... In Deacon's view, vis-a-vis this Harbin ethnography, symbols and words are virtual, which have far-reaching evolutionary consequences on biology, making possible language use.
Modern linguistics, while not developing an evolutionary biological-related focus in detail yet, makes language its object of examination, highlighting, for example, the significance of the sign and signifier (de Saussure) as well as its structure, its morphology, syntax, phonetics, and semantics. Its well-developed specializations in multiple fields such as sociolinguistics, dialectology, psycholinguistics, computational linguistics, historical-comparative linguistics, and applied linguistics add to theorizing communication here vis-a-vis actual and virtual Harbin as field sites by providing approaches to studying language use on the ground and in virtual worlds (UCLA). In the field of anthropological linguistics' focus on communication, especially vis-a-vis ethnography and the 3000-8000 language's in the world, virtual Harbin's possibility and emergence adds new instantiations of what is actually signified by a sign – in the form of interactive, digital representations - extending Saussure's and many others emphasis on, what I interpret here, to be parallels between the signifier and the virtual.
Conversation leading to new knowledge, as such, emerges as a concept in the ancient Greek world (reference), vis-a-vis Platonic dialogues (reference), as intimacy-filled as some of the Symposium, for example, was (Plato and Wikipedia). ...
(http://scott-macleod.blogspot.com/2010/10/lotus-seed-pod-modern-linguistics-not.html - October 7, 2010)