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Project Scope

This project will be teaching a simplified version of english to dolphins via a modified morse code format.

The hope is to be able to directly communicate with whales and dolphins in a profound way.

While trying to learn and understand the sounds emitted by these creatures is viable and may be of success, I don't think it is going to happen any time this century. That is why I want to try to solve this mystery a different way.

Who am I?

Carsten Svendsen, born in Denmark 1991 and moved to New Zealand in 2016, once had a dream about interspecies intelligent communication, particularly between humans and dolphins. The idea is not new, but I believe I have found a way based on morse code.

I have been an electrician since 2008 and studied Marine Biology in 2020 at SORCE, Indonesia.

I never went to university or anything fancy, but everything I need is already present in my heart to make this project a reality.

The project

The Evans Code was developed in 1925 to aid in morse code transmissions by reducing the number of letters in a word significantly. This has since been superseded by The Phillips code in 1975 with no further update that I know of.

    Based on this idea, I have been developing a system where a letter in morse equals a whole word. Two letters in morse equals a different word in that subcategory. Here are a few examples:

A = Measurement​

AA = Size

AAA = Big/Large

AAB = Small/little

AB = Temperature

ABA = Hot

ABB = Cold

B = Animal

BA = Carnivore

BAA = Fox

BAB = Dinosaur

BB = Herbivore

BBA = Turtle

BBB = Brachiosaurus

I found a list of the 5,000 most common words in english and sorted them out according to categories. Some words are also synonyms and can be put together basically. The morse code system is incredibly versatile and can fit as many words as you want, as long as you can find the right category for them; there are 30 standard combinations of dots and dashes. With just 3 layers the potential is 15-27,000 unique words.

    There are many different languages in the world which has different ways of interacting with words and sentences. My idea is to make everything as basic as possible, e.g. I/Me/Mine/My becomes the same for example. Same with most sentence structures.

    You can download my progress from my Github. Once you open the .exe it will take a fairly long time to load the program depending on your processor speed. I have since developed a better interface and am currently in the process of transferring everything to it.

It is the idea that dolphins and possibly other species are able to emit controlled sounds which mimic the standard dit-dah of morse code.

Once a rough, but functional new language has been created, it must first be tested by AI and a big library of text to see how the newly created language handles translating back and forth. Once all confusions and errors have been ironed out, field testing can commence.

    Whether the field testing will be in the wild or captivity is yet to be determined. I'm thinking captivity at this stage because those dolphins are already so bored that they'd probably be willing to learn anything, who knows. On the other hand, I wouldn't want to spread a partly functional language in the wild, which would make for a hard time to fix later on when faults have been discovered.

In any case, field testing will be done underwater with specifically designed touch controls to easily output morse code, located on the fingertips. This is still on the idea stage, but I doubt it would be complicated design. I'm thinking reed switches.

Communication with dolphins is, as I said before, not a new idea by any means:

  • The CHAT research program done by Dr. Denise Herzing back in 2014 was teaching dolphins different sound patterns that correlate with a specific object, like seaweed or ball.

  • Gavagi, a swedish company,  has been doing a 4-year research project since 2017 where they input dolphin sounds to an AI in hopes of translating it directly. Stil no results as of yet that I can find.

  • Project CETI is another organisation who is working on using AI to translate Sperm Whales language.

Example Tree

When will we see results?

I am but one man with limited knowledge of various subjects. I originally was doing this work in Excel, but quickly succumbed to it's lack of expandability. I had a program made which can have long lists and subcategories, but now that I've used it a lot, it's gotten extremely slow.

Therefore I've had a new program made which is still super basic but does work better graphically and under the hood. I would however, love to have someone make up a proper software, instead of a Fiverr botch job for quick money.

I am also a bit stuck in regards to determining the importance of words in the aquatic environment.

    Does "paperclip" need to be part of this language? Probably not, but the option to add it later would be very useful.

I found a list of 5000 of the most common words in the english language and many of them are honestly not at all applicable to this application. Some words are a bit more specialized but still somewhat relevant now and then, however, finding the right category to put them in is not an easy feat, if not impossible given my current progress. I do believe this list of words is also fairly old by now.

    Everything will have to be reiterated many times and categories changed and mixed around to make sure everything makes sense. As a matter of fact, I will have to learn this whole new system myself by heart if I'm ever going to have even a miniscule chance of teaching dolphins this thing.

Still interested?

If you would like to get on board with me, there is only one requirement, and that is that you must be fluent in english which shouldn't be much of a surprise. If you know other languages as well then that is perfect! The english grammar structure is honestly not very user friendly and if we can grab bits and pieces from other languages to make the simplest language we can, we would be much better suited.

Location doesn't matter as much of the work can be done remotely. I would love to meet in person though, so if you're based in Auckland, definitely hit me up for a chat! Contact details can be found at the bottom of the website.

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