Social symbol grounding and language evolution

Interaction Studies 8 (1):31-52 (2007)
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This paper illustrates how external symbol grounding can be studied in simulations with large populations. We discuss how we can simulate language evolution in a relatively complex environment which has been developed in the context of the New Ties project. This project has the objective of evolving a cultural society and, in doing so, the agents have to evolve a communication system that is grounded in their interactions with their virtual environment and with other individuals. A preliminary experiment is presented in which we investigate the effect of a number of learning mechanisms. The results show that the social symbol grounding problem is a particularly hard one; however, we provide an ideal platform to study this problem.



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