Monday, December 11, 2006


"Shaka, when the walls fell"

"Tenser, said the Tensor" is the blog of a linguistics grad student and science fiction reader, who often writes about linguistics in science fiction (naturally), so when I saw this morning that he'd written about the Star Trek: TNG episode "Darmok", which I've always seen as one of the most interesting examinations of linguistics in science fiction (the televised variety, anyway), I was definitely interested in what he had to say.

Suffice it to say that the episode might not work as well as I thought it had. That said, the discussion of Tamarese-A and Tamarese-B touches on the one nagging nitpick I'd always had with the episode, but he goes further into examining the theoretical workings of the Universal Translator and what it suggests about functional mechanical telepathy. An interesting examination well worth checking out.

Yep. I remember reading Raphael Carter's page on the episode many years ago, and sending an e-mail that raised many of the same points that Tensor raises (although not in as amusing a manner).
Thanks so much for that link, Chris. It's fascinating to find another linguistics/SF person around!
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