General Conlang Discussion

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-19, 2:31

So any questions?
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rubs

Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-19, 2:52

linguoboy wrote:So any questions?

what level of linguistic skill will I need to make such a language as i'd propose?
and atop of that how would Polypersonal-agreement work in practice?

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-19, 3:01

rubs wrote:what level of linguistic skill will I need to make such a language as i'd propose?

Depends what level of complexity you're aiming for.

rubs wrote:and atop of that how would Polypersonal-agreement work in practice?

It works many different ways, depending on the language in question. The polypersonal language I know best is Osage (a Siouan language, related to Lakota) and, if you have specific questions, I can do my best to answer them based on my knowledge of that language.
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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-19, 11:08

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:what level of linguistic skill will I need to make such a language as i'd propose?

Depends what level of complexity you're aiming for.

like ……… Makes navaho sound like babyspeak level complexity.
Basically really formalised and yet more complex version of one of those languages.

rubs wrote:and atop of that how would Polypersonal-agreement work in practice?

It works many different ways, depending on the language in question. The polypersonal language I know best is Osage (a Siouan language, related to Lakota) and, if you have specific questions, I can do my best to answer them based on my knowledge of that language.

…… Well that's more than adequate, to answer any immediate system,
well could you give me a general overview of how it's done.
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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-19, 14:28

rubs wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:what level of linguistic skill will I need to make such a language as i'd propose?

Depends what level of complexity you're aiming for.

like ……… Makes navaho sound like babyspeak level complexity.
Basically really formalised and yet more complex version of one of those languages.

Um, yeah, you're going to want to scale down those ambitions. Quite a lot, in fact.

Let me put it to you this way: I have a degree in linguistics from one of the best programmes in the country. I've been learning languages for over thirty years. Navajo kicks my ass. Every time I have tried to study it, I've retreated in disgrace. It's morphology is at least an order of magnitude more complex than that of any other language I've studied (and, yes, that includes Osage).

rubs wrote:well could you give me a general overview of how it's done.

What's wrong with this overview? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polypersonal_agreement

As I said, I'm more than willing to answer specific questions. What I'm not going to do is write up a lesson on polypersonal agreement from scratch when such things already exist and can be found on the web for free.
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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-19, 14:37

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:what level of linguistic skill will I need to make such a language as i'd propose?

Depends what level of complexity you're aiming for.

like ……… Makes navaho sound like babyspeak level complexity.
Basically really formalised and yet more complex version of one of those languages.

Um, yeah, you're going to want to scale down those ambitions. Quite a lot, in fact.

Let me put it to you this way: I have a degree in linguistics from one of the best programmes in the country. I've been learning languages for over thirty years. Navajo kicks my ass. Every time I have tried to study it, I've retreated in disgrace. It's morphology is at least an order of magnitude more complex than that of any other language I've studied (and, yes, that includes Osage).

I’d have thought so, all the other details only get more ambitious. :whistle: ,
But I want a really bizzare language :silly: .

rubs wrote:well could you give me a general overview of how it's done.

What's wrong with this overview? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polypersonal_agreement

As I said, I'm more than willing to answer specific questions. What I'm not going to do is write up a lesson on polypersonal agreement from scratch when such things already exist and can be found on the web for free.

I read it i'm just not sure what specific question to ask,
I didn't ask for a lesson let alone one from scratch and I tried to look for a link with no success.
so yeah just how does the agreement pattern work and what would one need to include to contain a similar pattern.
Well i'd need to know at-least something about the agreement pattern to ask something more specific,
or at-least know what to ask.
Their is a question about fusional endings like how does one decide when to develop a new schema,
or us an additional morpheme.
But i'm expecting the answer to that to be more complicated than a general overview.
Last edited by rubs on 2016-08-19, 15:03, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-19, 15:03

rubs wrote:[But I want a really bizare language

"Bizarre" is not the same thing as "incredibly complex".

If you want a "bizarre" language, I would say that the easiest way to go about it is to determine what categories are commonly found in languages and then discard those in favour of other ones. Most languages have a singular/plural distinction? Okay, instead I'll have a tripartite distinction between "not enough", "enough", and "too much". Most languages inflect verbs to show relative time? Okay, then I'll inflect them to show absolute time of day (e.g. whether an action took place or will take place in the morning or the afternoon, with no indication of whether this is today, tomorrow, or yesterday). Things like that make your language bizarre, not just heaping on more inflectional complexity.

rubs wrote:I read it i'm just not sure what specific question to ask

Maybe try creating an example sentence to see if you've understood the explanation.

rubs wrote:Well i'd need to know at-least something about the agreement pattern to ask something more specific, or at-least know what to ask.

