The Quantum Nature of Identity in Human Thought: Bose-Einstein Statistics for Conceptual Indistinguishability

Provided by: Cornell University
Topic: Software
Format: PDF
Increasing experimental evidence shows that humans combine concepts in a way that violates the rules of classical logic and probability theory. On the other hand, mathematical models inspired by the formalism of quantum theory are in accordance with data on concepts and their combinations. In this paper, the authors investigate a novel type of concept combination were a number is combined with a noun, e.g., eleven animals. Their aim is to study 'Conceptual identity' and the effects of 'Indistinguishability' - in the combination eleven animals, the 'Animals' are identical and indistinguishable - on the mechanisms of conceptual combination.

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