Author Topic: In search of consistent and coherent terminology  (Read 1130 times)

agent_smith

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In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« on: August 22, 2018, 11:37:58 AM »
An examination of two influential knot book authors (Ashley and Budworth) demonstrates inconsistencies in the way certain knotting terms are interpreted and applied.

per Ashley:
[ ] 31: Open loop
[ ] 32: Closed loop
[ ] 33: A loop knot
[ ] 40: A single turn
[ ] 41: A round turn
[ ] 42: Two round turns

Chapter 11 page 185 from 'ABoK' (published 1944)
Ashley makes the following remarks:
A loop knot is a closed bight that is tied either in the end or the central part of a rope.
A loop knot is a rigid knot that is tied in hand and placed over an object such as a peg, post, pile, hook, or the lug of an archers bow.


A hitch is a knot that secures a knot to an object and is made fast directly around an object.

A loop proper is an unknotted closed bight.


per Budworth (The complete book of knots 1997):
[ ] Loop: No written definition is offered. But, an image shows a helix created by the overlap of one rope segment over the other
[ ] Bight: No written definition is offered. But, an image shows a segment of rope shaped into a 'U' with relatively parallel legs
[ ] Turn: No written definition is offered. But, an image shows a rope arcing around a pipe/rod scribing 360 degrees
[ ] Round turn: No written definition is offered. But, an image shows a rope arcing around a pipe/rod scribing 540 degrees
[ ] Linked elbows: No written definition is offered. But, an image shows an overlap created by 2 twists (with 2 crossing points). Budworth is not precise as to which exact segment he intends is the 'elbow'.

I am continuing to do research - and will look at Cyrus Day and others for more clues and breadcrumbs.
My intent is to find some coherence and consistency with knot terminology.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2018, 11:06:07 AM by agent_smith »

DerekSmith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2018, 02:09:13 PM »
Here is a stab at a Knotting Lexicon, started 8 years ago by Dave Root (of knot maker fame).

Of note he also did not like 'Loop' knot and called them Ring knots, but he did sub classify Eye Knots.

http://nodeology.pbworks.com/w/page/23011471/Knots%20Terms

agent_smith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2018, 02:46:08 PM »
Geoffrey Budworth has authored many knot books - and may be regarded by some as an 'expert'.

In Budworth's book titled 'The ultimate encyclopedia of knots and ropework':
ISBN-10: 0760736383
ISBN-13: 978-0681606944

... he distinguishes a bight from a loop as follows:

Bight: Doubling a line so that two parts are brought close together creates a 'bight'

Loop: When the two adjacent parts of a bight cross, a bight turns into a 'loop'.

It appears that Budworth requires an overlap of one rope segment over the top (or under) the other to form a 'loop'.
NOTE: I am using the word 'overlap' to denote the point of intersection where a crossing occurs.
Budworth does not elaborate further that a loop can have S or Z chirality.

It does appear that Budworth is trying to make a distinction between a 'bight' and a 'loop' - and it would also appear that he requires that a loop take the form of a helix.
NOTE: Budworth did not specifically use the word 'helix' but, it would seem that the physical structure of his concept of  loop does take the form of a helix.



DerekSmith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2018, 11:03:03 AM »
Quote
Chapter 11 page 185 from 'ABoK' (published 1944)
Ashley makes the following remarks:
A loop knot is a closed bight that is tied either in the end or the central part of a rope.
A loop knot is a rigid knot that is tied in hand and placed over an object such as a peg, post, pile, hook, or the lug of an archers bow.

A hitch is a knot that secures a knot to an object and is made fast directly around an object.

A loop proper is an unknotted closed bight.

For me, Ashley puts forward the ideal set of descriptors.  I believe to use any other lexicon, it would be first necessary to produce a case which faults the Ashley statements.

Derek

agent_smith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2018, 12:20:38 PM »
per Derek:
Quote
I believe to use any other lexicon, it would be first necessary to produce a case which faults the Ashley statements.

I think this is known as the reversal of the onus of proof.
That is, who bares the onus to prove if something is correct (or not)?

