Upshot: In the model simulation and the human experiment, we observed that attention shifted from a tool to a task. This was accompanied by bodily extension. However, our experiments lack a sense of bodily incorporation (the sense of ownership. Based on the valuable commentaries, we would like to discuss the necessary conditions for possible bodily incorporation in terms of redundant degrees of freedom, synchronous visual tactile stimulation, and 1/f noise.
Context: Our body schema is not restricted to biological body boundaries (such as the skin), as can be seen in the use of a cane by a person who is visually impaired or the “rubber hands” experiment. The tool becomes a part of the body schema when the focus of our attention is shifted from the tool to the task to be performed. Problem: A body schema is formed through interactions among brain, body, tool, and environment. Nevertheless, the dynamic mechanisms (...) underlying changes in the body schema are still not fully understood. Method: To study the changing conditions of the body schema (e.g., a shift of attention), a simulation model of object discrimination was extended to differentiate between two kinds of sensitivities – sensitivity to an object being directly manipulated and sensitivity to another object being manipulated by the first. The proposed model consisted of windmills with different numbers of vanes. A model agent was required to determine the number of vanes on a windmill by touching the vanes blindly with an arm controlled by a neural network. Placing a second windmill beside the first and gearing the two windmills to move associatively resulted in the agent using the first windmill as a tool with which to discern the number of vanes on the second windmill. In other words, an agent’s body schema can shift from its arm tip to the boundary between the first and second windmills. We then introduced an experiment with a real windmill model to test the hypothesis demonstrated by the theoretical model. Results: We demonstrated that even simple computational agents can have two different sensitivities to the windmills. One agent becomes sensitive to the first windmill and insensitive to the second one. Another agent becomes insensitive to the first windmill and sensitive to the second one by using the first one as a tool. Therefore, we concluded that the boundary of the body schema was extended to the first windmill in the case of the latter agent because paying attention to the task to be performed instead of the tool itself is essential for the tool to be considered as part of the body schema. Analysis of the experiments using a computational model and human experimentation revealed that a shift from an irregular to a regular movement of a windmill is an indication of extension of the body schema. Constructivist content: Our insights are beneficial for enactive cognitive science. This is because an extended body schema questions the Cartesian separation between subject and object, and the self and the environment. (shrink)
Control of grain boundary microstructure for grain boundary engineering (GBE) is effective to prevent intergranular corrosion by disconnection of corrosive random boundary network resulting from the introduction of coincidence site lattice boundaries during the frequent formation of annealing twins in bulk austenitic stainless steels. Since the practical use of austenitic stainless steels often includes straining and heating processes, such as forming, annealing and welding, the processes after the GBE treatment could degrade the optimised grain boundary microstructure and the high corrosion (...) resistance of grain boundary engineered (GBEed) austenitic stainless steels. Therefore the present study examined the effects of post-GBE strain-sensitisation on grain boundary microstructure and corrosion resistance of a GBEed 304 austenitic stainless steel produced by a single-step thermomechanical processing for GBE. The results showed that the grain boundary microstructure was changed apparently and the corrosion resistance gradually decreased in the GBEed steel with an increase in post-GBE strain followed by sensitisation, but the GBEed steel maintained significantly higher corrosion resistance during the post-GBE strain-sensitisation than the equivalently strain-sensitised base steel. (shrink)
Grain boundaries (GBs) in complex oxides such as perovskites have been shown to readily accommodate nonstoichiometry changing the electrostatic potential at the boundary plane and effectively controlling material properties such as capacitance, magnetoresistance and superconductivity. Understanding and quantifying exactly how variations in atomic scale nonstoichiometry at the boundary plane extend to the practical mesoscale operating length of the system is therefore critical for improving the overall properties. Bicrystals of SrTiO3 were fabricated to provide the model GB model structures that are (...) analysed in this paper. We show that statistical analysis of aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscope images acquired from a large area of GB is an effective routine to understanding the variation in boundary structure that occurs to accommodate nonstoichiometry. In the case of the SrTiO3 22.6° ?13 (510)/ GB analysed here, the symmetric atomic structures observed from a micron-long GB can be categorized as two different competing structural arrangements, with and without a rigid-body translation along the boundary plane. How this quantified experimental approach can provide direct insights into the GB energetics is further confirmed from the first principles density functional theory, and the effect of nonstoichiometry in determining the GB energies is quantified. (shrink)
