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A glossary of juggling terminology - does such a thing exist?
In this subthread over on Reddit someone has asked for a glossary of modern juggling, and to my surprise I realised that I'm not sure such a thing exists, not an authoritative one anyway. Can any Edgizens prove me wrong please? Or suggest some good places for a curious Redditor to start looking? David Cain do you perhaps have some suggestions?
I think it was our God Emperor who created this one. Seems quite thorough.
Although I would question "Backdrop"; to me that is what is behind you - in terms of filming or performing (so, do your props contrast sufficiently with the backdrop or do they blend in?) [I would definitely include that as an alternative meaning]
Otherwise, its a pretty good start on a juggling glossary, it maybe requiring a bit of updating in terms of references to people (perhaps, to make it a bit more timeless, I would omit living people from the glossary)
Yeah, I couldn't find anything comprehensive when I looked either, which was what prompted me to compile that page.
It's been a while since I've added anything to that page, I think the last addition was buugeng.
I have added the extra definition for backdrop. I've also removed most of the living jugglers from view. I've left in those who I feel are more famous for a contribution they have made to juggling culture rather than for who they are.
New suggestions are always welcome. Any glaring ommissions from the past few years that I should include?
Both terms added, & inverse too which is related. Suggestions for less clunkily worded definitions also welcome!
"Combat: US term for Gladiators" should be "Gladiators: the British term for combat".
Yeah, I suppose you are right, it does seem to be a purely British term now. I wonder when that changed? I clearly remember it being announced as gladiators during the games at the EJC in 2002.
& is it a 3 club specific thing? I don't think I've ever heard the term 'unicycle combat' for example.
Gladiators is more of a generic term for "the last person doing this prop/skill with contact between participants allowed" so unicycle gladiators is usually still a thing. Also hoop gladiators or ball-on-head gladiators.
Combat is for three clubs and three balls.
Antipodism with a head stand
I'll take things I'd never seen for $400, Alex:
(Worth the FB link. Worked on private browsing without a login)
I train in the same space where Jose recorded this. He also has a pretty solid 4 clubs, which I think is even more insane!
I've seen a few examples of inverted antipodism, but if memory serves they were all in head-to-head balance.
Except for Rastelli:
(in case the time link doesn't embed, jump to 1:49)
There is plenty of handstand antipodism. For example that clip Violetta kiss spinning a staff while doing a one arm on Alexander?
Yes, I totally messed up what I was trying to say - I meant head-balance antip.
You are absolutely right - lots of handstands.
Excellent article from David Cain on the related area of inverted juggling:
David Cain, if you're reading this, the photo of Reverhos doing 5 clubs in practice has disappeared.
21st September 2013, at Bristol juggling convention. One my passing resources I take to conventions is James' sheet of passing siteswaps (https://goo.gl/b9UYT9), with 4 handed siteswaps grouped into categories. In discussion with someone (who eludes me now), I claim an amusing challenge might be to try and do all of the siteswaps on the sheet, with some rules about what 'completing' a pattern means. Some basic rules are drawn up - 8 rounds to a clean finish for period 3 siteswaps, 6 rounds to a clean finish for period 5 or 7, holds must be active and flipped, and a few others.
Keen and eager, I accost various people at the convention to tick off patterns, redoing completions if the pattern was a bit messy, teaching people new patterns and e.g. ticking off 966 (7 club 3 count) with someone who had never tried the pattern before. Danny is keen to motor through some with me, and he suggests it would be amusing to have various achievements like in video games - an achievement for completing your first pattern with me, an achievement for completing an entire section (we promptly find an easy section with only 4 patterns and complete it), one for getting a pattern in every section, and so on.