Ashley wasn't perfect - he made mistakes.
For example, he apparently awarded the title of 'Bowline' to illustrations #1057 and #1058.
In my opinion, this is wrong.

I am not suggesting that everything Ashley wrote is wrong. I am simply saying that he is a product of his time - and he (like you and me) was human and therefore susceptible to errors.

Budworth (in my view) tried to add clarity to various knot structures.
Budworth appears to suggest that a 'loop' is created when a helix is formed - by the overlap of one rope segment over the other.
NOTE: I use the term 'overlap' to describe the point of intersection where one rope crosses over the other to form the helix.
Note also that Budworth did not elaborate if a 'loop' could have S or Z chirality.
And a further note: Budworth did not use the term 'helix' to describe a 'loop' - but it is strongly implied.

Harry Asher (The Alternative Knot Book) is unclear and his book (in my opinion) leaves it open to interpretation.
For example, Asher (at page 19) attempts to define various structures.
He shows the following drawings:
[ ] open loop
[ ] closed loop
[ ] turn
[ ] round turn

His explanation of what a 'turn' is, in comparison to a 'round turn',  leaves the reader scratching their head.
His explanation of what a 'bight' is - is also fluid and dilute. On page 17 (Fig 6) he implies that a 'bight'  takes the same form as the image on page 19 (Fig 8 ).

I have a pocket book on 'Knots and Splices' from Cyrus Day (original 1953 edition). In his Glossary, he does not have an entry for the word 'loop'.
He does have an entry for the word 'bight' where it can have 2 different meanings as follows:
1. "The middle of a line"; or
2. "A loop or curve in a line".

In my view, Ashley, Asher and CL Day do not provide sufficient precision in their explanations of 'bight', 'turn' and 'loop'.
In contrast, Budworth attempts to clear the murky waters.

NOTE: In my view, there are 4 noteworthy knot book authors who have had significant influence:
1. C Ashley
2. H Asher
3. CL Day
4. G Budworth

I am currently looking at some of the works of Brian Toss (eg The complete riggers apprentice).
« Last Edit: August 26, 2018, 01:43:59 PM by agent_smith »

DerekSmith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2018, 01:44:40 PM »
per Derek:
Quote
I believe to use any other lexicon, it would be first necessary to produce a case which faults the Ashley statements.

I think this is known as the reversal of the onus of proof.
That is, who bares the onus to prove if something is correct (or not)?

It does not matter what 'it' is known as.  If you had quoted my whole statement :-
Quote
For me, Ashley puts forward the ideal set of descriptors.  I believe to use any other lexicon, it would be first necessary to produce a case which faults the Ashley statements.
  You would realise that I was stating that in my opinion Ashley should only be rejected if proven to be wrong.

This is a gem :
Quote
Ashley wasn't perfect - he made mistakes.
For example,he apparently awarded the title of 'Bowline' to illustrations #1057 and #1058.
In my opinion, this is wrong.
  Because Ashley contradicts your opinion - he made mistakes? - Really?  Your statement is even more inapropriate in that ABoK is in essence an encyclopedia, where Ashley has collected diagrams, methods, usage and names :-
Quote
1057. The SINGLE BOWLINE on the bight. There are a number of
knots that have been given this title,

Finally, I would advise that you do not confuse a definition of a component or cord fragment with the naming convention for a group of knots.  The definition of Loop in one category, does not have to conform to the definition of the same word in another context.

Derek

agent_smith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2018, 02:21:33 PM »
per Derek:
Quote
Because Ashley contradicts your opinion - he made mistakes? - Really?  Your statement is even more inappropriate in that ABoK is in essence an encyclopedia, where Ashley has collected diagrams, methods, usage and names :-

Ashley doesn't contradict my opinion. I am simply pointing out aspects of his work that I believe may be in error. Regardless of whether it is a 'book', 'encyclopedia', or some other format, your line of argument is irrelevant.
More likely, you perceive that I contradict your own opinions.
I think this is the underpinning tone in your posts.

In relation to illustrations #1057 and #1058, I would invite you to advance your own opinion if these structures should be regarded as some type of 'Bowline' (or be entitled to have the name 'Bowline' associated with them) - or not.

