Research


October 2, 2008: 3:26 pm: ACT-R/S, Cognitive Modeling, Research, Spatial Reasoning

The past month has seen me up to my eye-balls in spatial modeling. I’ve been blasting out models and exploring parameter spaces. I’ve been doing all of this to get an ACT-R/S paper out the door (crazy, I know). I’ve got a single model that can accomplish two different spatial tasks across two different experiments. However, fitting the two simultaneously looks impossible. Inevitably this is due to mistakes with the model and the theory, but how much of each?

Is it a serious theoretical failing that I can’t zero-parameter fit the second experiment? Given how often modelers twiddle parameters between experiments, I doubt this. However, I’m proposing an entirely new module – new functionality. The burden of proof required for such an addition pushes me towards trying to do even more – perhaps too much.

After much head-bashing (it feels so good when you stop), and discussion, I’ve decided to split the paper in two. Submit the first experiment/model ASAP, and let the model and theory issues surrounding the second percolate for a few months. While this doesn’t meet my module-imposed higher-standards, it does have the added benefit of being penetrable to readers. The first experiment was short, sweet, with a cleanly modeled explanation. It makes an ideal introduction to ACT-R/S. Adding the second experiment (with judgments of relative direction) would have been far too much for all but the most extreme spatial modeler (as many of those as there are).

I just have to try to put the second experiment out of my mind until the writing is done… easier said than done.

September 3, 2007: 7:31 pm: ACT-R/S, Cognitive Modeling, jACT-R, Research, Spatial Reasoning

The dissertation has been sent out to the committee. Now I have two fun filled weeks to get settled back outside of D.C. and then figure out how to condense those 150+ pages into a 45 minute talk.Sounds like fun.

December 3, 2006: 4:16 pm: Research

1999 – Current
jACT-R is a Java based open source implementation of ACT-R; a cognitive architecture used by cognitive psychologists and artifical intelligence researchers.
Unfunded

September 3, 2006: 4:22 pm: Research

2000 – 2006
Examining the processes and representations necessary in order to reason about spatial problems both in reality and in the mind. The primary focuses is on differentiating major representational systems including egocentric and allocentric theories. This research includes basic behavioral research, cognitive architecture development, modeling, and fMRI components.
ONR Funded

March 3, 2004: 4:24 pm: Research

1999 – 2004
Research on how scientists, in the real world, reason about their experiments, phenomenon, and data. Research includes the taking and analyzing of verbal protocols, data analysis, and modeling.
Unfunded – Master’s research

March 3, 2003: 4:27 pm: Research

2000 – 2003
This research explores the potential application of Latent Semantic Analysis to determining what strategies a person will use to resolve a situation based solely on that person’s description of how he or she would handle it.
Funded by ARI

March 3, 2001: 4:26 pm: Research

2001
The Explanatoids program is focused on promoting scientific thinking in everyday environments by placing thought provoking signage in public recreation areas, such as city parks, amusement parks, and sports facilities. People in these environments were surveyed about their understanding of the key concepts before and after the signage was installed to assess its impact on their knowledge.