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On the Origin of Language

An interesting article on the origin of language in Nautilus.


April 26, 2017

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That was quite interesting, although I am very mistrustful of the author's assumption that dreams are trying to tell us something, rather than being the manifestations of routine recalibrations in the brain's management of data. This also makes me mistrustful of the author's understanding of neurology in general.

But consider: within 50 years we shall probably be able to communicate directly using thought, through brain-computer interfaces, and no longer have need to compress the full richness of the concepts that we wish to convey into the straitjacket of language. The question will have come full circle; the people of the future will possibly consider our use of languages to be as limited a form of expression as we consider Neolithic art; they will probably still use them for some time, but expressing something in speech or writing will be like describing a novel in a telegram. The downside, of course, will be a great loss of poetic artifice.

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