In Startide Rising (a novel by David Brin) it's been a couple hundred years since Earthlings finnaly "went" galactic. The only reason they are still around now is the fact that they had uplifted two species from the earth, chimps and dolphins. In this novel you follow the first spacecraft piloted by dolphins, Streaker.

The crew happens to come across a fleet of derelect ships that may date back to the Progenitors. This causes the galactics to become very much in the mood for war and so they end up chasing down Streaker. Anyway the crew of Streaker has to think of some way to get past all of these battling ships and species. What they do is quite a feat of engineering and shows just how desrving of sapience dolphins are. The crew of Streaker is later talked about in the last two books of a side story trilogy of sorts. The books in the trilogy are Infinty's Shore and Heavens Reach

One of the most inventive parts of this book was the uplifted dolphins languages. The language the "civilized" dolphins was a whistling, poetic language called Trinary, which humans could use and understand with training. In the book was shown as lines of italicized text with asterisks.

* When one commands
One is envied by people-
But oh! the demands! *

The primitive language the uplifted dolphins eschewed (but were known to revert to when under stress) was called Primal. Brin would use hash marks instead of asterisks, and the text itself tended to be at a more primitive level, indicating more primitive urges.

Brin also used odd punctuation marks to indicate alien sounds or other cases where communication or language was not following human norms.

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