reply to post by Druid42
We don't have instant access to Terabytes of data, we have to learn one word at a time, and allow our biological minds to develop it's own
This is only part of the picture.
Computers investigating language structure and development are incapable of learning a language without first setting up ground rules to understanding
a language. IE - a computer cannot (nor will it ever be able to) look at, say, a text book and be capable of drawing information from it without
first being programmed with basic concepts of language (such as the concept of a noun, verb, adjective, etc).
Even though language is a highly ordered and structured process - computers will never be able to draw meaning from that order (even if it is
identifiable) without being first programmed with a basic understanding of what language is.
Natural Language Processing is simply dependent upon the instincts
of language. Our instincts drive us to create language - and do so in such
a way that common structures and concepts appear in all language structures. You consistently refer to an object as a certain string of sounds. You
use permutations of these sounds to apply different contexts or meanings (or add other sounds in a consistent manner to further describe the
Throw some hay over the fence to the horse.
Throw the horse over the fence some hay.
We can inherently understand both sentences and derive their meaning. Because we have basic concepts of how language should exist bound to our minds
by genetics. Without these axioms, computers would be helpless to interpret languages.
For another example - you don't have to be taught what the phrase: "Bend over backwards" means in order to understand it. You know what bending
over backwards is - an uncomfortable task that makes you vulnerable. With only the definition of the words and the knowledge of their order - you
derive a meaning.
The reason for certain lacks of cultural disparity is because those infants are raised in a particular culture, and taught within the confines
of said culture. I'm not seeing the relation between infants with "blank" minds and culture variances. You are what you are taught by your parents
To overlook environmental and nurture effects is a mistake.
However, no one taught me to get an erection when presented with an attractive female. Yet the state can be brought about voluntarily or
involuntarily (this is also true in females - even more so, blood flow to the vagina will increase involuntarily in a number of situations that are
not at all desirable to the female - but blood plasma will seep across the membranes to become lubricant for an encounter, anyway).
No one taught me to give a death glare to a guy looking at a female I'm accompanying. If anything - I was taught to be wary of such impulses - but I
cannot deny that there is the immediate instinct present. If a guy pursues said female - the instinct
is literally homicidal.
From the standpoint of natural selection - this makes a lot of sense. Fewer of my partner's kids would be mine if I had no problem with other guys
hanging around. Similarly, my partner's resources and security would be jeopardized by my keeping of a mistress. Her offspring are threatened by
the presence of another female.
These instincts are hard-wired into our being and form a cornerstone of our society. Sex is a universal topic across all cultures. There are
variables, to be certain - but it's a universal concept and the emotions involved are essentially identical across all cultures. Women from the
Philippines find those with lighter skin attractive - it implies wealth and status (something women care about in societies - and other species -
where women typically leave the family group to follow their mate). Skin whitening cream is as popular there as tanning lotion in other parts of the
Men in many other parts of the world will go to salons to get manicures and facial treatments - because a man who can afford to take care of himself
can afford to take care of a woman and a family (or - more importantly - a man who can't afford to or does not have the desire to take care of
himself certainly cannot do so with a woman or family).
While the particulars of the culture may differ - the concept is fundamentally the same: the opposite sex advertises to the other to be desirable.
It's not cultural that they do this - it is genetic. What form it takes is certainly influenced by culture - but genetics make it an issue of
culture to begin with.