Cognitive and Perceptual Limitations and Learning: An Excursion into Connectionist Theory
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Most developmental theories consider development as a process in which an organism grows from an immature (biological, behavioral, sensory, and cognitive) state to a mature one, the latter being more perfect and 'better'. In this paper I will argue in favor of the view that the limited resources with which the organism starts its development show positive results, in that they make possible certain kinds of learning which otherwise would be highly problematical. I will start by discussing certain limitations regarding the cognitive structure of the organism. Then, I will discuss learning and its problems in connectionism. My argument will be that the knowledge we gain from our effort to overcome these problems sheds light on the beneficial role of limited resources. Finally, I will return to the types of limitations taken up in the first part, and assess their role in the cognitive development of the organism.