Monday, August 25, 2014

Our Greatest Invention

I just happened upon this article about a book called 'Shapes for Sounds: Why alphabets look like they do, what has happened to them since printing was invented, why they won't ever change, and how it might have been.'

I haven't read the book yet (I just ordered it), but some of the pictures are so fascinating.

For instance, what if we wrote in blocks of color?

Linguists commonly use charts like this:
to map sounds that happen in our face:

Extrapolating from those charts, the book shows us this:

Which is really quite cool.

I should have my book in a few days, so I'll check back in when I've had a chance to study it. In the meantime, what do you think? Have any of you read this book? Do you agree that writing is one of mankind's greatest inventions?