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Re: VMs: vms sentences

Bruce Grant bgrant@xxxxxxxxxxxxx wrote
Sent: 08 February 2004 20:57

> Nick Pelling wrote:
> > One problem with this is that there is still a good deal of
> > uncertainty over what constitutes both a glyph and an encoded token,
> > so it may be better to do this using a real-time (rather than a
> > static) resource.
> A couple comments:
> 1.   The disagreements about what constitutes a token, a word, a
> sentence etc. are real and justified. However, in any rational
> investigation you need to be able to formulate some hypothesis (whether
> or not it turns out later to be correct) in order to do any testing..

I agree 100 %.

>     If a particular definition of these terms results in a plausible
> decryption of the VM, it will gain credibility. To refuse to do any
> analysis until the correct definition can be derived in an _a priori_
> way, however,  seems fruitless to me.


>     Since no one is sure what features of the VM are important, no one
> wants to make any potentially incorrect assumptions. Yet without
> assuming _something_, at least provisionally, it is hard even to begin.
>     For this reason, I think it would make sense to start with one (or
> two or five or whatever) "standard" transcriptions against which
> statistics could be calculated, leaving open the possibility of adding
> more or deleting some later on.

This would give everyone a chance to collate a reasonable set of data to
analyse. I think it should have been done a long time ago.

> 2,   I think it would be a good idea to use a low-tech and technology
> neutral format (e.g. text) to collect statistics, for several reasons:
>     - it would make it easier for people to submit contributions without
> being skilled in a particular technology (e.g. sending a
>        document vs. writing a program).
>     - it would be less dependent on the vagaries of technology (ISP
> changes or outages etc., disappearance of people from the list etc.)
>     - it would be easier to distribute.

As low tech as possible would be best. Some of the more technologically
minded on
this list tend to forget that others are using a much more low tech approach
and would
lose out if technology simply took over.

> Bruce

I await the responses. But don't hold your breath Bruce!


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