Back home from the convention, excited about my new incredibly nerdy challenge, I decide I should keep an electronic copy (rather than just ticking off on the sheet) of my progress, since I know how often I lose things. I make a few auto stats keeping things. One thing it tells me is how many patterns are on the sheet. Whenever I have shown the sheet to people on papre and asked how many patterns there are, they guess about 100, somewhere in the 80-200 range. It turns out there are 534! It also turns out there 202 sync patterns (actually 101, but the two sides do different things, and I decided I should do both sides), which on reflection don't look as fun as the others. On closer examination (and in discussion with James') it becomes apparent that some of the sections are somewhere between hard and impossible. He laughs when I tell him of the idea of doing all of them and points at the '8 clubs with zaps' section. Zaps, 2.5p's, are very fast passes, and there are plenty of very hard 5 and 6 club patterns with zaps - it's doubtful if anyone has ever tried any of the 14 patterns in that section, or if anyone is capable of trying them.
I plough on regardless, making fun progress. At one point I make a strong concerted effort over many sessions to make progress towards my first 9 club pattern, a89, with Alex, a juggler near me. Just as we get close, he moves away! But at the next convention, where we have set aside the entire morning to finally nail this, it takes about 4 attempts, and a milestone feels reached. It starts to get harder however, and the pool of people I can do the patterns with shrinks. Getting new people on the sheet is a fun goal, but the skill someone has to have to get on the sheet grows. The enormity of the task dawns, and while for well over a year I manage to keep my average above 1 pattern per day, it gets harder. As I get to around 40%, motivation drops, the realisation that I'm not even halfway through grows and the knowledge that almost all of the remaining patterns are harder than almost those I've done is daunting.
For over a year, progress is slow. I feel lost in the middle of the sheet. At conventions people ask me how the sheet is going, and it always feels disappointing to admit I've not done much recently. For a while I don't have a regular passing partner who can plough through the sheet with me.
Eventually though, I get over 60%, and I'm counting down rather than up. The feel is a bit different - I only do the patterns with an increasing small and able group of partners, and there's no chance of me redoing messy runs - I take any clean finish I can, in some cases fudging the timing way beyond sensible to cram a pattern to completion. I have increasing esoteric knowledge of ways patterns will be difficult, and regularly describe what the difficulties and solutions to doing a certain siteswap will be to my partner - before we even try it once. As I get closer to my goal, motivation increases, but there's always this worry that at some point the patterns become fundamentally impossible, that at some point progress will dramatically slowdown. I guess that this might happen at about 80%, or 85%, and that after that every single pattern will become a monumental effort.
Today I just ticked over 85%, and the pattern that took me there was a8958. It was the first ever pattern I achieved from the 8 clubs with zaps section of the sheet, the only section that until today I had failed to get a single pattern from. And more than that, it proved that I could get the patterns in that section, and that progress is still possible. To get there, I had to train zaps repeatedly with the same partner, Cameron, for the last month, but we removed a slew of 6 and 7 club zap patterns in the process.
I'm now at 85.02% done, with 80 patterns left. 39 different jugglers have helped me get here, although over 50% of the entire sheet (not just those I've done) has been done by just 4 passers. The majority of patterns left are sync patterns, and the majority that aren't sync are zap patterns - there are precious few 'normal' patterns left, and I'm not rushing to do those!
It's not always clear that I enjoy ticking the patterns off sometimes, nor whether doing 454 (and counting) different siteswaps and juggling conventions has caused me to sometimes ignore other, possibly better (!) activities or passing patterns. That week in Bristol, I think I would still decide to embark on this quest, but possibly I would do it better with some forewarning of just how ludicrous this rather pointless task would be. But I'm increasing excited about seeing the end, and increasing determined to push forwards and actually complete this gigantic task, that many quite knowledgeable passers thought was difficult almost to the point of impossibility.
In case anyone read this far:
a) well done
b) https://goo.gl/utxfDP shows the patterns I have completed so far, and the names and summary tabs show some stats about my progress
c) https://youtu.be/mBKy65d08fw is the 8 club with zap pattern. It looks, er, like a lot of the other patterns I do
d) Cameron and I warm up with Holy Grail now, so we filmed a long run - https://youtu.be/jXdxYa1DELk
e) http://jugglingedge.com/forum.php?ThreadID=2335&SmallID=16982#Small16982 is my post from when I got to 50%
f) If you think you can do one of the remaining patterns, are not on the sheet and I don't know you, let me know :)
The longest post I ever make, and there's a major grammar error on the first line :S Fancy fixing that someone, and making me a bit more satisfied with my monologue?
