still support Nick, as he has
> boundless potential, and may one day come around again.
> As for me, I've had great success on the B pages at this point, but have
> only recently focused on the A pages. I'm not quite ready yet to claim my
> pizza, but I know from reading what's coming from the list that I have
> absolutely no competition, so time is not a pressing matter. Since I
> get paid to work on the Voynich, the work has been done in spurts, and a
> of precious spare time has been spent on background information about the
> author and the system in use. Some of this I've already released to the
> list, in fact most of it is available in chunks, if you'll check.
> Enough grand-standing for you? Enough for me anyway. On to your other
> > I am talking about statistical analysis here. If you took a
> > sample of my handwriting you would find a glyph "this" which
> > appears as one item but is actually 4.
> > This is not a printed work, so yes, we have to guess as to what
> > constitutes a single glyph.
> I was also talking about statistical analysis in several recent posts
> concerning glyphs. You can write what you see, and then perform textual
> analysis to determine if a variant or mutant should be considered a
> glyph. Of course this does depend on what has influenced what you "see".
> Early transcribers saw glyphs when they viewed the manuscript for the
> time. If you see strokes instead of glyphs, you'd better check your
> influence at the door, to be honest.
> > I would guess that you believe all word breaks are spaces too.
> > Have you actually SEEN any old documents? Look at latin.
> > Characters and words run together. "t" runs into letters. "cr"
> > can look a lot like eva "ch" So can "ti" and both "ni" and "ui"
> > can look like eva "iii" but in Courier it is one glyph.
> For transcription purposes it is universally accepted that "word breaks"
> spaces. You would have to have *special* knowledge about the author's
> original intentions not available to the rest of us to transcribe the
> document any different. You have no such knowledge, Larry. Have I SEEN
> old documents? NO, I'm a simple country boy and stuttering dolt who has
> never traveled any further than I can walk in a day and still be home by
> supper-time. This is what you suspected, correct?
> I admit I slept through Latin in high school and college, but found a
> renewed interest in the language when I began certain studies. I am most
> interested in 16th/17th century Latin, I have transcribed approximately
> 3,000 pages of Latin from this time so it could be available to those who
> share my interests, and have translated several items not yet present in
> English language. I'm no professional, more of a hobbyist, but I do have
> some passing familiarity with the tongue and the documents, and I do not
> agree with your assessment of the VMS script as it relates to Latin
> > For statistics Courier is absolutely NO good. EVA aint great
> > either. But at least it breaks apart some glyphs into their
> > OBVIOUS components where Courier is just plain stupid in that regard.
> As much as I believe you believe what you believe, I'd suggest you're in
> error. There are no OBVIOUS components to VMS glyphs. They are written
> they are written, no subterfuge involved here, no hidden messages, no
> stroke-based encoding. A glyph is a glyph, simple and effective. What
> see between the spaces are glyphs, nothing more, nothing less. When I
> reference to the cursive nature of 'm' and 'n', I was simply saying the
> author used a down stroke instead of a hump, as we use today in our
> A down stroke was natural for the writing of the time, just as a hump is
> natural for our writing, since we no longer raise pen from paper to
> most of our letters. An 'm' is still and 'm', and an 'n' is still an 'n'.
> They composed letters from strokes, and as we are increasingly more lazy,
> compose them from continuous flow of the pen on paper. Nothing sinister
> about my comments in this regard, and no hidden agenda in the VMS script,
> I agree with you, Currier was stupid. Stupid enough not to ask for
> perceptions, and stupid enough not to color his thinking when he
> the VMS. He wrote what he saw, nothing more, nothing less. Transcription
> itself is a mechanical thing that requires no higher thought functions.
> makers of EVA were already quite familiar with the VMS script, but chose
> represent it in new ways. Their choice, but not what I would call actual
> "transcription", since they had a plan which dictated their moves along
> way. Was Currier stupid, or practical? His transcription is the closest
> thing you have at present to the actual Voynich glyphs, of that I'm quite
> certain. You can add to this somewhat, but you're not going to be able to
> find better than his basic perceptions as a corner stone.
> Transcription is wiping your mind clean and representing the glyphs as
> appear on paper, as if you've never seen them before. You get to page 23,
> see a glyph, and say "hey, I saw the same thing on 1r but didn't know what
> to make of it at the time." It's a once over, twice over, three times
> process that leads to the best representation of what you see on the page.
> It's not a higher level thinking process, merely a "match the image"
> process. EVA is admittedly not what I deem a transcription, as they seek
> higher function in their efforts. As I said, they did incorporate
> into their effort that allowed for proper representation, but these
> have been ignored by transcribers, rendering their transcriptions
> inaccurate. Sometimes simple is simply better.
> Take me for a raving lunatic, Larry, but I reiterate my basic points.
> at the beginning and work to the end. After recording several thousand
> glyphs as you see them, you'll gain a great sense of what a glyph actually
> is. When you record page after page, you'll even start to "see" when
> change in the script, something not obvious to the naked eye. In the end
> you'll be left with the opinion I hold, that it's much simpler than we all
> make it out to be. The lunatic coming out once again - if you only knew
> what I knew, you'd know how simple it really is.
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