•  16
    Expectations of Processing Ease, Informativeness, and Accuracy Guide Toddlers’ Processing of Novel Communicative Cues
    with Marie Aguirre, Mélanie Brun, Anne Reboul, and Olivier Mascaro
    Cognitive Science 47 (11). 2023.
    Discovering the meaning of novel communicative cues is challenging and amounts to navigating an unbounded hypothesis space. Several theories posit that this problem can be simplified by relying on positive expectations about the cognitive utility of communicated information. These theories imply that learners should assume that novel communicative cues tend to have low processing costs and high cognitive benefits. We tested this hypothesis in three studies in which toddlers (N = 90) searched for…Read more
  •  16
    Puzzling out graphic codes
    Behavioral and Brain Sciences 46. 2023.
    This response takes advantage of the diverse and wide-ranging series of commentaries to clarify some aspects of the target article, and flesh out other aspects. My central point is a plea to take graphic codes seriously as codes, rather than as a kind of visual art or as a byproduct of spoken language; only in this way can the puzzle of ideography be identified and solved. In this perspective, I argue that graphic codes do not derive their expressive power from iconicity alone (unlike visual art…Read more
  •  14
    The puzzle of ideography
    Behavioral and Brain Sciences 46. 2023.
    An ideography is a general-purpose code made of pictures that do not encode language, which can be used autonomously – not just as a mnemonic prop – to encode information on a broad range of topics. Why are viable ideographies so hard to find? I contend that self-sufficient graphic codes need to be narrowly specialized. Writing systems are only an apparent exception: At their core, they are notations of a spoken language. Even if they also encode nonlinguistic information, they are useless to so…Read more
  •  19
    Cognitive Science, Volume 46, Issue 2, February 2022.
  •  25
    The amount of information conveyed by linguistic conventions depends on their precision, yet the codes that humans and other animals use to communicate are quite ambiguous: they may map several vague meanings to the same symbol. How does semantic precision evolve, and what are the constraints that limit it? We address this question using a multiplayer gaming app, where individuals communicate with one another in a scaled-up referential game. Here, the goal is for a sender to use black and white …Read more
  •  29
    Graphic complexity in writing systems
    with Helena Miton
    Cognition 214 (C): 104771. 2021.