Worth pointing out that of the 80, 8 are invalid and one doesn't involve any actual passing...
I think of the ones left, about 10 are just too hard. You seem to have actually ticked one of these patterns off so maybe I am underestimating how much you and Cameron in particular have improved.
Glad I have consumed 4 years of your life with one simple spreadsheet however!
I wish you had stats on total time attempting patterns. I know we have spent close to 2 hours on single patterns before and I would guess the average is at least 20 minutes if not more. At 20 minutes on average this would give you 6.3 solid days to get the 454 patterns.
I was surprised to see I had only ticked off six patterns with Brook, as it felt like we put in a few hours of time at Bungay a few years ago. But if the average is about 20 minutes, then that seems about right. Although, if I remember correctly, one of them was a double ended pattern and we both did both ends, so the second version might have taken less time.
Now I want to try a seven or eight club zap pattern.
56789 and 96956 are my favorites with 7. Both have a nice flow compared with some of the uglier patterns
Triple self, self, zap, zap, double pass.
No, I've videoed very few of the patterns so far. Maybe I'll do it as part of my warm up with Cameron next time we do zaps though, now I've been reminded of it.
Six is quite a few :) We got at least one of those at EJC I think?
James suggested some nice patterns, if you just want to try any 7 club zap pattern though, 885 is far easier that almost any of the other 7 club zap patterns. I feel like 885, 975 and 56789 were the only ones I'd regularly tried outside the sheet.
Ye of little faith, still! All the 8 with zaps will be hard work, but I think fundamentally doable, although maybe more like projects now. We failed the collect of 9a5 yesterday, so another will go soon :)
Yeah, I wish I had collected all sorts of things from the start. I think the mean and median would be very different here - there were quite a few that went quite fast, and then a few way out that I treated much more like projects (a89 when I ticked that off, and a8958 were both concerted efforts over multiple sessions). I actually ticked of 5p34 first time with Rhonda although that's a bit of an anomaly - we had been doing it anyway, and then I remembered it was on the sheet, so the first time after that we landed the collect.
A robot Kendama?
I love this machine. Could watch it forever. pic.twitter.com/dvjUjpaMb6
— Vlastimil Hovan (@Vlastimil_Hovan) October 16, 2017
(watch to the end) not quite a 6th Dan, but still very impressive. Can't believe the guy watching this contraption walked away just as it got to the best bit!
It looks as though the guy works at the stand, and has seen it do the same routine all day. I'd be bored by it on the third day of a convention too!
Very interesting, especially as I watched this video immediately after reading this piece from The New Yorker: welcoming our new robot overlords. The article mentions that object manipulation is one of the hottest topics in robotics.
I would like to see the larger version of this robot found in the comments do the throw, whip around, catch trick with a person.
Congratulations to the Void!
I have just read on a Facebook post from Donald Grant that he has passed his 6th Dan Kendama exam. this is the highest level and he has become the first ever non-Japanese to manage it. I know that he has had several attempts beforehand and that it had proved elusive even though all the individual skills were doable. So many congratulations on his perseverance.
Apologies for the uncapitalised 't' at the start of a sentence. Just goes to show I should read my posts more thoroughly before hitting the post button.
Thank you, Nigel. I'll even forgive you the "t".
I wrote a Twitter thread about it, that starts here:
Today I became the first non-Japanese player to pass the highest grade of 6th Dan in kendama. It's the hardest thing I've ever done. 1/- pic.twitter.com/SdzusdcqQn
— The Void (@TheVoidTLMB) October 14, 2017
This is really cool. Congrats.
Is there an easy to read list of the tricks you needed to do, with video links?
I don't know enough about kendama to be sure, but this video claims to show all the tricks for 6th Dan in kendama: https://youtu.be/Yx47Uh6OfQo
http://kendama.co.uk/tricks.html lists them all, with gifs, if that will do you. Right hand column of the Advanced/Dan table will show you how many of each one I had to do successfully in 10 attempts. (Plus, of course, having previously done all the stuff to get to 5th Dan, and then wait a year before being allowed to try.)
