Ramscar and colleagues (2010, this volume) describe the “feature-label-order” (FLO) effect on category learning and characterize it as a constraint on symbolic learning. I argue that FLO is neither a constraint on symbolic learning in the sense of “learning elements of a symbol system” (instead, it is an effect on nonsymbolic, association learning) nor is it, more than any other constraint on category learning, a constraint on symbolic learning in the sense of “solving the symbol grounding problem.”.
Schyns, Goldstone & Thibaut argue that categorization experience results in the learning of new perceptual features that are not derivable from the learner's existing feature set. We explore the meaning and implications of this “nonderivability” claim and relate it to the question of whether perceptual invariants are learnable, and if so, what might be entailed in learning them.
Theories of relational concept acquisition based on structured intersection discovery predict that relational concepts with a probabilistic structure ought to be extremely difficult to learn. We report four experiments testing this prediction by investigating conditions hypothesized to facilitate the learning of such categories. Experiment 1 showed that changing the task from a category-learning task to choosing the “winning” object in each stimulus greatly facilitated participants' ability to learn probabilistic relational categories. Experiments 2 and 3 further investigated the mechanisms underlying this (...) “who's winning” effect. Experiment 4 replicated and generalized the “who's winning” effect with more natural stimuli. Together, our findings suggest that people learn relational concepts by a process of intersection discovery akin to schema induction, and that any task that encourages people to discover a higher order relation that remains invariant over members of a category will facilitate the learning of putatively probabilistic relational concepts. (shrink)
Page argues convincingly for several important properties of localist representations in connectionist models of cognition. I argue that another important property of localist representations is that they serve as the starting point for connectionist representations of symbolic (relational) structures because they express meaningful properties independent of one another and their relations.
Deep neural networks (DNNs) have had extraordinary successes in classifying photographic images of objects and are often described as the best models of biological vision. This conclusion is largely based on three sets of findings: (1) DNNs are more accurate than any other model in classifying images taken from various datasets, (2) DNNs do the best job in predicting the pattern of human errors in classifying objects taken from various behavioral datasets, and (3) DNNs do the best job in predicting (...) brain signals in response to images taken from various brain datasets (e.g., single cell responses or fMRI data). However, these behavioral and brain datasets do not test hypotheses regarding what features are contributing to good predictions and we show that the predictions may be mediated by DNNs that share little overlap with biological vision. More problematically, we show that DNNs account for almost no results from psychological research. This contradicts the common claim that DNNs are good, let alone the best, models of human object recognition. We argue that theorists interested in developing biologically plausible models of human vision need to direct their attention to explaining psychological findings. More generally, theorists need to build models that explain the results of experiments that manipulate independent variables designed to test hypotheses rather than compete on making the best predictions. We conclude by briefly summarizing various promising modelling approaches that focus on psychological data. (shrink)
Humans, including preschool children, exhibit role-based relational reasoning, of which analogical reasoning is a canonical example. The connectionist model proposed in the target article is only capable of conditional paired-associate learning.
Theories of analogical reasoning have viewed relational structure as the dominant determinant of analogical mapping and inference, while assigning lesser importance to similarity between individual objects. An experiment is reported in which these two sources of constraints on analogy are placed in competition under conditions of high relational complexity. Results demonstrate equal importance for relational structure and object similarity, both in analogical mapping and in inference generation. The human data were successfully simulated using a computational analogy model (LISA) that treats (...) both relational correspondences and object similarity as soft constraints that operate within a limited-capacity working memory; but not with a model (SME) that treats relational structure as pre-eminent. (shrink)
We are big fans of propositions. But we are not big fans of the proposed by Mitchell et al. The authors ignore the critical role played by implicit, non-inferential processes in biological cognition, overestimate the work that propositions alone can do, and gloss over substantial differences in how different kinds of animals and different kinds of cognitive processes approximate propositional representations.
