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blazar (7356)

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Journal of blazar (7356)

Friday August 01, 2008
08:39 AM


Ok, it's been ages since I wrote here last: at some point I had claimed that I had always been half-hearted about blogs in general, but then I had started using the journal to write quite about anything that would spring to mind. The next step has been that I started (somewhat) compulsively writing in my "new" italian/bilingual blog: it's actually a tumblelog, which should make for a slightly different use than a typical blog; but I also use it as a generic blogging platform, which completely suits my needs... (Indeed this article will be imported there!)

Whatever, back to the point: perlative! I stumbled upon this term by means of the aforementioned blog, since someone else had mentioned a strangely (well, for me - for an expert linguist things would be different, I presume) named case, precisely abessive. "Abessive?!?" Who had ever heard it, let alone imagine it could exist? Indeed, checking Wikipedia for cases, I found out that there are so many more than those I studied in Latin! To some extent I expected so, but really, not so many! Amongst these, one called perlative, which sounds so perlish: it

"expresses that something moved 'through', 'across', or 'along' the referent of the noun that is marked."

Indeed, it is not very common, since:

"The case is found in the West Australian Kuku-Yalanji language and in Tocharian."

Whatever, it would be nice if one could find a use for a perlative case in Perl 6, or create some dialect of Perl 6 which has cases and in particular allows a perlative one, possibly with a very perlish (i.e. pragmatic, syncretic, dwimmy) semantics: Perl in general has no cases, and while I see their usefulness in natural languages -for they tend to allow for free word order, which I like- I don't see how could they fit well in its syntax, even with some modifications.

*NIX shells do have a bare minimum of declensions, but that's a whole another story: the syntax is indeed handy and with the possibility of using the accusative form of the noun in the same statement it is one rare case in which it turns out to be more terse than Perl's for a similar semantics; but then Perl achieves a higher degree of combined terseness-power in quite about everything else that there's no competition.

(Incidentally, before someone points out, yes: I am aware of Lingua::Romana::Perligata.)

Both in Italian and in English we have no declensions either, but for some pronouns. Well, I for one, would like more pronouns in Perl 6, independently of all this madness of a meditation. And then there may be some kind flexion applicated to them. Of course one may imagine that even if so, cases should be at most very common ones like nominative and accusative. But perlative? How could we give a semantically useful significance to a syntax "expressing that something moved 'through', 'across', or 'along' the referent of the pronoun that is marked?" Well, perhaps all this may be useful for some Aspect oriented feature. Which may also be not so bad, in general. In which case the "something" above would be probably any kind of data, and the construction could turn out useful to monitor it, or otherwise manage how it is transferred.

Well: end ay crazy brainstorming! ;)

Monday November 05, 2007
04:24 PM

What a strange kind of... spam?!?

I'm not even sure how to call it... I have a Google Alert for err... well... something, and one day it popped up a strange page which I just couldn't reach as it basically only did a redirect to something else, which in turn "failed" - bringing to my home. But downloading it with wget I saw the source and appearently the string I was after was actually in: more precisely the page's content seemed to be built with fragments from other pages, one of which containing my target. It also seems to be regenerated dynamically. For the interested, the url is I'm just curious what all this thing is about...

Saturday October 27, 2007
08:11 AM

Perl standard

A recent clpmisc post (link @ GG) resulted in a largely obnoxious and long thread in which amongst other things people talked about the already oft discussed question re whether Perl should be standardized or not.

In a post (link @ GG) I just read today, Peter J. Holzer -in reply to a mention of which Larry Rosler's famous "ANSI Standard Perl?" interview- pretty much settles the down the question:

The argument about the "marketing value" of a standard has some merit. But a standard is neither necessary nor sufficient for success, even in corporate and governmental environments.
There is no Windows ISO standard, no Java ISO standard, and yet these are used very widely. OTOH there is an ISO (or at least ANSI) CPU standard (for a subset of the SPARC ABI, IIRC) which nobody cares about and I think the Pascal or BASIC ISO standards are similarily inconsequential.

Successful standards (like C90 or POSIX) are developed after there have been multiple implementations and when the implementors actually want to converge on a single standard. In the case of an open source interpreted language like perl5 there is little value in a standard. There is only one implementation, a second implementation is unlikely to happen (porting is almost always easier than rewriting from scratch) if it happens compatibility is probably only a minor goal.

Saturday October 13, 2007
08:19 AM


I've just read a popular science article about teleportation. Interesting reading apart, as an introducion they say:

Admit it -- at one point or another we've all dreamed of being able to teleport. How much easier and less stressful life would be if, at the flick of a switch, we could whisk ourselves direct from home to work without the intervening two hours crushed onto public transport, face wedged into the armpit of an overweight man with a sweat gland problem.

Now, I fear that should a public system of teleportation for people and objects come into being, they would manage to arrange it so that you would end up having your face wedged into the armpit of an overweight man with a sweat gland problem, while waiting to be beamed up. And when you arrive to destination, it would still be!

Wednesday October 10, 2007
06:57 PM

My first time...

...uploading something on YouTube. Ok, not that much of a venture: all the kids out there do it all the time. But seriously I made it more difficult than it would have been. Since I took the clips with my camera, but they portray a friend of mine's cat pets, I was overly concerned with privacy. And I changed all settings... just to change them back to the defaults when she told me it was ok to make them public, allow comments, and so on.