Yes, the list is good and the rules are clear. The gifs make my eyes bleed though, so the video was highly appreciated.
If you want to read the long* story, it’s at http://kendama.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,3098.msg29896.html#msg29896 (after the tweets).
* Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
That was a great read thank you. The story is always much more interesting than just the bare facts. All the more satisfying to learn that your achievement was in spite of sub-optimal conditions.
* As ever I disagree with the insinuation that 'long' equals 'bad'.
Well done Void! First in the world is a helluva thing!
I enjoyed the 'long' read.
Thank you. But it's far from "first in the world". There are ~30-40 extant Japanese 6th Dan players. But I'll take it. :-)
Yes, fair point. I actually meant first non-Japanese in the world, as per OP, but now you've got me thinking about it I see that doesn't really make a whole lot of sense.
How about this: Congrats Void! Approximately 41st in the world is a helluva thing!
I go along with that.
On foreign terrain it's so much the better an achievement as the natives always have an edge or two with a long tradition an' all on their side. On a side note, as a halfway decent chess player (over 50% on club level), I had been into Chinese Chess, Xiangqi, for a while, and the natives (real-life and online play) gave me a hard time to even win one game and leave rookie level, while I could win games against germans or other longnoses. However.
Congrats, The Void!
Well done mate. I didn't even know you were trying again this year. Is that it now or can you go even higher?
Anyone know if there’s a proposed date for chocfest yet? I can’t see anything in the events listing, but I’m trying to plan my January :)
Damnit! Chocfest have just announced they’re going 20th jan - the one weekend I didn’t want them to go for :(
Sorry, we booked it straight after last Chocfest, but the someone else had already booked our preferred date so we had to go for a week earlier.
Does this mean you might not be coming Paul?
It means I definitely won’t be coming, I’m getting married instead - venue and registrar we’re booked this afternoon.
It also means some of my guest list will have to choose too :(
If only you had announced yesterday!
I disagreed immediately. I mean, why would such a smart fellow choose to film in portrait?
— The Void (@TheVoidTLMB) July 14, 2017
I agreed with the preamble, but it got problematic when the actual definition started. But is such a long definition useful?
I followed a little of the Facebook discussion about how this definition had been whittled down to mere pages (or was it reams?). I'll have a look at that if it appears but I don't consider a 15 minute video to be information, especially one which didn't seem to yield a point when I skimmed through it
Barnesy, here you go:
Juggling is a genre of activities related to the default form. The default form is the three ball cascade.
How far does the border have to be from the 3b cascade before it becomes 'not juggling'?
It's not about distance. It is an on or off switch. Is there a relevant relation or not? Is there another genre that has a stronger connection to the subject than 3 ball cascade, or other established forms of juggling?
One thing to always remember, is that we are dealing with communication and the meaning of a word here. For an example, if I walk into a pizza place with another juggler and the pizza chef is throwing the dough around, I could easily start talking to my juggling friend about the pizza tricks as juggling, and he would know immediately what I was saying. If the person I was talking to was a non-juggler, it might be harder, since it is not as certain that he would see a connection to other already established forms of juggling.
Perhaps dance is the default form? I think there's an 'outside' and 'inside' of what juggling is. The inside is - feeling a motion.. a dance. The feeling is the same as dancing, you're using an object/s (balls, poi, pizza etc) to feel the dance instead of your body. Skateboarding is using your body and an object to feel it. The playing of a musical instrument isn't related because of the lack of motion.. you're feeling rhythms & melodies.. but not motion. Does that make any sense? Not sure myself.
Juggling is a genre of activities related to the default form. The default form is the three ball cascade.
"Juggling a three ball cascade" is already juggling - can it then serve for defining juggling? (Howto define "juggling" in "juggling a three ball cascade"? .. to me, that's circular, tautologic, self-redundant reasoning)
Far TL; Can't be bothered to W - but:
Is a definition even useful?
