lojbo karni number 18/19

From Lojban
Jump to: navigation, search
le lojbo karni
Number 18/19 - May 1994
Copyright 1993-4,  The Logical Language Group, Inc.
2904 Beau Lane, Fairfax VA 22031 USA (703)385-0273  lojbab@access.digex.net
Permission granted to copy, without charge to recipient, when for purpose of promotion of Loglan/Lojban.
Editor and President:  Bob LeChevalier ('Bob' or 'lojbab.')

	le lojbo karni (LK) is the quarterly newsletter for new observers of the Loglan Project and for less active participants in the 
project.  Active participants receive the longer journal, ju'i lobypli (JL) (available by subscription only).  The Logical Language 
Group, Inc., known in these pages as la Lojbangirz., is a non-profit organization formed for the purpose of completing and 
spreading the logical human language "Lojban - A Realization of Loglan" (commonly called "Lojban" - pronounced 
/LOZH-ban/), and informing the community about logical languages in general.
	For purposes of terminology, "Lojban" refers to a specific version of a logical human language, the generic language and 
associated research project having been called "Loglan" since its invention by Dr. James Cooke Brown in 1954.  Statements 
referring to "Loglan/Lojban" refer to both the generic language and to Lojban as a specific instance of that language.  The Lojban 
version of Loglan was created as an alternative because Dr. Brown and his organization claimed copyright on everything in his 
version, including each individual word of the vocabulary.  By contrast, the Lojban vocabulary and grammar and all language 
definition materials, are explicitly in the public domain.  Anyone may freely use Lojban for any purpose without permission or 
royalty.  la Lojbangirz. believes that such free usage is a necessary condition for an engineered language like Loglan/Lojban to 
become a true human language, and to succeed in the various goals that have been proposed for its use.
	Page count this issue is 12 pages +2 for the order form, resulting in a charge to voluntary balances of $1.40 for North Ameri-
can recipients and $1.68 for others.  We ask that you aid us by contributing the amount of your voluntary balance, which specifi-
cally reflects the cost of our producing and mailing your copy of our publication.  If you aren't interested in this publication, 
please pass it to someone else who might be interested, and let us know so we don't continue to waste limited resources mailing 
to you.  Press run this issue, 800.

	The following identifies abbreviated names of people referred to in 
LK.
	'pc' - Dr. John Parks-Clifford, Professor of Logic and Philosophy at 
the University of Missouri - St. Louis and Vice-President of la Loj-
bangirz.; he is usually addressed as 'pc' by the community.
	'Bob', 'lojbab' - Bob LeChevalier - President of la Lojbangirz., and 
editor of ju'i lobypli and le lojbo karni.
	'Nora' - Nora LeChevalier - Secretary/Treasurer of la Lojbangirz., 
Bob's wife, author of LogFlash.
	'JCB', 'Dr. Brown'- Dr. James Cooke Brown, inventor of the lan-
guage, and founder of the Loglan project.
	'The Institute', 'TLI' - The Loglan Institute, Inc., JCB's organization 
for spreading his version of Loglan, which we call 'Institute Loglan'.
	'Loglan' - This refers to the generic language or language project, of 
which 'Lojban' is the most successful version, and Institute Loglan an-
other.  'Loglan/Lojban' is used in discussions about Lojban where we 
wish to make it particularly clear that the statement applies to the ge-
neric language as well.
	'ftp' (File Transfer Protocol) - A method of accessing and getting 
copies of electronic materials from archives on other computers via the 
Internet.  There is a Lojban archive named "/pub/Lojban" on a  com-
puter named "ftp.cs.yale.edu".  If you have email or computer net ac-
cess and aren't familiar with ftp, contact us via the email address below.
	Following are definitions of frequently used Lojban terms.  Longer 
explanations are in the Overview of Lojban.
	cmavo - Lojban structure words
	gismu - Lojban root words; currently 1342;
	rafsi - short combining-forms for the gismu;
	lujvo - compound words built from rafsi;
	le'avla - words borrowed from other languages (some people have 
started using fu'ivla for this concept, but "le'avla" will also remain a 
valid term for the indefinite future);
	brivla - Lojban predicate words, consisting of gismu, lujvo, and 
le'avla; (a few cmavo have the grammar of a brivla);
	tanru - Lojban 'binary' metaphors, the most productive and creative 
expression form of the language, unambiguous in syntax/grammar, but 
ambiguous in semantics/meaning;  tanru generally have a modifying 
portion (generally on the left) that serves the function of an English ad-
jective or adverb, and a modified portion (on the right).
	sumti - the arguments of a logical predicate;
	selbri - Lojban predicates which indicate a relation among one or 
more sumti.  A selbri is most often a brivla or tanru;
	bridi - Lojban predications, the basic grammatical structure of the 
language; a bridi expresses a complete relationship:  the selbri 
expresses the relation and the sumti express the various things being 
related;
	selma'o - grammatical categories of Lojban words; the basis of the 
unambiguous formal grammar of the language.  Traditionally and 
erroneously called "lexeme" in the Loglan community.  These categories 
typically have a name derived from one word in that grammatical 
category; the name is all capitals, except that an apostrophe is replaced 
by a small letter 'h' (this is an artifact of the computer language "C" in 
which the formal Lojban grammar is defined for the YACC processor; C 
forbids apostrophes in 'tokens' representing single words.
Voluntary Balances and Our Non-Profit Status
	Our orientation is non-profit.  Almost every dollar we re-
ceive goes directly into producing the products that we send 
out, with a very small overhead and no paid salaries.  We sub-
sist entirely on your contributions against our costs of mailing 
to you.  However, a large number of our respondents are col-
lege students and others with low incomes, who want our ma-
terials but couldn't afford them at our costs.  Others live out-
side the U.S., where our costs are higher, yet it is harder for 
them to contribute.
	Therefore, we operate on a voluntary balance system.  We 
ask you to contribute what you can towards your balance, and 
maybe to make a donation to help cover those who can't af-
ford theirs.
	la Lojbangirz. is a non-profit organization under Section 
501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.  Your donations 
(not contributions to your voluntary balance) are tax-
deductible on U.S. and most state income taxes.  Donors are 
notified at the end of each year of their total deductible 
donations.

Computer Net Information
	Via Usenet/UUCP/Internet, you can send messages and text files to la Lojbangirz./Bob at:     
lojbab@access.digex.net   
(This new address, as of September 1993, supersedes the prior "snark" and 'grebyn' addresses.)
	You can also join the Lojban List mailing list (currently around 75 subscribers).  
	Send a single line message (automatically processed) containing only:
"subscribe Lojban yourfirstname yourlastname"  to:	listserv@cuvmb.cc.columbia.edu
If you have problems needing human intervention, send to:	lojbab@access.digex.net
Send traffic for the mailing list to:	lojban@cuvmb.cc.columbia.edu
The primary Lojban ftp archive site is:	ftp.cs.yale.edu (directory /pub/Lojban)

Your Mailing Label
	Your mailing label reports your current mailing status, and your current voluntary balance including this issue.  Please notify 
us of changes in your activity/interest level.  Balances reflect contributions received thru 26 May 1994  Mailing codes (and ap-
proximate balance needs for U.S. subscribers) are:
Activity/Interest Level:	Highest Package Received (Price Each)	Other flags:
B - Observer	0 - Introductory Materials ($5)	JL - JL Subscription ($28/yr)
C - Active Supporter	1 - Word Lists and Language Description ($15)	(followed by expiration issue #)
D - Lojban Student	2 - Language Design Information ($10)	* indicates subscription prepaid
E - Lojban Practitioner	3 - Draft Teaching Materials ($30)	LK - LK Subscription ($5/yr)
		R - Review Copy (no charge)
		UP - Automatic Updates (>$20)
Please keep us informed of changes in your mailing address, and US subscribers are asked to provide 
ZIP+4 codes whenever you know them.
	Feel free to call or write to ask about your balance account or mailing code assignment.


