Sunday, 9 December 2012

The rights of public employees vs intellectual property

My apologies to my readers for not having posted a while. I just started a job. After many years of being a persona non grata in my own homeland, I totally appreciate this new job and the opportunities to be a contributing member of society again. For those who know me or of me, a political post and the way I tend to think, the way I am do not mix without explosive results. Hopefully that is all behind me now. I think it is; and I'll tell you why:

The nature of our work is such that many of the things we do in our office can be considered 'new' and 'cutting edge' even. In order to implement the mandate of the workplace, everything that everyone in the office does is of that nature. The transition from pre- to a literate society... -this is no hyperbole, believe me. From the technical to the aesthetic, we are trying to meld these aspects together in a more or less seamless manner. Deliberately.

I've actually been intending to post a technical paper in this blog that I did up recently as part of constructing a terminology database. I mean, I don't know whether the thought processes behind the paper are technically feasible (I'm pretty sure they are - just that I'm no computer expert to see clearly why I'd think that).

As a trained linguist, I know the grammatical/phonological structure of the Inuit Language (Inuktut, we call it to make the term inclusive covering all Eskimo-Aleut family) intimately. Many years ago I came up with a way of emptying the contents of the Inuktut grammar completely to bring out the structural aspect of it all. The equation works beautifully to expose the inner workings of the structure.

Focussing only on the medial affixation rules (ontologically, as Duden heavy-weights call it and what re-inspired me to look more closely), there is a way of demonstrating the logical constraints why the grammatical equation would work so beautifully. The internal structure of the Inuktut grammar is no chimera open to human whim and uninformed imagination but one that behaves mathematically with constraint rules that are both rigorous and stable and utterly systemic. Beautiful, is all I can say.

I'm usually not one to claim credit for what I consider to be the heritage and birth right of all humanity, but given the (what I consider) failures of government bureaucracies to do justice to the intellectual and practical possibilities of human development and aspirations - of course, based solely on the already uni-laterally and publicly stated priorities and directions for which bureaucracies are infamous for for glomming onto at whatever cost - I think its worth pointing out that whatever failures may come to pass it is not because Inuit and their language are 'primitive' (demonstrably to the contrary) and not worth our time and effort but that these failures will be due to the 'priorities and directions' already taken even unto lock-stepping over a cliff.

This brings me to the whole point of this blog entry's title: do what we produce in the public workplace (even ones that we've produced before becoming bureaucrats and are only now showing) belong to governments, or are they public domain and open to public discourse?

There are other insights from other fields that have not been applied in the way the thinker now plans to apply them that should also be settled in terms of the question posed in the title of this entry. I will not get into them here simply because they're highly technical and out of respect for the unnamed collaborators. But what  makes the issue different and unique here is the nature of Nunavut itself. The proper word would be 'pressing' for the differences and uniquesness.

And there we have: saying so many words without saying much. At least, not exposing more than is neccesary.


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