Definitions usually only serve so you can point at things which don't fit the definition and exclude them. Something I haven't been interested in doing with "juggling" for a while
I like the idea of exploring the boundaries of a concept, as it lets you find areas that haven't been explored yet. However, defining what the word juggling means is a different exercise of defining what "juggling is", or can be. Completing the first step is probably useful before beginning the second step.
However, if I'm to watch a long video, it has to be more interesting than that in the first minute for me to continue on with it.
Luke, if you want to claim that the word juggling represents something different than "what juggling is" you will have to explain that difference. The word juggling is only a representative for a concept. I does not matter if you try to leave the area of language and the meaning of words, when you still use language and words. Using words in communication confines you to their meanings, unless you explain how they would differ.
We use the word juggling, and we mean something when we do. Therefore, I did not make a definition. Its already there, I have no say in the matter. I can only describe what the word means already.
Q: Is a definition even useful?
A: Yes, because when we understand deeper what it is that we are doing, we can reach further, and be more effective. We can communicate better. Removing confusion is both pleasant and aesthetical.
"Definitions usually only serve so you can point at things which don't fit the definition and exclude them."
For sure you can come up with more uses to understanding language and the meaning of words, than that one.
Not only exclude what is not juggling, but also for example seize the ``essence´´ of juggling, or e.g. define its outlines, yes, as what it's not, as opposed to where juggling stops to be juggling. Like, " Is it right, is it well communicated, to call a throw (that dough across the snack-bar) juggling or is it very artistic skilled throwing, but not really juggling? " .. What do I expect of myself when saying that I am a "juggler", being able to throw dough like him for me wouldn't be enough. I'd like to know what ``exactly´´ juggling is and what ``exactly´´ it requires. I don't feel like a juggler yet with enduring 5 balls for minutes, but not managing a 5b s'swap. I would drop even a 3b cascade when talking to someone at the same time. My 3b tricks go a few rounds to collapse (doing at the limit, tho). I'd say, for example, being able to do a lot of 3b tricks, stable(!!) and transitioning between them makes you a "juggler". Also challenging 2b tricks. But is throwing one ball up and clapping your hands or eating an apple with the other hand really what we understand by "juggling"?
Void, I was rushed and time was limited. The purpose of the video is to reveal the general thoughts. I am not great at explaining, and I am afraid those who wants to understand might have to get involved in the discussion. What is unclear? please tell me, and I will do my best to explain. Not only has the definition of juggling been an area of much disagreement, it also seems as the approach to it differs greatly, from person to person.
For those who find this video too long to be palatable, start here:
And here is a summary of the definition, which may or may not make sense unless you watch the whole thing.
"Juggling is a genre of activities which are related to the default form. The default form of juggling is the 3 ball cascade."
Topic of discussion: is the default form really the 3 ball cascade?
I am now tempted to watch the whole thing because that is not something I'd expect from Erik. There must be a lot more to it than that.
I always use the definition: "Doing what doesn't need to be done in the most difficult way possible."
I've tried to find the source of this definition a few times. Earliest reference I can find is from Jerry Carson in 2001, which is almost certainly where I picked it up from originally. However, Jerry's message suggests it comes from further back.
Wouldn't that definition include many other activities such as skateboarding, rock climbing and base jumping?
If someone is interested to read more about the definition of juggling, there is some discussion about it in this thread:
That link didn't work for me but http://objectepisodes.com/t/the-definition-of-juggling/18/2 does.
The Kingston Jugglers have, "Doing the unnecessary the hard way" on their t-shirts and they've been around a while. Greg Phillips would probably know when they started using it.
Slightly different wording from 1993: http://dev.juggle.org/history/archives/jugmags/45-3/45-3,p28.htm 2nd paragraph.
Longtime friends David Cain and Jay Gilligan won the Fargo Intermediate and Juniors Championships
David, are you younger than I think, or is that sentence missing a 'respectively'!
Why is it important to define juggling? Is it just so you can deny it includes poi?
