Amelia Wein, Martin Takáč:  Sensorimotor Characterization of Semantic Structures

Abstract:  This report summarizes the results of the first stage of a larger project aimed at building a computational model of understanding, whereas by understanding in wider sense we mean both (linguistic) understanding of utterances in a natural language and (non-linguistic) understanding of events in the world. In particular, this stage focused on operationalizable characterizations of structures and processes behind understanding. As a background theory we have chosen Knott’s book ‘Sensorimotor Cognition and Natural Language Syntax’ because it is compatible with current embodied and simulationist views on understanding and contains a sufficient level of details. This text is conceived as an extensive summary of the relevant parts of the book, mostly abstracting away from exact neural substrate/localizations of the described structures and processes and their empirical justification, and focusing on their functional descriptions, mutual information flow etc.