Format Follows Function

In my experience, there is one Theory that makes everything alive make sense. The Theory makes sense out of nonsense, forges causal links between seemingly disparate phenomena, and has the power to inspire epiphany.

Darwin’s Theory is driven by observations, and backed up with natural curiosity, and a childlike engagement with Nature. He sets out to experience life and watch it change; he ends up by cracking Nature’s code! The code is inscribed in the English language – the foundational system Darwin describes with English is no less than the skeleton key we call Natural Selection.

Darwinian code approximates its first cousin of scientific order: The Mathematics of God – the common tongue one must glimpse in order to hypothesize fairly about the ways and means of life itself.

Why do we seek to crack this Code?

Consciousness would be explained were we to know the answer to this secondary query.

I am called a Human Being [homo sapiens sapiens – the wise, wise –double wise– ape]; I speak, read, and write using the codified conceit: language – I code my consciousness in bits and bites [pun intended].

I am alive; my microcosmic insides speak the old common code called Life, the code that Darwin cracked the surface of, and then shared.

The goal of consciousness must be Sleep. Natural Selection is one of a dozen cures for Truth… One Elixir.

The Elixir of life, written in enzymatic couplets, is like our native tongue, and so it defies intimacy or reflection.
The code can serve to understand nonliving systems, and the progress of artifice and technology. Consider language as replicator and then think of the evolution of The Document.

Languages are a compound effect built and hewn from the arbitrary dimensions of our physical form – the length of our tongue, a byproduct in balance for long enough to circumscribe the patterned logic of an infinitesimally small and yet collective pattern. The logic is just a tiny and common P.O.V.

What is this worth? The key, or legend, of language is Etymology. Is it not true that Etymology is really the study of the evolution of language, across all the history of humanity?

The history of a word, I say, becomes its meaning. The usage of a word is always morphing and changeable; and when cultures collide, evolutionary bottlenecks threaten to choke the edges of fantasy.

There will have to be some formula – an algebra of meaning – for etym- to be a true -ology.

Is this nature and nurture?

Does this follow?

etymology = nature, usage = nurture.

Is this science? Is this relativism?

Here is satisfaction vís a vís the document; and this one is Greek:

Etymology: document
noun: document; plural noun: documents
ˈdäkyəmənt/
1. 
a piece of written, printed, or electronic matter that provides information or evidence or that serves as an official record.
Verb: document; 3rd person present: documents; past tense: documented; past participle: documented; gerund or present participle: documenting
ˈdäkyəˌment/
1. 
Record (something) in written, photographic, or other form. “The photographer spent years documenting the lives of miners”
Support or accompany with documentation.

It stems from the Greek to teach.

In the Hellenistic & Classic periods, teachers walked around spreading their knowledge to others [docere-ing], or decreeing out loud, with their voices.

Their students were passive at times; they could have been anyone who could hear and wanted to listen.

A docent [in a museum or of a collection of art, literature, music, and the like] can teach or speak (or lecture) on a specific collection of artifact [or on the topics of natural science].

Common usage has robbed docere of iitsnexpansive implication, especially the word document. We have reduced meaning itself!

Today, the word denotes a specific, flat, monotone, piece of paper, embedded or glossed over on the surface – with words…

Such is the current state of affairs.

There is, however, hope for wisdom and gravitas; hope for an exalted connotation.

The computer-fueled Age of Information puts the word document on trial, so to speak, by raising a simple question: “What exactly is a document?”

Electronic documents can be hyperlinked beyond the boundaries of space and time – beyond words…

The new document floats, flits, bites, bytes, and streams in ether, like Apollo on his fiery chariot, whipping his team as they storm across The Sun’s corona.

The nova-document is alive, dimensional, eternal, fleeting, an illusion, yet so powerful it can exist outside the known bounds of time and space. It can appear everywhere and nowhere, without a physical form.

This is the true meaning of document. Once it has realized its glory, it has already become a teacher; one who inspires us all to transmit knowledge and information from here to eternity.

Written by
C. Cantrell

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