You can decide for yourself if it is important or not. The word juggling already means something, otherwise we would not use it. "Convention" and "juggling convention" would mean the same thing, and they do not. If I tell you I am going to a juggling convention, you will get a different idea about what I am about to do, than if I said I am going to a convention. I, or anyone else did not make up what the word juggling means, but we can try to articulate its meaning by looking at how the word has been used.
My version (depending on the context - like "among jugglers", but not apt for Wikipedia) would be sth like:
" Juggling is the rhythmic displacement* of objects in a way that allows to do sth else during that displacement ongoing. This is achieved by aiming the object, thus controlling where it will land, with no need to track it. The skill of juggling lies in using that time for doing more displacements of the same kind or sth completely different in a rhythm. This in turn ("using that time") is achieved by synchronizing the body's movements with the pattern (or: "trajectories") juggled (and vice versa, by adapting, tuning, synchronizing the pattern to fit optimal body motion). "
The borders to other kinds of object manipulation transition smoothly. Object manipulations, that are not juggling, include e.g. cutting a slice of bread or sausage or drinking a cup of .. erhh .. revitalizing hot beverage, or moving your whole household to another town with two or more cars than you have helps (then called "logistics").
* displacement - also e.g. rolling
______________ ________________ _____________ _____________ _______________
Thoughts that brought me there:
Maybe it makes sense to include the juggler in a definition of juggling. I mean, the props don't juggle by themselves - it looks so mechanical, so high-tec, when a robot juggles, while, in turn when a human juggles like a robot, it's an artsy illusion, sth haunting, mesmerizing, a different feel, an uncommon onsight. So the (human, or be it then a robot) juggler is a necessary part of the whole setup of "juggling". Juggling is then the juggler moving right in rhythm with the props and the pattern, as a whole. It would distinguish "juggling" from "juggling pattern" or from "juggling (default) form" or alike, as a result of juggling, but not the whole of "someone juggling". Can juggling exist without being actually done by someone? Else "(the) juggling" and "doing juggling" would be two different things, which in reality, practically, they are not.
Or else - let then juggling be the result of what jugglers do, just like there's dance even when no one is actually dancing it -, a definition should then still include how and why this result is achieved. We'd then get: "Juggling is a juggler juggling the three ball cascade."
Or at least include some physical stuff: "one object in the air" .. what does that mean? - It's timing, time gained by throw height (or roll distance), time to do sth else before catching it again, it's rhythm, tact, (music?), and the juggler needs to account for all that by moving in ways allowing for it to happen: posture, technique, pattern an' all.
A whole lot has been said about this in the thread on Objectepisodes.com
Feel free to join.
Thanks, I mean, no thanks. Prefer to stay here. Why spread the online juggling community onto lots'a different places - it's a lot more clicking and logging in, but, main thing is, content gets partly reduntant, partly exclusive or not to find anymore, also later. Same discussions - like this one - will be unnecessarily parted onto different threads, and by nature have less participants. The whole thing gets ``decentralized´´.
But you are participating in this discussion in the decentralized location. The centralized location is on OE.
I understand the generality of your argument, but I think it can only be used against:
a) New, undeveloped forums that
b) Are redundant with current forums
a) is arguable with OE,
b) is different in that it is (descriptively) for serious discussion about juggling, with a few of the current best thinkers on juggling.
I replied to Scott Seltzer, who linked to youTube.
I think, I have good arguments:
That "default form" stuff and that "Juggling is juggling the 3b cascade" thing is self-referring, so not a definition.
My version proposed above does several things:
It includes contact juggling, poi swinging, patterns rolled on a billiard table (by using the "displacement" instead "tossing or rolling or moving or handling").
It includes the juggler, as what I argued for above to me is part of poised juggling. Juggling without a juggler doing it is maybe a "juggling pattern".
It includes the rhythm, so that a single throw or a gimmick or a standalone flourish or an ass catch on its own are not juggling.