In case anyone wants to see them, here they are!

Back to real world: I'm going now on a daily basis to give them some food and make sure they're fine. They've just arrived and two days ago they were still crying for their mom. Now my friend's home is already their territory, and they're so tender and so funny, playing all the time. What a wonderful life! Eating, sleeping, playing, pooping. That's it! Oh, and tons of caresses and fondling. I'm almost jealous...

Technically, I'm doing a favour to this friend of mine who is so concerned about her new little acquaintances, but really I'm also benefitting much from this engagement, in this otherwise so horribly depressed and painful period. They speak of pet therapy. I'm beginning to understand... although I've always been and remain skeptical about "cheap" substitutes for human relationships some people turn their love for animals into. (This is not the case with my friend and will never ever be with me.)

Tuesday October 09, 2007
03:34 PM

Will it also eventually flourish?

Love is patient, love is kind, it is not envious. Love does not brag, it is not puffed up.
1 Corinthians 13:4

Thursday September 20, 2007
03:45 AM

Pea^H^Hiece of mind

sqrt(2)/2 * ( |PD> + i|DC> )

Tuesday September 18, 2007
02:07 PM

It's always a pleasure

It's always a pleasure when $Larry answers a post of yours. Especially because if he does then he has something interesting and instructive to say. That's what just happened to me. The "downside", if we really want to call it so, is that now I have read through it all... no I mean: reread through it all, because I did already read it, but I mean really reread it many times till I'm sure to grasp the many points that are now still above the top of my head...

Thursday September 13, 2007
05:39 PM

*Plonk*ed by Abigail... :(

Probably by far the least of my problems in life, but not really pleasant either and yet having somehow to do with Perl so perhaps appropriate to this site for once...

I've been plonked by Perl hacker extraordinaire Abigail!

Lately, I reported or literally copied -with proper attributions!- stuff that I regarded as interesting from clpmisc (link @ GG) to PerlMonks and vice-versa. Incidentally, I'm not doing this on a routinely basis or an in an obtrusive way -I plan on doing that whenever I stumble on an interesting thread, which is to say not too often- but while this was well received well in one direction and appearently not bad in the other one, today it was not by Abigail (link @ GG) who wrote:

Is there a point of reposting perlmonks threads to Usenet? People who are interested in perlmonks already read it. People who don't, well, they don't and there's no need to repost for them.

I (IMHO) kindly replied:

I *do* think that there's a point, for people interested in *Perl* who may like one interface and dislike the other one. And I think there's a point reposting stuff from one place to the other if it contributes to Perl knowledge or is otherwise intriguing. For the future I'll stick to include a [PM] "tag" in the subject for those like you who will want to filter such posts out a priori.

But the further followup is was a:



For completeness I'm also reporting my reply to Charlton Wilbur who also supported Abigail's position:

On 13 Sep 2007 11:39:28 -0400, Charlton Wilbur
<> wrote:

>If Perlmonks is lacking in competent and knowledgeable posters, then
>perhaps it's time to reexamine their choice of interfaces.  And if

Well, of course if I see that many people agree with you and Abigail,
then I will stop doing so. Not that I do it *routinely* nor that I've
done that so many times...

However PM is *not* lacking in competent and knowledgeable posters, in
fact did the OP in this particular example receive quite a lot of
*sensible* answers.

Yet the problem seemed interesting enough to be shared: that it was
posted there is somewhat of circumstance. If I had stumbled in it by
randomly browsing the web and still found it interesting, then I would
have posted it here as well.

>they're not so lacking, reposting Perlmonks threads here and clpm
>threads there serves only to annoy.

Well it may be and may not be. I copied there the content of a thread
posted here some months ago (with proper attributions) and at
<> you can read:

: ++ for bringing that here, so I read it :-)
: I didn't know about @CARP_NOT, so I learned something new today.

Also, Uri Guttman and xhoster took a shoot at the actual problem, so
they must have found it interesting.

Honestly, I don't want to bother anyone. Do you think that
occasionally posting here interesting stuff from PM with a suitable
tag in the Subject for you and others to easily filter it out would be
so bad?

(Further reply and discussion ongoing, for the interested.)

Thursday September 06, 2007
12:29 PM

She's gone...

She's gone

But it wasn't the KKK that took her away

Just a misunderstanding

A long series of misunderstandings

Perhaps deliberate ones?

Apparent inability to grab the concept of the expression "I love you"

I've never ever said that, was it not the case

In fact to only three women did I say it

But it was not enough

And now, silence...

Current soundtrack:

Hello darkness, my old friend,
Ive come to talk with you again,
Because a vision softly creeping,
Left its seeds while I was sleeping,
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence.

In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone,
neath the halo of a street lamp,
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of
A neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence.

And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more.
People talking without speaking,
People hearing without listening,
People writing songs that voices never share
And no one deared
Disturb the sound of silence.

Fools said I, you do not know
Silence like a cancer grows.
Hear my words that I might teach you,
Take my arms that I might reach you.
But my words like silent raindrops fell,
And echoed
In the wells of silence

And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon God they made.
And the sign flashed out its warning,
In the words that it was forming.
And the signs said, the words of the prophets
Are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls.
And whisperd in the sounds of silence.