The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between sensorimotor intelligence and conceptual intelligence in early childhood. Children from 2 years 6 months to 4 years 7 months were tested for the relocating ability in two tasks. In both tasks, children saw an object on a table and the object was concealed by a cover. Then children were asked to point to the object's location before and after the table was rotated. In the Full rotation task, the table was rotated 180° at a time. In the Step rotation task, the table was rotated 180° by 45° step. The hiding location of the object was the center of left or right side of the table and the direction of rotation was clockwise or counter-clockwise. Thus children had 4 trials in each task. The relationships between the performances in the Full and the Step tasks indicated that children in the transitional period from egocentric to allocentric responses in the Full task showed lower performances in the Step task than the other children. The findings suggest underdeveloped conceptual intelligence inhibit sensorimotor intelligence.
This study examined why it is difficult to use recursive processing. Kurland & Pea (1989) took up the recursive call of LOGO procedure and suggested that “embedded recursion” (the recursive call was embedded in between) was more difficult than “tail recursion” (the recursive call came last). In Experiment 1, 10 procedures like LOGO were prepared and tested whether participants (N=36) used procedures correctly or not. There were two types of procedures: 5 tail recursion tasks and 5 embedded recursion tasks. Because participants were not familiar with procedures and recursion, they learned procedure of the recursive call in advance. The result showed that the average of embedded recursion tasks was lower than that of tail recursion tasks. It was confirmed that embedded recursion was more difficult than tail recursion. In Experiment 2, we examined whether the difficulty of embedded recursion is due to embeddedness itself or to embedded recursive structure. There were two types of procedures: 5 embedded recursive tasks and 5 only-embedded tasks. The result showed that the average (N=20) of embedded recursive tasks was lower than that of only-embedded tasks. It turned out that the difficulty of embedded recursion is due to embedded recursive structure.
This research focused on young children's abilities to use landmarks when they lost their senses of where the target is located. In this experiment, a target object was hidden under one of four identical boxes arranged in a 2 × 2 matrix. Two dolls served as landmarks, one (the direct landmark) was behind the target box and the other (the indirect landmark) was behind the box in the diagonal position. The entire table top was rotated behind a screen, so that children had to infer the position of the hidden object from the locations of the landmarks. In addition, as children couldn't see the landmark behind the boxes, they had to infer the position of the hidden object from the other visible landmark. The children performed such an inference task significantly better than chance. Even if the direct landmark was occluded from their view, they could infer the target position from the indirect landmark. However, in some condition they failed to use the indirect landmark, which was interpreted as revealing their failures to become aware of the change of the situation. Taken together, this research indicated that 3-year-old children had the ability to code the direction of the target relative to another object. It was interpreted that their difficulties of using the indirect landmark were derived not from the coding problem per se, but from their inability to start retrieving relevant pieces of information.
This study investigated how scientists' backgrounds constrained their processes of problem formulation, that is the processes of representing an ill-defined problem as a more specific one. We provided various active scientists with an ill-defined theme and asked them to form a specific research plan which was related to the given theme. The coding of their protocol data showed that the processes of their problem formulation could be classified into five types. Then we compared four of the five types with the scientists' backgrounds which consist of their major research fields, journal enterprises, research goals, and available research methods. We found, as a result, inconsistency in the correspondence between the four types of formulation and their research fields/submitted journals which have been considered by researchers on social studies of science to be representative of the characteristics of scientific studies. On the other hand, we found consistency in the correspondence between the formulation types and their “background constructed by their research orientation” in their previous studies, which consists of two factors: research goals and available research methods. This background, that is, their research orientation is considered to be constructed by validation boundary of each journal enterprise. We propose, therefore, “background constructed by their research orientation”, as the representative of the characteristics of scientists' cognitive activities in problem formulation.
Two major problems in human object recognition are how we recognize objects from various viewpoints and how we memorize the shape of many objects. View-based object recognition theories have proposed that viewpoint independent recognition can be achieved by obtaining a certain number of views of an object. These theories do not involve the use of 3-dimensional information. In our previous research, however, we showed that the 3-dimensional structural information of objects could be utilized for recognition if enough time is available. The generalization from a familiar view to unknown views improved after trials only under the long reaction time conditions. According to the results, we supposed that there are two kinds of modules that compare the internal representation of objects and the input images. One is a 2-dimensional module that simply matches the images, and the other is a 3-dimensional module that involves transformation between relatively far viewpoints. In this study, we first showed that 3-dimensional complexity of the objects affects the generalization range. The effect was seen only under the long reaction time conditions. This result strongly supports the above hypothesis. In the second part of this study, we replicated our previous result that the generalization range was broadened as a subject becomes more familiar with objects. And we found that the improvement mainly depends on familiarity with each category of objects rather than each object itself. These results cannot be explained by purely view-based theories which are modeled simply with the GRBF (Generalized Radial Basis Functions) network or its derivations, because in such theories each view of each object is independently acquired.