Aspects, that the "best thinkers of the juggling scene" upto now haven't yet accounted for. So I must be completely wrong. Juggling is a highly complex form of movement (of a person actor) and with objects. Calling it an "activity related to a basic pattern", the latter an algorithm, that stickman can do, is way beyond what doing juggling actually is. Every activity in the universe is maybe "related to a default form", in the end, that's then like positing: "Juggling exists." is the definition of juggling.
Thanks for your thoughts.
"I replied to Scott Seltzer, who linked to youTube."
I was referring to your comment in response to erik's offer to join OE.
"That "default form" stuff and that "Juggling is juggling the 3b cascade" thing is self-referring, so not a definition."
I found this a bit of a frustrating straw man argument. Why use "juggling" twice in its own definition, then call it self-referring? Erik posted his tl;dr definition above, which reads: Juggling is a genre of activities related to the default form. The default form is the three ball cascade.
His definition does not use the word "juggling" at all, and is not at all self-referential. It is an example of an ostensive definition, which is a valid and common type of definition.
I'll discuss your definition in a separate comment, because I feel that these are separate ideas.
["offer to join OE"] Yes, I understood that. And I was referring to you stating, OE were the centralized place ( when speaking in such terms - it's become a long thread there, and it's become a long thread here, rather independently from one another, exept for Erik Aberg linking there, late this thread. So inviting me to join there ((and having to register an' stuff an' all)), I took as actually a redirection ).
["3b cascade ``unjuggled´´"] Then, I think, in juggling defined as an activity, maybe there is no ``default form´´ "3b cascade", without it needing actually juggled. You can make it an algorithm, you can make it an abstract concept, you can make it a standalone pattern independent of juggling (using quarks or cars or stickman, or people walking zig-zag in cascade pattern or mere points and vectors in a coordinate system), but when using it as an activity to define juggling, using it to precise the activity of juggling, then surely as the juggled cascade. So, in that "default form"-statement, I read the word and notion of "juggling" (the 3b cas) included, even if it's not explicitly written, and I think, that is also what Aberg meant - the activity of juggling a 3b cascade (it in fact reads to me as that word juggling were omitted or expected to be thought included). Else, some major abstraction level would have escaped me ..
["ostensive definition"] I'll have to look that up. So far, I can only say: The ``default form´´ of a horse are neither a "hoof", nor a "mammal" which would be a general category and a property defining it (the classical way), while I can't see how "A horse is a gender of living things related to the default form 'standard-horse' like that one over there [points to one]." can be an useful definition.
Going through the suggested definition bit by bit...
" Juggling is the rhythmic displacement*
I don't see juggling as necessarily rhythmic, at least not in the sense of any definition of rhythmic I could find (e.g. a strong, regular, repeated pattern of movement or sound.). I could juggle briefly in a completely unrepeated style that would clearly still be juggling.
[...]of objects in a way that allows to do sth else during that displacement ongoing.[...]
I'm not convinced this is necessary, but it is an often-seen attribute of typical juggling.
[...]This is achieved by aiming the object, thus controlling where it will land, with no need to track it.[...]
What about freestyling, where sometimes the juggler doesn't really aim? What about the passing game "garbage", where you throw horrible throws to your partner, absolutely necessitating them to track the object?
[...]The skill of juggling lies in using that time for doing more displacements of the same kind or sth completely different in a rhythm.[...]
Same argument against rhythm. And without rhythm being included in the definition, the definition is by far overly inclusive.
[...]This in turn ("using that time") is achieved by synchronizing the body's movements with the pattern (or: "trajectories") juggled (and vice versa, by adapting, tuning, synchronizing the pattern to fit optimal body motion). "[...]
Juggling is very easy to do, and in fact always done, without "optimal body motion". This part of the definition also uses "synchronizing" loosely. Taken literally, it doesn't make much sense, and taken loosely, it doesn't state things precisely enough for a definition.
(general) I feel that your suggested definition describes a lot of juggling, but not all of it. I also feel like it uses far too many parameters, some of which seem to be intended more literally than others. Some of the parameters are categorically different than others:
rhythm being necessary is very different than demanding optimal body motion.
I'm glad, you had to dig deep and find unusual, rare counter-examples, in order to query, attempt to refute, to discuss the the proposed definition.
