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ERIC Number: EJ1050525
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jan
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 28
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0364-0213
Culture: Copying, Compression, and Conventionality
Tamariz, Mónica; Kirby, Simon
Cognitive Science, v39 n1 p171-183 Jan 2015
Through cultural transmission, repeated learning by new individuals transforms cultural information, which tends to become increasingly compressible (Kirby, Cornish, & Smith, 2008; Smith, Tamariz, & Kirby, 2013). Existing diffusion chain studies include in their design two processes that could be responsible for this tendency: learning (storing patterns in memory) and reproducing (producing the patterns again). This paper manipulates the presence of learning in a simple iterated drawing design experiment. We find that "learning" seems to be the causal factor behind the increase in compressibility observed in the transmitted information, while "reproducing" is a source of random heritable innovations. Only a theory invoking these two aspects of cultural learning will be able to explain human culture's fundamental balance between stability and innovation.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail: cs-journals@wiley.com; Web site: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A