News
First, An Apology

	It has been a long time since our last issue back in February 1993, and some of you are receiving your first 
materials from us after requesting it as early as June 1993.  No, LLG is not dead - not by any standard.  We 
unfortunately had to make some difficult priority choices in June, and le lojbo karni got dropped to a very low 
priority for a while, along with responding to new orders.  Since we were out of copies of the previous issue 
(#17), this meant that we didn't have a complete introductory package to send to new inquirers about Lojban.
	As a result, some of you have been waiting an inexcusably long time to hear from us (especially the few of 
you who sent money with your request), and we offer our sincerest apologies for the delay.
	In articles below, I'll try to explain what has been going on such that we haven't been answering correspon-
dence and producing newsletters, but I don't assume that this excuses us for not being responsive.  I am trying 
to find a solution that allows us to be more responsive to new inquirers about Lojban, but for the next few 
months, things will continue to be difficult.  There is only one person here writing dictionary material, filling 
orders, answering letters, and producing newsletters.  I am also a new parent of two great kids, and this takes a 
lot of time.  A lot of work is farmed out to others in the community, but there is a lot that cannot be delegated.
	If you get this, and believe that you have an order with us outstanding, be sure to let us know.  Unless we 
explicitly say so in our mailing to you, we believe that this newsletter and anything sent with it brings our order 
backlog up-to-date.
	This issue is numbered as #18 and #19.  We do not expect to put out a new issue of this shorter newsletter 
along with Ju'i Lobypli #19, which we intend to put out in the not-too-distant future, since we don't expect a 
significant amount of new news by that time.


