The Prepared Mind: the Role of Representational Change in Chance Discovery

  • Eric Dietrich
  • Arthur B. Markman
  • C. Hunt Stilwell
  • Michael Winkley
Part of the Advanced Information Processing book series (AIP)


Analogical reminding in humans and machines is a great source for chance discoveries because analogical reminding can produce representational change and thereby produce insights. Here, we present a new kind of representational change associated with analogical reminding called packing. We derived the algorithm in part from human data we have on packing. Here, we explain packing and its role in analogy making, and then present a computer model of packing in a micro-domain. We conclude that packing is likely to be used in human chance discoveries, and is needed if our machines are to make their own chance discoveries.

Chance favors only the prepared mind.” — Louis Pasteur


Conceptual Change Letter String Target Domain Parse Tree Chance Discovery 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eric Dietrich
    • 1
  • Arthur B. Markman
    • 2
  • C. Hunt Stilwell
    • 2
  • Michael Winkley
    • 1
  1. 1.Philosophy DepartmentBinghamton UniversityBinghamtonUSA
  2. 2.Psychology DepartmentUniversity of TexasAustinUSA

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