Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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assign words a value on a spectrum of generality to specificity
  [vote for,

The word wall is overall more general compared to floor ( a floor being the horizontal wall) therefore wall would have a lower sharp value than floor or even slab. Livid, being more nuanced, would have a slightly higher sharp value than angry.

A sentence can now be summed for a value. A more specific sentence will have a higher average value. Of course, people use sentences differently so the number of words in the sentence maybe taken into the calculation.

The measure does depend on context but saying floor when pointing to carpet or lino still gives a scale of specificity of the word used compared to use in a construction or building context where wall and floor are almost comparable.

A dictionary could have a sharp value entry which sums the average word's use glob or cloud.

Now we have a sharp metric, let's evaluate, high profile, accurate say.

wjt, Nov 02 2019

Unblocking and recovering the inner artist https://en.wikipedi.../The_Artist%27s_Way
[blissmiss, Nov 03 2019]

Just https://www.google....yA5oQ4dUDCAY&uact=5
Not sure where the adverb usage actually comes from (etymologically...) [neutrinos_shadow, Nov 13 2019]


       I attended my online Friday morning group of blocked artists yesterday, and 3 of them have their PHd's in economic related studies. They got to takling about all kinds of variables, and ifinities and on and on. I was lost. I had to nod and pretend like I had some notion of what they were discussing to appear smarter than I am.   

       This idea is having the same effect on me. I'm just sitting here nodding while life goes right over my head. Please, my neck is getting sore, help.   

       (And why, pretel, isn't the wall the vertical floor, I ask you?)
blissmiss, Nov 02 2019

       //blocked artists// What, exactly, is a blocked artist?   

       As to the idea, I can't be sure but it seems to relate to an epistemological ontology predicated on emphatic noumena.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 02 2019

       //What, exactly, is a blocked artist?// Something to do with diet, one would imagine.
FlyingToaster, Nov 02 2019

       I can see this being useful for computer learning of quite short sentences. Two or more sharp words could be too unrelated and destroy the context though.   

       What would probably happen is that any short sentences containing overally general words, or any longer sentences with some mix of sharp+sharp or sharp+general items would require that the computer ask questions until a sharper or sharpest word is provided instead.
4and20, Nov 02 2019

       There's a limit to the value of more specific words. One trades the cost of understanding immediately and precisely for the cost of remembering unusual words. Furthermore generally communication should be suited to the less intelligent people. We already use longer and more specific words when the audience is expected to be smarter or better educated in the topic at hand. One tells a child "that's not good for you", an adult "that has too much saturated fat" and a doctor "The combination of carbohydrates and saturated fat has been shown to cause atherosclerosis"
Voice, Nov 02 2019

       Or, in Sturton's case "Are you going to finish that?"
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 02 2019

       With a child's brain being more absorptive and plastic, there's probably a psychological sharp term, wouldn't it be more intelligent to say "That combination of carbohydrates and saturated fat has been shown to cause atherosclerosis" to the child. For population as a whole. But since your also teaching context, a lot of extra information via other means is needed.   

       [blissmiss] I consider the word 'floor' to be sharper because it has fewer uses than 'wall'. Wall seems more generic, used more widely. It's like saying a box is a crate. A specific box can be crate but not all boxes are crates.   

       Admittedly, on a space station. the walls are vertical floors but this is a specific case not a definition for all floors. The sharpest would be a new word for a vertical floor and the most generic would be the word 'there'.
wjt, Nov 02 2019

       Admittedly, If the context is perfectly known, a generic word can be very, very sharp.
wjt, Nov 02 2019

       //less uses than 'wall'// fewer uses.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 02 2019

       gr: changed //epistemological ontology predicated on emphatic noumena.// There's A sharps and B sharps. Definitely an A sharp statement.   

       I think specificity is diluted a bit when trying to make an explanation with a wide context.
wjt, Nov 03 2019

       MaxwellBuchanan, see link.   

       And I'm still not understanding this idea. So I shall continue to say "ahhhh", and nod. What the hell.
blissmiss, Nov 03 2019

       [wjt], you might find it interesting to look at ontologies, I think they’re relevant to this idea, naming and identifying relationships between concepts.   