Priorities Change
	The biggest news this issue is our newly intense focus on 
getting the first Lojban book, the dictionary and reference, 
completed and published.  We've made progress on this goal, 
but the book is not done yet.  I am hoping to announce publi-
cation information by the next issue of this newsletter.
	As a major step towards this goal, last summer we com-
pleted the baselining of the rafsi list, the last major piece of 
the language to be frozen before dictionary publication.
	Because JL issues are taking 1-2 months to prepare, and 
LK issues are derived from the JL issue after it is completed, 
we have been unable to keep JL and LK on the hoped-for 
quarterly schedule while getting the dictionary and textbook 
published.
	Issue #18 of JL took even longer than normal to produce, 
over 2 months from the day I started, even though I had 
thought the issue partially done when I started.  My family 
life, supporting the computer network discussions, and ad-
ministrative tasks have kept me from working efficiently, and 
the types of materials we are publishing are taking longer to 
edit than older issues, because of the need to ensure clarity 
and accuracy of technical content.
	Meanwhile, the books have been too long delayed while I 
tried to get JL on a more frequent schedule.  We improved the 
JL frequency, but not to the quarterly level we need in order 
to get 2nd class mailing from the Postal Service.  It became 
clear that one of the two goals had to give way, and the books 
are far more important to the long term prospects for the 
project.
	I'm sure that the decision to put book publication higher 
priority than regular JL publication is one which the com-
munity will find acceptable, provided that we maintain some 
minimum publication frequency.  Of course, at the moment, 
we aren't even managing that.
A Brief Status of Ongoing Projects
	The ckafybarja (coffeehouse) writing project - We have 
delayed the schedule for this project (described last issue), 
partly because there has not been enough material submitted, 
and partly because we have had to lower its priority.  Some of 
the strongest proponents of the project have yet to submit 
contributions.  However, Nick Nicholas revised one piece that 
was in progress when JL17 was published and Veijo Vilva has 
written a new Lojban text contribution to the effort.  Nick also 
submitted a character description on behalf of a friend.  As a 
result, the period for submission of characters and/or setting 
ideas has been extended indefinitely, until the various people 
who have contributed feel that enough has been submitted to 
either vote, or to at least turn fully to the Lojban writing en-
deavor that is intended.
	rafsi baseline - This project started in summer 1992.  I 
delayed making rafsi assignments final, because I wanted 
them to reflect actual usage of Lojban gismu roots in lujvo 
compounds.  We now have enough data that statistical analy-
sis is meaningful, and some rafsi were changed as a result of 
that analysis, while we also managed to respect the 'sacred-
ness' of many of the rafsi more frequently used in compounds.
	JL Subscriptions - ju'i lobypli, our "quarterly" journal, is 
now fully on a subscription basis.  You no longer get this jour-
nal without explicitly requesting it.  You must either pay for 
this subscription, or request that your subscription charge be 
waived (which will be done based on available donated funds 
for such purposes, with priority going to overseas subscribers 
and those who have been most active in using the language, 
"lobypli" after all meaning 'Lojban user'.  JL18 had around 
120 subscribers, and that number may drop to 110 or so for 
JL19, but seems likely to be stable thereafter until books are 
published (when it hopefully will increase).
Finances
	One reason for delays in publication last spring was a 
major hemorrhage in our funds.  We were spending money 
much faster than we were taking it in.  By delaying publication 
and reducing our frequency, we restored ourself to a positive 
cash-flow for the year.  Significant donations from Jeff 
Prothero (totalling $2500 in 1993, about 1/3 of our income) 
were the primary factor in restoring stability, and we actually 
finished the year some $1200 ahead (which is just about the 
amount that we lost in 1992).  We cannot count on such 
support from one individual indefinitely, though, and will need 
a fund raising drive in order to make it through next year.  I 
intend to ask for donations in the letter that announces 
publication of the first book.  Substantial donations and/or 
massive orders will be necessary to keep the price for the Loj-
ban books reasonable, since small print-runs will add several 
dollars to the price of each book, and we cannot afford a large 
print run without more cash reserves.  (Expected publication 
costs will run around $10,000, which is larger than our current 
annual budget.  Donors welcome!)
LogFest 93
	Our annual gathering was held at Lojbab's house in Fairfax 
VA the weekend of 9-12 July 1993.  We had a new record at-
tendance, around 20 people, many of whom stayed the entire 
weekend.  One attendee was Jorge Llambias, from Argentina, 
who had just become interested in Lojban.  He has since be-
come one of the leaders of the community through his ac-
tivity, has learned the language about as well as anyone has 
so far, and is assisting in our outreach to Spanish-speaking 
countries (we've had several inquiries from such countries, 
written in either Spanish or Esperanto.  Jorge's skill in both 
languages means that we now have some capability to 
support Lojbanists who speak Spanish but not English.
	A highlight of LogFest was international Lojban conversa-
tion by live 'interaction' on the computer networks with Nick 
Nicholas in Australia, using the "IRC" function of the Internet 
(see below).
	The annual business meeting on that Sunday was the 
shortest ever, and helped us keep our focus on Lojban activi-
ties rather than organizational ones.  Jorge and Veijo Vilva 
were added as international voting members of la Loj-
bangirz., joining Nick Nicholas and Colin Fine who were 
added last year.  Voting members are the subset of you who 
are interested enough in Lojban to commit to helping on 
organizational matters.  International participation helps en-
sure that the organization remains broadly focussed on YOUR 
goals, since the Lojban community is growing more quickly 
outside the USA than inside.
Logfest '94
	LogFest '94 is scheduled for the weekend of 15-17 July 
1994.  Since we hope to have books done by then, at least in 
draft form, we intend to attempt a more aggressive effort to 
use Lojban in conjunction with LogFest.  A current proposal is 
to dedicate at least the Monday following LogFest weekend to 
"Lojban-only" living in Lojbab's house (where LogFest will be 
taking place) - we have the option of extending this if partici-
pants wish to do so.  We hope to recruit several members of 
the community to try to participate in this adventure.
	If we try this, there will likely be a rocky start, as people 
who have not worked extensively with the language quickly try 
to get used to hearing and expressing themselves in Lojban. 
	Anticipating problems, we will probably have one 
(inconvenient) room where people can talk in English, and one 
person has proposed that we permit any other language be-
sides English (including Esperanto, Spanish, Russian, etc.) 
when our Lojban skills fail to communicate; this will among 
other things solve the problem of my kids, who haven't 
learned much Lojban, but could fall back on their rusty Rus-
sian.  Lojban will obviously still be the language of preference 
since there is probably no other non-English language that will 
be common to all participants.
	We welcome any/all interested in participating in this ex-
periment.  As usual, the most important skill you will need to 
successfully participate will be vocabulary - learning enough 
Lojban grammar to communicate is almost trivial if you have 
the vocabulary to say things and understand what others are 
saying.  Study that gismu word list!
Other News
	DC Weekly Group - The DC weekly group, consisting of 4 
Lojbanists who are regulars, continues to meet and do a little 
conversation each week in Lojban.  We added one new 
person, Albion Zeglin, as a regular attendee, but David Young 
had to stop coming at about the same time due to 
transportation difficulties.  The quality of the Lojban 
conversation has definitely improved in the last few months.
	Bradford Group - Colin Fine's group in Bradford, England, 
continues to meet, albeit irregularly.  From postings on the 
net, they are probably achieving a sophistication in Lojban use 
at least comparable to us in DC.  Colin hosted the first UK 
Logfest in late September, with 5 attendees.
	CIX - A possible bolster to Colin's efforts to build a UK Loj-
ban group was the formation this year of a Lojban discussion 
group on the UK computer network 'CIX'.  This group has 
grown rapidly, and is reported to have some 25 participants.  
Lojban List traffic is echoed to this group, and Colin may 
shortly have CIX access to assist those interested in studying 
Lojban in furthering their progress.
	IRC - Colin Fine, Nick Nicholas, and Mark Shoulson started 
a pattern of using the computer network system called 
"Internet Relay Chat" or IRC, in order to enable 'live' Lojban 
conversation between Lojbanists otherwise isolated.  A group 
of Lojbanists is thus now meeting irregularly on the computer 
networks to converse in Lojban, recently including David 
Young and Sylvia Rutiser from the DC Lojban group.  If you 
are on the Internet with access to the IRC function, and want 
to participate, contact us by e-mail per page 1.  Erik Rauch 
devised a computer program called a 'bot' which serves Loj-
banists 'talking' via IRC.  Any time you can't remember a word 
(English or Lojban), you can ask the 'bot', and it will look up 
the word for you while you wait, in the official files.
	Legal - The trademark on 'Loglan' has now been officially 
cancelled, in accordance with the court order following our 
legal victory on this issue.  TLI did not include the trademark 
claim in the first publication after the cancellation.
	We have now paid off the legal debt, with money contrib-
uted by Lojbab and Jeff Prothero.
	The Loglan Institute - There is little to report about the 
Loglan Institute these days; not much seems to be going on.  
The organization continues to exist.  TLI had an advertisement 
in the April 1993 Scientific American, although they reported 
in Lognet that they spent over $2000 for the ad; this would 
require a large response in order to break even.  TLI has set 
up a computer network mailing list; subscribers report little 
activity.
	In October, TLI announced completion of their own dic-
tionary revision, which is being issued only in electronic form 
at a price of $50.  No printed version is expected in the near 
future.  (By comparison, some form of the Lojban dictionary 
data in electronic form will be available via the computer 
network for free, and at a nominal price on diskette.)
	They are also reporting work on a substantial revision on 
the rules of their language version, in order to make it, like 
Lojban, truly 'self-segregating' at the word level (i.e., unam-
biguity demands that you always be able to break a stream of 
Loglan/Lojban sounds down into individual words uniquely; 
the TLI language version has been seriously defective in this 
area).
	TLI has not seemed interested in our efforts to reach a ne-
gotiated settlement to our differences, and recently has made 
statements suggesting that they may intend another legal 
challenge to our effort.  We hope this will be avoided, but will 
be prepared in case it happens.
	lujvo-making - Nick Nicholas has taken a small project, 
describing some principles for making lujvo, and turned it 
into a full analysis of the problem.  He has analyzed and pro-
posed place strutures for every lujvo that has appeared in 
Lojban text, and some that have merely been proposed for 
use, and has written a paper describing this extensive analy-
sis.  Some form of the paper, after it has been reviewed, will 
be part of the dictionary/reference.  Another version may 
appear in the Lojban grammar description, most of which is 
being written by John Cowan.
	Nick's extensive lujvo analysis means that we will have at 
least 3000 lujvo included in the first dictionary.
	English-order dictionary - Meanwhile, John Cowan has 
devised a computer utility called a "KWIC" index (Key-Word-
In-Context), which will make creating a good English order 
dictionary much easier than we had anticipated.  Based on his 
and Nick's work, we may have as many as 10000 English en-
tries in the first dictionary, or 7 times the number in the cur-
rent gismu list.  A sample of the output of his KWIC index, as 
it will be formatted for the dictionary, is found below.
	Lojban-to-PROLOG Translator - Nick Nicholas also 
turned a term project for one of his classes into a major Loj-
ban accomplishment.  He devised a computer program which 
automatically translates the basic structures of Lojban text 
into PROLOG (computer language) equivalents.  He got a lot 
of the grammar incorporated in a very short time, thereby 
making it easier to convince people that extensive computer 
processing of Lojban text is a practical future goal.
	FTP site - The Planned Languages Server (PLS), founded 
a few years ago by Mark Shoulson and Jerry Altzman, (and 
listed in some of our brochures as a source of on-line Lojban 
information) appears to have died, a victim of both organizers 
moving on to a new environment.  However, just in time, Erik 
Rauch has set us up an even better facility for distribution of 
Lojban materials electronically, an "FTP" (File Transfer 
Protocol) server on one of the computers at Yale University.  
See page 1 for information on this server, which is available 
vis the Internet.
Book Status
	Work continues on the books, but we cannot report any 
completion dates yet, although Lojbab will have some sort of 
draft of the dictionary /reference for review at LogFest 94.  
Highest priority remains the dictionary/reference, and that has 
occupied most of Lojbab's time in between JL issues, along 
with the administrative tasks involved in keeping the organiza-
tion running (including responding to orders and questions 
from the community by mail).  Unfortunately, these latter 
tasks continue to take too much time, with the inevitable 
continued delays.  There is some significant progress though.
	In this issue, however, are two reports on the diction-
ary/reference:  an outline, and a sample discussing our ap-
proach to doing the English-order portion of the dictionary.
	As the outline shows, the contents of the reference book 
have swollen to the point that we are strongly considering 
issuing the reference as two books - one more of a reference 
per se, while the other is a pure dictionary of English-Lojban 
and Lojban-English, emphasizing content words.  A major 
reason for this has been Nick Nicholas's excellent and exten-
sive work on lujvo, which promises to give us several thou-
sand entries in each direction in the dictionary if it is com-
pleted.  Nick is also writing a paper describing his treatment of 
place structures in lujvo-making, which will also be included 
in the reference book.
	John Cowan has completed a revision of the entire content 
of the draft textbook lessons, reorganizing the materials and 
updating them to the current language.  The results will be 
merged with the new work that Lojbab has done towards a 
textbook, and will then result in the draft textbook.
	John also has continued writing his survey papers covering 
the entirety of the language from the standpoint of the gram-
mar, which will be assembled into the Lojban Reference Gram-
mar.  John has completed 13 of his planned 16 papers, but all 
of the papers must yet be reviewed by several people before 
they are finalized.
Language Development Status
gismu
	Last issue we noted adding of 4 new gismu to support 
the new international metric prefixes, but did not list the 
words.  They are (with the international prefix in 
parentheses):
gocti	10-24	(yocto-)
gotro	1024	(yotta-)
zepti	10-21	(zepto-)
zetro	1021	(zetta-)
	After an extensive review, all open issues on gismu place 
structures have been resolved, and the dictioanry re-baseline 
proposal is available on the Internet for final review and com-
ment.  After a comment period, the gismu list will be split 
into two forms, the current form intended for use with Log-
Flash, and a version oriented towards dictionary formatting.  
Once we have two lists, keeping them matching with each 
other will be a substantial requirement.  In case of conflict, 
the dictionary format listing will be presumed to have prece-
dence.
	A revised printing of the gismu list was prepared in Sep-
tember, and this will be the new one sent to people ordering 
"package 1".  As that printing took place during the final re-
view, it is not exactly the same as the final proposal, but the 
differences are minor and it is much more accurate than the 
previous version that we were sending out (it is also a bit eas-
ier to read).
rafsi
	We baselined the rafsi list effective June 1, 1993.  We 
had intended to have the baseline effective with book 
publication, but the books aren't out, and the pending change 
had a noticeable effect on people's willingness to make and 
use lujvo, as well as to write in Lojban in general.  Since we 
expect no changes in the few months before the book comes 
out, it made sense to make the change effective early.
	Nora integrated ad hoc  software programs into a capabil-
ity to correct and revise older texts written with the earlier 
rafsi list.
Grammar
	With the publication of JL18 last June, we included a com-
plete summary of pending changes to the Lojban grammar, 
and the revised E-BNF notation form of the Lojban grammar 
incorporating those changes.  The grammar was effectively 
rebaselined with this publication, as we then started using a 
parser incorporating the changes to evaluate Lojban text.  
There is still the possibility of minor corrections before the 
official rebaselining in conjunction with book publication, but 
there have been no proposed changes in the 7 months since 
JL publication.
	We are not yet publishing a new version of the formal 
grammar definition (the 'YACC' grammar); it will appear in the 
published reference book.  Note that the E-BNF, while com-
puter-ish in style, is not the formal definition that has been 
verified as unambiguous.  The E-BNF was prepared manually 
from the formal definition, and has been checked many times, 
but the YACC grammar takes precedence in case of disagree-
ment between the two versions.
Lojban Proto-Reference Book - Preliminary Outline 
with estimated page counts by section
	The following is the outline for the proto-reference book 
which Lojbab is using as of publication time.  It includes a de-
scription of each section contemplated for inclusion, and an 
estimated page count.  Major tables, forming the bulk of the 
book, are the most unpredictable portions in length; these are 
marked with asterisks (*).  The estimated page counts in the 
following are in most cases just that - estimates (a bar indi-
cates a page count for several related sections).  The text is 
not in general written in any final form, although almost all of 
the materials exist in some preliminary form that mostly re-
quires editing, rather than new writing.
	The current page count estimate is large, probably too 
large for a reasonable first publication.  Due to space and 
publication cost, some materials listed in the outline may be 
left out.  For example, many people are less interested in the 
gismu list etymologies, especially since they are in a rather 
preliminary form that makes them hard to use.  On the other 
hand, the features documented in the outline are those that 
define Lojban officially, and all may be helpful to both lan-
guage learners and to people looking over our shoulder to 
examine the quality of the Lojban design.  Those items in 
italics are considered likely for omission in the first edition that 
we are hoping to get published soon.
	A study of the outline shows that, with the exception of 
the dictionary proper, no section of the book is particularly 
long, such that omitting it would substantially reduce the size 
of the books.  The only real tradeoff that might make a major 
difference would be to avoid the practice of listing most data 
twice - once in the full dictionary, and once in a list specific to 
the type of information being presented.
	That dual listing takes a lot of space, but our experience is 
that the nature of the language is such that people will need 
and use those separate lists fully as much as any combined 
dictionary list.  When you are making new words, you need a 
handy list of the gismu and their rafsi, and other data, es-
pecially existing lujvo, would be a distraction.  Similarly, 
people tend to use lists of cmavo in selma'o order as often, 
if not more often, than they use alphabetical lists.
	The reference may include up to three attempts that have 
been made to devise a thesaurus-style semantic index for Loj-
ban.  None of the efforts really can be considered authorita-
tive, and indeed, Lojbab believes that there is a significant 
problem with the standard thesaurus technique, which tends 
to be more noun/adjective-oriented than verb-oriented.  In 
dealing with a predicate language, which is probably more like 
a verb-orientation - most of the words have been categorized 
on the basis of the meaning of their x1 place, which is often 
not the only place that is important to classify.
	However, semantic indexing of the gismu list seems to be 
something that most people have some use for, given the 
number of people who have reported doing something of that 
type on their own.  Since we cannot produce a definitive and 
verified thesaurus solution, it seems better to present all three 
efforts, and let the user of the book decide which best suits 
his purpose and his understanding of the Lojban vocabulary 
system.  Of course, this takes more pages, but we cannot 
honestly say, without a lot more research than we are likely to 
have time for in the next year, which effort is most accurate 
and/or useful, and what entries in each list are correct.  Take 
all groupings therefore, with a large grain of salt, recognizing 
that at least one person, the compiler of the particular list, 
saw a semantic similarity between the various gismu that are 
grouped together.
	Comments on the outline, are of course welcomed.