>I could juggle briefly in a completely unrepeated style that would clearly still be juggling.
Cool! But I think this might then be either "learning to juggle", or else pretty hard and then rather one of the many exotic, experimental forms of juggling, if really done with no rhythmic feeling, also without half or quarter tacts (e.g. shapeshifting which is still a rhythm). But, yeah, one could go through slightly or completely different heights in order to achieve that - would look pretty "Frankenstein", or "casual", though. [//And that's where our new discipline "casual juggling" (without any rhythm whatsoever) is born.//]
Maybe your word "repeatedly" could be of use for a definition (e.g. in order to distinguish from single throws, gimmicks, that could then be "elements of juggling").
>And without rhythm being included in the definition, the definition is by far overly inclusive.
Hm .. rhythm is indeed, if not crucial (as you put it), a major constituing aspect I see in the ado of juggling that I find needs to be included in a good definition. (But maybe it's not the best word). By "rhythm" I don't mean a tact, a beat, a cadence, but also e.g. galopped tacts, also speeding up or down shortly (in relation to a given beat), or also a funky, maybe broken rhythm (but I think, that was also your wide understanding of the word).
Maybe abstract it to sth like "recurring along spacetime" or so (which sounds queer and awkward).
I do still think that usually juggling goes with a rhythm (in that broadest sense).
[// I don't want ``my´´ definition to be "overly inclusive" °gnarghh°//]
>Juggling is very easy to do, and in fact always done, without "optimal body motion".
I don't see that. I see that alternately throwing a weight (also that of the arm itself!?) left--right--a.s.o. requires countermovement and keeping th balance - the whole body is involved to provide for the right positioning of hands and arms when throwing and catching (in the rhythm dictated by the pattern). Doing (or tuning) this awarely and as optimal as possible is crucial for juggling well, fluent, with no superflu tensions. A question of posture, anatomy, action patterns, the system: "juggler juggling".
[>"synchronizing"] When building a juggling robot, you will have to synchronize throws (height, direction, timing) and where the robot's hand or bowl or what it's got, shall catch. Same for our human hands - where the hands are needs be synched with where the props fall. And what goes for a single throw and catch will take place all the time when juggling a pattern, else you drop.
[>general] Yes, juggling has a lot of aspects that want to be included in a definition. And rating a definition's valuability or aptness or usefulness in deep will lead to having to in turn defining the words used in it.
One more thing .. a definition of an activity, of object manipulation, as broad as juggling, can by nature not be completely clear, not complete, not as binding as in e.g. natural sciences, but can still be ``better´´ than in e.g. social sciences or in humanities. It transitioning fluently at its borders doesn't mean it can't be defined as what it's usually. Any exotic derivations are then exactly that, not "juggling" in it's common sense, but "experimental" or "exotic forms", or "unclear to draw a line there". It needs be done pragmatically a bit, I guess.
I mean, it would be cool to have a widely agreed upon definition, instead of year by year when that topic rises up again, resigning on the many exception there are counteracting every attempt to define juggling while we all know what it is.
I disagree that my counterexamples were rare, particularly the not having "optimal body position". Consider a beginner, walking around in an uncontrolled fashion, has optimal body position. Certainly juggling, certainly not optimal body position!
Really though, I don't think "optimal body position" is important to your definition, and I feel it would be stronger without it.
I certainly understand the differences between levels of acceptable precision between natural sciences and social sciences (I did a BSc and MSc in natural sciences, and am doing a PhD in social science). I believe that a definition should encapsulate the uncertainty of the act. I think this is a great strength of Erik's definition. With his definition, it can account for context and culture, both of which can affect whether something is juggling. If Erik's definition is a Gaussian centred around a 3b cascade, I think yours is a similar curve, but with the tails cut off.
 - Arguable, probably?
Okay, I think, we've both thrown our arguments into the webspace now, and there's partly rather controversial opinions or viewpoints, some bit of agreement; but we both put foreward some aspects to maybe be accounted for in future attempts on defining "juggling". [ #definitions ]
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