Re: The Tower of Babel (was: Extropic Art (was: Poll))

Mitchell Porter (
Fri, 17 Jan 1997 17:41:40 +1000 (EST)

[Mitchell Porter]
> There is a linguist, Anna Wierzbicka (now working at the Australian
> Natural University,, whose main project is to
> find a so-called "natural semantic metalanguage".

That should read "Australian National University"!

Presumably "Natural" crept in from "natural semantic metalanguage"...
Does anyone have an information-processing model of how such errors
occur? It's as if there's a number of words or symbols active
in the mind at any time, brought forward for a variety of tasks
(composing a sentence, in short-term memory,...), and sometimes
a word will be put to use in the wrong task. How would that happen?
(Or perhaps the alternative question is better: How do we manage
to usually use appropriate words?)

> I'll have a page on the NSM at the URL below shortly.
> -mitch