Pages	Section Description
[4]		Table of Contents

[7]		Intro
 4			About Lojban
 3			About this book

[5]		Lojban Orthography
 1			Letters and symbols
 3	|		optional conventions
	|			Cyrillic Lojban
	|			Dates
 1	|		compounds
	|		text layout

[10]	Lojban Phonology
 2			consonants
 1			permissible initials
 1			permissible medials
 2			vowels, diphthongs, divowels
 2	|		syllables
	|		hyphen
	|		buffering
 1			stress
 1	|		rhythm, phrasing
	|		intonation

[14]	Lojban Morphology
 1			Summary of types and how to tell them apart
 1	|			cmene (names)
	|			cmavo
	|				V
	|				VV
	|				CV
	|				CVV
 1	|			brivla
	|				gismu
 1	|				lujvo
	|					rafsi
 4						lujvo-making algorithm/tosmabru
 2						scoring/choice of form
 1	|				le'avla
	|				le'avla lujvo
 3			Resolver algorithm


[43]	Syntax
			E-BNF
 2				About the E-BNF
 3				*E-BNF
 1				*selma'o/E-BNF terminal index
			YACC Grammar
 8				About the YACC Grammar
 1				Parser algorithm
 20				*YACC Grammar
 8				*selma'o/YACC grammar terminal index

[21]			selma'o
 1				*selma'o list
 20				*short alphabetical definition, subcategories 
with cmavo in each subcategory
[20]		terminals
 20			*YACC terminal list, definition, examples of each 
type

		Lexicon
[50]			The formation of gismu
 3				Lojbanizing rules used
 45			*composite gismu etymologies 
 1				*cultural gismu
 1	|			*metric gismu
	|			*internal gismu

[110]		Place structures of gismu
 40			*Lojban gismu (rafsi, definition) Lojban order
 35			*gismu keywords; keywords/phrases for each 
place by gismu
 35			*Lojban and English order (no place structures)
[39]		cmavo
 10			* cmavo in Lojban order
 10			* cmavo in selma'o/subtype/alphabetical 
order
 2				* cmavo compounds typically written as one 
word
 8				* non-Lojban alphabet and symbol set 
conventions
 1				* unassigned cmavo
 2				* experimental cmavo
 1				Categories within pro-sumti (KOhA)
 3				Categories within UI
 2	|		Use of BAI to add places/cases
	|			*list of BAIs typically used to add cases
	|			*list of BAIs typically used as sumti modifiers
[37]		rafsi
 1				Assignment of rafsi
 8				*rafsi, by type, alphabetically
 8				*rafsi, pure alphabetical
[20]		How to determine place structures of lujvo

[120-157]	lujvo lists
 75			*lujvo actually in use - estimated ~3000
 45			*proposed lujvo (possibly intermingled with pre-
ceding) systematically created (using "se", 
"te", "ve", "xe", "nu", "ka", "ni", "ri'a", 
"gau", etc.  estimated ~3000
 22			*pre Eaton/TLI lists (heavily weeded and 
edited) - estimated ~1500
 15			*collected old proposals ~1000
 [9]			Names
 1				Lojbanizing of names
 4					*some personal names
 4					*some country/language names
[16]		le'avla
 3				types of le'avla
 1				the culture word issue
 3				*cultural le'avla
 3				*some food items
 3				*some plants/animals
 3				*element words

 206-243	*Lojban order dictionary (composed of all 
preceding lists) [gismu (40), cmavo (20), rafsi 
(8), cmene (names) (6), le'avla (12), lujvo 
(120-157)]
 378-415	*English-order dictionary [page counts dependent 
on Lojban order counts:  gismu (est. pg. x 5), 
cmavo (x 2), names(x 1), le'avla(x 1), lujvo(x 
1)]

		Thesaurus
			systems of categorization
 4				*Roget's/Athelstan/Lojbab
 4				*Carter
 4				*Cowan
 40		*gismu to category for each type
 30		*category to gismu for each type
 10		*English-order cross-index of categories

 30	Appendix - *Glossary of Lojban/Linguistic 
Terminology
[74]	Appendix - Correspondences with historical TLI Loglan
			Lojban gismu correspondence to historical TLI 
Loglan gismu and lujvo
 30			*Lojban gismu order
 20			*historical Loglan gismu order
			Lojban selma'o correspondence to historical TLI 
Loglan selma'o
 3				*Lojban selma'o order
 3				*historical Loglan selma'o order
			Lojban cmavo correspondence to historical TLI 
Loglan cmavo
 10			*Lojban cmavo order
 6				*historical Loglan cmavo order

 8			Index

 458-542 pages reference +
 584-658 pages dictionary +
  92 pages thesaurus +
 110 pages appendices =
____
1244-1402pg 

Sample English-to-Lojban dictionary (intermediate 
step)
	The following is a sample of the output from a KWIC (Key 
Word In Context) tool that John Cowan wrote specifically to 
help automate creating the English-to-Lojban dictionary.  This 
trial effort will play a part in the creation of the English portion 
of the dictionary.  There may be some differences in style or 
format in the final dictionary.  Comments are welcome as to 
how usable you find this style of presentation of the vocabu-
lary.

