Experimental Semiotics: A new approach for studying the emergence and the evolution of human communication
  • ISSN 1572-0373
  • E-ISSN: 1572-0381
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes


Although rapidity of fading has been long identified as one of the crucial design features of language, little is known about its effects on the design of communication systems. To investigate such effects, we performed an experiment in which pairs of participants developed novel communication systems using media that had different degrees of rapidity of fading. The results of the experiment suggest that rapidity of fading does not affect the pace with which communication systems emerge or the communicative effi cacy of the emerged systems. However, rapidity of fading seems to affect the design of these systems. In particular, communication systems implemented in the more rapidly fading medium exhibited a higher degree of combinatorial reuse of their forms than systems implemented in the medium that faded more slowly. These results suggest that the design of language might be constrained by subtle relations the presence of which can be ascertained only through direct experimental manipulation. Human communication systems crafted today in the laboratory can provide new insights into the design of natural languages.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...

  • Article Type: Research Article

Most Cited

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error