Author Topic: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals  (Read 5130 times)

roo

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Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« on: May 17, 2006, 03:32:38 AM »
If I had to select a close and natural analogue of knots it would be fasteners.  There are hex head screws, socket head cap screws, pan head screws, types of staples, nails, brads, Velcro, etc., ad nauseum.

Notice that for none of these do we attempt to apply a universally-expandable, entity-based, codification system the way we do for chemicals.  

With chemicals,  we care about the makeup of the elements and their order, because we can do many useful things with that information.   As just one example, it can help us predict the outcome of reactions.  However, the codification of features that make fasteners distinct from one another is not much use to us at all.  The same applies to knots.  

Once you have expended the energy to have knot features codified, and ready for robotic assembly, then what?  Nothing.  Identification and communication had already been done for ages in a much more intelligible manner via diagrams and a common name or names.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2006, 03:39:13 AM by roo »
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squarerigger

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Re: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2006, 04:11:47 AM »
Quote
Once you have expended the energy to have knot features codified, and ready for robotic assembly, then what?  Nothing.


Well ... if chemicals are assembled under a codification system, ready for robotic assembly, as you so quaintly put it, does that mean we cannot invent more chemicals?  I think not, but then I am not a chemist.  Maybe you and Derek should have a conversation?  If I remember correctly, the alchemists had names they used, like phlogiston, to explain what they saw, but that soon changed, didn't it?  Also, people use quaint names all the time for chemicals in common use - it doesn't make the chemical any different, it just allows a familiarity with it.  Does that common name mean that we should not have a codification system for chemicals?  Does that common name mean that another chemist can understand what is being referred to and can reproduce it?

All the fasteners you mentioned have already been codified in their original invention under the patent system used in the US, the UK and other countries, as far as I am aware.  They also have common names, trade names and weird names, and some of them are used correctly by contractors, mechanics, tailors and others who purchase them, some of them are not.  That doesn't make the codification system used for patents wrong - just different, more systematic and more precise!  And, no, I am not suggesting that knots be patented, just use a system that is logical and systematic when describing them in technical journals - it does not have to be like the chemicals' periodic table, but there should be something consistent.  When describing them to common uses, use common names.  What could be easier?

SR

roo

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Re: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2006, 04:39:19 AM »
Quote




All the fasteners you mentioned have already been codified in their original invention under the patent system used in the US, the UK and other countries, as far as I am aware.  They also have common names, trade names and weird names, and some of them are used correctly by contractors, mechanics, tailors and others who purchase them, some of them are not.  That doesn't make the codification system used for patents wrong - just different, more systematic and more precise!  And, no, I am not suggesting that knots be patented, just use a system that is logical and systematic when describing them in technical journals - it does not have to be like the chemicals' periodic table, but there should be something consistent.  When describing them to common uses, use common names.  What could be easier?

SR


I've never heard of anyone specifying a socket head cap screw by some patent number.    You even admit that patenting knots isn't the intent, so it's not comparable.

You just want more consistent usage of terms, it would seem.   That would be the best focus of attention.  It's likely to a much less drastic, and much more mundane task.
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DerekSmith

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Re: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2006, 01:18:46 PM »
Quote
If I had to select a close and natural analogue of knots it would be fasteners.  There are hex head screws, socket head cap screws, pan head screws, types of staples, nails, brads, Velcro, etc., ad nauseum.


You make a good point Roo, but notice that you point is exactly in line with the proposals to rationalise knot naming.

To take your example, Velcro is never called a staple, nails are never called screws.  Although there are variants within each functional group, their name has now become synonamous with an expected functionality.  If I ask to buy a cable tie, I do not have to concern myself over where I am buying it from, that a ships chandler might be selling me a wood screw while a climbing shop might be selling me a rock bolt.

If we could just achieve the clarity and rationality that you example for other fixings and apply it to knots, then we would be a long way forward from the confusion we cling to today.  Would that not be worth some effort?

roo

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Re: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2006, 07:27:29 PM »
Quote


If we could just achieve the clarity and rationality that you example for other fixings and apply it to knots, then we would be a long way forward from the confusion we cling to today.  Would that not be worth some effort?


Clarity is worth some effort, but there seems to be a tendency for over-aggressive efforts that could end up being counterproductive.

For example, shoulder bolts are another name for stripper bolts.  You might decide to encourage (somehow) the use of "shoulder bolt" over "stripper bolt".  OK, fine.

But what we should not do is take a universal, long-established name, and change it because we think it's not quite right for some reason.  It'd be like saying that nails should now be called "flat head impaling pins".  


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Willeke

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Re: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2006, 09:11:53 PM »
I think that for knots we should use a system in which the now common names are used, but like a dictonary gives more info on words, we should add a picture and as much furter discribtion as we can suply.

So we start with a knot called 'bowline', next a simple picture in which you can see the knot clearly for quick reverence, a step by step picture instruction, a step by step instruction in words and lastly a whole list of different sets of describtions following whatever system the writer of the piece feels needed, including all known names in as many languages as we can add.

If we make an index on the net we can search on any word.
So those people who want to search knots on their common name can find it but the people who would like a system like chemicals use can have their way too.

That way we can work together rather than make all different listings.
I think that adding this info in the knots listing in wikipedia is best.

Willeke
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DerekSmith

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Re: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2006, 01:57:43 AM »
I like your suggestion re naming Willeke but you being a Moderator, I was very surprised to read you suggest that the Index be built outside any control of the IGKT.

Is this really where the IGKT wants its members energies to go?

Wikipedia is great, but I have seen some of the stuff on there that was just plain wrong.  If you try to change it, loudest and most numerous voice wins.  While Wiki is a great place for a group to build an Index, it needs auditing by a skilled body (such as the IGKT) then locking, before it is given any Guild seal of authenticity.

If the Index goes to Wikipedia then I don't ever see the Guild playing a role.  But then, apart from this forum, it looks like the IGKT is on its death bed anyway.

Willeke

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Re: Why Knots Shouldn't Try To Be Chemicals
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2006, 12:32:29 PM »
I am a forum moderator, not an IGKT official.
I am an IGKT member and as such I agree with the commitee point that anything published (paper or on the web) under the name of IGKT needs to becontrolled by the IGKT.

But a listing of knots should be available to everyone.
I would go for a listing in as many places as posible, with as many entries as posible.

If we as IGKT members can agree with the listing as it is, at that time, we can send people there with an IGKT approval.
If we want to make a listing as IGKT, (or as IGKT forum) we do put in more work as needed, wikepedia is there, and it is starting to be one of the most respected sources of knowledge on the web, and I expect it to become the first to search when someone wants info.
It has been tested recently and holds as high or low a percentage of mistakes and faults as the most respected printed encyclopedias.

But I still would like a wiki just on knots, where there can be info not fitting in wikipedia.

Quote
If the Index goes to Wikipedia then I don't ever see the Guild playing a role.  But then, apart from this forum, it looks like the IGKT is on its death bed anyway.


I understand that you are not an IGKT member, and as such only see a little of what the IGKT does and is.
I asure you that to me, a member who has been to many meetings in England, France and the Netherlands, the guild seems very much alive.

The IGKT does not play a role in the publication of many knotbook, though a few of the members do write most of the books worth buying by now, nor has it any influence on many knot listings curently on the web.
No problems there. It is only when something is published under the name of the guild, as if it has its sign of aproval, that the guilds needs to controll what is being published.

Willeke
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nor what a clever person can do with simple tools." - Ian Fieggen

Writer of A booklet on lanyards, available from IGKT supplies.