The fundamental relations that underlie cognitive comparisons—“same” and “different”—can be defined at multiple levels of abstraction, which vary in relational complexity. We compared response times to decide whether or not two sequentially‐presented patterns, each composed of two pairs of colored squares, were the same at three levels of abstraction: perceptual, relational, and system (higher order relations). For both 150 ms and 5 s inter‐stimulus intervals (ISIs), both with and without a masking stimulus, decision time increased with level of abstraction. Sameness (...) at lower complexity levels contributed to decisions based on the higher levels. The pattern of comparison times across levelswas not predictable solely from encoding times. The results indicated that relations at multiple levels of complexity can be abstracted and compared in working memory, with higher complexity levels requiring more processing time. We simulated the impact of relational complexity on response time using Learning and Inference with Schemas and Analogies (LISA), a computational model of relational comparisons based on dynamic binding of elements into roles in a relational working memory. (shrink)
van der Velde & de Kamps argue for the importance of considering the binding problem in accounts of human mental representation. However, their proposed solution fails as a complete account because it represents the bindings between roles and their fillers through associations (or connections). In addition, many criticisms leveled by the authors towards synchrony-based bindings models do not hold.
This review of Martin Jay’s recent published collection of essays examines his ongoing rethinking, supplementation, and revision of central themes—the negative and positive dialectics of historical totalization, the varieties and uses of conceptions of experience, the nature of visual cultures and scopic regimes, and the ambiguities of truth-construction in the public realm—that have been the focus of his major works since the 1970s. It argues that his more recent work indicates a gradual shift toward an affirmation of the kinds of (...) paratactic and deconstructive thinking of Adorno and Derrida as models for producing appropriate forms of historical consciousness and historical critique in the present, and it raises the question of how the issues of historical truth-telling, consensual collective identity, ethical action, and the cultural role of the critical intellectual are reformulated in this process. (shrink)
The popular belief that religion is the same everywhere or that all religions are ‘at bottom’ identical in essentials is a widespread falsehood that is saved from being completely worthless by the fact that religion does exhibit a universal or common structure wherever it appears. This structure is intimately related to the structure of human life in the world. The enduring pattern that enables us to understand religions widely separated in both time and space depends largely on the fact that (...) man and the process of human life in the world have their own structures which remain, despite the undeniable variety introduced by vast differences of culture, ethnic features, geographical location, climate etc. Structure means pattern or form; it is reality significantly organised. It can be grasped as that which endures above and beyond changing historical details. Because human life has a structure, we are able to understand the wrath of Achilles or sympathise with the love of Abélard for Héloïse although we are separated from both by centuries of time. (shrink)
Despite the title, I do not intend to launch another expedition into the domain of epistemology. I wish instead to call attention to some problems which have arisen for philosophical theologians and philosophers of religion, as a result of two facts about the development of modern philosophy and its bearing on the analysis and interpretation of religious insight. Following these considerations, I shall propose in brief compass a programme for the future which I believe will prove fruitful for the philosophical (...) treatment of religious concerns. (shrink)
Let it be clear at the outset that in reappraising Dewey's thought we have to do with no minute philosopher. In breadth of interest and range of thought he belongs with the great comprehensive thinkers of the past. And in contrast to many thinkers both in his own time and since, he had a constructive program. Philosophy for him meant more than analysis, even though analysis is an important part of the philosophic enterprise. Dewey's constructive philosophy has too often been (...) lost in polemic discussion. I subscribe to the confession made some years ago by Ernest Hocking in which he said that he began to understand Dewey when he started reading him for enjoyment and not for the purpose of showing that he was all wrong! As Dewey's work shapes up in historical perspective, it assumes a great substantiality. One may disagree and one may correct, but in comparison with philosophy of a wholly technical and professional sort, Dewey's large-minded approach to genuinely philosophic questions places him among philosophers of stature. (shrink)
_A new theory of how and why we cooperate, drawing from economics, political theory, and philosophy to challenge the conventional wisdom of game theory_ Game theory explains competitive behavior by working from the premise that people are self-interested. People don’t just compete, however; they also cooperate. John Roemer argues that attempts by orthodox game theorists to account for cooperation leave much to be desired. Unlike competing players, cooperating players take those actions that they would like others to take—which Roemer (...) calls “Kantian optimization.” Through rigorous reasoning and modeling, Roemer demonstrates a simpler theory of cooperative behavior than the standard model provides. (shrink)