|… immediate behavior, responses that must be made to some stimulus
within very approximately one second (that is, roughly from ~300 ms to ~3 sec). (…)
… immediate behavior is where the architecture shows through — where you can see
the cognitive wheels turn and hear the cognitive gears grind. Immediate behavior is
the appropriate arena in which to discover the nature of the cognitive architecture.
|A. Newell (1990), Unified theories of cognition, p. 235f.|
[Copyright neth.de, 2007]:
Hans Neth, Rich Carlson, Wayne Gray, Alex Kirlik, David Kirsh, and Steve Payne (2007): Immediate interactive behavior: How embodied and embedded cognition uses and changes the world to achieve its goals. Symposium held at CogSci 2007.
Summary: We rarely solve problems in our head alone. Instead, most real-world problem solving and routine behavior recruits external resources and achieves its goals through an intricate process of interaction with the physical environment. Immediate interactive behavior (IIB) entails all adaptive activities of agents that routinely and dynamically use their embodied and environmentally embedded nature to augment cognitive processes. IIB also characterizes an emerging domain of cognitive science research that studies how cognitive agents exploit and alter their task-environments in real-time. Examples of IIB include arranging coins when adding their values, solving a problem with paper and pencil, arranging tools and ingredients while preparing a meal, programming a VCR, and flying an airplane.
|There is a co-ordination of senses and thought, and also
a reciprocal influence between brain activity and material creative activity.
In this reaction the hands are peculiarly important. It is a moot point whether
the human hand created the human brain, or the brain created the hand.
Certainly the connection is intimate and reciprocal.
|A.N. Whitehead, Technical Education and its Relation to Science and Literature, p. 78.|
[Copyright neth.de, 1999–2014]
Hans Neth and Steve Payne (2002): Thinking by doing: Epistemic actions in the ToH, paper presented at CogSci 2002.
Hansjörg Neth, Stephen J. Payne
Abstract: This article explores the concept of epistemic actions in the Tower of Hanoi (ToH) problem. Epistemic actions (Kirsh & Maglio, 1994) are actions that do not traverse the problem space toward the goal but facilitate subsequent problem solving by changing the actor’s cognitive state. We report an experiment in which people repeatedly solve ToH tasks. An instructional manipulation asked participants to minimize moves either trial by trial or only on the last three of six trials. This manipulation did not have the predicted effect on the trial-by-trial move counts. A second, device manipulation provided some participants with an “exploratory mode” in which move sequences could be tried then undone without affecting the criterion move count. Participants effectively used this mode to reduce moves on each trial, but there was no clear evidence that they used it to learn about the problem across trials. We conclude that there is strong evidence for one sub-type of epistemic action (acting-to-plan) but no evidence for a second sub-type (acting-to-learn).
|These dual skills of manipulating the environment and processing the environment (…) allow us to reduce very complex problems to a series of very simple ones. (…) This is real symbol processing and, we are beginning to think, the primary symbol processing that we are able to do. Indeed, on this view, the external environment becomes a key extension to our mind.|
|McClelland, Rumelhart and the PDP Research Group (1986): Vol. 2, p. 46|
[Copyright neth.de, 2001–2014]:
Hans Neth and Steve Payne (2001).
Addition as interactive problem solving. Paper presented at CogSci 2001.
Hansjörg Neth, Stephen J. Payne
Abstract: Successful problem solving depends on a dynamic interplay of resources between agent, task, and task environment. To illuminate these interactions we studied how participants added a series of single-digit numbers presented on a computer screen. We distinguished between four different user interfaces, each implementing a different mode of interaction with the displayed addends: look only, point, mark, and move. By collecting and analysing complete interaction protocols we were able to integrate overall performance measures with fine-grained behavioural process data on the strategies engendered by the different user interfaces. We discovered reliable differences in the chosen sequences of addends, which can be understood in terms of the cost-benefit structures provided by the interactive resources of the user interfaces.
Keywords: Embodied cognition, mental arithmetic, epistemic actions, complementary strategies, immediate interactive behavior (IIB).
Reference: Neth, H., & Payne, S. J. (2001). Addition as interactive problem solving. In J. D. Moore & K. Stenning (Eds.), Proceedings of the 23rd Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 698–703). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Related: Thinking by doing? | Immediate interactive behavior (IIB) | Arabic vs. Roman arithmetic | Taxonomy of actions | The cognitive basis of arithmetic | Interactive coin addition | The functional task environment