Artificial language

It is election time in Germany and thus time for many people to read political manifestos. The German University in Hohenheim has analyzed the language used in those manifestos and came to the conclusion: they are impossible to understand for an average human being and need to be translated into some meaningful language so that people can understand it. ( Source here in German ).

An intellectual is a man who takes more words than necessary to tell more than he knows.

Amazing. Why do people chose some sort of artificial and unnecessarily complicated language when communicating ? How many presentations have you seen where you just would say: “Häh ?”

Is it the attempt to create some sort of “professional appearance” when choosing such  a language with over-complicated words and monster sentences, spaghetti charts and tons of details nobody really want to look at ?

Laws are another good example. Essential for our culture they should be easy to understand by everyone. But because of the language chosen to write those a new profession has been created to translate those laws into another over-complicated language: lawyer.

It is always amazing to me how something as simple as communication between people can be made so in-efficient.

This is part of the challenge in the Cognitive Era: translating data into meaning. Thus I like how this Watson-driven robot talks to a person in this video “IBM Watson Engagement Advisor ”.


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