The Future of Language

From Noise to Silence


Language has evolved from the noisy sounds our early ancestors used to make. Babbling, talking, writing ... brain-scanning & future mind-reading are all methods to "process our thoughts" with, that we can't handle otherwise. Without language, we would have been still extremely primitive. Yet, we are still partly animals, carrying the same instinct/primitive brain our ancestors had, that our language can devolve into noise again, whenever we act as primitively as they did.

At an early stage of our evolution, constant audiovisual stimulation had led to the development of human language, to satisfy basic communication needs. However, later, such primitive stimulation became less needed when verbal stimulation took over and people could hold a conversation: the spoken word became a sufficient medium to perceive the world and communicate with, with no need for eyes or ears except for their limited role of word recognition. It's better to move from there, than dwell thereon and regress to a bygone era of natural history.

At present, speech can even easily be replaced with writing most of the time, the latter being a better tool for creative thinking than speech is, assisting the brain in abstract reasoning and making up for its short memory and lack of space and inborn organizational skills.

The sum of entire human language, written/spoken/non-verbal, can be saved in dictionaries. Because of the development of data-saving technology, a future dictionary will be frighteningly monumental, more like a portable compact library, containing all the possible words, phrases, sentences and CONTEXTS a language has, connected by a complex web of mathematical and logical rules, where any meaning can be instantly evoked according to the data the dictionary receives.

A near-future language will contain elements from all world languages, within the body of a lingua franca that is simple and practical enough to absorb new additions and adapt to constant linguistic changes. English plays such role at present as the universal language. It will continue so, yet future English will be barely recognizable, as it continually evolves.

Meanwhile, other types of languages will improve alongside verbal language, that, though less competent, will have their own contexts where they best fit: sign language, shape language, color language, sound/pressure frequency, or any assigned value to any meaning where nothing but "numbers" are endlessly, accurately used for serving such function.

As for the distant future, by methodically analyzing the past it's easy to predict the fate of ALL languages. It's safe to say that the need for verbal communication will be meaningless, when our poor present brain-scan techniques develop into more efficient fully-fledged mind-reading technologies. There is no need to spend an hour giving a lecture or passing the information in your head to someone, when you can do it in seconds. Even objects can be programmed to read your mind, executing your order without saying it.


Living with Noise     |      Benefits of Deafness      |       Speech vs. Silence