Bootstrapping & the origin of concepts

  title={Bootstrapping \& the origin of concepts},
  author={Susan Carey},
  • S. Carey
  • Published 1 January 2004
  • Psychology
  • Daedalus
beings create scienti1⁄2c theories, mathematics, literature, moral systems, and complex technology. And only humans have the capacity to acquire such culturally constructed knowledge in the normal course of immersion in the adult world. There are many reasons for the differences between the minds of humans and other animals. We have bigger brains, and hence more powerful information processors; sometimes differences in the power of a processor can create what look like qualitative differences… 
Original Knowledge and the Two Cultures
A common, crucial theme for the two cultures is the issue of the origin of knowledge. In this paper I shall argue, on the basis of evidence fromcomparative cognitive neuroscience, for widespread
Compositionality in language and arithmetic
The lack of conceptual analysis within cognitive science results in multiple models of the same phenomena. However, these models incorporate assumptions that contradict basic structural features of
The Faculty of Language Integrates the Two Core Systems of Number
It is argued that grammatical number reflects the core system of precise representation of distinct small numbers alone, and numeral systems arise from integrating the pre-existing two core systems of number and the human language faculty.
Towards numerical cognition's origin: insights from day-old domestic chicks
  • R. Rugani
  • Psychology
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2018
Studies revealing that day-old domestic chicks can: (i) discriminate between different numbers of objects; (ii) solve rudimentary arithmetic operations; and (iii) use ordinal information, identifying a target element in a series of identical elements, on the basis of its serial-numerical position are discussed.
Language Reflects "Core" Cognition: A New Theory About the Origin of Cross-Linguistic Regularities
It is argued that the underlying structures that are common to the world's languages bear an intriguing connection with early emerging forms of "core knowledge" and that developmental researchers and cognitive scientists interested in (non-verbal) knowledge representation can exploit this connection to language by using observations about cross-linguistic grammatical tendencies to inspire hypotheses about core knowledge.
Spencerism and the Causal Theory of Reference
Spencer’s heritage, while almost a forgotten chapter in the history of biology, lives on in psychology and the philosophy of mind. I particularly discuss externalist views of meaning, on which
Individual differences in non-verbal number acuity correlate with maths achievement
There are large individual differences in the non-verbal approximation abilities of 14-year-old children, and that these individual Differences in the present correlate with children’s past scores on standardized maths achievement tests, extending all the way back to kindergarten.


Psychological universals: what are they and how can we know?
A conceptual and methodological framework to guide the investigation of genuine universals through empirical analysis of psychological patterns across cultures and four distinct levels of hierarchically organized universals are offered.
Functional Imaging of Numerical Processing in Adults and 4-y-Old Children
These results support previous claims that there is a neurophysiological link between non-symbolic and symbolic numerical processing in adulthood and are the first evidence that the neural locus of adult numerical cognition takes form early in development, prior to sophisticated symbolic numerical experience.
Asymmetries in the Acquisition of Numbers and Quantifiers
Number terms and quantifiers share a range of linguistic (syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic) properties. On the basis of these similarities, one might expect these 2 classes of linguistic expression
Acquisition of English Number Marking: The Singular-Plural Distinction
We present data from a preferential looking method to investigate when infants have mapped singular and plural markers in English onto the semantic distinction between singleton sets and sets with
Number comprehension by a grey parrot (Psittacus erithacus), including a zero-like concept.
A Grey parrot that was able to quantify 6 item sets using English labels and demonstrated knowledge of absence of quantity, using "none" to designate zero demonstrated numerical comprehension competence comparable to that of chimpanzees and very young children.
Infant speech perception bootstraps word learning
Tracking individuals via object-files: evidence from infants' manual search
In two experiments, a manual search task explored 12- to 14-month-old infants’ representations of small sets of objects. In this paradigm, patterns of searching revealed the number of objects infants