What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

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Levike
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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby Levike » 2014-12-21, 16:38

SostiMatiko wrote:The human mind "switches" to one language at a time. That is one main reason why i cannot accept a multi-source language like Esperanto. Latino Sine Flexione could be ideal, if it accepted some simple improvements, which it has not yet accepted.
Maybe it's weird for you seeing that it's clearly a mixture, but for most people it wouldn't be.

People wouldn't perceive it as using multiple languages at one time, but they would identify it as one single language. Primarily because the average person knows maybe 2 languages only and second because the majority doesn't look at a language from a linguistic point of view.

English is also a clear mishmash, yet it's not rejected by anyone because of this.

I really like "Latino Sine Flexione" though,
mostly because it's elegant, looks and sounds good, but it's still understandable.
Nem egy nap alatt épült Buda vára.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby SostiMatiko » 2014-12-21, 16:46

What you called goofy is not really, rather my descriction was insufficient for you.
Every noun is an adjective and vice versa. The head noun is a noun, and it functions as a predicative, while the modifying ones function as adjectives.

I have seen Esperanto "kantabirdo". SostiMatiko would express it as "ewo wexo arnito" (good sound bird), or "texno wexo arnito" (skill sound bird) if you prefer, anything acceptable if understood. In this case, to give an example, ewo (good) works as an adjective, ewo wexo "of good voice" also works as an adjective, but if they are heads they can be considered as nouns, e.g. say "arnito wexo ewo" = "the bird's voice is good", here "good" means "a good thing", so you can call it a noun. In "arnito wexo" (the bird's voice), arnito can be called an adjective, and "wexo" (voice) a noun.
If we say "arnito ewo wexo" = the bird's good thing is its voice, so the last one is normally predicative, except some unusual case when you expressly mark a preceding word as predicative. In other words, it is only head final word order, as in Esperanto.

SostiMatiko has some suffixes that make words you can call adjectives, e.g. suffix -iko "related to", -ino "with the color of", so we make "arnitiko" =something related to a bird, or "fatino" =the color of "fato" (light) =white (which can be analysed into all other colors). Indeed, such words as "arnitiko" or "fatino" are adjectives, but if you use them on their own and NOT as modifiers, they function as nouns. E.g. if we say "perieti fatino" (wears white), it means "wears white clothes", so here "fatino" functions as a noun, and if i say "periet arnitiko", the context will make it clear i mean "let me wear my bird's down (filling) jacket", so again "arnitiko" functions as a noun. I believe you can understand it, so it is nothing like goofy.
ॐ भूर् भु॑वः सुवः त॑त् सवितु॑र् व॑रेणियं भ॑र्गो देव॑स्य धीमहि धि॑यो यो॑ नः प्रचोद॑यात्

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby SostiMatiko » 2014-12-21, 16:54

Concerning "amendments" for LSF and multisourcing, my opinion is here viewtopic.php?f=85&t=38028&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&start=40#p926652 , you can search with the word "amendments". English is justified to have so many loanwords because it is a natural language, and it is de facto the international language, doesn't matter even if nobody likes it, no use if we reject it, but for an artificial auxlang, and especially a minimal one, that is a bad idea. At least in my opinion.
ॐ भूर् भु॑वः सुवः त॑त् सवितु॑र् व॑रेणियं भ॑र्गो देव॑स्य धीमहि धि॑यो यो॑ नः प्रचोद॑यात्

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby SostiMatiko » 2014-12-23, 17:28

Levike wrote:I think it'd look goofy.