You keep saying "the agreement pattern" as if there were only one. As I said, the pattern is different in different languages. That's why you need to work on coming up with more specific questions.

For instance, Osage doesn't have subject and object inflections, it has agent and patient ones. This is important because some verbs are stative and use patient inflections to indicate the subject. (In addition, there are doubly-stative verbs which use patient inflection to express both subject and object.) This is completely different from the polypersonal agreement of, say, Basque (an ergative language) or Swahili (an accusative one). Then Swahili isn't like these other languages either since it has an elaborate noun-class system which requires agreement on the verb. And so.

Think more about what you want to do, then you should be able to come up with some questions on how it can be done.
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rubs

Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-19, 16:02

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:[But I want a really bizare language

"Bizarre" is not the same thing as "incredibly complex".

If you want a "bizarre" language, I would say that the easiest way to go about it is to determine what categories are commonly found in languages and then discard those in favour of other ones. Most languages have a singular/plural distinction? Okay, instead I'll have a tripartite distinction between "not enough", "enough", and "too much".

I get your point, — Already did that with my idea for my nouns instead of having genitive[with a much more complex syntax that's meant to be reflect across the entire language]
completely different syntax, but the syntax is so complicated I’m not sure I personally understand it.
Bizarre I was under-specific bizarre but sharing some traits with Northamerican-Languages which I love.

Rather I want a language with the specific character of being a very complex and precise language.

Most languages inflect verbs to show relative time? Okay, then I'll inflect them to show absolute time of day (e.g. whether an action took place or will take place in the morning or the afternoon, with no indication of whether this is today, tomorrow, or yesterday). Things like that make your language bizarre,


…… Not what i was going for but the general principle is correct.

not just heaping on more inflectional complexity.


Well yeah I get that point, but… I want a hyper-logical alien language,
[if I meant logical as in regular or simple, you'd think it'd be hype not to
just call it a pidgin or creole they can be strange too]
I oversimplified it by calling it an inflectional language.
not for you but for myself.
it can be used to be more "bizarre" provided you're okay with their language being more bizzare to us, than ours is likely to be too them.
[not withstanding that we'd have a much different syntax and so forth]

rubs wrote:I read it i'm just not sure what specific question to ask

Maybe try creating an example sentence to see if you've understood the explanation.

rubs wrote:Well i'd need to know at-least something about the agreement pattern to ask something more specific, or at-least know what to ask.

You keep saying "the agreement pattern" as if there were only one. As I said, the pattern is different in different languages. That's why you need to work on coming up with more specific questions.

For instance, Osage doesn't have subject and object inflections, it has agent and patient ones. This is important because some verbs are stative and use patient inflections to indicate the subject. (In addition, there are doubly-stative verbs which use patient inflection to express both subject and object.) This is completely different from the polypersonal agreement of, say, Basque (an ergative language) or Swahili (an accusative one). Then Swahili isn't like these other languages either since it has an elaborate noun-class system which requires agreement on the verb. And so.

Think more about what you want to do, then you should be able to come up with some questions on how it can be done.

Well, I know some use a single affix to give both subject and the object, I read it I think I need some time to digest your post.
asides that how would one integrate obviation, into a relatively rudimentary system,
i'll answer my own question by looking it up.

---–
I’ve got a solid feel part of my noun structure,[referring only to those structures that correspond to the genitive]
introductory explanation would involve a few slides overview
but to make it quite simple it could it uses a syntax that can be described in terms of one of seven types of relationship as a tree structure that isn't allowed to be mirrored, in itself multiple times in which further the branches at any point can be grouped or ungrouped, and this produces syntactically different structures.
the rest i'm not so sure how to structure my Cases.
Last edited by rubs on 2016-08-19, 16:55, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-19, 16:54

rubs wrote:Rather I want a language with the specific character of being a very complex and precise language.

I recommend looking at Ithkuil for an example of a language of this type.

rubs wrote:Well yeah I get that point, but… I want a hyper-logical alien language

"Logical" means very different things to different people. To most people, it seems to mean "having very regular morphology". For an example of a language actually based on predicate logic (and, thus, very different from any human language), I recommend looking at Lojban.

rubs wrote:Well, I know some use a single affix to give both subject and the object, I read it I think I need some time to digest your post.

