[thelist] The Web's future: XHTML 2.0

David Bindel dbindel at austin.rr.com
Sat Sep 21 13:58:01 CDT 2002

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I myself and a W3C standards-compliant developer, but I have finally
figured this out:

	W3C = Big Brother

Read the following excerpt from George Orwell's 1984:

- -------------------------------------

'The Eleventh Edition is the definitive edition,' he said. 'We're
getting the language into its final shape -- the shape it's going to
have when nobody speaks anything else. When we've finished with it,
people like you will have to learn it all over again. You think, I
dare say, that our chief job is inventing new words. But not a bit of
it! We're destroying words -- scores of them, hundreds of them, every
day. We're cutting the language down to the bone. The Eleventh
Edition won't contain a single word that will become obsolete before
the year 2050.'

He bit hungrily into his bread and swallowed a couple of mouthfuls,
then continued speaking, with a sort of pedant's passion. His thin
dark face had become animated, his eyes had lost their mocking
expression and grown almost dreamy. 'It's a beautiful thing, the
destruction of words. Of course the great wastage is in the verbs and
adjectives, but there are hundreds of nouns that can be got rid of as
well. It isn't only the synonyms; there are also the antonyms. After
all, what justification is there for a word which is simply the
opposite of some other word? A word contains its opposite in itself.
Take "good", for instance. If you have a word like "good", what need
is there for a word like "bad"? "Ungood" will do just as well --
better, because it's an exact opposite, which the other is not. Or
again, if you want a stronger version of "good", what sense is there
in having a whole string of vague useless words like "excellent" and
"splendid" and all the rest of them? "Plusgood" covers the meaning,
or "doubleplusgood" if you want something stronger still. Of course
we use those forms already. but in the final version of Newspeak
there'll be nothing else. In the end the whole notion of goodness and
badness will be covered by only six words -- in reality, only one
word. Don't you see the beauty of that, Winston? It was B.B.'s idea
originally, of course,' he added as an afterthought.

A sort of vapid eagerness flitted across Winston's face at the
mention of Big Brother. Nevertheless Syme immediately detected a
certain lack of enthusiasm.

'You haven't a real appreciation of Newspeak, Winston,' he said
almost sadly. 'Even when you write it you're still thinking in
Oldspeak. I've read some of those pieces that you write in The Times
occasionally. They're good enough, but they're translations. In your
heart you'd prefer to stick to Oldspeak, with all its vagueness and
its useless shades of meaning. You don't grasp the beauty of the
destruction of words. Do you know that Newspeak is the only language
in the world whose vocabulary gets smaller every year?'

'Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range
of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally
impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it.
Every concept that can ever be needed, will be expressed by exactly
one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its subsidiary
meanings rubbed out and forgotten. Already, in the Eleventh Edition,
we're not far from that point. But the process will still be
continuing long after you and I are dead. Every year fewer and fewer
words, and the range of consciousness always a little smaller. Even
now, of course, there's no reason or excuse for committing
thoughtcrime. It's merely a question of self-discipline,
reality-control. But in the end there won't be any need even for
that. The Revolution will be complete when the language is perfect.
Newspeak is Ingsoc and Ingsoc is Newspeak,' he added with a sort of
mystical satisfaction. 'Has it ever occurred to you, Winston, that by
the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will be
alive who could understand such a conversation as we are having now?'

- -------------------------------------

Proof right there!

David Bindel

Version: PGP 7.0.4


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