Levike, your criticism has been the most substantial i have received until now. Actually all criticism i have received from you and others are things i have already carefully considered, but critique from outside helps settle the matters decidedly.
When SostiMatiko was born, in June 2013 (it is young, you see), it had to resolve the big controversy: the unmarked stem means the imperative / jussive, or the adjectival form of a noun? After much doubt it was decided the first: the "aimed action". But the doubt has gone on every day until now; literally everyday i heard the debate inside me: "maybe would it be better if the unmarked stem meant the adjectival form and not the imperative?".
I feel that SostiMatiko was reborn today: i think that if the unmarked means the adjectival, THEN the language will probably look goofy, but it will be more LOGICAL and PRACTICAL.
The first examples i have considered are:
ew wex arnito pori stomo aut kako
(this translate the Turkish proverb: bülbülün çıktığı dil belâsıdır "the tongue (voice) that the nightingale let out, is its own trouble". Compare the old SostiMatiko and the new form:
new: ew wex arnito pori stomo aut kako
old: ewo wexo arnito pori stomo, idiko kako.
We see that although the meaning and the syntax is essentially the same, the new form has more economy: it is shorter, uses less final -o, and needs less punctuation. It can also be more readily explicit when combining words; let's see another example:
old: kako joro mesa ewo uwergeti.
new: kak jor mesa ewo uwergeti.
We see that the economy is not really big, only 2 "o" saved, and the new form gets more distant from the CVCV pattern which is favored, but on the other hand, any difficulty of pronouncing a consonant without a following vowel is instantly solved by the invisible sixth vowel of SostiMatiko, a kind of schwa; and, the new form makes it more readily understood that the verb subject is "ewo" (and not any of the previous adjectival forms), because an adjectival form cannot stand as subject, object, or predicate.
It is also helpful in building adverbial complexes as "jor mesa" which now is clearly "in the hour", while the old "joro mesa" could mean "the hour is inside" (although this can hardly make sense).
So, the second controversy of SostiMatiko, concerning differentiating prepositional from postpositional usage, is also more easily solved.
The old form can be called "beginners' dialect", while the new form "mature dialect".
Levike, as you see, with your comments you facilitated this rebirth of SostiMatiko into its mature form. If you endorse it now in its new form, i will mention your name as a coauthor of SostiMatiko, you can be a member in https://www.facebook.com/groups/omado.sosti.matiko/ and if you learn it (i believe you can learn it within a day or 8 hours of study), you will be one of the group's admins.
ॐ भूर् भु॑वः सुवः त॑त् सवितु॑र् व॑रेणियं भ॑र्गो देव॑स्य धीमहि धि॑यो यो॑ नः प्रचोद॑यात्

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby SostiMatiko » 2015-01-10, 22:51

SostiMatiko has been accused for using consonant clusters and successive vowels, for having a derivational grammar which can result in longer words that some people find hard to analyse, and some people for their own reasons do not like SostiMatiko’s “a posteriori” source.

Dama Dewan http://konlangerz.com/conlang/85/Dama_dewan has left all such “weaknesses” behind.

Although all its grammar is 6 suffixes (every word can have only one suffix) and its vocabulary consists of only 258 words which i have learned within five days, i m sure it can do all that Esperanto can.
To check it out, give me an Esperanto sentence with an English translation, and if i can understand that, i shall translate it in Dama Dewan, with a comparison in SostiMatiko if you like. (please notify me with a personal message, as i do not often visit this site).
ॐ भूर् भु॑वः सुवः त॑त् सवितु॑र् व॑रेणियं भ॑र्गो देव॑स्य धीमहि धि॑यो यो॑ नः प्रचोद॑यात्

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby kaptengrot » 2015-04-07, 17:39

Maybe I posted in this thread before, I can't remember... Anyway, my first critique is not about Esperanto itself but about how people TEACH Esperanto, because if the teachers are better then it's easier to learn:

1. I would make it so that people realized they can use accent marks or other "special characters" instead of the x-system. If you can't type ŭ, ĉ then type ú, c̈ or something, because it's still understandable and much nicer to look at than ux, ch.

2. When a word is listed in a dictionary, lesson or textbook, don't simply list the word, also write alongside it what compounds the word is made up of. Dictionaries should also have more synonyms, that are made up of compound words.

3. Reduce the vocabulary in practise and teach people how to do this as you go in your lessons/whatever. Say "train-meet-place", not "station". Say "online journal", not "blog". Say "very cold", not "freezing". The thing is that if people were properly taught about the logic of making compound words, they wouldn't have a need for these loans (in most cases) because they wouldn't think that the word was missing in the first place. I agree that something like "rettaglibro" is a bit long, but then we have to think about if "day-book" even automatically makes sense to most people in the first place or not (by the way, I don't think "word-collection" makes one think automatically of "dictionary" either, maybe it's just me). If not, then we make a new word for it and the problem is solved.

About EO itself:

1. I would make it 100% regular, or definitely as close to it as possible. Whether this means coming up with euphemisms, needing to import new words to fix things, or getting people to use the word as if it really did have a prefix/suffix attached, it doesn't matter. Likewise with genders - every single root word, including stuff like "patro" should be gender-neutral and the gender is made explicit when needed by "in" or "vir".

No "papero" because "ero" is already its own word. No "scii" because there shouldn't be two i's (no roots should end on a vowel that's not ŭ, or maybe we need to start marking "this vowel is part of the root" by putting a cap on that root i or something).