abdomen:  x1 is a / the abdomen / belly / lower trunk of x2; ¯betfu (bef 
be'u)
able:  x1 is able to do / be / capable of doing / being x2 under conditions 
x3; ¯kakne (kak ka'e)
above:  x1 is directly above / upwards-from x2 in gravity / frame of 
reference x4; ¯gapru (gar)
abrupt:  x1 is sudden / abrupt / sharply changes at stage / point x2 in 
process / property / function x3; ¯suksa (suk)
absolute:  x1 is a fact / reality / truth, in the absolute; ¯fatci (fac)
absorbs:  x1 soaks up / absorbs / sucks up x2 from x3 into x4; ¯cokcu 
(cok cko co'u)
abstracted:  x1 is abstracted / generalized / idealized from x2 by rules x3; 
¯sucta (suc)
academy:  x1 is a school / institute / academy at x2 teaching subject x3 to 
audience / community x4 operated by x5; ¯ckule (cu'e)
accessing:  x1 is a street / avenue / lane / drive / cul-de-sac / way / alley / 
at x2 accessing x3; ¯klaji (laj)
accident:  x1 is an accident / unintentional on the part of x2; x1 is an 
accident; ¯snuti (nut nu'i)
accommodates:  x1 contains / holds / encloses / accommodates / 
includes contents x2 within; x1 is a vessel containing x2; ¯vasru (vas 
vau)
accompanies:  x1 is with / accompanies / is a companion of x2, in state / 
condition / enterprise x3; ¯kansa (kas)
accompaniment:  x1 dances to accompaniment x2; ¯dansu 
accomplishes:  x1 succeeds in / achieves / completes / accomplishes x2; 
¯snada
according: x1 is a dimension of space / object x2 according to rules / 
model x3; ¯cimde
according: x1 is a family / clan / tribe with members x2 bonded / tied / 
joined according to standard x3; ¯lanzu (laz)
according:  x1 is a history of x2 according to x3 / from point-of-view x3; 
¯citri (cir)
according:  x1 is an heir to / is to inherit x2 from x3 according to rule x4; 
¯cerda (ced)
according:  x1 is polite / courteous in matter x2 according to standard / 
custom x3; ¯clite (lit)
according:  x1 is to the east / eastern side of x2 according to frame of 
reference x3; ¯stuna
according: x1 is to the north / northern side of x2 according to frame-of-
reference x3; ¯berti (ber)
according:  x1 is to the south / southern side of x2 according to frame of 
reference x3; ¯snanu
according: x1 is to the west / western side of x2 according to frame of 
reference x3; ¯stici 
according:  x1 is / reflects a pattern of forms / events x2 arranged 
according to structure x3; ¯morna (mor mo'a)
account:  x1 is an account / bill / invoice for goods / services x2, billed to 
x3, billed by x4; ¯janta (jat ja'a)
accountable:  x1 is responsible / accountable for x2 to judge / authority x3; 
¯fuzme (fuz fu'e)
accruing:  x1 is a profit / gain / benefit / advantage to x2 accruing / 
resulting from activity / process x3; ¯prali (pal)
accuracy:  x1 measures / evaluates x2 as x3 units on scale x4, with 
accuracy x5; ¯merli (mel mei)
achieve:  x1 helps / assists / aids object / person x2 do / achieve / 
maintain event / activity x3; ¯sidju (sid dju)
achieves:  x1 succeeds in / achieves / completes / accomplishes x2; 
¯snada 
acid:  x1 is a quantity of / contains / is made of acid of composition x2; x1 
is acidic; ¯slami 
acidic:  x1 is a quantity of / contains / is made of acid of composition x2; x1 
is; ¯slami 
On Lojban rafsi
by Lojbab
	People new to the project have sometimes criticized Loj-
ban's rafsi system, claiming that the system is overly complex 
or hard to learn.  I contend otherwise, based on personal ex-
perience and on observation of those who have already 
learned the system.  What may appear extremely complex and 
rule-bound, in practice turns out to be quite easy.  The system 
also has the advantage that you need not learn everything at 
once - you can use the system while knowing only a fraction 
of the rules and the rafsi.
	As a sample of the criticism, Rick Harrison made the fol-
lowing comment on the "conlang" computer mailing list:
	The vast majority of constructed language enthusiasts 
agree that a planned language should have no allomorphs, 
i.e. each root-word should have only one form which should 
not change due to conjugation, declension, compounding, or 
other grammatical processes.  Allomorphs increase the 
difficulty of memorizing a vocabulary and give no benefit in 
return.  It appears that Loglan and Lojban suffer from 
rampant allomorphy.  Any given 5-letter predicate might 
have 0, 1, 2, or 3 triliteral allomorphs to be used in 
compound words.  Unless I am mistaken, there's no way to 
predict whether a given predicate has allomorphs, and if so, 
what those allomorphs might be; each predicate's 
allomorphs must be memorized.

	Lojban rafsi are the word-forms used to make compound 
words, and are the 'allomorphs' that Rick is talking about.  I, 
of course, disagree with Rick's statements and his conclusions.  
In particular, I believe that:
	- 'allomorphy', like many other aspects of the design of a 
constructed language is a design feature that may be used as 
a trade-off to prevent other problems or to provide other 
advantages.  Lojban's system does both;
	- the need to clearly distinguish between a multi-word 
metaphor and a single word compound derived from that 
metaphor means that some sort of allomorphy is necessary.  
The only other alternative is to add an extraneous particle as 
glue between the components of one of these two types of 
concept combination (which we do in the case of le'avla lu-
jvo, but only because there is no other general solution for an 
arbitrary word-form that maintains unambiguity).  In general 
such particle addition is inconsistent with Zipf's Law for com-
pounds that will be used frequently.  Zipf's Law predicts that 
words which are frequently used will be shorter than less fre-
quent ones, and a primary reason for making a compound will 
be because the combined concept is used frequently enough 
to warrant abbreviation.  I have considerably more faith in this 
principle as a basis for constructed language design than I do 
in the purported difficulties arising from allomorphy, especially 
with a system like Lojban's that is carefully designed.
	(One oft-recurring suggestion for change, generally by crit-
ics of the language such as Rick, has been to let the short 
forms serve as the roots themselves.  Not only are there far 
too few such possible roots, but such a usage would detract 
from the words available for use as cmavo, the normal inter-
pretation of a CVV form that is a separate word.  In addition, 
short rafsi are far more densely-packed among the set of 
possible forms than the gismu - nearly all such short forms are 
used.  This results in a significant loss of redundancy that 
would make the language harder to resolve with such con-
densed forms.  Indeed, Lojban allows the long-form for any 
compound built of 5-letter rafsi, to alternate for any com-
pound built with the shorter rafsi forms to be used equiva-
lently with identical meaning, to reduce noisy environment 
redundancy problems.  Finally, of course, if the short forms 
were the roots, there would be no capability for further 
shortening in conformance with Zipf's Law, and indeed either 
compounds or non-compound metaphors would have to be 
longer than the separate words that compose them.)
	- words for all common concepts in a language have to be 
memorized eventually, if you are to achieve fluency.  'Allomor-
phy', at least as used in Lojban, makes learning that vo-
cabulary easier in general, and there are significant benefits in 
addition to vocabulary learning, in that you can create new 
words on an ad hoc basis, even when you are still a language 
novice, and you can usefully analyze words you don't know.  
The added memorization implied by the rafsi, even if you 
memorize every single one of them (which no one has), is but 
a very small percentage of the total vocabulary needed for 
fluent adult conversation, but provides immediate benefit for 
even small amounts of learning.
	The first time you see a compound, you will probably take 
it apart.  Perhaps even the first few times.  But you cannot be-
come even moderately fluent in any language if you need to 
analyze the etymology of every word you want to read, speak, 
or understand.  Words that occur at all frequently must be 
internalized as a unit of meaning.  If there are 50,000 con-
cepts that are needed for adult conversation (a reasonable 
guess), then you will need to memorize 50,000 words, at one 
word per concept.  This number cannot be reduced, except by 
polysemy (one word representing multiple concepts), and I 
cannot see Rick or anyone arguing that polysemy makes 
learning a language easier.
	- there is indeed a way to predict whether a Lojban root 
has rafsi, and there are constraints that greatly limit what 
those rafsi might be.  In addition, because the assignment of 
rafsi is maximized, almost every possible rafsi has some 
meaning.  This has the result that every rafsi that you learn to 
associate with its gismu reduces the possibilities for other 
words.  This makes learning the others easier, and by the time 
you've learned even 1/2 the rafsi (or maybe less if they're the 
right ones), you can generally guess the rest as you need 
them.
	Let me discuss rationale, first.  Lojban lujvo, or com-
pound words, represent the myriad of predicate relations that 
are not reflected in the gismu roots.  As predicate words in 
Lojban (as opposed to tanru, the phrases from which lujvo 
are often derived), they each have a unique meaning (and 
associated place structure).  This meaning need not be memo-
rized by the Lojban learner - the rafsi system allows you to 
unambiguously take the word apart to see the tanru compo-
nents that went into building the compound.  You may then 
assume that the compound represents the most common 
and/or most plausible interpretation of that phrase, and you 
will rarely be incorrect.o
	Thus, as you come to know more of the rafsi by using the 
language, you become less and less dependent on a dictionary 
or word list to help you understand new words as you come 
across them.  The ability to dispense with a dictionary in eve-
ryday Lojban use is the major goal and benefit of the rafsi 
system - it is virtually impossible to achieve fluency in a lan-
guage until you are willing and able to try to use it spontane-
ously without looking words up that you don't know.
	The ability to do without a dictionary offers a major ad-
vantage in the growth of the Lojban vocabulary, a critical as-
pect of the language's first years.   Lojbanists, whether new or 
experienced, can create new words on an ad hoc basis while 
speaking and writing, using the rafsi system to do so quickly 
and easily.
	With the current Lojban system, you only memorize those 
lujvo which you find yourself using often (in which case you 
memorize them simply by using them often enough that they 
come to mind without thinking about it).  You invent new 
words on an ad hoc basis, knowing that someone else inde-
pendently inventing a word for the same concept will likely 
end up with the same word, but that in any case, the word 
you invent will almost certainly be correct, in that it will not 
represent any concept other than the one you have in mind.

