Are small and large numbers represented similarly or differently on the mental number line? The size effect was used to argue that numbers are represented differently. However, recently it has been argued that the size effect is due to the comparison task and is not derived from the mental number line per se. Namely, it is due to the way that the mental number line is mapped onto the task-relevant output component. Here synesthesia was used to disentangle these two alternatives. (...) In two naming experiments a digit-color synesthete showed that the congruity effect was modulated by number size. These results support the existence of a mental number line with a vaguer numerical representation as numbers increase in size. In addition, the results show that in digit-color synesthesia, colors can evoke numerical representation automatically. (shrink)
The relations between automatic processing and consciousness are discussed in this paper. It is argued that automatic processing should not be identified with the absence of consciousness. The organism has access to representations resulting from automatic processing, but these representations, in contrast to the representations resulting from nonautomatic processing, are not propositional. Therefore monitoring of the process, the defining feature of nonautomatic processing, is not possible.
Starting with Dienes and Perner’s distinction between explicit and implicit knowledge and the traditional philosophical distinction between COS as an object and COS as a subject, we suggest a triple classification of COS experience into three modes, each corresponding to a different state of consciousness. When one acts automatically COS is totally embedded within the representation of the environment. When one monitors or attends to one’s experience, the self is implied by an explicit representation of one’s attitudes, consistent with Descartes’ (...) cogito insight ‘I think therefore I am’ . However, a reflexive thought, e.g., ‘I know fact x,’ requires an explicit representation of the self. This analysis highlights the existence of an intermediate mode of COS as a subject and suggests its possible connection to monitoring one’s behavior. (shrink)
We apply Dienes & Perner's (D&P's) framework to the automatic/nonautomatic processing contrast. Our analysis leads to the conclusion that automatic and nonautomatic processing result in representations that have explicit results. We propose equating consciousness with explicitness of aspects rather than with full explicitness as defined by D&P.
The current study addresses how information whose processing was not part of task requirement is represented in memory. Using a novel measure, recognition memory for unattended material was assessed twice, once when it appeared with the same attended study target and once with a new target. The data reveal memory for unattended study information only in the old target condition. Results suggest that the entire study event is encoded and represented in a memory trace, which contains both attended target information (...) along with unattended context information. In conclusion, manifestation of unattended memory may be dependent on the presence of old target information at test. (shrink)
We agree with Clarke and Beck that the approximate number system represents rational numbers, and we demonstrate our support by highlighting the case of the empty set – the non-symbolic manifestation of zero. It is particularly interesting because of its perceptual and semantic uniqueness, and its exploration reveals fundamental new insights about how numerical information is represented.
We agree that the default numerical representation is best accessed by probing automatic processing. The locus of this representation is apparently at the horizontal intraparietal sulcus (HIPS), the convergence zone of magnitude information. The parietal lobes are the right place to look for non-abstract representation of magnitude, yet the proof for that is still to be found.
In this commentary I show that the SOC framework implies automaticity of both the materialization of phenomenological conscious experience and the application of the primitives resulting from the emergence of consciousness. In addition, SOC implies that cognition refers to conscious experience. Consequently, I propose automatic/nonautomatic instead of unconscious/conscious as the basic contrast characterizing human cognition.