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Visual language and thinking visually

  1. Feb 24, 2004 #1
    I'd like to ask for some opinions about what I've been developing. It's about visual language and thinking visually. Originally I was just trying to satisfy my own curiosity, if I could create many different kind of geometrical figures, which could act as an useful tools for my thoughts, but I accidently innovated (read: I re-created the wheel) something else. Or is there really anything new and unique in ìt?


    Visual type of thinking has many benefits. It is often more painless than "usual" kind of thinking. It is also very creative kind of thinking, which easily creates new and fresh thoughts, that you wouldn't have thought at all when thinking "in typical ways". Small change in a figure and you might realize something totally new. It is also a lot easier to transfer your thoughts to others by using visual form of presentation.
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 25, 2004 #2
    I think in concepts. That is, most of my thoughts or at least the essence of them contains no sensory medium (like "inner eye," "inner ear") It is a good question. More people should ask it. Also "how do you remember?" I once discovered that some people remember in a 3rd person perspective. Isn't that strange? I believe you can drastically raise your intelligence by changing your thinking style. For example "thinking in English" with your inner ear, is a highly inefficient thought syntax. Far removed from raw concepts. I tend to do well of specail items in IQ tests, meant for the gifted though. I even designed my own visual-spacial test. It is very simple, but very difficult. It is at www.whitesalamnder.com.
  4. Feb 25, 2004 #3


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    There are some people who use pictures for communications. The Chinese language uses pictographs in its alphabet. There are advantages and disadvantages to it. Complicated ideas can be represented with few characters, but it is difficult to translate things into Chinese. For centuries, this was not a problem, as things were much more likely to be translated from Chinese.

    There are many otherwise intelligent autistic people who need to use pictographs to communicate. Some can understand spoken words, but can not produce them. Pressuring them to use an abstract language is sometimes painfully frustrating to them.

    Feynman diagrams, used to describe particle physics, dramatically simplified the expression of reactions. Previously, a complicated notation more ammenable to mainstream mathematics had been used. It was so difficult to follow, that even brilliant minds had difficulty making use of it. They spent all their brainpower just comprehending what the equations meant, and had little left for what could be learned from them.

    Pictographic languages tend to be effective as jargon. They are useful in a closed group. One skilled in the language can use it to convey ideas to others who know it much more easily than with words. Think of a programmer using a flowchart to talk to another programmer. Then think of writing an essay to describe a program instead. The problem with pictographs is that they tend to be less portable.

  5. Feb 25, 2004 #4

    My "flash images" are ment to be followed by an explanation for them. The figures are not ment to be understood by only looking at them long enough.

    There are some things, I haven't thought through. Like what kind of syntax would this visual language have, if that is about to be developed? I'm sure I didn't mean it to be something like blisssymbolics. There would only be one figure built from different elements and it is suppose to be understood in a flash (I don't want interpreting of a figure slow down my thinking and make my thoughts wander around). It could be that I thought, that there could be several genres of graphical elements, that are used with certain kind of figures / ideas / thoughts. I really don't know yet.

    At this point I must remind, that they are originally ment as tools for my own mind. Originally I didn't mean them to be shown to others, but while developing it (and it's still version 0.346 alpha or something like that), I began to see, that they could be used that way too. So, basically my "flash images" are mix of more than 1 idea. It is kind of base for somebody with enough interest to think it further (with or without me).


    It's funny how many people tend to word "concept" in wrong sense. They use it like "concept" would be synonym to "word". Seems like atleast we both use it in correct sense. Words are dangerous.. they have tendendy to fool you in every crossroad. Ludwig Wittgenstein might have something to say about this, if he was still alive.

    I'll take your cross cercle test someday. I once went to neurological tests, and I was told that my ability to think visually was way above avarage, but your test didn't (like you said) seem to be too easy. Or then that neuropsychologist just wanted to be nice to me and I'm actually just stupid. On the other hand I was not very good with words there. I forgot too easily stories or set of words told to me, but I could easily remember complex geometrical figures. I seem to think most of the things visually. Even making simple additions, I notice tendency to solve mathematical problems by seeing numbers in my mind (quite slow actually). I often found it hard to recall the words I'm looking for. Thinking, however, is (often, in many cases) easier for me, if I do it visually. Well, that would mean everyone else, too, in some sense.
  6. Feb 25, 2004 #5
    Before we learn how to speak, our mind operates on a different "thought syntax," in my opinion a 1-3 year old's capacity for abstract thought is so much higher than an adult's-- of course, they have the disadvantage that they are new the the world and don't have all the means to express their intelligence. It might be obvious that a mind that young is lightyears ahead of an adult's mind in some respects-- for example, they LEARN LANGUAGE starting form nothing, in only a couple of short yearss! what adult can do that? Beut after they lean language, their :thought syntax" shifts. This is why it is difficult to retrieve memories from before we could speak-- because we stored them differently than we do now.. in a differnt thought language.

    No one has taken my crop cercle test yet... I'm not even sure if all the questions are valid! Some are very difficult (I could not solve then if I hadn't made them). But part B is the most interesting. There are a handful of items in both parts that I am very proud of-- I know they are valid and the logic is very sound. These are # 4, 16, 19, (part II) 3, 6, 7, 8
  7. Mar 1, 2004 #6
    I'll explain my my idea some more by explaining 7 of the figures in more detail (see those "Extra information" -parts):


    Some useless excerpts from them:

    "..you can't ever be aware of everything. Only part of it at the same time. We could say that you can think 4 things at the same time, but if you want to think one more thing, you have to / you will drop something out of the stage / consciousness..."

    "See that small piece? Think it as a lie. When you glue that lie with that bigger piece, they will form unbroken wheel, that will start rolling downhill along that line. Without that piece, wheel is broken and it can not roll."

    "Think this figure as a vegatable with roots. When you grab it, you'll get only above ground level -part and roots will stay on ground. For most people it would require too much effort to get the roots also, so they won't bother."

    "This one has 2 already intruduced "flash images" in it. One would be required to understand both of them first, before he can understand this one.."
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