Osage does this, but only in the specific case where the subject is 1S and the object is 2S, e.g. wióxta "I love you". (Cf. ą́ðioxta "you love me", which is 1S.PAT-2S.PAT-love. óxta is a double-stative verb, but the same affix is used with active transitive verbs as well, e.g. owíhką "I help you".)
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rubs

Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-19, 17:11

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:Rather I want a language with the specific character of being a very complex and precise language.

I recommend looking at Ithkuil for an example of a language of this type.

I’ll do that, or at-least try and then come back for clarification.
rubs wrote:Well yeah I get that point, but… I want a hyper-logical alien language

"Logical" means very different things to different people. To most people, it seems to mean "having very regular morphology".

Thats not what I meant by logical, what I meant by logical is having a grammar and syntax that strictly follow laws of a given logic, in a manner which is accurate precise, & concise, If I had to describe it.

For an example of a language actually based on predicate logic (and, thus, very different from any human language), I recommend looking at Lojban.

thanks, I suppose.

rubs wrote:Well, I know some use a single affix to give both subject and the object, I read it I think I need some time to digest your post.

Osage does this, but only in the specific case where the subject is 1S and the object is 2S, e.g. wióxta "I love you". (Cf. ą́ðioxta "you love me", which is 1S.PAT-2S.PAT-love. óxta is a double-stative verb, but the same affix is used with active transitive verbs as well, e.g. owíhką "I help you".)

:doggy: If only english or german had this…

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-19, 17:18

rubs wrote:Thats not what I meant by logical, what I meant by logical is having a grammar and syntax that strictly follow laws of logic, in a manner which is accurate precise and concise.

Then the next question becomes, "Which laws of logic?" Not all logic is mathematical logic, for instance.

There's a very sophisticated logic underlying all natural languages which makes them incredibly precise and yet concise at the same time. Linguists didn't really appreciate this until they tried to model languages computationally and learned how hard it was to keep computers from making mistakes that competent speakers would consider elementary. If you want to learn more about it (and I recommend that anyone who wants to create a language do so), you should acquaint yourself with the field of cognitive linguistics.

thanks, I suppose.

You're welcome, I guess.
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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-19, 17:51

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:Thats not what I meant by logical, what I meant by logical is having a grammar and syntax that strictly follow laws of logic, in a manner which is accurate precise and concise.

Then the next question becomes, "Which laws of logic?" Not all logic is mathematical logic, for instance.


I suspected you were going to say that,
ones relating to any type of non conventional thinking,
possibly may be multiple logics put into one.
I admit I haven't decided yet.

There's a very sophisticated logic underlying all natural languages which makes them incredibly precise and yet concise at the same time. Linguists didn't really appreciate this until they tried to model languages computationally and learned how hard it was to keep computers from making mistakes that competent speakers would consider elementary.

I’ve noticed that some languages appear incredibly logical once one gets familiar to them.
Like outside they’d look virtually indecipherably but internally they have internal consistent incredibly regular
but complex structure that functions in a highly expressive manner.
Still somewhat more intuitive argument, but i've seen enough languages to say their is significant variation in language, when factor in that different populations will think somewhat differently, and so forth, makes me think their are likely to be only few Universals.


If you want to learn more about it (and I recommend that anyone who wants to create a language do so), you should acquaint yourself with the field of cognitive linguistics.

thanks I suppose again.
thanks, I suppose.

You're welcome, I guess.

hmm Thanks again.

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-19, 19:54

rubs wrote:I’ve noticed that some languages appear incredibly logical once one gets familiar to them.
Like outside they’d look virtually indecipherably but internally they have internal consistent incredibly regular
but complex structure that functions in a highly expressive manner.

Not that I disagree, but could you give some concrete examples?

rubs wrote:Still somewhat more intuitive argument, but i've seen enough languages to say their is significant variation in language, when factor in that different populations will think somewhat differently, and so forth, makes me think their are likely to be only few Universals.

There's actually more than you might think because you take so many for granted. Prototype theory, for instance. I've yet to read about any natural human language which doesn't structure semantic categories this way. (This is one of the things that makes Lojban such a good model for a non-human language; it was actually invented to test whether human beings could even learn to speak such a thoroughly mathematical language.)
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rubs

Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-19, 21:08

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:I’ve noticed that some languages appear incredibly logical once one gets familiar to them.
Like outside they’d look virtually indecipherably but internally they have internal consistent incredibly regular
but complex structure that functions in a highly expressive manner.

