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Conditions for Selection and Conceptualization in Diagrams and Sentences

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Abstract

This paper considers several ways in which diagrams mini-mally designate the selection and conceptualization of infor-mation compared to sentential forms of external representa-tion (ER). We group these factors as different ways that an ER designates cognitive engagement (DCE) and propose that this concept is important in distinguishing and understanding differences between different classes of ER. The article out-lines components of a conceptual framework we are currently developing for characterizing expressions of information in diagrams and other classes of ER. The framework is em-ployed to better understand the nature of DCE in diagrams and its semantic conditions. Our account of DCE is then used to shed light on three important characteristics of diagram-matic ERs: (1) the ill-defined nature of the information they express, (2) their rich potential for providing expressions and (3) their efficacy for tasks that are ill-defined in certain ways.

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Applying semantic concepts to analyzing media and modalities
  • K Stenning
  • R Inder
  • I Neilson
Stenning, K., Inder, R. & Neilson, I. (1995). Applying semantic concepts to analyzing media and modalities. In Glasgow, J., Narayanan, N. H., & Chandrasekaran, B., (Eds.): Diagrammatic Reasoning: Cognitive and Computational Perspectives. AAAI Press: Menlo Park, CA.