New posting -- "How do our sentences fit together?"

David E. Wojick dwojick at HUGHES.NET
Thu May 24 11:46:24 EDT 2007

Dear Colleagues,

I have posted a brief introduction to my work on the propositional 
structure and dynamics of expressed thought (writing and speaking). 
Please see:

Mine is more of a discovery than an algorithm. All of the sentences 
in a body of writing or speaking have a basic underlying structure. 
(Technically it is the atomic propositions, not the sentences.) To 
oversimplify, this is because each sentence is answering an unspoken 
question of just one other prior sentence.

It is a tree structure and I first found it by analyzing public 
policy issues so it is called the Issue Tree. Here is a simple 

Each path from the top down through the tree is a line of thought. So 
if we do an issue tree of a body of scientific literature we will see 
the lines of thought that underlie it. This is what I mean by 
visualizing the reasoning, which is what we are really interested in 
many cases. Many of our visualization methods are seeing the shadow 
of the issue tree. There are also many things to measure in the issue 

Actually there are two ways of representing the same tree that are of 
special interest. In one the paths proceed historically so we can see 
how the science is developing over time. In the other we proceed from 
the most general concepts down to the more specific. These are very 
different, for as Aristotle says, the order of knowing is opposite 
the order of being.

In addition to the divergence of paths in the local issue tree there 
is a convergent phenomenon, where a concept jumps from one region (or 
subtree) to another. My favorite example is the quantum, which jumped 
from heat (Planck) to light (Einstein) to matter (Bohr).

I did a lot of work with issue trees but it was before the PC, so it 
is all on paper. I will be happy to discuss it.

Regards to all,


David E. Wojick, Ph.D., P.E. -- 540-858-3503 -- <dwojick at>
391 Flickertail Lane, Star Tannery, VA 22654 USA provides my bio and 
client list. 
presents some of my own research, including the dynamics and 
structure of information.
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