• ? Lab alum Zach Horne starting at the University of Edinburgh in 2021

    Zach Horne will join the faculty at the University of Edinburgh in the winter semester, 2021. Congratulations, Zach! Continue reading

  • ? Lab alum Joanna Korman to start at Bentley University in Fall 2020

    Congrats to Joanna Korman (, who’ll be starting as an Assistant Professor at Bentley University this fall! Continue reading

  • ? Chapter on syllogistic reasoning in the Handbook of Rationality

    I wrote a new chapter on the psychology of syllogistic reasoning in the forthcoming Handbook of Rationality that summarizes recent advances in the field. Here’s a quick summary: Psychologists have studied syllogistic inferences for more than a century, because they can serve as a microcosm of human rationality. “Syllogisms” is a term that refers to… Continue reading

  • New paper on teleological generics in press at Cognition

    Joanna Korman and I have a new paper out in Cognition that examines statements such as “cars are for driving”. The statement is interesting, because people tend to accept it, though they reject statements such as “cars are for parking”, even though you park cars just as often as you drive them. Such statements are… Continue reading

  • Harner to show new work on omissive causes at AIC 2019 in Manchester

    Hillary Harner will present a paper by Gordon Briggs, herself, Christina Wasylyshyn, Paul Bello, and myself titled “Neither the time nor the place: Omissive causes yield temporal inferences” at this year’s International Workshop on AI and Cognition (AIC 2019). The paper describes an oddity in reasoning about “omissive causes” — situations when something happens as… Continue reading

  • LRW talk on the dynamic processing of perceptual models

    I presented work by Neha Bhat on how to leverage object detection algorithms to build spatial mental models at the 2019 London Reasoning Workshop. The abstract is here: We describe a novel computational system that processes images in order to dynamically construct and update iconic spatial simulations of the world — the equivalent of perceptual… Continue reading

  • A novel algorithm for causal deduction in ICCM Proceedings

    Gordon Briggs and I presented a new computational model and a novel dataset on how people make generative causal deductions at this year’s International Conference on Cognitive Modeling (ICCM). For instance, if you know that habituation causes seriation and that seriation prevents methylation, you don’t need to know what all those words mean in order… Continue reading

  • Harner presented work on teleological generics at SPP

    Hillary Harner presented our latest work on teleological generics at SPP. The abstract of her work is available here: People can describe generalizations about the functions of objects by producing teleological generic language, i.e. those statements that express generalities about the purposes of objects. People accept teleological generics such as eyes are for seeing and… Continue reading

  • Kelly’s work on durational reasoning at LRW and CogSci

    Laura Kelly presented new research on reasoning about durations at the 2019 London Reasoning Workshop. The abstract of her talk is here: Few experiments have examined how people reason about durative relations, e.g., “during”. Such relations pose challenges to present theories of reasoning, but many researchers argue that people simulate a mental timeline when they… Continue reading

  • New paper on why machines can’t reason yet

    A major failure of current AI systems is that they can’t mimic common sense reasoning: most ML systems don’t reason, and all theorem provers draw trivial and silly deductions. We analyze why — and suggest a path forward — in a new paper now out in German AI journal Künstliche Intelligenz: AI has never come… Continue reading