I suppose we could measure shuttle speed by snail's pace.
"Rickard A. Parker" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> Units of measure like the foot, the yard, the mile, horsepower,
>> however "imprecise" they are, are based in sense experience.
>> Even "right" and "left" vs. compass points are more grounded
>> in our orientation to the body.
>But people are strange and there are all sorts of ways to look
>at the world. I found the below fascinating.
> Let us return to Pormpuraaw. Unlike English, the Kuuk
>Thaayorre language spoken in Pormpuraaw does not use rela-
>tive spatial terms such as left and right. Rather Kuuk Thaayorre
>speakers talk in terms of absolute cardinal directions (north,
>south, east, west, and so forth). Of course, in English we also use
>cardinal direction terms but only for large spatial scales. We
>would not say, for example, “They set the salad forks southeast
>of the dinner forks—the philistines!” But in Kuuk Thaayorre
>cardinal directions are used at all scales. This means one ends
>up saying things like “the cup is southeast of the plate” or “the
>boy standing to the south of Mary is my brother.” In Porm-
>puraaw, one must always stay oriented, just to be able to speak
> People who think differently about space are also likely to
>think differently about time. For example, my colleague Alice
>Gaby of the University of California, Berkeley, and I gave Kuuk
>Thaayorre speakers sets of pictures that showed temporal prog-
>ressions—a man aging, a crocodile growing, a banana being eat-
>en. We then asked them to arrange the shuffled photographs on
>the ground to indicate the correct temporal order.
> We tested each person twice, each time fac-
>ing in a different cardinal direction. English
>speakers given this task will arrange the
>cards so that time proceeds from left to right.
>Hebrew speakers will tend to lay out the
>cards from right to left. This shows that writ-
>ing direction in a language influences how we
>organize time. The Kuuk Thaayorre, however,
>did not routinely arrange the cards from left to
>right or right to left. They arranged them from
>east to west. That is, when they were seated facing
>south, the cards went left to right. When they faced
>north, the cards went from right to left. When they faced
>east, the cards came toward the body, and so on. We never told
>anyone which direction they were facing—the Kuuk Thaayorre
>knew that already and spontaneously used this spatial orienta-
>tion to construct their representations of time.