UTCS Artificial Intelligence
Modeling the Emergence of Syllable Systems
Active from 1998 - 2001
Syllable systems across languages share a number of common patterns. A particularly compelling explanation for these patterns is that they orginate from constraints provided by the perceptual and articulatory systems of language users. In this research, we use genetic algorithms to examine how a few experimentally defined perceptual and articulatory constraints on syllables interact to produce different relative distributions of syllable types in evolved vocabularies. The goal is to show how both language regularity and variation arise from optimizing the sound system under these constraints.
Undergraduate Student (Alumni)
Constrained Emergence Of Universals And Variation In Syllable Systems
Melissa A. Redford, Chun Chi Chen, and Risto Miikkulainen