2. I would get rid of ĥ and c, because we don't need that many sounds/letters in Esperanto (the less sounds, the easier it is to pronounce) and in the first place, words in EO that have the letter C itself often have instead S, K or maybe even Z in many languages, in pronunciation. For example, "science" in English is pronounced "sai-ens", "utveckling" in Swedish is pronounced "utvekkling".

The Esperanto C is difficult to pronounce in certain combinations that may-or-may-not come up surprisingly often, but even more than that, as it's supposedly pronounced "TS" we should just spell it as TS. I also think that that way, more people would realize when they try to import a word that the pronunciation is going to be awfully difficult. When an English-speaker sees "scienco" for example, they may read it in their head as it's pronounced in English, but if it were spelt "stsientso" as it's actually pronounced...
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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby orthohawk » 2015-05-26, 12:39

arpee wrote:Instead of having all of these suffixes and prefixes to remember, it would be easier to just combine roots to make compounds.

Why not just think of the affixes as just other words? "malo" the opposite. "igi" to cause. "ujo" container, etc. Voila! There's thy* compounding.
*I use Quaker-style Plain Speech forms for speaking to one person. Esperante, mi uzas "ci/cia/cin" SEN iu ajn nuanco de intimeco aŭ ofendo.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby orthohawk » 2015-05-26, 12:49

Skeptik wrote:5) Introduce a new word to mean "smile". The current word for smile is "rid/et/o". This would logically mean "quiet laugh" and to describe a smile as a quiet laugh is just rid/iculous. I would suggest the word "sonriso", adapted from the Spanish "sonrisa", and similar to the Italian "sorriso," and the French "sourire".

Why not just use a letter combination that is not yet assigned a value? E.g. "cap-" is not an E-o root, nor is "mos-" (from the Hungarian: Mosoly). Much fairer than just pulling in (yet) another Romance root.
*I use Quaker-style Plain Speech forms for speaking to one person. Esperante, mi uzas "ci/cia/cin" SEN iu ajn nuanco de intimeco aŭ ofendo.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby orthohawk » 2015-05-26, 13:27

JuxtapositionQMan wrote:That aside, I had another idea: two new correlatives.

The only tweaking to the correlatives I would do is to add one for "other". As useful as such things as "aliel", "alial", etc are, "alia" and "alie" mean something else.

I'd suggest "in-" (because E-o needs more Slavicisms IMHO)........yes, yes, it's the same as the feminizing suffix, but it would not cause any confusion because it's followed by -i- before the endings are added: inia, inie, inial, iniel, iniam, etc.
*I use Quaker-style Plain Speech forms for speaking to one person. Esperante, mi uzas "ci/cia/cin" SEN iu ajn nuanco de intimeco aŭ ofendo.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby orthohawk » 2015-05-26, 13:43

SostiMatiko wrote:That is one main reason why i cannot accept a multi-source language like Esperanto.

And yet, thee* is writing in English...................
*I use Quaker-style Plain Speech forms for speaking to one person. Esperante, mi uzas "ci/cia/cin" SEN iu ajn nuanco de intimeco aŭ ofendo.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby orthohawk » 2015-05-26, 13:49

kaptengrot wrote: I agree that something like "rettaglibro" is a bit long, but then we have to think about if "day-book" even automatically makes sense to most people in the first place or not (by the way, I don't think "word-collection" makes one think automatically of "dictionary" either, maybe it's just me). If not, then we make a new word for it and the problem is solved.
Erinja of lernu.net will hate me ;), but we could go the "mojosa route" and call it a "rotolo."

kaptengrot wrote:About EO itself:

1. I would make it 100% regular, or definitely as close to it as possible. Whether this means coming up with euphemisms, needing to import new words to fix things, or getting people to use the word as if it really did have a prefix/suffix attached, it doesn't matter. Likewise with genders - every single root word, including stuff like "patro" should be gender-neutral and the gender is made explicit when needed by "in" or "vir".

No "papero" because "ero" is already its own word.

What, and make punning impossible???...........oh, wait.....thee* may be onto something there ;)

kaptengrot wrote:2. I would get rid of ĥ and c, because we don't need that many sounds/letters in Esperanto (the less sounds, the easier it is to pronounce) and in the first place, words in EO that have the letter C itself often have instead S, K or maybe even Z in many languages, in pronunciation. For example, "science" in English is pronounced "sai-ens", "utveckling" in Swedish is pronounced "utvekkling".

