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July 30, 2009

“It’s not non-sense if you mean every word of it, and mean every word to be a set of potential meanings instead of a singular one. I believe much of this comes down to the choices of the end-user, though, and not to anything inherent in the program.”

Yes. Each word has what Christopher Dewdney calls a tunnel of meaning or signification; one looks through the word and through to different and possibly equally viable meanings, all the way back through the etymological history of the word. I wonder, though, if there is something inherent in the way the program reads the words before they become choices for the end-user that looses the words from meaning governance. The words are given to us according to the history of how the words are being used in a particular text, and then re-contextualized (quite literally) for the end-user to use. The software is doing things with words before the end-user is…and those things *allow* the new potential meanings to take place.

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