Natural recursion doesn’t work that way: automata in planning and syntax

2016-01-01
Natural recursion in syntax is recursion by linguistic value, which is not syntactic in nature but semantic. Syntax-specific recursion is not recursion by name as the term is understood in theoretical computer science. Recursion by name is probably not natural because of its infinite typeability. Natural recursion, or recursion by value, is not species-specific. Human recursion is not syntax-specific. The values on which it operates are most likely domain-specific, including those for syntax. Syntax seems to require no more (and no less) than the resource management mechanisms of an embedded push-down automaton (EPDA). We can conceive EPDA as a common automata-theoretic substrate for syntax, collaborative planning, i-intentions, and we-intentions. They manifest the same kind of dependencies. Therefore, syntactic uniqueness arguments for human behavior can be better explained if we conceive automata-constrained recursion as the most unique human capacity for cognitive processes.

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Citation Formats
H. C. Bozşahin, Natural recursion doesn’t work that way: automata in planning and syntax. 2016, p. 112.