Aerts et al. provide a valuable model to capture the interactive nature of conceptual combination in conjunctions and disjunctions. The commentary provides a brief review of the interpretation of these interactions that has been offered in the literature, and argues for a closer link between the more traditional account in terms of concept intensions, and the parameters that emerge from the fitting of the Quantum Probability model.
This article examines the role of similarity in the hybridization of concepts, focusing on hybrid products as an applied test case. Hybrid concepts found in natural language, such as singer songwriter, typically combine similar concepts, whereas dissimilar concepts rarely form hybrids. The hybridization of dissimilar concepts in products such as jogging shoe mp3 player and refrigerator TV thus poses a challenge for understanding the process of conceptual combination. It is proposed that models of conceptual combination can throw light on the (...) judged future success and desirability of hybrid products in general. The composite prototype model proposes two stages of conceptual combination. In the first stage, the concepts are aggregated into an additive hybrid, simply by forming the union of the two sets of attributes. In the second stage, any conflicting attributes are identified and resolved, often with the introduction of emergent attributes, resulting in an integrative hybrid. Across four studies that varied the similarity and type of hybrid products, similar and integrative hybrids were valued more than dissimilar and additive hybrids. Critically, though, dissimilar hybrids were also highly valued if they were integrative. Results supported the two stages proposed by the composite prototype model, and implications for other models of hybrid formation are discussed. (shrink)
Consideration of color alone can give a misleading impression of the three approaches to category coordination: the nativist, empiricist and culturalist models. Empiricist models can benefit from a wider range of correlational information in the environment. Also, all three approaches may explain a set of perceptual categories within the human repertoire. Finally, a suggestion is offered for supplementing the naming game by varying the social status of agents.
Unless restricted to explicitly held, sharable beliefs that control and justify a person's behavior, the notion of a rule has little value as an explanatory concept. Similarity-based processing is a general characteristic of the mind-world interface where internal processes (including explicitly represented rules) act on the external world. The distinction between rules and similarity is therefore misconceived.
Carruthers’ thesis is undermined on the one hand by examples of integration of output from domain-specific modules that are independent of language, and on the other hand by examples of linguistically represented thoughts that are unable to integrate different domain-specific knowledge into a coherent whole. I propose a more traditional role for language in thought as providing the basis for the cultural development and transmission of domain-general abstract knowledge and reasoning skills.
In Dienes & Perner's analysis, implicitly represented knowledge differs from explicitly represented knowledge only in the attribution of properties to specific events and to self-awareness of the knower. This commentary questions whether implicit knowledge should be thought of as being represented in the same conceptual vocabulary; rather, it may involve a quite different form of representation.
Atran's thesis has strong implications for the doctrine of externalism in concepts (Fodor 1994). Beliefs about biological kinds may involve a degree of deference to scientific categories, but these categories are not truly scientific. They involve instead a folk view of science itself.
Externalism cannot work as a theory of concepts without explaining how we reidentify substances as being of the same kind. Yet this process implies just the level of descriptive content to which externalism seeks to deny a role in conceptual content.