Topic: equal simplicity

topics > science > Group: relationship between brain and behavior

philosophy of science

coordinated motor programs
metaphysics and epistemology
people better than computers
people vs. computers


Equal simplicity is a tool used by Bernstein to detect differences in structure by studying the differences in the costs of using that structure. Similar structures should exhibit similar cost patterns.

Another method is to introduce obstacles and record the changes in behavior. What remains constant despite the changes reflects the purpose of the activity.

If equal simplicity is valid then computers are of a different kind than living things. Two of the many differences are the cost of calculation and the cost of coordinating many degrees of freedom. (cbb 5/94)

Subtopic: lines of equal simplicity up

Quote: lines of equal simplicity correspond to transitions that related to a devices structure [»bernN_1935]
Quote: lines of equal simplicity are due to actions which use the same structural principles or operations [»bernN_1935]
Quote: lines of equal simplicity allow indirect analysis of a system's structure [»bernN_1935]

Subtopic: equal simplicity distinguishes systems up

Quote: different process of acquistion tells us that animals and children represent number in different ways
Quote: use equal simplicity to distinguish a puppet theatre from a movie house [»bernN_1935]
Quote: different arm circles use different muscles but are equally simple, indicates spatial control instead of muscular control [»bernN_1935]
Quote: equal simplicity shows difference between template, compass, and ellipsograph [»bernN_1935]

Subtopic: computer vs. human up

Quote: the complexity of arithmetic problems differ for computers and for human subjects [»pylyZW3_1978]

Subtopic: artificial obstracles identify the invariant goals up

Quote: add artificial obstacles to discover the goal or purpose of a behavior; the invariants represent the goals [»ohalJJ_1980]
Quote: can check models of thought by component analysis of tasks, error analysis, and by stressing the system; e.g., forbidding external aids [»pylyZW3_1978]
Quote: could test identity in terms of propagation of effects; doesn't work under inheritance or derivation rules [»kentW6_1991]

Subtopic: laws of nature up

Quote: nature employs the first, simplest, and easiest means; e.g., fish and birds use the simplest, easiest means to swim and fly
Quote: relativity is a general principle that applies with great accuracy to mechanics; it should apply to all physical domains [»einsA_1916b]

Subtopic: data points distinguishes systems up

Quote: a line is predictive because there are very few ways to draw lines [»baumEB_2004]
Quote: a program reflects a natural process if it produces the same data points

Related Topics up

Group: philosophy of science   (10 topics, 406 quotes)

Topic: coordinated motor programs (29 items)
Topic: metaphysics and epistemology (99 items)
Topic: people better than computers (35 items)
Topic: people vs. computers (55 items)
Topic: symmetry
(11 items)

Updated barberCB 5/04
Copyright © 2002-2008 by C. Bradford Barber. All rights reserved.
Thesa is a trademark of C. Bradford Barber.