Yes. Currently that option would only work for MN1. Auto-expansion for all the suttas would require a lot of work. The suttas are quite inconsistent with expansions. So I gave up after MN1. Note that MN1 expanded is shorter than DN33 unexpanded.
I’m wondering about the word option. I can’t see any option to either expand or not, but it is expanded by default.
Would it be possible to make this for the user to select?
Yes it would be possible to make that option. It is also more work to make the option than to simply disable the expansion for all. The choices are:
- Do nothing (0 day)
- Create a settings option for users to turn off the expansion that only works for MN1 (0.5 day)
- Turn off the expansion for MN1 for all of us (0.1 day)
I guess this is now up to Aminah to decide.
I vote for option 3!
So, in the other thread, I wasn’t joking (well, except for the converting to Christianity bit): I found the expanded MN1 a challenge, but I also think it has real genuine potential for benefit.
I think before making a decision we should consider how likely will it be that we’ll get round to doing any more expansions (Karl is it now just MN1 and DN33 that are expanded? I know from a question I asked Bhante ages ago—well before SCV was even a twinkle in your eye—that expansion can be prohibitively complicated, but equally the task is not something outside the realm of ‘reasonable to consider’; Karl, from your previous look at this, would you say there are easier and harder cases to expend (that we might pick off the easy ones), or that it’s all just difficult?)
If there is some chance that others might be expanded then I think option 2 would be better. If not, given that one of the most awesome things about SCV is its power to lower the threshold of entry to the suttas, on balance, I think we’d probably have to go with option 3; but not before allowing anyone interested in the expended suttas to download them (eg Gus has expressed the value of the expanded versions in the other thread), and therefore for now we should go with option 1.
So there we have it, all three options!
Do I win a prize?
Oh, at least one!
This was actually a thought that just came to me too!
MN1 brought light into my life. It made me laugh. And after reading it again and again, I found myself frustrated at the abbreviations. Those ellipses cut short the wonder. Indeed, the ellipses seemed almost dismissive in the curtness of their three little dots. I wanted so much to hear the words that were missing. But I spent days thinking and coding until I could finally hear MN1 in its entirety. And then one day I succeeded and I listened to all of MN1. It was blissful to hear all of it. Blissful.
I no longer listen to MN1.
I have eaten that meal and washed my bowl. Now I listen to DN33. DN33 is not expanded. But it could be expanded. I have thought about it. And yet an odd thing has happened to me. I no longer need to hear the expansions. When DN33 skips the third absorption, I know that the ellipses do count it in. When I hear “second absorption … fourth absorption”, my mind automatically adds in the third absorption. It just happens and I don’t need the expansion any more.
This experience over the past year has been peculiar. I have seen both the need for and lack of need for expansion. My choice of MN1 to expand was a personal one that mattered to me. It was an idiosyncratic choice. I certainly do not regret expanding MN1 and I am very glad I did expand it. MN1 is regarded as an “advanced sutta.” I’m not sure why that should be so. It is perfectly clear to me. And SN12.23 is NOT an advanced sutta, but I feel the need to study SN12.23 a lot. In other words, I cannot answer the question of whether MN1 should be expanded for others.
The expansion of MN1 proved that auto-expansion is indeed possible. The code to auto-expand is idiosyncratic however. It is idiosyncratic because all the ellipses throughout the Pali canon and the translations are used in slightly different ways. If we decide that some suttas should be expand-able, I will gladly help with that effort. It will not, however, be a sweeping fix for all 3999 suttas. We will, instead, need to choose which suttas should be expandable. Then we can write code to expand the chosen few.
I hope that all of the above has provided more information for future directions. I no longer want expansions personally, but I do remember that urgent need to expand and see the whole sutta. I know that others will or are now feeling that need to hear the expanded suttas. I will support that needs as I can as it arises.
Great story, thanks! It’s easy to forget how subjective and impermanent our responses are.
I also applaud the idea of using auto+ expansion: evolve a script that will do the basics, and tweak it as we go on a per-sutta basis.
Dealing with such a large and complex all the time, I am always on the lookout for ways to keep things simple and repeatable.
Now, this is very speculative: I wonder whether it might be possible to, over time, evolve an expansion formula that applied to all the suttas? One that took into account the different kinds of expansion? Say, for example, that experience showed that expansions had to be calculated in four basic ways, we could mark up the text to reflect that. There would be individual exceptions, too, like the peyyala series which no sane person is going to want to listen to. So once such a formula is worked out, it could be applied on a general basis to produce expanded and unexpanded versions of the texts, in any format/
MN16 - 17.23.3
are hard to come by. …
Read as dot ,dot at the end.
On the list.
Actually, SarathW1, I found the incident in MN 17. Is there another one in MN 16, and where exactly?
Is it possible to go back to Sutta Central page from SCV?
Just a nice to have things.
Now I listened to it twice and I could not detect it.
This was indeed my hope as well. However, as I applied the MN1 algorithm to MN2, MN3 and more, I found to my horror that each of the those other suttas had tiny little quirky departures from my clever rules. So I hung my head and sighed. And embraced defeat.
I therefore don’t think it feasible to write an algorithm that expands all existing suttas.
However, I do think it possible for translators to use ellipses in a single consistent manner that can be auto-expanded.
Basically, if all the suttas use MN1 style ellipses, we will be … fine.
At this point I know we are laughing together at what that means.
But if we start from the point of trying to expand some rather than all, how do things look then? i.e. are there any group of suttas where expansion is reasonably consistent?
Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to edit my comment to include a major qualification. What about including selected expanded versions, one for each narrator cum language option (Pli/Pli+En/En), in the SCV wiki, at least until general auto-expansion becomes feasible? That way, auto-expanded MN 1 will still be available to autoexpandophiles.
Even MN1 is inconsistent. I had to change the algorithm several times to get through all of MN1. What worked for the first expansion didn’t work for the second expansion, etc. This led to the false hope that my efforts would pay off for the rest of MN. But when I tried the MN1 expansion out, I realized that my journey had just begun…
The worst case I have found is actually the simplest:
the second absorption…the fourth absorption
It is the worst case because it relies on global knowledge (i.e the reader knows the absorptions). Auto-expansion requires local information. That said, it is technically feasible to feed all the unexpanded suttas to an AI along with their expanded versions and we would have perfect expansions for all the existing suttas. The silly part here is that one would need to feed the expanded suttas to the AI.
Robots require local consistency. They excel at doing the same thing over and over again without regard for global context.
The question of what suttas should be expanded is quite an interesting one. I think Bhante, as a teacher with experience, would be the best person to answer this tough question. I do think that expansion could serve as an initial learning tool. Given such a set of expandable suttas (maybe 5-10?), I do think it possible to generate an auto-expansion algorithm that would serve those suttas exclusively (but see caveat above about local knowledge)
Robbie, are you…restless…with MN1?
Take a certain person who is restless. And they don’t truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that restlessness ceases without anything left over.
I can’t wait for 1.5x and 2x speed buttons… and why not 2.5x
(just kidding )
Aminah also listens in Ferrari mode. She prefers Raveena for high-G acceleration.
Most sound players today offer exactly those speed options. I saw no need to duplicate that in SCV itself as a priority.