	Briefly reviewing the Lojban rafsi system, each Lojban 
gismu has between 2 and 5 combining forms.  Two of these 
are trivially and uniquely determined.  The gismu itself may be 
used as its own combining form when it is in the final position 
of the lujvo.  In addition, there is a related 4-letter form, ob-
tained by dropping the final vowel from the gismu, which may 
be used in any non-final position, by gluing it on to the follow-
ing component with a "y" (pronounced as a schwa, the final 
sound in the English word "sofa").  Since no two gismu con-
cepts differ only in the final vowel, this means that each con-
cept has two combining forms, which can always be used in 
forming compounds that can be uniquely broken down to rec-
ognize the components.
	Using only these two 'long' rafsi forms, the 4-letter and 
the full 5-letter gismu form, the beginning Lojbanist can use 
the full expressive power of the language, while memorizing 
no rafsi.  There are no exceptions to these rules, and no 
complications, and the resulting word, (called the 'unreduced 
form') is always correct and acceptable.
	The complications arise only when you become a more ad-
vanced student of the language.  When you can speak and 
write in a language quickly, you don't want really long words 
for relatively simple concepts.  It is fairly common to devise 
lujvo made up of 4 (or more) components, sometime for con-
cepts that are used every day.  Most people would be unsatis-
fied with a language that required them to use a 20-letter 
word with 8 syllables for a very common concept.  
	Indeed, an analysis of natural languages called Zipf's Law 
indicates that the length of words in actual use is inversely 
related to their frequency of use - the most frequently used 
words in a language are the shortest ones, and long words are 
rarely used.  In languages such as English, when a commonly 
expressed concept is represented by a long word or phrase, 
common usage turns it into a contraction (like "didn't", or into 
an acronym or abbreviation.  Examples include "TV" for 
"television", "TB" for "tuberculosis", "ASAP" for "as soon as 
possible", and "CIA" for "Central Intelligence Agency").  It is 
believed by many linguists that the multitude of declensions 
and conjugations found in languages today are the remnants 
of earlier contractions.
  Note that such acronyms as "TV" lose significant information 
about word meaning available in longer forms.  "Television", 
for those who know the Latin roots that formed the word, 
reveals some aspects of the word's meaning; "TV" does not.  
"CIA" can stand for a variety of longer expressions, and there 
is no clue except context to indicate that a government or-
ganization is the intended meaning.  A common English word 
that is apparently a short form, "OK", has completely lost its 
origin (leaving only unconfirmable speculations).  When that 
happens, these compounds become like roots in themselves 
that must be memorized separately.  This increases the diffi-
culty of language learning, unacceptable in a constructed lan-
guage like Loglan/ Lojban.
	To relieve this pressure for short forms for common words, 
those Lojban gismu which have been found most useful in 
compounds have been assigned additional 3-letter short rafsi.  
A Lojban word may have up to one of each of the following 
forms:  a CVC-form, a CVV-form, and/or a CCV-form, where C 
and V stand for consonants and vowels that are found in the 
source word.  These short-forms may be preferred because 
they combine to form shorter words, sometimes with fewer 
syllables, than the 4-letter and 5-letter rafsi.
	As a result, therefore, more than one rafsi may be used 
to represent a gismu/concept in making a compound, since 
the 4- and 5- letter forms still exist.  In addition, because 
these shorter forms are found in other words, or even 
standing alone as words (cmavo) in themselves in the case of 
CVV forms, you need to have rules that prevent the 
compounds from breaking up incorrectly.  Language design 
decisions force tradeoffs among the need to maximize the 
number of words that can be contracted and the requirement 
to retain the integrity of the compounds that are formed and 
the ability to break them down into recognizable meaning 
components.
	The nature of the sounds that make up words, and the im-
perfections in human speech and hearing give rise to further 
complication in a system of word compression.  Certain 
sounds, when adjacent to each other may provoke mispro-
nunciation or may be misheard by a listener.  Linguists also 
know that certain sound combinations tend to be unstable and 
to change with time.  In designing Lojban, we had to plan 
ahead to avoid combinations that would likely lead to the Loj-
ban of 2100 being significantly different from the Lojban of 
the first dictionary.
	All of these tradeoffs have been dealt with in the current 
Lojban design; yet the rules for lujvo-making remain relatively 
simple.  Some rafsi are forbidden in some word positions.  
Depending on word-position and adjacent rafsi, you may 
have to add a "hyphen" letter to make a word pronounceable, 
or to keep the sounds from breaking up into two words when 
heard by a listener.
	If the rules are too difficult for your level of proficiency, 
you always can fall back to the long form rafsi mentioned 
above.  You can do so because a firm rule of the Lojban de-
sign is that, if there is more than one possible rafsi combining 
form, the choice of form does not affect the resulting mean-
ing.  The shortest form of a word means the same as the long 
form.  An English example where this is true is "television", 
which can be seen as a short form of the two components 
"tele" and "vision".  "TV", a further shortening of the same 
components is taken as identical in meaning to "television".  
This invariance is true for all Lojban compounds, even when 
dozens of possible shortened forms are possible.
	Dozens of forms can be possible when more than one 
short rafsi is assigned to a gismu.  We want to assign multiple 
short forms, because the effects of sound interactions and the 
Lojban word-formation rules may prevent one particular rafsi 
from being used in some situations.  Thus an additional short 
rafsi increases the likelihood that some short form is possible 
in a particular difficult combination; it also may mean that in 
other combinations where there are no sound restrictions, you 
will have a multitude of choices.
	Of course, the rule that all of these choices will have a sin-
gle common meaning means most will never be used.  
Probably only the longest form (which will be used by lan-
guage beginners) and the shortest form will be used.  If there 
is more than one 'shortest form', different people may choose 
different ones are preferable for a while, but usage will rela-
tively quickly tend to settle on one of the choices.  We have 
defined a formal scoring rules to help people pick the form 
that is most likely to be settled on, but it is not necessary to 
use it - choose the form that sounds best to you and others 
may agree.

	Let me now turn to a Lojban example.  Following is a long 
compound that has appeared in Lojban text:
nolraitruti'u  (5 syllables)
nol-rai-tru-ti'u
nobli-traji-turni-tixnu
noble+superlative+govern+daughter
(princess - specifically the daughter of a king/queen, as op-
posed to Princess Di of the UK)
	If there were no short forms, this word would have to be:
noblytrajyturnytixnu    (8 syllables)
	Given that it is desired that you expect to memorize the 
Lojban word, learning it as a unitary word rather than by puz-
zling it together every time from its components, it should be 
obvious that the shorter word "nolraitruti'u" is better than 
the longer one.  If you lived in a country with royalty such as 
the UK that had such a princess (as Elizabeth was before she 
became queen) and were prone to reading, writing, and talk-
ing about such a princess a lot, which word would you prefer 
to say or write?
	I argue that "princess" is not that infrequent a concept, 
certainly deserving of a single word.  The British, so I under-
stand, do make distinctions between the various types of prin-
cess, at least in terms of how they are titled, so that the dis-
tinction is socially and linguistically important.  Lojban must 
have separate words if there are clearly two separate con-
cepts, as there are in this case (the 'Di' variety of princess 
might be 5 terms:  noble-superlative-governor-son-
spouse).
	The longer 8-syllable form is permitted as an alternative to 
the short form, and might be used either in noisy environ-
ments where the longer word has all those extra sounds as 
redundancy checks, or by beginners who have not yet memo-
rized the short rafsi or the compound, and are creating the 
compound on the fly (as this word has been created every 
time it has been used thus far since we have no dictionary nor 
people who have memorized such words).  The long forms are 
of course needed when the words are not compounded, or 
else you would not be able to tell a compound from a root 
from a structure word.
	Loglan/Lojban has reached what I believe is an optimal 
tradeoff between redundancy and brevity, ease of learning 
and unambiguity of the morphology.  If other solutions exist, 
they are unlikely to meet all the goals for the language.

