[INDOLOGY] sanskrit and computers?

Antonia Ruppel rhododaktylos at gmail.com
Mon Apr 13 14:25:02 UTC 2020

Dear Professor Zydenbos,

Just for the record: I shared this article not because I think that there
is anything worthwhile about it - it seemed so obviously flawed that I
didn't think that needed pointing out. I do however think it is a good
article to know about - the whole 'Sanskrit and computers' story is one of
the main ways in which Sanskrit is being talked about in public. We as
Sanskritists are best placed to counter such myth and misinformation, and
to do that, it helps to know what is out there.

Mostly what *I* find sad is that there are so many unquestionably wonderful
things about knowledge of Sanskrit that go happily ignored by a public
apparently interested in Sanskrit - and instead, it's this misinformation
that takes root. I'm always happy when I hear about initiatives such as
Patrick's that try and do something against this - it would be such a shame
to just cede the field to those with political/nationalist agendas.

All the very best,

On Mon, 13 Apr 2020 at 04:27, Robert Zydenbos <zydenbos at uni-muenchen.de>

> On 2020-04-12 21:43, Antonia Ruppel via INDOLOGY wrote:
> > […] I've attached an article about Sanskrit use for NLP that I've
> > sometimes seen referred to as 'proof' that this is a
> > respectable/serious subject for academic study. (It is IEEE, but from
> > the proceedings of a conference rather than one of their own
> > (prestigious) publications.)
> Such articles make me very sad.
> Evidently none of the four authors, nor any editor before the article
> was published, noticed that seven vibhaktis are mentioned (section V) --
> and then comes a list of eight. This is only one of many problems I have
> with this article. (Another one is “chez le garcon- in the boy”, another
> is “a phrase in English language "I like apple" can suggest a brand of
> Computer or a kind of fruit apple” (no!), another one is the total
> irrelevance of section IX, especially as soon as we are dealing with
> non-Indo-European languages.)
> Nothing really good comes from such publications.
> RZ
> --
> Prof. Dr. Robert J. Zydenbos
> Institute of Indology and Tibetology
> Department of Asian Studies
> Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (University of Munich – LMU)
> Germany

Dr Antonia Ruppel

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