Wednesday, July 07, 2004

You hvae to raed tihs, serously jsut raed it

Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrgde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny imropetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit plcae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wtihuot a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

I 'lifted' this (subject line and all) from this other blog - thanks to The Phil for finding it (or writing it).


pentaphobe said...

To quote The Language Construction Kit...

redundancy isn't a bug, it's a feature. Claude Shannon showed that the information content of English text was about one bit per letter-- not too high considering that for random text it's about five bits a letter. Sounds inefficient, huh? On the other hand, we don't actually hear every sound (or, if we're accomplished readers, read every letter) in a word. We use the built-in redundancy of language to understand what's said anyway.

To put it another way:
y cn ndrstnd Nglsh txt vn wtht th vwls, or shouted into a nor'easter, or over a staticky phone line.

snip....Very probably the degree of redundancy of human languages is pretty precisely calibrated to the minimum level of information needed to cope with typical levels of distortion.

Do a google on "Information Theory" too.. there are quite a few references to the same sort of stuff..

Toby said...

Thanks - I knew you'd have some useful references.

I still like this, because it caught me sub-vocalising:

There are 10 types of people in the world, those who understand binary, and those who don't.

Toby said...
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