The alphabet of a formal language is the set of symbols, letters, or tokens from which the strings of the language may be formed; frequently it is required to be finite. The strings formed from this alphabet are called words, and the words that belong to a particular formal language are sometimes called well-formed words or well-formed formulas. A formal language is often defined by means of a formal grammar such as a regular grammar or context-free grammar, also called its formation rule.
The field of formal language theory studies primarily the purely syntactical aspects of such languages—that is, their internal structural patterns. Formal language theory sprang out of linguistics, as a way of understanding the syntactic regularities of natural languages.
In computer science, formal languages are used among others as the basis for defining the grammar of programming languages and formalized versions of subsets of natural languages in which the words of the language represent concepts that are associated with particular meanings or semantics. In computational complexity theory, decision problems are typically defined as formal languages, and complexity classes are defined as the sets of the formal languages that can be parsed by machines with limited computational power. In logic and the foundations of mathematics, formal languages are used to represent the syntax of axiomatic systems, and mathematical formalism is the philosophy that all of mathematics can be reduced to the syntactic manipulation of formal languages in this way.
Under the editorship of Yale linguist Bernard Bloch, Language was the vehicle for publication of many of the important articles of American structural linguistics during the second quarter of the 20th century, and was the journal in which many of the most important subsequent developments in linguistics played themselves out.
One of the most famous articles to appear in Language was the scathing 1959 review by the young Noam Chomsky of the book Verbal Behavior by the behavioristcognitive psychologistB. F. Skinner. This article argued that Behaviorist psychology, then a dominant paradigm in linguistics (as in psychology at large), had no hope of explaining complex phenomena like language. It followed by two years another book review that is almost as famous—the glowingly positive assessment of Chomsky's own 1957 book Syntactic Structures by Robert B. Lees that put Chomsky and his generative grammar on the intellectual map as the successor to American structuralism.
The Lak language (лакку маз, lakːu maz) is a Northeast Caucasian language forming its own branch within this family. It is the language of the Lak people from the Russian autonomous republic of Dagestan, where it is one of six standardized languages. It is spoken by about 157,000 people.
In 1864 Russian ethnographer and linguist P. K. Uslar wrote: "Kazikumukh grammar or as I called it for short in the native language, the Lak grammar, Lakku maz, the Lak language, is ready".
In 1890 a textbook was published on Lak grammar compiled by P.K. Uslar named as The Lak Language. It stated under the title "Lak alphabet": "The proposed alphabet is written for people who name themselves collectively Lak, genitive Lakral. From among these people each one is named separately Lakkuchu 'Lakian man,' the woman — Lakkusharssa 'Lakian woman.' Their homeland they name Lakral kIanu — 'Lak place.'"
Lak has throughout the centuries adopted a number of loanwords from Arabic, Turkish, Persian, and Russian. Ever since Dagestan was part of the USSR and later Russia, the largest portion of loanwords have come from Russian, especially political and technical vocabulary. There is a newspaper and broadcasting station in Lak language.
Choice involves mentally making a decision: judging the merits of multiple options and selecting one or more of them. One can make a choice between imagined options ("what would I do if ...?") or between real options followed by the corresponding action. For example, a traveller might choose a route for a journey based on the preference of arriving at a given destination as soon as possible. The preferred (and therefore chosen) route can then follow from information such as the length of each of the possible routes, traffic conditions, etc. If the arrival at a choice includes more complex motivators, cognition, instinct and feeling can become more intertwined.
Simple choices might include what to eat for dinner or what to wear on a Saturday morning - choices that have relatively low-impact on the chooser's life overall. More complex choices might involve (for example) what candidate to vote for in an election, what profession to pursue, a life partner, etc. - choices based on multiple influences and having larger ramifications.
Amy Tran Kwitny was the young woman who went on to become Choice. The Choice Corporation's desire to create a corporate spokesmodel to compete with Ultratech's corporate symbol, Prototype, led to the creation of Choice. Amy Tran was a former subject of Aladdin experiments and considered an ideal subject. She was reacquired by the agency to be their test subject.
Aladdin and NuWare pooled their resources to make Amy Tran the first bioenhanced ultra. Sections of her brain were replaced with wetware implants created from the brain tissue of Forsa and Starburst, former members of the Squad. A period of testing and mental conditioning ensued, and Choice, as Amy Tran was now called, was turned over to CEO Bob Dixon, who used her as a spokesmodel and mistress.
A media sensation, Choice endorsed the Choice Corporation's products. They planned to later reveal her ultra powers, thereby skyrocketing her popularity. Unfortunately, her mental conditioning began to break down due to Dixon's sexual abuses. Choice was moved to Brazil to be reconditioned, but escaped.
Choice was a credit cardtest marketed by Citibank in the United States, announced in 1977 and first issued in 1978. It was one of the first cards to offer a cash-refund program and no annual fee. Choice was intended to create a rival to Visa, MasterCard, and American Express, but proved unsuccessful, and was withdrawn in 1987. Citibank has continued to use the "Choice" name on some of its Visa and MasterCard cards.
The card was introduced in 1977, when Citibank bought NAC, a regional credit card based in Baltimore, renaming it Choice. A subsequent campaign in Maryland in 1980 turned the card into a regional success, earning more than one million cardholders in the Baltimore and Washington, DC, area.
With a view to nationwide expansion, the test market was expanded to include Colorado. Despite the success of Sears' Discover Card, which offered many of the same features as Choice when it was introduced in 1985 (such as a rebate on purchases and no annual fee), Citibank decided Choice could not compete with Visa and MasterCard in the longer term, and the card was reissued as a Visa at the end of 1987, aimed at entry-level customers and those with poor credit.