       You might say that “floor” and “wall” are subsets of “planar structural element”, so are lower- level/more specific. At the top level you’ll have something like “all things”.   

       These models can be useful for machine knowledge systems, but also because if you’re forced to precisely define a concept, you find the edge conditions: e.g. is a wall necessarily planar? Is a floor necessarily structural - and that gives some ideas for novel solutions. Could you have a non- structural floor? It wouldn’t be very useful, so structural integrity is probably a fundamental requirement of all floors. Could you have a non- planar floor? Well, it could be quite weird, but not necessarily impossible- so perhaps it’s a solution to a problem: so new idea - non-planar floors.
Frankx, Nov 03 2019

       How do you define a word? Written orthography only abstractly mirrors spoken utterances, and divisions between semantic units is heavily language-dependent. There is also a whole level of communication that is non-verbal. "The exterior wall of the bathroom" is sharper than "wall", but <points> is sharper still.   

       This idea and subsequent discussion is also very noun-centric. At a certain point you run up against problems of object boundaries and identities. One brick does not form a wall; two bricks neither. At what point does a linear arrangement of bricks become a wall? Does the act of walling require an actual wall, or can one wall something in with non-wall objects? The fire wall on my computer does not involve planar structural elements.
pocmloc, Nov 03 2019

       Sounds like you need some Education, [poc]; maybe even a bit of Thought Control, too.   

       We have a special offer on Dark Sarcasm today, if you're interested.
8th of 7, Nov 03 2019

       Just not in the classroom...
neutrinos_shadow, Nov 03 2019

       //see link// Hmm. Seems a bit woo-woo to me. What happens when someone unlocks the door to their inner artist, only to discover there's nobody there?   

       //new idea - non-planar floors// Old houses have them. Buggers to tile.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 03 2019

       //Buggers to tile//   

       Tile to tree-frog   

       Your move
pocmloc, Nov 03 2019

       Elephant & Castle.
8th of 7, Nov 03 2019

       Tree-frog to zebrafish. I win.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 03 2019

       No, you're in Nidd. No parallels after a diagonal.
8th of 7, Nov 03 2019

       [Frankx] Pushing the meaning envelope of a word will just dilute the current meanings specificity. Look at Physicists and their word spin. Why name something to confuse a concept?. A word conveys information dependent of it's meaning the more pointy that information is, the more specific. A new concept should have a new word.   

       /At what point does a linear arrangement of bricks become a wall// On completion payment else it's a job, or work.There's probably no specific word for a partially constructed brick wall.   

       [pocmloc] Context is important because of multiple meaning such as 'fire wall'. Each separate sharp value will be down graded when it is not the main use meaning of the word meaning. In the computing context, fire isn't a fire. Everything has a level of specificity even pointing. Even words that construct grammar can be grouped and rated against each other, even if some have the same value.   

       [blissmiss] Sorry I can't explain this word valuing system very well. Don't worry, this idea might just not be for you.All good. Probably, the true target for the thought might not even be on this site and be a conversation of a conversation.
wjt, Nov 06 2019

       //No, you're in Nidd.// But I have a Get Out of Nidd Free card.   

       As to the idea, I now sort of get it. But can you, [wjt], give an example of how it might be useful? Also, doesn't the specificity of a word depend on context? For instance, the word "deck" might be quite nonspecific without context (a ship's deck; a deck of cards; a deck of records), but if I'm talking about ship-building it becomes more specific. And if I'm talking about (say) the area where cars park on a particular ferry, then "deck" becomes more specific still, especially if I say "THE deck".   

       Likewise, "alchohol" might be quite broad ("they don't serve alcohol" - any alcoholic drink); somewhat broad ("a hydrcarbon with a primary OH group is an alcohol") or very specific ("this wine's alcohol content is 14%" - i.e. it means ethanol).
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 06 2019

       In English, multiple short words are strung together to create this context. "alcohol" => "some alcohol" =>"the alcohol" => "this alcohol". Other languages manage this kind of variety through inflection, case endings, mutation, eclipsis, etc.   

