How language influences a problem (fun with babelfish!)

Language is the way we represent the world to each-other, it is how we communicate our map of the world to other people. Hence, the way we formulate our problems is important for us too. So today, one of my friends suggested the following experiment: Go to babelfish and put in your problem. Make it a nice description of what is bugging you. Then, translate it into another language (I suggest Japanese), and once translated, translate that back into English. The result will be a new sentence that will make you laugh about your problem, simply because it sounds so strange – and once you laugh about your problem, it stops being one. Try it out yourself, and let me know what happens for you…

For more information about language, read this

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One thought on “How language influences a problem (fun with babelfish!)

  1. Joanna Young says:

    Isn’t it amazing how good ideas just go circulating quickly and easily round the universe?!

    Your blog tempted me to try this one again and I typed in an old chestnut “I don’t have enough money just now”, then experimented with English to Japanese and back.

    Not only did the answer make me smile…..”Furthermore the sufficient for me exactly now there is no gold”……

    it also woke up the story that was lying in the problem……..

    So…….if no gold ….for me…….exactly now…….I find myself starting to wonder….if not exactly now…..when exactly it will be….. and since there is clearly gold, but just not yet, I start to wonder where it might be buried, and where I could start looking and suddenly I am not thinking about ‘not having enough money’ at all, but when and where and how I will find the gold….and a whole new story opens up in front of me.

    All that from one simple trans……lation!

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