The Esperanto C is difficult to pronounce in certain combinations that may-or-may-not come up surprisingly often, but even more than that, as it's supposedly pronounced "TS" we should just spell it as TS. I also think that that way, more people would realize when they try to import a word that the pronunciation is going to be awfully difficult. When an English-speaker sees "scienco" for example, they may read it in their head as it's pronounced in English, but if it were spelt "stsientso" as it's actually pronounced...

Why not make "um" a prefix as well and just say "umscio" for "science"?
*I use Quaker-style Plain Speech forms for speaking to one person. Esperante, mi uzas "ci/cia/cin" SEN iu ajn nuanco de intimeco aŭ ofendo.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby mōdgethanc » 2015-06-01, 0:59

SostiMatiko wrote:The human mind "switches" to one language at a time.
No it doesn't. Humans are perfectly capable of mixing two or more languages in the same utterance and even mixing oral and sign languages effortlessly without realizing it (Sacks 1989). Please learn about the human mind and about languages before talking about them.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby martinluan » 2015-06-02, 23:33

First I prefer to get rid of ĥ, it is not used often and the pronunciation is hard.

As per grammar, I prefer to leave accusative -n optional. Without -n, application the S-V-O order is taken.

In vocabulary, I hope to limit the loan words application. It does not matter which major language is the source. A word from Chinese or Russian does not make the difference to the people have no idea of these two languages except for the statistics concern in the end. A lot of Esperanto speakers are multiple language users at the same time. It might be fun only to them to find the matching game from time to time. You try to have a little bit of everything then you might end up nothing in the end. It would be more efficient to use more internal logic instead of borrowing words. Only the real cross language words, like Taxi, should be considered.

Another concern to Esperanto is the culture. Too many people learn Esperanto for Esperanto. It would be more promising there is some specific cultural concept linked to Esperanto instead of "communication convenience". The demographics of Esperanto users have huge influence to the the new comers. Image if we have almost all great chess players in the world speaking Esperanto and they regularly discuss chess game in Esperanto. Then you will be attracted to Esperanto immediately if you are a chess fan. We have too many linguists in this community and the language itself is the topic they talk most. What other people have in mind when Esperanto is mentioned?

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby HellfireBolt » 2015-12-07, 0:53

That's simple, really.

-o noun ending -- cancelled;
accusative case -- cancelled;
genitive case -- added, takes form of -a on personal names, titles and such;
verbs -- infinive ending changed into stressed 'ar', ending for the future changed into stressed 'os'.
verbal adverbs -- cancelled except '-ante';
future participles -- cancelled;
passive voice -- simplified into 'est*s *ata';
sounds c, dz -- abolished;
alphabet -- simplified: ux abolished, j->y, gx+jx->j, cx->c, sx->x, hx->q (pronounced h); diacritical marks are therefore abolished.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby Rasolar » 2016-02-19, 13:35

To make it easier? I don't know, esperanto is very easy in my opinion, but I would change somethings to make the language more international.

1 - A more international vocabulary with radicals from the 15 most spoken languages in fair proportions.

2 - All nouns are neutral, we would use a suffix to indicate the males too.

3 - Abolish accusative. Actually I like the accusative, despite I forget it sometimes.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby Moraczewski » 2016-03-30, 11:15

martinluan wrote:First I prefer to get rid of ĥ, it is not used often and the pronunciation is hard.

Funny thing - for Russians the h is hard to pronounce while ĥ is the normal way. Better not get rid of ĥ sound, but get rid of h/ĥ distinction. Allow both.

martinluan wrote:Another concern to Esperanto is the culture. Too many people learn Esperanto for Esperanto. It would be more promising there is some specific cultural concept linked to Esperanto instead of "communication convenience". The demographics of Esperanto users have huge influence to the the new comers. Image if we have almost all great chess players in the world speaking Esperanto and they regularly discuss chess game in Esperanto. Then you will be attracted to Esperanto immediately if you are a chess fan. We have too many linguists in this community and the language itself is the topic they talk most. What other people have in mind when Esperanto is mentioned?

I suggest not one specific concept but developing the culture in all directions. People who like films may find films in Esperanto, people who like music... you get the idea. With only one specific concept linked to E-o only those who like the concept will join the E-o movement -> loss of potential participants. Esperanto must stay neutral to all human concepts. For the present I agree with you - when Esperanto mentioned I imagine a bunch of people waving green flags and praying to Zamenhof.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby xBlackHeartx » 2017-02-24, 18:00

My biggest gripe when I last tried to learn the language? The euro-centric bias.

