rant: Against Experimental Gismu

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Thank you for the no-confidence vote in lujvo, and I look forward to you running out of gismu. :-( Meanwhile:

  • nanbrpitsa --- 'cause if a pizza isn't properly a fu'ivla, nothing is.
  • jerle'i karce "rented car"; if you insist on distinguishing between Hertz and !YellowTop, datseljatna jerle'i karce. What's that? Insufferably long? Welcome to Lojban. If you really must, karcrtaksi.
  • salsa. Good Lord.
  • tango. To which we'll add foxro for foxtrot, xaslo for the Hustle, and xopki for the Hokey-Pokey, no doubt.
  • zombie. Because no'e morsi is such a complicated expression.

I mean, why are you doing this? Because it's fun? Because you can? Because lujvo actually involve a modicum of work? (But nowhere near as much as squeezing words into CVCCV does.) And how is this not a repudiation of the baseline?

  • pe'i lei di'u valsi cu trina ki'u le nu ba'e no nu gunka cu sarcu le nu setca vy le me zoi ke CVCCV ke tarmi -- mi'e xorxes
    • iseni'ibo lenu gismu da cu xu se sarcu ji'a le gismu simsa vlatarmi pe le krasi bangu .ue .i za'a cunso fancu -- mi'e nitcion
      • i cunso funca i la'e di'u mi na nabmi i la'a mi so'e le di'u valsi naku ba pilno i ku'iji'a mi na dunku le nu da'i reji'ici vy co'a se pilno loi drata --mi'e xorxes

And we're going to repudiate the baseline for salsa?!

-- nitcion


<sarcasm>You've obviously never had Really Good Salsa.</sarcasm> :) --Jay


All right, Nick. I admit it. I started it all with [1]. The intention was to record gismu that had had some use, as apparently pitsa and taksi had. I apologize for the rampant wordmakery and prescriptivism that followed it. -tsali

tsali, I did know it was you, and I have no intent to personally attack you on it; there's no need to apologise. But I do feel someone somewhere had to voice disapproval. -- nitcion.


We've forgotten so many important ones...

  • larva (x1 is the pre-adult form of x2... (when verba isn't enough]
  • libra (x1 is a set of scales made of stars x2 weighing x3...)
  • mango (x1 is a mango, duh)
  • kudzu (x1 is a mass of kuzdu, growing faster than x2, drowning countryside x3...)
  • mambo (to go with tango)
  • mensa (x1 is a high-IQ society, with cutoff x2, journal x3, deadly enmity with rival society x4... (darn, conflicts with mensi, but so what?]
  • rambo (x1 is Sylvester Stallone with bare skin x2)
  • zebra (x1 is a zebra with stripes x2, not to be confused with a tirxu)
    • This almost makes sense (as a fu'ivla): zebra species actually are discriminated by their striping pattern.
  • dildo (x1 is a sextoy used by x2 in/on organ x3 requiring cleaning x4)
  • bilbo (x1 is a hobbit of breed x2 (default Harfoot]
  • frodo (x1 is a ring-bearing hobbit with ring x2)
  • gimli (x1 is a dwarf of clan x2)
  • bravo (x1 is a boffo job/Qapla' performed by x2)
  • plaza (x1 is a plaza/town square (or rhombus) with street performers x2)
  • porno (x1 is pornographic / obscene by standard x2)

I suppose these should be moved to Experimental gismu. But then someone might take them seriously, and that would be a disaster.

Sorry for the waste of electrons; it's amazing what you find with a little grep and the right regular expressions and a silly frame of mind...

I agree with the rant, and as for the list: u'icai --rab.spir


I disagree. If someone uses one, shouldn't we follow the ever-recurring LLG dictum and Let Usage Decide?

This has, BTW, happened with norgo, I used it in a submission to the Lojban Story which Robin is running (And, not to get too off topic, if you are reading this Robin then fix the numbering system.) There's really no way anyone will use the stupid ones, such as (IMHO) salsa. - mi'e. kreig.danyl.

The dictum is rapidly becoming "Let Usage Decide, Except When It Would Contradict Me" (the rejection of short-distance soi vo'a being an excellent illustration.) For all I know, people there are going to start using rambo, too. That fact alone does not make it right. And the fact that you use norgo doesn't mean Usage has decided norgo is legit. It means you have decided norgo is legit. But all the Usage in the world does not annul the considerable ideological objections to experimental gismu in general. And any criterion you invoke to say salsa is silly is ultimately just as subjective as any criterion I invoke to say norgo is silly. -- nitcion

  • It had been used before, which is why it was on tsali's list; I was only pointing out that I knew of a specific usage. And here's a criterion for you: salsa is a subset of sasno - what is norgo a subset of (other than prenu)?
    • norgo isn't a subset of prenu at all. It is related to kulnu.
      • Are you saying the norwegians aren't people?
        • Yes.
        • Norwegian language isn't a person, but it's still norgo.
It's also hard for negative usage to properly compete against positive usage. If one or two people decide to start using rambo, they can gleefully point to their usage, saying that it grants the word legitimacy. After all, there are lots of good, but obscure, gismu that have seen very little or no use, and here you have one being used! And yet all those who reject rambo can hardly point proudly to their striking non-usage of it as a demonstration that it should not be used. Blind faith in usage does not allow a fair shot for both sides of the argument. --mi'e mark

I think "larva" is a good one. An important distinction in the insects is whether their cifnu are larva; this happens to coincide with whether the wing buds (if any) form inside or outside the body, hence the taxa Apterygota, Exopterygota, and Endopterygota. But I'll still use "cifnu" in lujvo; given that a cinki is a toldi, you know its cifnu is a larva. -phma

So what exactly does larva get you that curnu [simsa] cifnu doesn't? -- nitcion

  • Well, in gua\spi at one time there was a gismu for larva, which also means nymph and teenager; I can't seem to find it at present.
  • larva may indeed be a good one, but using the word "larva" must be considered to be slangish, or a temporary measure until the gismu-making algorithm is run on it.

Let's settle this the real, macho (or as macho as lojban gets) way: Tinker at each other!

  • matco (x1 (event) is macho/aggressively virile towards x2 (ka) under conditions x3)
    • Congratulations on "adding" the first sexist word into Lojban.