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Imitation Games for Complex Utterances

By Bart de Boer

Abstract

This paper presents a preliminary experiment in modelling the emergence of repertoires of complex words in a population of agents. Agents that can produce words, which are strings of (abstract) phonemes, try to imitate each other as well as possible. For this they do not only have to learn each other's words, but also each other's phonemes. But they cannot know a priori which sounds are actually used to distinguish words, and which sounds are just the result of the sound changes and co-articulation that are caused by the pronunciation rules. A simple learning heuristic is presented that can extract phonemes from words. Experiments have shown that this imitation game can result in successful and expanding vocabularies of words that do show regularities in the ways sounds are combined. However, due to the simplicity of the simulations, the results do not yet have a large linguistic relevance. 1. Introduction Can self-organisation explain the regularities that are found in the s..

Year: 2000
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