	Rick and others make two assumptions when criticizing 
Lojban, assumptions I believe are incorrect:
1) that there is a way of reducing the amount of memorization 
needed to gain fluency in a conlang below some arbitrary 
minimum, and 
2) that memorizing allomorphs is difficult.
	Assuming that the set of thoughts that might be expressed 
linguistically should be about the same, regardless of the lan-
guage, there are only so many options available for expressing 
those thoughts.  If there is 'one word per concept', then a 
speaker must have memorized a separate word for each con-
cept in order to achieve fluency.  If polysemy exists, then 
speaker has an added burden:  to memorize a somewhat 
smaller set of words, but to also memorize the multiple mean-
ings of those words (including meanings he may rarely use) 
and some means of pragmatically distinguishing which 
meaning is intended.
	There's no way around this.  Fluent speakers don't often 
invent words or even derive new prefix/suffix formations when 
conversing.  Productive language formation (i.e. inventing new 
words) takes time to think, and taking that time in the middle 
of a conversation breaks up fluency.  There is some minimum 
amount that must be learned, even in the most regular of con-
langs; no design trick can reduce this.
	For a given language, for each concept you expect to talk 
or hear about in fluent speech, you must learn 1) at least one 
word for the concept, 2) the association of that word with that 
specific concept, and not to other concepts (including false 
friends from the native language), 3) any other meanings or 
usages associated with that word, including both polysemy 
and pragmatic considerations (what phrases may be appended 
to sentences using that word, etc. For example, if you stick an 
object on an intransitive verb "*I sit the store", or attach cer-
tain prepositional phrases to a word that doesn't expect them 
"*I give from Mary across the store" you get nonsense in any 
language, ungrammatical garbage in most of them.)  It takes 
memorization to turn words into sense.
	Thus, for people who are really going to use a language, 
the only thing you can do is ease the memorization process to 
make it easier to do that required memorization, to get from 
novice to fluency.
	One way - the most frequent among conlang inventors - is 
to build lots of memory hooks to some natural language(s).  
In doing so, you risk semantics transfer that might make your 
conlang not truly an independent language.  An example of 
this problem is the oft-heard debate about the Esperanto pre-
fix "mal-" which in that language means "opposite of", but in 
many European languages means "bad".  People native to 
those languages seem to often complain about 'derogative' 
implications of words containing "mal-", when such implica-
tions are not part of Esperanto in any way.  You can't avoid 
this kind of problem - all languages will have 'false friends' 
that mislead you in learning similar-appearing new words in a 
new language.  You can minimize it through other methods of 
aiding the learning process.
	Another way, occurring in Esperanto, is the use of affixes 
(such as "mal-") that modify meanings of words in certain 
semi-regular ways.  Thus, by learning a few words and these 
few productive affixes, you multiply the vocabulary that results 
from memorization.  New people then learn from seeing words 
that they can easily decompose - after seeing these words 
over and over, they suddenly find that they know both the 
word-formation rules, the affixes, and the compounds.
	Lojban in effect carries the Esperanto technique to the ul-
timate extreme.  Rather than a couple dozen short affixes, we 
allow every root to have an affix, and then make those affixes 
resemble the roots in very regular ways.  For all Lojban lujvo, 
you automatically know that any resemblances to words of 
other languages are accidental, since those lujvo are always 
composite of simpler words in Lojban and are not derived 
from any other language.

	As for the second assumption, I assert that Rick is wrong, 
and that
A very regular conlang can have allomorphs that 
are easy to memorize and Lojban has such a 
system that actually makes compound words more 
learnable than they might otherwise be.
There are three parts to my argument on this point:
- the nature of 'memorizing' of a word is non-trivial in the first 
place;
- Lojban's system is designed to provide differing aids to the 
novice, the experienced learner, and the expert Lojbanist, 
allowing the different levels of skill to concentrate on those 
aspects of word 'memorizing' that are easiest for their skill 
level and most productive for them;
- the Lojban allomorphs, being made in predictable ways from 
the gismu are relatively easy to memorize.

Lojban and Metaphysical Bias
(a discussion between And Rosta [not-indented] and Lojbab 
[indented])
	Does one necessarily wish to avoid metaphysical bias?  I 
would always wish to be able to say that something is at the 
"back" or "front" of my mind, or that I am in "high" or "low" 
spirits.  I might wish to avoid distinguishing recipients from 
destinations and treat them as the same thing; I might want 
to treat possession as a kind of location, say.  
In Lojban, we want to remove metaphysical bias 
when possible.  It isn't always.  The examples you have 
selected are examples that we will be trying to eliminate 
(at least in translation to Lojban), because they are Eng-
lish biased figures of speech, and it is not necessarily 
universal that all cultures consider "high" spirits to be 
better than "low" ones, or that the 'mind as queue' 
metaphor is superior to the 'mind as stack' one.
	I follow the cognitivist doctrines of George Lakoff and his 
colleagues, of Jackendoff and of Langacker.  (These are very 
simply expounded in Jackendoff's review article of Lakoff's 
new book in the June 1991 Language.)  This doctrine main-
tains that certain things are conceptualized only metaphori-
cally.  Metaphors whose vehicles are space and the body pre-
dominate, and are used to conceptualize more abstract things.  
Some of these metaphors are claimed to be grounded in uni-
versal human cognition, and others to be dependent on cul-
ture.
	We therefore could, maybe, draw the following conclu-
sions:
	(1a) Lojban's aim (of removing metaphysical bias) is 
doomed to fail.
The goal is to 'minimize' it, not remove it.  For situa-
tions where one or more roughly equivalent methods ex-
ist to express something, but each is biased in some 
way, we try to allow all of them.  If we must be arbitrary 
among several choices, we choose a single way, but are 
prone to choosing a non-English way to counter the ten-
dency for English biases to creep in.
	(1b) Lojban's aim flies in the face of the way we really 
think and is therefore a hindrance to thought.