Quote
Finally, I would advise that you do not confuse a definition of a component or cord fragment with the naming convention for a group of knots.  The definition of Loop in one category, does not have to conform to the definition of the same word in another context.

And this is the gem for me :)
Your advice is duly noted.
But, I choose to adopt a stricter (ie more precise) definition of knotting terms.
If you prefer a more fluid and diluted definition to enable the use of the word 'loop' to take on different meanings in different contexts - that is of course your prerogative.

And finally, I would advise that you reflect on the theme of this thread...which is to discuss knotting terminology. It was not intended to specifically target your personal conceptualization of what constitutes a 'loop' or other physical structures.
Perhaps you have missed the fact that various knot book authors seem to have conflicting and/or imprecise explanations of knotting terms?

If you prefer to engage in a personal battle to assert your own perceived lexicon - I am happy to take the role of your adversary!

Another point I would like to make is with regard to Budworth. Your comments re Ashley suggests that other authors cannot advance their own theories, without first proving Ashley to be wrong.
If this interpretation is correct - in my view, it would hold back innovation and progress because new concepts would first have to be vetted by people who hold older (or even outdated) views.

I like how Elon Musk is changing the paradigm of reusable rocket boosters - where the old concept is to use it once then throw it away. He is shaking up the entire space industry. I don't think Elon had to prove that the competition was wrong. He had a vision and he built it and it worked. Now the old guard are worried.

EDIT NOTE

Xarax sent me this gem:

Quote
Ashley's publication is not impenetrable to reason or, indeed, to advance alternative theories! Ashley made HUNDREDS of mistakes !
Dan Lehman has detected a number of them:
http://igkt.net/sm/index.php?topic=183.0
« Last Edit: August 26, 2018, 03:19:06 PM by agent_smith »

SS369

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2018, 02:41:36 PM »
For considerations:

Loop: Round form achieved in cordage.
Loop knot: the weave/lacing that joins parts to form a round shaped
construct.

Eye: Eye shaped form achieved in cordage.
Eye knot: the weave/lacing that joins an eye shaped construct.

Parts of bowline: Collar bight, Nipping or Constricting Helix, loop bight or eye bight (depending on the Bowline).

Standing Part, Working End.

SS

agent_smith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2018, 03:07:37 PM »
Thanks for your suggestions Scott - and for steering this thread back on its intended course.

There appears to be technical issues with uploading new images (and some older images seem to have vanished).
I have been trying to upload images of 'loops', 'bights' and so on but, no luck.

DerekSmith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2018, 06:28:20 PM »
@Mark
Quote
In relation to illustrations #1057 and #1058, I would invite you to advance your own opinion if these structures should be regarded as some type of 'Bowline' (or be entitled to have the name 'Bowline' associated with them) - or not.

These two knots do not have a simple helix nipping structure, rather, they are simple hitch conformance where the loaded SP lays over and grips the other end of the nipping component.  As a consequence, neither has a clear nipping helix loop leg.  On that basis alone, neither would satisfy that definition of a Bowline.

agent_smith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #10 on: August 27, 2018, 05:28:44 AM »
Just steering this conversation back on topic - which is to examine influential authors of knot books and how they define certain and specific components in knots.
In essence - the 'lexicon' to describe the various components of knots.
Jargon or terminology might be another way to conceptualize it.
Ultimately (in an ideal world) - some sort of consensus may be found to unify and consolidate the terminology into a logical and coherent body of information.
Although - this might involve changing certain entrenched paradigms - and any notional concept of 'change' could invoke fear, and in some cases, outrage. But, I think looking to influential knot book authors is a reasonably good way to start...

Okay - I have looked at a book authored by Brian Toss - titled "Chapman knots for boaters" (1990). Originally published under the title; "A Chapman Nautical Guide: Knots".
It appears that Brian Toss has had some influence in the world of knots and knotting.
In this book, he describes the following components both with line drawings and printed content:

[ ] Turn: He shows a drawing of a rope folded around a hand as a U turn (180 degrees)

[ ] Round turn: He shows a drawing of a rope folded around a hand twice (540 degrees)
Of interest to me, is that he indicates that there is a friction and security benefit gained from a round-turn (ie a 'capstan effect'). He does not use the phrase 'capstan effect' - it is implied.

