My wonderful former post-doc at Milano Bicocca, Dr. Roberto Bottini, will be visiting the lab at SISSA this week. He’ll be around Thursday and Friday (26/27 November), and will talk about the work we’ve been doing together over the last couple of years on the relationship between consciousness and word meaning on Thursday, 2.30 pm, in room 139. Here you can find a title and an abstract for Roby’s talk. Everyone is most welcome!
Hello world! A MoMo paper was recently accepted for publication in Cognition. Building on a great idea by Roberto Bottini, we’ve shown that early blind individuals have their own mental time line just like sighted people, which implies that vision isn’t necessary to develop a spatial mapping of time. We’ve also demonstrated that this mental time is qualitatively similar to that of the sighted. This contrasts sharply with previous data by our co-authors Virginie Crollen and Olivier Collignon, who showed that the association between space and numbers is fundamentally different in the sighted and blind. By showing an important difference in the spatial mapping of time and numbers, these new data suggest for the first time that the spatial grounding of different abstract concepts may not be different manifestations of the same underlying cognitive mechanism; rather, they may have different experiential and/or genetic origins. Until 20 June 2015, the paper will be free to everyone at this link.
Special thanks for this work go to the Italian Union for Blind and Visually Impaired, and the Institute for the Blind of Milano for their collaboration.
Hello world! Great news here, two of my recent papers were accepted for publication! They both come from my immensely precious collaboration with Kathy Rastle at Royal Holloway, and also feature the ERP magicians Aureliu Lavric and Heike Elchlepp at Exeter, and the great Colin Davis at Bristol.
One paper will appear in Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, and describes evidence for masked suffix priming in English, thus reinforcing the idea that affixes play a fundamental part in complex word identification, along with stems. It’s the first evidence for suffix priming in English, joining data provided in Spanish by Jon Andoni Duñabeitia and the Manolos, Perea and Carreiras. We took advantage of this effect to provide a new test for position specificity in suffix coding. Indeed, masked suffix priming didn’t hold cross-positionally, thus suggesting again position-constrained coding for affixes. You can download a post-print of this paper here.
The second paper will appear in Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, and reports on ERP evidence showing different time courses for irregular and regular masked priming. On the one hand, this informs the long-lasting debate between words-and-rules and parallel-processing approaches to inflectional morphology. On the other hand, it proves true two, quite stringent predictions of Kathy’s and my model for visual word identification, which propose the existence of two separate and serially arranged levels where morphological ties are coded. A post-print version is also available for this paper here.
Or at least this is my hope 😉 I’ve made a few changes in the website, in an attempt to make it simpler, more user friendly and more accessible from friends around the world. Not tons of things, but hopefully a few details that should make readers’ life easier. First, I’ve changed the theme. Actually, I think I liked the previous one better aesthetically; but couldn’t get rid of the useless double lateral columns, which were just empty and took out reading space. This one just has one widget column, which is more than enough, I think. Second, I completed the translation of all my science pages to English, including the teaching pages. Third, I’ve provided direct connections to pdfs for all my papers, and also added a link to the publisher’s webpage. This move should both make your life easier and protect myself a bit more against copyright violations. There’s surely something more I could do to bring this website further; but time is precious (especially these hectic days packed with deadlines!), and I hope this will be enough for a little while. Enjoy!
Hey world, the post-print of our most recent effort was doublechecked by our Outreach Department for copyright safety, and is now available here, or through this website publication page. Enjoy!
Hello world, great news from the MoMo! A paper of ours was recently accepted for publication in JEP:LMC. This work is primarily from our own Simona Amenta and from the fabulous Marco Marelli, and shows for the first time that we break down complex words into morphemes based on orthography alone during sentence reading. So, yep, apparently corners corn within sentences too. This work also shows, however, that semantics come to be important very soon after breakdown, or possibly even together with the breakdown. In fact, whereas base frequency is facilitatory in genuine derivations (e.g., dealer), it slows down processing in pseudo-derived words such as CORNER. This latter piece of evidence contrasts with data on isolated words, where the stem plays the same kind of effect in either transparent or opaque words. For those of you who’d like to read the piece, we’ve just submitted a post-print version to our on-line repository at Bicocca; so, it should be out soon here. Oh, yes, I can understand you can’t wait 😉 so please e-mail me or Simona, if you’re dying of curiosity…
The MoMo is just back from a trip to the US. We’ve been visiting Daniel Casasanto‘s lab at the University of Chicago. It was great! Beautiful lab, great people, and fantastic hospitality from Daniel’s family. The window painting experience with the little ones was particularly fun! And no, we didn’t mind the minus 15 or something that we experienced there — jokes apart, I genuinely prefer the minus 15 and blue sky that we had in Chicago, rather than the month or so of nearly consecutive raining that we’re having here in Milan. We then moved to California for the meeting of the Psychonomic Society, which was also great. 25 Celsius there, and blue sky; so, the perfect combination. Don’t worry, we didn’t spend all our time painting on windows and checking for the weather; we also did science, yeah. You can find Davide’s talk at U Chicago here, and Davide’s and Rob’s Psychonomic presentations here and here, respectively. Take a look!
Two MoMo students, Giulia Mapelli and Arianna Tarabelloni, recently got their degrees, a Master and a Bachelor respectively. Both got the highest marks. Good job, ladies!
A paper of ours was recently accepted for publication in QJEP, you can find a post-print version here. Thanks go to the paper major father, Marco Marelli, and to Simona Amenta, who also contributed greatly to it. Some says that papers are like children, and one never has a favourite one. Well, not true for me: I think this one is particularly interesting, it’s a completely new look to the issue of how we identify complex words in print. So, needless to say, strongly suggested reading, my friends!
The MoMo is about to invade Edinburgh! We just got the reviews for some five (five, yes!) abstracts that we sent to the conference on Architecture and Mechanisms for Language Processing (AMLAP, to wordNerds). All five papers were accepted, and we’ve got an average of 5.08 on a 7-point scale. Good job, guys!