Forming Concepts of Mozart and Homer Using Short-Term and Long-Term Memory: A Computational Model Based on Chunking

AbstractA fundamental issue in cognitive science concerns the mental processes that underlie formation and retrieval of concepts in short-term and long-term memory (STM and LTM respectively). This study advances Chunking Theory and its computational embodiment CHREST to propose a single model that accounts for significant aspects of concept formation in the domains of literature and music. The proposed model inherits CHREST’s architecture with its integrated STM/LTM stores, while also adding a moving attention window and “LTM chunk activation” mechanism. These additions address the overly destructive nature of primacy effect in discrimination network based architectures and expand Chunking Theory to account for learning, retrieval and categorisation of previously unseen complex sequential symbolic patterns – like real life text (by Homer, Chaucer, Shakespeare, Dickens) and written music scores (by Bach, Mozart, Beethoven and Chopin). These findings offer further support to mechanisms proposed by the Chunking Theory and expand it into psychology of music.

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