Not that I disagree, but could you give some concrete examples?

obvious example thats been dropped is navaho, i'm sure many more examples will come to mind sooner rather than latter.
I think it's a fair to say all native americans, are very rich in such languages generally speaking with citation being a book on native american languages, if you needed citation.

Tendency is for many of the polysynthetic languages being quite logical with the unit occupying word denoting a particular type or schema, these languages are surprisingly different.

rubs wrote:Still somewhat more intuitive argument, but i've seen enough languages to say their is significant variation in language, when factor in that different populations will think somewhat differently, and so forth, makes me think their are likely to be only few Universals.

There's actually more than you might think because you take so many for granted.
universals or differences?

Prototype theory, for instance. I've yet to read about any natural human language which doesn't structure semantic categories this way. (This is one of the things that makes Lojban such a good model for a non-human language; it was actually invented to test whether human beings could even learn to speak such a thoroughly mathematical language.)

… Well i'd take it most linguistic universals may be things i'd have taken for granted.
other than that it's no surprise that it'd be such an interesting model for an alien language.

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-20, 1:08

rubs wrote:obvious example thats been dropped is navaho

In what way do you find Navajo "incredibly regular"? When I look at the verbal system, I actually see quite a few irregularities (such as suppletive plural stems and lexicalised derived forms).

rubs wrote:
There's actually more than you might think because you take so many for granted.
universals or differences?

Universals. (That should have been clear from context, i.e. being immediately followed by an example of a universal.)
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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-20, 2:07

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:obvious example thats been dropped is navaho

In what way do you find Navajo "incredibly regular"? When I look at the verbal system, I actually see quite a few irregularities (such as suppletive plural stems and lexicalised derived forms).

I don't think that each example would have to share all of those features.
also reading up what specifically you meant that's interesting but, doesn't make the semantics or syntax irregular.

rubs wrote:
There's actually more than you might think because you take so many for granted.
universals or differences?


I genuinely didn't know, to me it wasn't clear.
Universals. (That should have been clear from context, i.e. being immediately followed by an example of a universal.)


Well In what sense is it universal,
no matter the structure of language, well Rumpelstiltskin-style-thinking,
[if i got the name of fairy tale characters right],
if we include these their are more interesting true universals,
all languages contain words which describe mental objects.
animal calls for example are a good exception of that,
where you'd have phrases that corresponds directly to type of external stimulus, rather than to a mental object or internal stimulus.
in practical terms it's universal in that we can be reasonably certain that,
but I wonder wether language in human sense is even a universals.

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-20, 2:20

rubs wrote:also reading up what specifically you meant that's interesting but, doesn't make the semantics or syntax irregular.

Then I don't understand what you mean by "irregular". In what sense is went a "regular" past tense of go when the vast majority of English verbs form the past tense simply by adding -ed? Suppletion is an inherently "irregular" process--not all stems undergo it and there are no rules which predict what forms the suppletive stems will take.

Same with lexicalisation. The meaning of words is arbitrary, so lexicalisation by definition means that the meaning isn't predictable from the compositional structure of the word.

rubs wrote:Well In what sense is it universal

In that I've never seen evidence of an attested natural language in which categories aren't structured in this way.
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rubs

Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-20, 3:55

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:also reading up what specifically you meant that's interesting but, doesn't make the semantics or syntax irregular.

Then I don't understand what you mean by "irregular". In what sense is went a "regular" past tense of go when the vast majority of English verbs form the past tense simply by adding -ed? Suppletion is an inherently "irregular" process--not all stems undergo it and there are no rules which predict what forms the suppletive stems will take.

well if plural, marking is also encoded in another part of the overarching clause that doesn't seem like it'd necisarily be a different type of structure but rather just a conditionally triggered change, that is present when the totality of the clause contains an argument with non singular marking.

rereading what I said I don't see how this negatively affects what i've claimed,
yup'ik, any example amerindian languages appear to be at the very least often enough deeply expressive languages, indeed sometimes their is no difficulty expressing concepts previously entirely alien to the culture without requiring any degree of Lexicalisation or anything like that.