And I don't mean the vocabulary, I mean how the grammar works.

I was trying to take a course on duolingo, but it kept trying to teach me to use the language with odd rules and exceptions that only Europeans would be familiar with rather than a grammar more straight-forward, logical, and relying solely on the rules layed out in the grammar! I mean, the thing expected me to just treat Esperanto as a word-for-word cipher of English, except you had to explicitly mark the direct object and such.

The language shows a lot of these problems since obviously Zamenhof was completely oblivious to just how diverse languages are. I mean, the language is obviously nominative in alignment, but there's no explicit mention of that anywhere, which I imagine must be baffling for anyone who speaks an ergative language (such as Hindu-urdu).

And of course there's the other problems that people often mention.

The language is sexist because female nouns are derived from male ones using a suffix (they not just have both be derived from a gender-neutral one? it would actually save you on a few more words! In Esperanto, 'father' and 'parent' are distinct roots, wouldn't it be simpler to just apply a masculine/feminine suffix to 'parent'?).

Verbs aren't marked for transitivity, even though the language gives you a way to change a verb's transitivity. This is really obvious with verbs that are ergative verbs in some languages. And I imagine languages that use a morphological causative would just assume that the -ig- affix functions like their causative affix, and thus assume that most verbs are inherently intransitive! And I imagine they would be baffled that 'to die' is derived from 'to kill', rather than the other way around like you normally see in languages with a morphological causative.

The phonology is a mess. I personally don't mind the huge phoneme inventory (though it really shouldn't have odd things like eux in it which even the creator couldn't pronounce! And yes, that does appear as a diphthong in some languages, I think Hawaiian has it). But the thing that really bothers me are all the weird consonant clusters. I mean, most people can't pronounce scii right, even if they can pronounce both consonants fine on their own!

I like the word derivnation system, but even it is flawed. I mean, how often do you see the -ing- affix being used? The book I own doesn't contain a single word with it! The only words I have ever seen that would use it are the words for 'candleholder' and 'scabbard', but why not just use compounding like English does with 'candleholder' rather than use an affix that only 2 nouns need? And of course, the mal- suffix is severly overused. Yes, its normal for languages to have such a thing (English does, expensive vs inexpensive), but you don't see it being used with common nouns! And the correlatives, though neat, show categories that aren't used elsewhere. Why are there genitive correlatives when there is no genitive case for nouns?

I could go on all day like this. The conlang is a poorly cobbled-together mess and the only thing that would fix it is a major overhaul that would leave it unrecognizable. You may as well start a new project. And even if you did, it wouldn't get wide-spread acceptance anyway. Esperanto hasn't taken over because its flawed, I mean people study English all over the world, its because its useless! If you learn English, you can communicate with one of the largest linguistic groups on the planet, read any book written by them, watch movies, study what they know. With Esperanto, there's nothing! There's no books for you to read, no music, no movies, and no one to speak to besides a few thousand people that can barely speak the language themselves. I've seen other auxlangs like Interlingua and Lingua Franca Nova translate books, so that you at least gain something when you learn the language. Why hasn't anyone done the same thing for Esperanto? I think part of the problem is lack of a commitee. There's no one behind the language guiding its development like many other auxlangs. The community is pretty much nothing but eternal beginners!

And yeah, I've lost all faith in auxlangs, even though they're the reason I started studying linguistics in the first place. I don't regret studying linguistics, I'm just saying I used to be a big fan of them and now I'm not.

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Re: What would you change about Esperanto to make it easier?

Postby Saim » 2017-11-05, 18:59

xBlackHeartx wrote:And I imagine they would be baffled that 'to die' is derived from 'to kill',


It's the other way around as far as I can tell.

mort (root)

mort-i (to die)

die-infinitive
mort-ig-i (to kill)
die-transitive/causative-infinitive

I mean, most people can't pronounce scii right, even if they can pronounce both consonants fine on their own!


Yeah, you can really tell that Zamenhof was a Slavic-speaker. :lol:

There's no books for you to read, no music, no movies, and no one to speak to besides a few thousand people that can barely speak the language themselves. I've seen other auxlangs like Interlingua and Lingua Franca Nova translate books, so that you at least gain something when you learn the language.


There are books in Esperanto, both originals and translations.
There is less in the way of film or music (but since you asked...) but that's true of many minority languages. There are also videoblogs.


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