LINGUIST List 16.1410|
Tue May 03 2005
FYI: Tutorial, Modelling Lang Evolution;SpecGram Online
Editor for this issue: Ann Sawyer
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Tutorial on Modelling Language Evolution
Classic SpecGram Now Online
Message 1: Tutorial on Modelling Language Evolution
From: Paul Vogt <paulvling.ed.ac.uk>
Subject: Tutorial on Modelling Language Evolution
Call for participation:
Tutorial on modelling language origins and evolution
5 September 2005
Part of the European Conference on Artificial Life, ECAL 2005, Kent,
England. See url:
Presenters: Bart de Boer, Paul Vogt and Tony Belpaeme
Evolutionary Linguistics is a new and rapidly growing field that has
emerged from the field of artificial life and that is concerned with
modelling the origins and evolution of language. It addresses questions
such as the evolution of speech, the origins of symbolic categories,
grounding, the origins of grammar, the prerequisites for human language,
and origins of symbolic communication. Although computational modelling
research has yielded interesting results, these are often misinterpreted or
overlooked by non-technically schooled researchers in the field. We feel
this is partly due to the way the complex and abstract models are
presented. Scientists lacking experience in computational modelling often
find it difficult to understand the underlying models and their results.
This tutorial offers an introduction for artificial life researchers who
are new to evolutionary linguistics and is aimed at understanding the field
and helping them set up computational experiments that address open issues.
We do this by presenting a thorough overview of the field and by discussing
how established ALife and AI techniques can be used to investigate the
evolution of language. To illustrate this we present a number of case
studies. In addition, we aim to provide suggestions of how to disseminate
the research to a multidisciplinary audience, which often include
linguists, anthropologists, archaeologists, psychologists and biologists.
- Introduction into the field of language evolution
- Major research questions in the field of language evolution
- Computational modelling of language evolution
- What computer models can contribute to the understanding of the
evolution of language?
- How to set up a computational model to study language evolution?
- What techniques to use for which problems?
- What research topics are suitable for modelling?
- Case studies plus demonstrations
- Disseminating modelling results to non-technical researchers
- Possible applications
- Some caveats on modelling and presenting results
Objectives and target audience:
We aim our tutorial primarily at young researchers and PhD students in
ALife who wish to start (or just have started) researching the rapidly
growing field of language evolution and computation. In addition, the
tutorial is interesting to those researchers who have an interest in the
field of evolutionary linguistics. This tutorial will be specifically
tailored for ALife researchers, a community we have not yet been able to
reach on the previous two occasions where the tutorial was given. To
accommodate our audience, the tutorial will contain a specially tailored
introduction to language evolution for ALife researchers.
At the end of the day, we hope the participants
- have an insight in the field of evolutionary linguistics, especially with
respect to the questions that are posed within the field.
- have become acquainted with the topics that have been studied within this
field together with an overview of the most prominent open questions, thus
allowing them to initiate their own research
- understand why researchers outside the ALife community have problems
understanding computer models, so that the participant would be able to
disseminate his/her results to a wider audience.
To allow each of the groups to follow the course, no other prerequisites
are required than a basic academic knowledge of AI.
For more information consult:
or contact Paul Vogt: paulvling.ed.ac.uk.
Linguistic Field(s): Cognitive Science
Message 2: Classic SpecGram Now Online
From: Trey Jones <TreySpecGram.com>
Subject: Classic SpecGram Now Online
A newly digitized issue of a classic journal from the linguists who bring
you Speculative Grammarian--the premier scholarly journal featuring
research in the neglected field of satirical linguistics--is now available
online for your browsing pleasure.
''Linguist of Fortune'', Vol 1, Num 1 of The Journal of the Linguistic
Society of South-Central New Caledonia--featuring the ground-breaking
article on Divine Unification Grammar, which put the deus ex machina back
Managing Editor, Speculative Grammarian
Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics
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