Today, and for quite a awhile, the buzz is technology, technology, technology. Technology is the savior of the world. And so on and so forth. As the many technological disciplines progress it follows that the specific language of each discipline is also made more specific in the description not only of individual parts but whole processes, methods, work flows, etc. Using acronyms as an example, the three letters EKG describe an extremely complex health evaluation process and/or the devices capable of carrying out this process. Unsuprisingly, an outsider may not be able to understand normal work conversation between two specialists in a given discipline.
OK, so what?
The historiocity of the extremely brief and concentrated story of the tower of Babel is often dismissed as a simple etiology for the origins of diverse languages. Nothing of any archeological or sociological merit is contained in the storyline save the use of ziggurats as a local backdrop. But what is interesting is that the eminent communication breakdown is paralleled with advancements in technology – bricks and mortar in this case. And to be sure, hubris fuels the entire drama.
And so the point is… ?
In a very general sense then, and with no intent to equate technology with evil or promote an anti-science posture for sure, could the diversity of “languages” we experience today in the extremely complicated and specific terminology of the various technological disciplines be an experience that is akin to that ancient and remote technological enterprise that is credited with the first communication breakdown?
Does this simple etiology, perhaps, preserve something very historical in its ironic juxtaposing of technological advancement and global communication breakdown?
Credit this one to idle time on my bus commute.