Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Odors as Words chirp chirp

With time to merely skim
rather than read in depth
Jaron Lanier's book
You Are Not a Gadget: A Manifesto
Alfred A. Knopf, NY 2010
caught my attention.

With titles such as the following
for those who know me/my work, is it any wonder?

Editing is Sexy; Creativity is Natural

Were Odors the First Words

Digital Peasant Chic

Paring the Circle

What will Money Be?

What is a Person?

From Images to Odors

and quotes such as

A smell is a synecdoche: a part standing in for the whole.

Perhaps the grammar of language is rooted in the grammar of smell.

In addition to the normal language we all use to describe objects and activities, we reserve a special language to express extreme emotion or displeasure, to warn others to watch out or get attention. This language is called swearing.

One of Charles Darwin's most compelling evolutionary speculations was that music might have preceded language.

Only a handful of species, including humans and certain birds, can make a huge and ever-changing variety of sounds.

Illustration: John Gould 1841 large ground-finch Geospiza magnirostris, one of Darwin's finches.
Charles and Chatham Islands, Galapagos Archipelago