Developmental stuttering is a speech disorder in fluency characterized by repetitions, prolongations and silent blocks, especially in the initial parts of utterances. Although their symptoms are motor related, people who stutter show abnormal patterns of cerebral hemispheric dominance in both anterior and posterior language areas. It is unknown whether the abnormal functional lateralization in the posterior language area starts during childhood or emerges as a consequence of many years of stuttering. In order to address this issue, we measured the lateralization (...) of hemodynamic responses in the auditory cortex during auditory speech processing in adults and children who stutter, including preschoolers, with near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). We used the analysis-resynthesis technique to prepare two types of stimuli: (i) a phonemic contrast embedded in Japanese spoken words (/itta/ vs. /itte/) and (ii) a prosodic contrast (/itta/ vs. /itta?/). In the baseline blocks, only /itta/ tokens were presented. In phonemic contrast blocks, /itta/ and /itte/ tokens were presented pseudo-randomly, and /itta/ and /itta?/ tokens in prosodic contrast blocks. In adults and children who do not stutter, there was a clear left-hemispheric advantage for the phonemic contrast compared to the prosodic contrast. Adults and children who stutter, however, showed no significant difference between the two stimulus conditions. A subject-by-subject analysis revealed that not a single subject who stutters showed a left advantage in the phonemic contrast over the prosodic contrast condition. These results indicate that the functional lateralization for auditory speech processing is in disarray among those who stutter, even at preschool age. These results shed light on the neural pathophysiology of developmental stuttering. (shrink)
The ageing population means that dementia is a serious social problem in Japan. Attitudes toward ageing in Japan are increasingly negative, and views of life and death among older people vary. Numerous ethical problems exist in the medical treatment of dementia. Amidst such conditions, it is important and beneficial to examine films that depict demented patients and to consider the issues raised by these films. Through film we see many aspects of a country and its times: culture and ideology, morality (...) and religion, medical treatments, views on life and death, social conditions and what issues are viewed as problems. The best films both entertain audiences and provide viewers with opportunities to think about social problems. In the past 30 years, 10 films about dementia had been made in Japan and two of these—The Twilight Years (Kôkotsu no hito) and Memories of Tomorrow (Ashita no kioku) are the main focus of this paper. In our analysis we consider three points: how the patients are informed of their disease, the characters’ wishes for death, and terminal medical care. (shrink)
This paper considers undecidability in the imitation game, the so-called Turing Test. In the Turing Test, a human, a machine, and an interrogator are the players of the game. In our model of the Turing Test, the machine and the interrogator are formalized as Turing machines, allowing us to derive several impossibility results concerning the capabilities of the interrogator. The key issue is that the validity of the Turing test is not attributed to the capability of human or machine, but (...) rather to the capability of the interrogator. In particular, it is shown that no Turing machine can be a perfect interrogator. We also discuss meta-imitation game and imitation game with analog interfaces where both the imitator and the interrogator are mimicked by continuous dynamical systems. (shrink)
Specification acquisition in the system design process has been improved since the middle of the 1980s when the upper CASE tools appeared. On the contrary the quality of requirement acquisition in the upper processes of system design has not been enhanced as much as specification acquisition. Understanding the user's requirements is indispensable as one of the basic conditions for building systems that can really satisfy users.This article discusses obtaining requirement knowledge, in terms of human-centred design. The focus is on the (...) process of requirement acquisition, where there is room for one to make full use of human knowledge in a dynamic manner. (shrink)