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rinoceronteMy point is compare not only the source language and the target language, but to compare all existing languages (or at least, as many as possible).
I am impressed! To compare all existing languages is a herculean effort, because there are over 6,000 living languages in the world. Even if you limited your analysis to the natural languages with over a million first-language speakers (300+), or those with 3 million or more first-language speakers (170+), it would be a daunting task.

Have you chosen to focus on languages that represent the widest diversity of grammars? To me, that might be most interesting because it would reveal the range of the possibilities for human discourse.
AlpheccaStars
rinoceronteMy point is compare not only the source language and the target language, but to compare all existing languages (or at least, as many as possible).
I am impressed! To compare all existing languages is a herculean effort, because there are over 6,000 living languages in the world. Even if you limited your analysis to the natural languages with over a million first-language speakers (300+), or those with 3 million or more first-language speakers (170+), it would be a daunting task. Have you chosen to focus on languages that represent the widest diversity of grammars? To me, that might be most interesting because it would reveal the range of the possibilities for human discourse.
I did not say I was going to do that alone! Emotion: smile It should be done jointly. I myself have chosen for now two Slavic languages (which, to be frank, I never chose Emotion: smile, a German one, two Roman, and one pre-Indoeuropean. Although, frankly speaking, for many purposes to have learnt the grammar of a language (not the language itself) is enough. Thus you can implement the knowledge of dozens of languages.
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rinoceronteYours is rational, but contaminated with certain "viruses", spreading the system errors. As a system it virtually does not exist. The point is that it needs several patches to recover. Quite few. Otherwise the rest of the world - aspectful world - simply ignores the rules of the crooked and unapprehendable English grammar.
Given the pragmatic way that English propagates and evolves, it is, in my opinion, a rather fruitless and quixotic mission to attempt to apply such patches, even if they could be elucidated.

There is no equivalent to Microsoft's "automatic updates" which would download and install a new rule set or "virus patches" into the language centers of the brains of English language speakers. And to my knowledge, there is no correctional institution or language police tasked in apprehending a language, holding it for rehabilitation, and then re-releasing it into polite society.

Educational institutions would be ineffective. Most people are blissfully unaware of grammar; a minority of the remainder might vaguely recall it as a required academic exercise in secondary school or university. No one thinks about "the Grammar Rules" when they communicate, they simply communicate. Luckily for humans, our brains are wired so that we don't have to consciously apply a set of rules during the communication process. (At least for the mother tongue!)

A few scholars (or serious amateur hobbyists) might be interested. But you might not find fertile soil there either. You'd probably be hard pressed to find a more disputatious and cantankerous group of folks. It's just the nature of academics. A thick skin would be a distinct advantage!

Many English writers and scholars have tried to change the most illogical, difficult, perverse, and onerous part of English language - the spelling system. Mark Twain, George Bernard Shaw and other luminaries have tried and failed. The only soul who had a modicum of effect was Webster, and he succeeded only in driving an obnoxious wedge between American and British English.
Anyone who could wave a "magic grammar wand" and bestow upon English a consistent and reasonable set of spelling rules would be beatified as a literary saint in perpetuity.

A-Emotion: stars
AlpheccaStarsAnyone who could wave a "magic grammar wand"
On the other hand, anyone who had, or thought he had, a magic grammar wand would be considered a nut case! Emotion: rofl

CJ
AlpheccaStarsMany English writers and scholars have tried to change the most illogical, difficult, perverse, and onerous part of English language - the spelling system
English spelling system is an irrationality. It is not a system error. Annoying, but not fatal. While the errors I'm talking about transform English grammar into a settling tank for anyone to ladle out whatever he wants and interpret it however he likes.

The inevitable patches I'm talking about are:
1. Replacing the word "present" in "Present Perfect". Reason: this tense is not present.
2. Replacing the word "perfect" in "Perfect Continuous". Reason: these tenses are not perfect.
3. Renaming Continuous aspect. Reason: it does not reflect continuity.
4. Abolishing stative verbs rule. Reason: it was composed inside out and head over heels, but remains the main justification for Present Perfect to viciously render ongoing actions.

How much is it? How painful?

And believe me, just a short comment like "Oh yeah, it's worth considering" on this forum from a person with reputation like yours (or like the one of other local experts) would have an immediate effect throughout the world. Thousands of people would start considering it at least. Mark Twain's problem was that there was no Internet back then... Emotion: wink
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I think this has to stop!
We are not learning anything out of this anymore. If there's one thing I'm getting out of this, it's definitely the art of SARCASM. And I'm loving it! But unless it's the reason for the existence of EF, this has to end.
All I can say is, from what I learned in college when I was studying Wittgenstein, we can speak of anything if it has a logical reference in the real world. That's exacly the reason why we are allowed to speak of unicorns and Scylla because even though they have no empirical reference in the 'real' world, they effect a change in people.
For as long as there is a sensible correspondece between linguistic signals and human actions and emotions, this world will be sane.
And to dig deep into the grammar of every single expression is, I guess, really pointless. What do you get when you finally reach the basement of a linguistic system? You get enlightened, but what then? Should you liken this discovery to Plato's 'allegory of the cave'? Will you tell the whole world of the truth that you've found? Will you tell everybody that "Long time no see" is ungrammatical because according to the prototype grammar system 'the word no should be followed by a noun or adjective'?
All right! There's nothing wrong in prescribing! After all, it is from a single seemingly irrational prescription that most revolutions are made. And it is indeed noble to take on this challenge of rectifying an apparent global error single-handedly. Who knows, maybe at some point in this noble quest of yours, you'll find a partner just like CalifJim whose 'That's right' has a potential of becoming a religion. But good luck buddy!
And that's WITH ALL DUE RESPECT to the grammar gurus who have taken part in this thread and have made me want to enroll in a crash course in linguistics. Good Golly, all those -tivesare just flying around in this thread!Emotion: headbang Nosebleed
lagatawI think this has to stop!We are not learning anything out of this anymore. If there's one thing I'm getting out of this, it's definitely the art of SARCASM. And I'm loving it! But unless it's the reason for the existence of EF, this has to end.All I can say is, from what I learned in college when I was studying Wittgenstein, we can speak of anything if it has a logical reference in the real world. That's exacly the reason why we are allowed to speak of unicorns and Scylla because even though they have no empirical reference in the 'real' world, they effect a change in people.For as long as there is a sensible correspondece between linguistic signals and human actions and emotions, this world will be sane.And to dig deep into the grammar of every single expression is, I guess, really pointless. What do you get when you finally reach the basement of a linguistic system? You get enlightened, but what then? Should you liken this discovery to Plato's 'allegory of the cave'? Will you tell the whole world of the truth that you've found? Will you tell everybody that "Long time no see" is ungrammatical because according to the prototype grammar system 'the word no should be followed by a noun or adjective'?All right! There's nothing wrong in prescribing! After all, it is from a single seemingly irrational prescription that most revolutions are made. And it is indeed noble to take on this challenge of rectifying an apparent global error single-handedly. Who knows, maybe at some point in this noble quest of yours, you'll find a partner just like CalifJim whose 'That's right' has a potential of becoming a religion. But good luck buddy!
I wish you had said all that to Zeno Wendler in 1959 when he ruined the English grammar single-handedly. You can't call the pre-1959 grammar a proto-type one.

...although, thank you for this opinion of yours and for wishing me good luck. Good luck to you too.
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Alfecca, CalifJim and others, maybe with due respect to the thread-starter this conversation should be continued in another thread started by me, whenever the need be. Thanks.
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