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What are we after?
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Subject: What are we after?
- From: "Mark E. Shoulson" <email@example.com>
- Date: Fri, 25 Sep 2009 14:11:49 -0400
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OK. Since I wasn't paying really paying attention during the flurry of
emails about this (a case of TL;DR, which I totally do NOT promise won't
happen again), I went to the googlegroups site and read through the
archive. Here are some of my thoughts in response to everything being
I think we sort of need to get a little more back to earth on this
project. Not that the discussions have not been brass-tacks practical:
you can't get more reality-based than actually starting to put together
the database. But I think there is a lot of very lofty, far-reaching
ideals that Lojbanists are so fond of, getting in the way of the grubby,
impure task ahead.
So, to start with the impure: *certainly* we should start by designing
the lowest level first. Even if we have the language proficiency for
higher levels (which itself is questionable, depending on how high we're
talking), we don't have enough (any) experience with how testing goes
and how this will work in the community to handle anything higher than
MAYBE three levels. Even three is a little iffy.
That's why I started where I did in the googledoc, to give an idea of
what kind of proficiency we should be looking for at each level. But I
went about it the wrong way. Like everyone else, I was too caught up in
designing the tests to pay attention to the more basic requirement of
getting a handle on wtf we're doing here.
So that's what we should do, I think. Try to agree amongst ourselves in
a more informal (but therefore understandable!) way what it is we expect
a "Level One Laureate" to be like. What should such a one be able to do?
And we should enlist help with that also. Especially because, as
old-timers, we forget what newcomers are like and what it's like being
one. We need to talk to kribacr from IRC; he's spent a lot of time
doing teaching duties on the IRC channel, and working on his order of
presentation of concepts. If that's an order that people seem to learn
comfortably, then that's also a good order to test people with. And
maybe later talk to lindar, as one of his successful students (and mine:
I started lindar off and kribacr took over).
So, to start things off, when I think of what I would see in someone who
had completed Level One certification (and just numbering them 1, 2, 3,
is probably best), I think of somebody who can manage short, simple
sentences, involving simple sumti (mi, do, ti...), basic brivla (mainly
gismu, but chosen by utility and frequency, so if there's a
commonly-used lujvo, no problem) and 2-piece simple tanru of them, NU
abstractors, but only one level deep, and some conversationally-relevant
UI and COI. I tried to express that in the document, but was thinking
more in terms of test design. Try looking over it with testee
description in mind and maybe we'll be able to discuss things more
There's other stuff I probably would comment on, but this post is
already way too long. Let's start with the basics and work our way up.
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