[ ] Bight: "If you bend the standing part (SPart) into a U-shape, you've made a bight"

[ ] Loop: "Lay one side of the bight over the other and you get a loop"
Of interest to me, is that Brian Toss then makes the distinction between a 'clockwise' loop and a 'anti-clockwise' loop.
He does not explicitly define the direction of twist as S or Z chirality. However, it is implied that he understood that a 'loop' could have a different helical form - depending on the direction of the twist at the point of intersection where the overlap occurs.

...

It appears that Brian Toss and Geoffrey Budworth have similar conceptualizations of a 'loop', 'bight' and 'turn'.
Both of these authors are from a later era than Ashley.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2018, 05:42:56 AM by agent_smith »

DerekSmith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #11 on: August 27, 2018, 11:51:09 AM »
The word 'loop' has many uses and meanings.  I do not accept any attempt to impose the meaning used in Cordage descriptors onto Knot descriptors.  In particular, whatever meaning is ascribed or understood for the term 'loop' used in reference to cordage, for me, will remain independent to the usage of the word 'loop' in defining a knot as a Loop Knot, for which I find the definition from ABoK p13 to be totally adequate :- 

39. A LOOP KNOT, commonly called a Loop, serves about the same purpose as a hitch, but it is tied in hand, which is the chief distinction between the two. After being tied it is placed around an object, such as a hook or a post. Its shape is not dependent on the object that it is fast to, and it may be removed at any time and will still retain its shape.

Derek

agent_smith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2018, 11:58:29 AM »
per Derek:
Quote
I do not accept any attempt to impose the meaning used in Cordage descriptors onto Knot descriptors.  In particular, whatever meaning is ascribed or understood for the term 'loop' used in reference to cordage, for me, will remain independent to the usage of the word 'loop' in defining a knot as a Loop Knot, for which I find the definition from ABoK p13 to be totally adequate[/size]

Thank goodness you are not the final arbiter for decision making in the IGKT!

And you appear to be confused by the intent behind this thread.
Its not about what you want.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2018, 12:00:10 PM by agent_smith »

siriuso

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #13 on: August 27, 2018, 02:37:20 PM »
Hi dear all,

In several threads we have heard about the definitions of loop knot and the sounding that some dislike the name of eye knot in term of loopknot. Up to now we seldom hear the opinions from members who favor the name of eyeknot. Please express your thoughts here.

yChan

agent_smith

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Re: In search of consistent and coherent terminology
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2018, 03:41:31 PM »
per yChan:

Quote
...definitions of loop knot and the sounding that some dislike the name of eye knot in term of loopknot

Quote
Up to now we seldom hear the opinions from members who favor the name of eyeknot. Please express your thoughts here.

yChan, thanks for your interest.
What you are suggesting is a type of 'poll' - where people can either like or dislike a descriptive term.
Your suggestion would be better in a different (new) thread - as it would derail and quickly degenerate into different factions preferring one word/phrase in preference to another word/phrase.
It would be nice if the emotional attachments to traditional definitions could be set aside - but this is virtually impossible.

If you carefully read my posts - you will notice that I have sourced information from influential knot book authors - rather than tendering my own definitions.

Once you start to tender your own personal opinion on knotting terms, you run the risk of deviating from traditional concepts - and invoking fear of change.
And once people pick up the scent of 'change' - you could induce apprehension and in some cases, outrage.

So thats why I have restricted my posts to exploring definitions already tendered by well known knot book authors.

...

So far, I have found that G Budworth and B Toss 'appear' to have a similar conceptualization of what a 'loop' is.
C Ashley, CL Day and H Asher do not advance some terms with precision - and as a result, some concepts are more fluid and diluted.
Many people look to Ashley as the authoritative source - but I am optimistic that other sources may yet prove to be equally important.
If logic and reason can prevail - rather than emotionally charged viewpoints - there might yet be a path to consensus.

Mind you, this isn't the first time that this has been tried! Its been tried several times - and all have bogged down to the axles and evaporated.