Same with lexicalisation. The meaning of words is arbitrary, so lexicalisation by definition means that the meaning isn't predictable from the compositional structure of the word.

rubs wrote:Well In what sense is it universal

In that I've never seen evidence of an attested natural language in which categories aren't structured in this way.

I’m not exactly sure what is meant mean the obvious interpretation to me,
yeah well I tend to not think in those categories, partially because,
I find incredibly little need to actually have categories of things to begin with,
at-least like that Just list of properties exhaustively.

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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby linguoboy » 2016-08-20, 4:16

rubs wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:also reading up what specifically you meant that's interesting but, doesn't make the semantics or syntax irregular.

Then I don't understand what you mean by "irregular". In what sense is went a "regular" past tense of go when the vast majority of English verbs form the past tense simply by adding -ed? Suppletion is an inherently "irregular" process--not all stems undergo it and there are no rules which predict what forms the suppletive stems will take.

well if plural, marking is also encoded in another part of the overarching clause that doesn't seem like it'd necisarily be a different type of structure but rather just a conditionally triggered change, that is present when the totality of the clause contains an argument with non singular marking.

This isn't clarifying for me your definition of "irregular". If suppletion doesn't qualify, what does?

rubs wrote:rereading what I said I don't see how this negatively affects what i've claimed

You claimed the Navajo language was "incredibly regular". Its regularity is quite credible to me.

rubs wrote:yup'ik, any example amerindian languages appear to be at the very least often enough deeply expressive languages, indeed sometimes their is no difficulty expressing concepts previously entirely alien to the culture without requiring any degree of Lexicalisation or anything like that.

All languages are capable of that. This isn't any special quality of languages of the Americas. (Yup'ik isn't "Amerindian".)

rubs wrote:yeah well I tend to not think in those categories

You absolutely think in these categories all the time. "Language" is a category. So is "human" or "plural". Plurality itself is a category, as is tense and definiteness. This is how your thought is structured.
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Re: General Conlang Discussion

Postby rubs » 2016-08-20, 14:21

linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
rubs wrote:also reading up what specifically you meant that's interesting but, doesn't make the semantics or syntax irregular.

Then I don't understand what you mean by "irregular". In what sense is went a "regular" past tense of go when the vast majority of English verbs form the past tense simply by adding -ed? Suppletion is an inherently "irregular" process--not all stems undergo it and there are no rules which predict what forms the suppletive stems will take.

well if plural, marking is also encoded in another part of the overarching clause that doesn't seem like it'd necisarily be a different type of structure but rather just a conditionally triggered change, that is present when the totality of the clause contains an argument with non singular marking.

This isn't clarifying for me your definition of "irregular". If suppletion doesn't qualify, what does?

I think it depends on what scope one’s looking at.
not sure what i'm meant to argue.

rubs wrote:rereading what I said I don't see how this negatively affects what i've claimed

You claimed the Navajo language was "incredibly regular". Its regularity is quite credible to me.

Dear sir what distinction are you pointing to?
taking you literally of course it's credible, did anyone ever claim the navaho didn't exist?

rubs wrote:yup'ik, any example amerindian languages appear to be at the very least often enough deeply expressive languages, indeed sometimes their is no difficulty expressing concepts previously entirely alien to the culture without requiring any degree of Lexicalisation or anything like that.

All languages are capable of that. This isn't any special quality of languages of the Americas. (Yup'ik isn't "Amerindian".)

I never intended you to read that I thought it was particular to amerindians.
Other than finner nuances, I wanted to give somewhat varried examples.

rubs wrote:yeah well I tend to not think in those categories

You absolutely think in these categories all the time. "Language" is a category. So is "human" or "plural". Plurality itself is a category, as is tense and definiteness. This is how your thought is structured.

my grammar must be awful that's not either what i was getting at or what i understood,
you claimed that this was a linguistic universal I wouldn't be aware of.
But if you mean In the sense that categories exist at some level and that their must be some cognitive coding or translation, and that language plays some role in this, and I understood what you said about Lojban being an exception in some sense to this.
…… Overall i'm really confused, I know that Lojban has categories, thats the least confusing bit of the whole discussion.

I can genuinely say this is not unambiguos information and my immediate thoughts, aren't one of abject objectivity but rather of wanting to psychoanalyse the incredibly peculiar model.
Neither unambiguous nor does it glare me as in anyway informative about language.
Last edited by rubs on 2016-08-20, 14:54, edited 1 time in total.


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