While some computational models of intelligence test problems were proposed throughout the second half of the XXth century, in the first years of the XXIst century we have seen an increasing number of computer systems being able to score well on particular intelligence test tasks. However, despite this increasing trend there has been no general account of all these works in terms of how they relate to each other and what their real achievements are. Also, there is poor understanding about what intelligence tests measure in machines, whether they are useful to evaluate AI systems, whether they are really challenging problems, and whether they are useful to understand (human) intelligence. In this paper, we provide some insight on these issues, in the form of nine specific questions, by giving a comprehensive account of about thirty computer models, from the 1960s to nowadays, and their relationships, focussing on the range of intelligence test tasks they address, the purpose of the models, how general or specialised these models are, the AI techniques they use in each case, their comparison with human performance, and their evaluation of item difficulty. As a conclusion, these tests and the computer models attempting them show that AI is still lacking general techniques to deal with a variety of problems at the same time. Nonetheless, a renewed attention on these problems and a more careful understanding of what intelligence tests offer for AI may help build new bridges between psychometrics, cognitive science, and AI; and may motivate new kinds of problem repositories.
We investigate the application of grammar inference to the analysis of facial expressions to discover underlying sequential regularities characteristic for a specific mental state. The input consists of sequences of action units (AUs), which represent basic facial signals. The typical classification task for facial expression analysis is to assign a set of AUs its corresponding mental state, e.g., an emotion. To our knowledge, there is no research investigating whether there is diagnostic information in the sequence in which the AUs occur in a given time interval. Our study is based on data of facial expressions of pain obtained in a psychological experiment with 347 pain episodes of 86 subjects represented as sequences of AUs. We applied the Alignment-Based Learning (ABL) approach to infer the underlying grammar for the set of all AUs which occurred in the sequences and for a reduced alphabet of the relevant AUs only. We used 10-fold cross-validation to estimate performance and we extended ABL with a frequency-based heuristics to reduce the number of grammar rules by eliminating such rules which do not contribute significantly to performance. The resulting grammar for the reduced AU alphabet provides a first approximation for a “grammar of pain”.
As a result of public discussions regarding Germany's standing on international rankings of student achievement, increased attention was focused on enhancing cognitive stimulation in preschools. There are some concerns that preschool curricula that focus more on cognitive stimulation rather than on socio-emotional skills might neglect the socio-emotional development of children. These concerns are rooted in the tradition of German preschools focussing more on the stimulation of social than of cognitive skills. This paper examines these claims by drawing on the German preschool programme ‘KiDZ’ in order to analyse the socio-emotional development (well-being, joy of learning, and worry) of children attending a preschool with a more academically oriented curriculum. This study also investigates effects of domain-specific preschool quality and if any effects of participation in KiDZ might be explained by the quality of the preschools. Positive effects of the children's participation in KiDZ are found and will be discussed.
Peer problems are common in children with special educational needs (SEN), but the reasons are poorly understood. This study aims to identify risk factors of peer problems (e.g., SEN, school setting, pro-social behaviour) for their occurrence. A subsample of 3900 children from the National Educational Panel Study in Germany was analysed. Children and parents answered the items of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) subscales ‘peer problems’ and ‘pro-social behaviour’. Students with SEN (attending special schools or inclusive classes) were more likely to score within the abnormal range of the SDQ subscale peer problems than students without SEN. The results further show a low level of parent–child agreement on the subscale ‘peer problems’. Logistic regression analyses showed that having SEN is always an explaining variable for ‘peer problems’ and that group differences cannot be fully explained by gender, school setting or ‘pro-social behaviour’.
In European parliamentary democracies political parties control candidate selection, maintain cohesion in the legislature and support governments. In addition to these classic functions, parties also organise the legislature delegating power to legislators, specifically as committee chairs and party coordinators. Delegation is inherently dangerous, involving potential agency loss. Parties, however, have ex-ante and ex-post institutional mechanisms to deal with agency problems. In this paper, a case study is made of the Portuguese legislature, arguing that parties make use of their pivotal role in selecting legislators as committee chairs and party coordinators to keep tabs on legislators to thwart shirking from the party line. This paper finds that political parties use incumbency as an ex-ante screening mechanism of committee chairs and party coordinators in looking for reliable signals of past behaviour to decrease uncertainty. Additionally, evidence suggests that extraparliamentary party structure is used as an institutional arena for ex-post control of party coordinators.
Research in the field of psychological aesthetics points to the appeal of stimuli which defy easy recognition by being “semantically unstable” but which still allow for creating meaning—in the ongoing process of elaborative perception or as an end product of the entire process. Such effects were reported for hidden images (Muth and Carbon, 2013) as well as Cubist artworks concealing detectable—although fragmented—objects (Muth et al., 2013). To test the stability of the relationship between semantic determinacy and appreciation across different episodic contexts, 30 volunteers evaluated an artistic movie continuously on visual determinacy or liking via the Continuous Evaluation Procedure (CEP, Muth et al., 2015b). The movie consisted of five episodes with emerging Gestalts. In the first between-participants condition, the hidden Gestalts in the movie episodes were of increasing determinacy, in the second condition, the episodes showed decreasing determinacies of hidden Gestalts. In the increasing-determinacy group, visual determinacy was rated higher and showed better predictive quality for liking than in the decreasing-determinacy group. Furthermore, when the movie started with low visual determinacy of hidden Gestalts, unexpectedly strong increases in visual determinacy had a bigger effect on liking than in the condition which allowed for weaker Gestalt recognition after having started with highly determinate Gestalts. The resulting pattern calls for consideration of the episodic context when examining art appreciation.