Learning Word Meaning From Dictionary Definitions: Sensorimotor Induction Precedes Verbal Instruction
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Almost all words are the names of categories. We can learn most of our words (and hence our categories) from dictionary definitions, but not all of them. Some have to be learned from direct experience. To understand a word from its definition we need to already understand the words used in the definition. This is the “Symbol Grounding Problem” . How many words (and which ones) do we need to ground directly in sensorimotor experience in order to be able to learn all other words via definition alone? The answer may shed some light both on the developmental origin of word meanings and on the evolutionary origin and adaptive value of language. We used an algorithm to reduce each of our dictionaries (Longmans LDOCE, Cambridge CIDE and WordNet) to its “grounding kernel” (“Kernel”) (which turned out to be about 10% of the dictionary) by systematically eliminating..
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Paul Bloom (2001). Précis of How Children Learn the Meanings of Words. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (6):1095-1103.
Afsaneh Fazly, Afra Alishahi & Suzanne Stevenson (2010). A Probabilistic Computational Model of Cross-Situational Word Learning. Cognitive Science 34 (6):1017-1063.
Tali Bitan & James R. Booth (2012). Offline Improvement in Learning to Read a Novel Orthography Depends on Direct Letter Instruction. Cognitive Science 36 (5):896-918.
Stevan Harnad (2002). Symbol Grounding and the Origin of Language. In Matthias Scheutz (ed.), Computationalism: New Directions. MIT Press
Timothy Pritchard (2012). Meaning, Signification, and Suggestion: Berkeley on General Words. History of Philosophy Quarterly 29 (3):301-317.
Kenny Smith, Andrew D. M. Smith & Richard A. Blythe (2011). Cross-Situational Learning: An Experimental Study of Word-Learning Mechanisms. Cognitive Science 35 (3):480-498.
Sam Scott (2001). The Other Way to Learn the Meaning of a Word. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (6):1117-1118.
Paul Bloom (2001). Controversies in the Study of Word Learning. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (6):1124-1130.
Stevan Harnad, Symbol Grounding is an Empirical Problem: Neural Nets Are Just a Candidate Component.
Jose Fernando Fontanari & Angelo Cangelosi (2011). Cross-Situational and Supervised Learning in the Emergence of Communication. Interaction Studies 12 (1):119-133.
Lakshmi J. Gogate (2001). Don't Preverbal Infants Map Words Onto Referents? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (6):1106-1107.
Added to index2010-12-06
Total downloads30 ( #132,498 of 1,906,957 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #200,308 of 1,906,957 )
How can I increase my downloads?