Speaker: Nina Gierasimczuk
Date and Time: Thursday, May 20th 2021, 16:30-18:00, Amsterdam time.
Title: Multi-agent language coordination and cognitive semantics of quantity terms
Natural languages vary in their quantity expressions, but the variation seems to be constrained by general properties, so-called universals. Explanations thereof have been sought among constraints of human cognition, communication, complexity, and pragmatics. In this work, we examine whether the perceptual constraints of approximate number sense (ANS) contribute to the development of two universals in the semantic domain of quantities: monotonicity and convexity. Using a state-of-the-art multi-agent language coordination model (originally applied to colour terms) we evolve communicatively usable quantity terminologies. We compare the degrees of convexity and monotonicity of languages evolvingin populations of agents with and without ANS. The results suggest that ANS supports the development of monotonicity and, to a lesser extent, convexity. This is a joint work with Dariusz Kalociński (University of Warsaw), Franciszek Rakowski (Samsung Research & Development Institute Poland) and Jakub Uszyński (National Information Processing Institute, Poland). It was generously supported by N.G.’s National Science Centre Poland grant no. 2015/19/B/HS1/03292.