This we will find out.  The problem is that certain 
concepts are always metaphorized because we have no 
primitive non-metaphor to express them in NLs.  Thus 
we have a chicken and egg problem.  Lojban will try for a 
different egg.
	Now even if metaphorless Lojban is possible, why is one 
supposed to avoid metaphor?  My English-biased conceptual 
metaphors are the way I think.
Not if you are trying to communicate to someone 
from Thailand who does not know your metaphors.  In 
an earlier book, Lakoff noted that not all cultures shared 
the same metaphors (e.g. "up" is "future" or "up" is 
"past", I think was one dichotomy).  I prefer a language 
that says that future is future and makes no links with 
'up' or 'down'.
(Remember that the goal of Lojban involving Sapir-
Whorf means that as much as possible we must reduce 
and/or identify all sources of bias that would affect 
'world-view' - which to me is a very similar concept to 
'metaphysics'.)
Sapir-Whorfian Thoughts?
	In response to a question from James Meritt, Lojbab said 
the following:
	There is no evidence yet of Lojban providing thoughts that 
are unthinkable in English, but the constraints of English 
syntax do tend to make thinking in certain ways more difficult.  
It would be a long time before we truly came up with an 
example that unambivalently is uniquely Lojbanic.
	Hmm.  I'll have to amend this.  In our discussions of the 
last week or two regarding Lojban property abstracts, it has 
become pretty clear that while it is possible more or less to 
define what is taking place using English words, I think it ac-
curate to say that most of them have no English equivalent in 
any meaningful sense.
	For example, "loika melbi" translates as "Beauty" the 
abstract concept and "leka lemi speni cu melbi" more 
roughly as "my wife's beauty" but more accurately as "the 
properties that make it true that my wife is beautiful [by 
some standard to some observer]".  But with most 
predicate words, there is no English equivalent for the 
property abstract.  For example, "loika klama" would 
translate as "Going-ness",  if that were an English word - 
already hard to grasp, while its counterpart:
leka mi klama le zarci
the properties that make it true that I go to the store
conveys no sense of exactly what sort of properties these 
might be - we would tend in English to start thinking in terms 
of causes, which is not what the Lojban means, because 
"Going-ness" is just not an English concept.  But constructs 
like this are rather easy to express in Lojban, and in some 
cases are virtually obligatory.  A particular "Going-ness" for 
example is the property that is being compared when we say 
that I go to my local Safeway more than you do.
	Whether use of statements like this in Lojban means that 
anything new and different in human thinking will arise as a 
result of this implication, is what is still not clear.
	Going beyond this, I can say that there are a lot more per-
haps more obscure things that can be easily said in Lojban, 
but which defy English translation.  Lojban does after all, allow 
and almost encourage the expression of "grammatical 
nonsense", of the "green ideas sleep furiously" variety, but 
even weirder.  People can indeed wrap their minds around 
such nonsense (for this English example, I have seen pro-
posed places where it might actually be meaningful), but it 
can reasonably be said that the Lojban equivalents go far 
beyond what anyone will ever understand in English transla-
tion.  Whether a Lojbanist thinking in Lojban will 'understand' 
such statements in the sense that we can understand "green 
ideas sleep furiously" is also presumable, but as yet unverifi-
able.
Lojban Text
	Following is Colin Fine's translation into Lojban of a fa-
miliar children's fairy tale.    Nick Nicholas served as reviewing 
editor.  Unlike the norm for LK of excerpting, we are reprinting 
the full Lojban (with translation).

®lu le nolraixli ne ga'u le dembi li'u¯
 cmene di'e noi se finti
la xans. krIstian. Andrsn. 

		_itu'e tu'e
	lisri le nolrainanla  goi ko'a   _i ko'a djica lo 
nolraixli   _i ri mulno be loka nolraixli be'o gi'o se 
zanru ko'a   _isemu'ibo ko'a fe'eroroi litru gi'e sisku 
pa go'i   _iku'i roroi nabmi   _i sa'e ge lo nolraixli cu 
raumei ju'o gi lo ni ri nolraixli ku ko'a na se birti 
.!uu   _i roroiku le no'e drani vau   _i ko'a ki'u 
se'irzdakla gi'e badri lenu na'epu'i cpacu lo 
nolraixli mulno
		ni'o pa vanci cu ki jaica ke selte'a vilti'a   _i 
lindi joi savru joi carvi joi camcilce   _i zo'e darxi le 
tcavro   _i le sorna'a nolraitru ki'u minde lenu le 
vorme cu karbi'o   _i le bartu cu nolraixli   _i ri 
selkecmlu .!uuse'inai ri'a tu'a lo carvi .ebo lo xlali 
vilti'a   _i mo'ini'a flecu lo djacu vi le kerfa .e le 
taxfu   _i flecu ji'a pa'o le cutci file cucti'e le 
cucyzbi [tosa'a pamoi pinka toi]   _i cusku fa ra 
ledu'u ra nolraixli mulno
		ni'o ®lu .!ue   _i cipra  _ai li'u¯ se seisku le 
sorna'a truspe goi fo'e   _ije ri bacru noda ku'i gi'e 
klama le sipku'a gi'e vimcu ro le ckabu'u gi'e punji 
le pa dembi le ckazbe   _ijebabo fo'e cpacu reno 
vresraki'e gi'e cpana punji ri le dembi   _i pa'aku 
reno datkypi'u gairki'e co'a cpana le sraki'e   _i ro 
go'i cu se vreta le nolraixli goi fo'a ca'o le nicte
		ni'o co'i le cerni cu preti fo fo'a fe leli'i fo'a 
capu sipna ge'ekau
	_i ®lu .!oicairo'o [seisa'a selsku be fo'a]   _i mi 
su'eso'uroi .!uu ga'orga'i le kanla ca'o piro le nicte   
_i ?ma za'anai ?pausai nenri le ckana   _i mi puca'o 
vreta le raktu jdari   _i piro lemi xadni ri'a bunre joi 
blanu   _i to'e zdile .!oisai li'u¯
	_i seni'ibo co'i djuno ledu'u fo'a nolraixli je'a 
mulno ki'u lenu fo'a  fi le reno sraki'e ku jo'u le 
reno gairki'e cu ganse fe le dembi   _i lo ckaji be 
loka ganse du'i la'edi'u cu nolraixli mulno ju'o
		ni'o le nolrainanla goi ko'a co'a speni fo'a   _i 
ko'a seki'u djuno ledu'u vo'a kansa le mulno be 
loka nolraixli   _i le dembi ba se punji fi la larku'a 
[tosa'a remoi pinka toi]   _i caji'a go'i    _ijo noda 
capu vimcu .!iacu'i tu'u ni'o di'u jetnu lisri .!uo.ui
tu'u
		ni'oni'o di'e pinka  
	_i pamai le lujvo po'u zo cucyzbi cu satci te 
fanva fe ®zoi.dy. Naesen paa Skoen .dy.¯   _i mi 
nelci le di'u bangrdanska tanru
	_i remai [tu'e la larku'a po'u ®la'o .dy. 
Kunstkammeret .dy.¯  cu ga'orbi'o ca le nanca be li 
pabirepa gi'eseri'abo ca'a teke carmi morji caze'u 
le lisri   _i le'i ca'a jmaji noi selzda le tolci'o ke 
nolraitru ckusro dinju cu selcmi so'i vrici ne mu'u 
lo prucedra lisri ku ce lo naiske lisri ku ce lo rarske 
cizra  tu'u]   _i di'u se krasi le pinka ne bau la 
dansk. fo la xans. briks. jo'u la .anker. iensn.

Colin's translation:

The Princess on the Pea
	There was once a prince, who wanted a princess for 
himself, but she had to be a real princess.  So he went all 
round the world trying to find one, but there was always 
some hindrance:  there were plenty of princesses, but 
whether they were real princesses, he could never be sure - 
there was always something that wasn't quite right.  So he 
went home and was sad, because he so much wanted a 
genuine princess.
	One evening there was a frightful storm.  There was 
lightning and thunder, the rain poured down, it was dreadful!  
There was a knocking on the town gate, and the old king or-
dered it opened.
	It was a princess standing outside.  But God how she 
looked in the rain and the storm!  The water ran down her 
hair and her clothes, and went in at the toes of her shoes 
and out at the heels.  And she said she was a real princess.
	"We'll see about that!" thought the old queen, but she 
said nothing.  She went to the bedroom, took off all the 
bedclothes, and put a pea on the base of the bed.  Then she 
took twenty mattresses and put them on top of the pea, and 
then twenty eiderdowns on top of the mattresses.
	And that's where the princess was to lie that night.
	In the morning, they asked her how she had slept.
	"Oh, terribly!", said the princess.  "I hardly closed my 
eyes the whole night!  God knows what there was in the bed!  
I was lying on something hard, and I'm black and blue 
everywhere!  It's quite horrible!"
	So they could see that she was a real princess, since 
she had felt the pea through twenty mattresses and twenty 
quilts.  Nobody but a real princess could be that sensitive.
	The prince took her for his wife, for now he knew that he 
had a real princess, and the pea was put into the Kunstkam-
mer, where it is still to be seen, if nobody has taken it away.
	You see, it's a true story!
	Note (from Blix & Jensen):  The Kunstkammer ("art 
chamber") closed in 1821 and was therefore fresh in 
memory at the time of the tale.  The collection was housed 
in the old Royal Library, and contained many different 
things:  old sagas, ethnographic tales, curiosities of natural 
history, and so on.



-----------------------------------------------------------------------
The Logical Language Group, Inc.	| NON-PROFIT ORG.|
2904 Beau Lane	|  U.S. POSTAGE  |
Fairfax VA 22031	|   P  A  I  D   |
	| MERRIFIELD, VA |
Address Correction Requested	| PERMIT NO.  64 |
Forwarding Postage Guaranteed	------------------
 Nick: I think you need a "kei" before "ki'u":  her feeling the pea does 
not cause her to be a princess, but causes them to know it.
 Nick: I don't know about "go'i" - what is true now is that the pea 
remains there, not that it is still being placed there.
 

 

 

 

 

 

6

5