Imagine a sentence that is constructed backwards to infinity.

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by davidelkins, Mar 14, 2017.

  1. someguy1 Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    346
    Mathematically, that's what a real number is. It's a string of digits whose finite initial segments converge on the "meaning" of the number. The sequence \(1, 1.4, 1.41, 1.414, 1.4142, \dots\) converges to its meaning, which is \(\sqrt{2}\).

    It's not hard to see that if instead of decimal digits we replaced the symbols with the 26 characters of the English language, or the 1,114,112 characters of the Unicode character set (I looked that up, it's the actual number), it would not make any difference. It could still be coded in decimal, or even binary.

    So in a sense, the mathematical real numbers are the prototypical model of an endless sequence of objects or events whose meaning is to be found only in the limit, and not in any individual member of the sequence.
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2017
    Yazata likes this.
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  3. The God Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,546
    So you know Urdu? You can construct a sentence backwards to infinity, by adding words one by one.
     
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  5. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    24,074
    An infinite sentence in English, even one of endless repeats of some simple phrase, would not necessarily converge to one meaning even pointwise, as the meanings of the individual words can change according to words appearing later. And this can happen in a couple of different ways.

    Gertrude Stein made a point of that, famously demonstrating one of them: "A rose is a rose is a rose is a rose"

    Here's one demonstrating a different kind of non-convergence (if we ignore the likelihood that the first "Rose" in Stein's demo was somebody's name):
    Buffalo. Buffalo buffalo. Buffalo buffalo buffalo. Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo. Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo. (And so forth)
     
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  7. Counter Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    437
    Terrifying!
     
  8. river Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    9,182
    The thread been tangentisizisitised. Fun . Just made that word up !!!.

    Imagine not just a sentence , but all we know .

    This thread reminds me of the book , The Final Encyclopedia .
     
  9. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    6,611
    This reminds me of that teaser:

    "...had had had had had had had had..."

    This has had punctuation removed but is otherwise part of a sensical paragraph.
     
  10. river Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    9,182
    How ?
     
  11. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    6,611
    What? No takers?

    All right.

    On the last question in the grammar test, Mary had had 'had', whereas Billy had had 'had had'. 'Had had' had had a better effect on the teacher.
     
  12. river Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    9,182
    And therefore ...?
     
  13. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    6,611
    What part are you failing to understand?
    It was a teaser. You asked for the solution. I provided.
     
  14. river Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    9,182
    Your point , in the end .
     

Share This Page