Quantitative Analysis of Culture Using Millions of Digitized Books, Science
Abstract: We constructed a corpus of digitized texts containing about 4% of all books ever printed. Analysis of this corpus enables us to investigate cultural trends quantitatively. We survey the vast terrain of ‘culturomics,’ focusing on linguistic and cultural phenomena that were reflected in the English language between 1800 and 2000. We show how this approach can provide insights about fields as diverse as lexicography, the evolution of grammar, collective memory, the adoption of technology, the pursuit of fame, censorship, and historical epidemiology. Culturomics extends the boundaries of rigorous quantitative inquiry to a wide array of new phenomena spanning the social sciences and the humanities.
- Source: Quantitative Analysis of Culture Using Millions of Digitized Books, Jean-Baptiste Michel, Yuan Kui Shen, Aviva Presser Aiden, Adrian Veres, Matthew K. Gray, The Google Books Team, Joseph P. Pickett, Dale Hoiberg, Dan Clancy, Peter Norvig, Jon Orwant, Steven Pinker, Martin A. Nowak, and Erez Lieberman Aiden, DOI: 10.1126/science.1199644, Science Vol. 331 no. 6014 pp. 176-182, 2011/01/14
Amber Case: We are all cyborgs now, TED.com
About this talk: Technology is evolving us, says Amber Case, as we become a screen-staring, button-clicking new version of homo sapiens. We now rely on "external brains" (cell phones and computers) to communicate, remember, even live out secondary lives. But will these machines ultimately connect or conquer us? Case offers surprising insight into our cyborg selves.
- Source: Amber Case: We are all cyborgs now, TED.com, 2011/01
The AHA! Experience: Creativity Through Emergent Binding in Neural Networks, Cognitive Science
Abstract: Many kinds of creativity result from combination of mental representations. This paper provides a computational account of how creative thinking can arise from combining neural patterns into ones that are potentially novel and useful. We defend the hypothesis that such combinations arise from mechanisms that bind together neural activity by a process of convolution, a mathematical operation that interweaves structures. We describe computer simulations that show the feasibility of using convolution to produce emergent patterns of neural activity that can support cognitive and emotional processes underlying human creativity.
- Source: The AHA! Experience: Creativity Through Emergent Binding in Neural Networks, Paul Thagard, Terrence C. Stewart, DOI: 10.1111/j.1551-6709.2010.01142.x, Cognitive Science Volume 35, Issue 1, pages 1�"33, January/February 2011, 2011/01-02