A new IAL user writes on his experiences with Esperanto, Ido, Lingua Franca Nova, Occidental, Novial, etc. etc.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

This is one of the most interesting blogs on IALs I've read in a while, by a person who is fairly new to the world of IALs (international auxiliary languages) and has been taking his time in choosing just the right one. In today's post it looks like he has decided on the one to concentrate on this year (I won't spoil the surprise). The previous one is also quite interesting in that it has a rough definition of success vs. failure for constructed languages, which goes something like this:

- If the language had a fairly large user base before the advent of the internet, and still has failed to attract a great deal of attention by now then it can be seen as a failure (i.e. it had enough promoters that if the language appealed to the average person it would have succeeded by now already)
- If the language has a larger user base (maybe a thousand or more?) and is able to maintain this then it may not be a failure, but if there are no immediate prospects for growth then there probably won't be any in the future either
- If the language had a small user base before the advent of the internet, then it didn't have enough advocates in the beginning for it to get a fair chance, and it will only be after it gets a fair shake that one can tell whether it will be a success or not. Languages like Occidental, Novial and Latino sine Flexione go here.

On top of all this though is something Steve Rice calls the "IAL epiphany", where the whole world (or a lot of it) becomes used to the idea of IALs themselves, and stops treating them as weird artificial or foreign entities. A more positive overall impression of IALs by the rest of the world would certainly change the situation quite a bit.

In addition to that there is also Ido, which has a special category all of its own: not only is it a language of its own, but it also happens to be a reformed version of Esperanto so curious and/or disappointed Esperantists will often learn it as well.

Let's borrow from DragonLance and see how well the description of the Majere twins fits the two languages.


cafaristeir said...

Sellamat Dave !

His analysis seems to be biased in favour of LFN. If a conlang is "good" because of its familiarity (in this case, the romance-based vocabulary), why shouldn't this positive feeling apply to the conlang's derivational system too ? This should thus give an advantage to Occidental over LFN.

데이빛 / Mithridates said...

Well, he did say that Occidental was "extremely impressive", and looking at the post it looks like it was a very close second place. The only things against choosing Occidental seem to be an already existing like of LFN, and the fact that Occidental can come across as a bit old, so something can definitely be done about that second reason. Perhaps a site like Ning could be used. Something like this:


cafaristeir said...

Hey Dave ! Reguarda denov su blog ! Il ha apprendet Occidental med tu traduction in anglese del cursu de Matejka e ha forsan changeat su opinion !

lyzazel said...

These "best conlang" debates do not help the cause at all.

Debating is awesome but they should at least choose one language and go with it. I would suggest everybody to go with Esperanto since it is the biggest one so far.

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