Category Archives: Cognition

Fun with representations V – Maps of the abstract world

Representing information means mapping it into a particular medium –focusing on certain elements of the original data, ignoring the irrelevant ones, and, ideally, simplifying the process of understanding and using it. Unfortunately, our resulting information ‘maps’ are sometimes inappropriate: they … Continue reading

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Posted in Cognition, External cognition, Software development, XCog | 10 Comments

Syntax is not sugar

Let’s say we’re representing some information visually with a standard directed graph. We have four nodes (B, C, D, and E) all pointing to another one (A). We have several choices to display the graph. Here are two: Are they … Continue reading

Posted in Cognition, External cognition, Software development, XCog | 1 Comment

Fun with representations IV – Chaotic libraries

Alright, moving on with the representation series! This time I’ll start with an old puzzle that I, by coincidence, got from Steve Easterbrook and, separately, from Angelika Mader in Dagstuhl with a couple of weeks’ difference. We have an 8 … Continue reading

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Fun with representations III – Hidden in plain sight

A while back, as part of a series of fascinating studies of perception in chess, Simon and Chase showed a chessboard to people with several degrees of chess expertise, for very brief moments, and asked them to reproduce the position … Continue reading

Posted in Cognition, External cognition, XCog | 13 Comments

Fun with representations II – Where is the train going?

Continuing with the last post’s discussion, right now we’re in the business of finding out why are some representations better than others. As a warm-up, then, let’s try to figure out the following: Which of these representations of geographical data … Continue reading

Posted in Cognition, External cognition, XCog | 4 Comments

Fun with representations I – Nine numbers

Here’s a two-player game for you to try out: You need nine cards, numbered 1 to 9. You and your opponent take turns picking cards -each card can only be picked once. The first player with three cards that add … Continue reading

Posted in Cognition, External cognition, XCog | 6 Comments