Saltiness
saltyicon.jpg
Any flavor or gustatory perception that could be loosely described as something like tasting the ocean is called a salty sensation. We use words like briny, metallic, acrid, fishy, alkaline, saline, antacid, medicinal, pickled etc. to describe salty flavors. These sensations are objectified as a class of chemical compounds generically called salts. They are all modeled by molecules composed from at least two atoms. To produce a taste sensation, a substance must be dissolved in water or saliva to react chemically with nerves of the tongue and palate. When salts are dissolved in water, they break into two components called ions. Different salty sensations are associated with different ions and we can make binary descriptions of these flavors by comparing them with tasting the ocean. Report the result using one of the following algebraic statements. If the tastes are not comparable, then say the flavor is not a salty sensation and write
A naturally occurring crystal of //sodium chloride//, also known as table salt, from a potash mine in Saskatchewan, Canada.
A naturally occurring crystal of sodium chloride, also known as table salt, from a potash mine in Saskatchewan, Canada.

$\delta_{\sf{I}}=0$

If the sensation is like tasting the ocean, then call it a brackish flavor and express this as

$\delta_{\sf{I}}=+1$

If the taste is not like the ocean, then say it is bitter and report

$\delta_{\sf{I}}=-1$

If the sensation is ambiguous then write

$-1 \le \delta_{\sf{I}} \le 1$

The number $\delta_{\sf{I}}$ is called the saltiness. We use a picture of the ocean as an icon for salty taste sensations. You can always click on icons to come back to a page like this for easy reference.

Summary
Adjective Definition
Saltiness $\delta_{\sf{I}} \equiv \begin{cases} +1 &\sf{\text{if a sensation is brackish }} \\ -1 &\sf{\text{if a sensation is bitter }} \end{cases}$ 2-9
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