       As I said above, how do you define a word?
pocmloc, Nov 06 2019

       // There's probably no specific word for a partially constructed brick wall. //   

       Not a single word, no; but definitely a phrase: "contract dispute" ...
8th of 7, Nov 06 2019

       Ha ha. It's called a ha ha.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 06 2019

       //Likewise, "alchohol" might be quite broad//
That's the trouble with English; lots of meanings for the same word, lots of words with the same meaning... it's a mess, really. (I'm not multi-lingual enough to know if other languages are any better, but I suspect some (er, most...) are.)
neutrinos_shadow, Nov 06 2019

       When trying to explain or say something the context is usually fixed, except here, where clever context changes are prized.   

       [Max] A wine with 14% methanol would be very unnatural. I was thinking speeches, where sharps could cut between emotive waffle and the needed pointy say. Sharps might also help getting short accurate sentences. A thesaurus could have word sharp values for their co factored contexts.   

       Really, the idea came out of trying, long ago, to decide between two synonyms.There are two different words so must have at least two accurate uses.
wjt, Nov 10 2019

       I was directed by some speaker giving a speech on speech yesterday, to no longer use the word "just". She said it diminishes everything it refers to. I think I get that.
blissmiss, Nov 10 2019

       // so must have at least two accurate uses. //   

       No, because usage is context-sensetive. There is no absolute meaning in a human language; you only get it in proper (machine) languages, where AND, OR, XOR have very specific, tightly defined and unambiguous meanings.   

       Machine languages have to be incapable of ambiguity.
8th of 7, Nov 10 2019

       I don't think that would be a just decision though, to follow that advice.
pocmloc, Nov 10 2019

       A word can still be grey, it's just that for some contexts it is a more specific shade of grey than it's other contextual implementations.
wjt, Nov 13 2019

       //no longer use the word "just". She said it diminishes everything it refers to.//   

       "I've just won the Nobel Prize"
"I'm just about to leave"
"It's just after 5pm"
"I've just got here"
"There's just one left"
"She's just advised me not to use the word "just"
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 13 2019

       "I've just won the Nobel Prize" - this is an acceptable usage, but needs an !
"I'm just about to leave" - just -> almost
"It's just after 5pm" - just -> a bit
"I've just got here" - just -> recently
"There's just one left" - just -> only
"She's just advised me not to use the word "just" - just -> recently
I think [pocmloc] did it better, using the completely other definition of "just" (as in "morally correct").
neutrinos_shadow, Nov 13 2019

       Justly then?
wjt, Nov 15 2019

       // "I've just won the Nobel Prize"   

       So you didn't win anything else?
tatterdemalion, Nov 15 2019

       ^ Obviously not, if just means barely.
wjt, Nov 15 2019

       Just won it , rather than something more exciting like theft or fraud.
pocmloc, Nov 15 2019

       [ns], most of your examples replace "just" with a weaker word or uglier phrase. "I've recently got here" could be in the last 24 hours. "I've just got here" means you've stepped out of the car a minute ago. "It's just after 5pm" is eleganter than "it's a bit after 5pm".
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 15 2019

       [MaxwellBuchanan]; yes, pretty much. Although (ironically...) "eleganter" is, itself, inelegant...
neutrinos_shadow, Nov 16 2019

       "Dimished do it!"
"Diminished fucking do it!"

       I suggest you reach for "just" as for a scouring pad, when something needs to be "diminished" by the removal of some distracting accretions.   

       If you're "giving a speech" (viz., a monologue), then you can avoid it by not allowing irrelevances to accrete in the first place. However, this excludes dialogue, and also excludes even monologues which try to address other points of view.   

       Therefore (perhaps unfairly) I suspect the speech expert quoted by [bliss] of not being such a good listener.
pertinax, Nov 16 2019

       You just hit the nail on the head, perty. hahahaha, that doesn't dimenish it, it actually seems to enhance. So you are right. Now if I could just, hahahaha, remember who said that.
blissmiss, Nov 17 2019


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