Language & Learning


Isn’t language incredible?! The human mouth and vocal cords can be manipulated with such precision to emit sound waves that another individual can discern and then decipher, to comprehend the feelings and ideas of the speaker.

And the written word – a collection of ordered squiggles on a page – can be recorded to convey exactly the same meaning, via the visual organs of another.
Subjects for research:

  • The method by which a newborn baby can start to make sense of communications. How it can reinforce the links it finds between words, concepts, ideas so that it can be competent in understanding others and in communicating to them.
  • How this learning by reinforcement can be used as a model for artificial intelligence.

Some links:

  • WordNet – a project by Princeton University to collect and cross-reference all the verbs, nouns and adjectives in the English language. Can be used as a database for linguistic software, dictionary searches, etc.
  • The Artificial Intelligence Chatterbox Challenge, along with some classic quotes from conversations with the best of the bots. The different bots in the contest use different techniques – some are explicitly programmed with responses and some of them actually learn from the users they converse with.
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One Response to Language & Learning

  1. Richa (Rossana) Coto-Batres says:

    I love languages and linguistics! A great book to read is Steven Pinker’s “The Language Instinct” and any other books by him. He clearly explains what we know so far about how the human mind works with language.