10/02/2009

applied Lemnology

The brave scholar Prof. Trottelreiner, figuring in many of Lem's stories, explains in "The futurological congress" a new forecasting method: "Linguistic futurology investigates the future through the transformational possibilities of the language. A man can control only what he comprehends, and comprehend only what he is able to put into words. By examining future stages in the evolution of language we come to learn what discoveries, changes and social revolutions the language will be capable, some day, of reflecting." I took that falsely as witty irony of an sf-writer on his genre - now the MIT seems to turn it into reality. An other experimental materialization of an idea from one of Lem's novels is this experiment.

At this occasion here the link to a scan of Lem's favorite book, poems by Rilke. In his autobiography, Lem desribes how he studied a lovingly made copy of it in hand-made paper and the german language in the midst of war in Warsaw.