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Michel Roland-Guill

Orthographic Processing in Baboons (Papio papio) - 1 views

  • Our results demonstrate that basic orthographic processing skills can be acquired in the absence of preexisting linguistic representations.
  • The computation of letter identities and their relative positions is referred to as orthographic processing, and there is a large consensus today that such processing represents the first “language-specific” stage of the reading process that follows the operations involved in the control of eye movements (bringing words into the focus of central vision) and early visual processing (enabling visual feature extraction; Fig. 1A) (14). In the present study, we examined whether the ability to efficiently process orthographic information can operate in the absence of prior linguistic knowledge.
  • Orthographic processing lies at the interface between the visual processing and the linguistic processing involved in written language comprehension.
  • ...10 more annotations...
  • Dehaene and colleagues proposed that skilled reading involves an adaptation of general object-identification processes in ventral occipitotemporal brain areas to the specific characteristics of printed words
  • according to the dominant theories of reading, orthographic processing is still primarily considered to be an extension of already established linguistic skills in the domain of spoken language processing
  • We challenged the hypothesis that learning an orthographic code depends on preexisting linguistic knowledge by investigating whether nonhuman primates can learn this skill.
  • the word versus nonword discrimination could be made implicitly on the basis of statistical dependencies between letters.
  • More detailed analyses revealed that baboons were not simply memorizing the word stimuli but had learned to discriminate words from nonwords on the basis of differences in the frequency of letter combinations in the two categories of stimuli (i.e., statistical learning).
  • words that were seen for the first time triggered significantly fewer “nonword” responses than did the nonword stimuli
  • Even more striking is the strong linear relation, shown in Fig. 4, between accuracy in response to nonword stimuli and their orthographic similarity to words that the baboons had already learned. The more similar a nonword was to a known word, the more false positive responses it produced.
  • Our findings have two important theoretical implications. First, they suggest that statistical learning is a powerful universal (i.e., cross-species) mechanism that might well be the basis for learning higher-order (linguistic) categories that facilitate the evolution of natural language (18, 19). Second, our results suggest that orthographic processing may, at least partly, be constrained by general principles of visual object processing shared by monkeys and humans.
  • Our study may therefore help explain the success of the human cultural choice of visually representing words using combinations of aligned, spatially compact, ordered sequences of symbols. The primate brain might therefore be better prepared than previously thought to process printed words, hence facilitating the initial steps toward mastering one of the most complex of human skills: reading.
  • Our results indicate that baboons were coding the word and nonword stimuli as a set of letter identities arranged in a particular order. Baboons had learned to discriminate different letters from each other (letter identity) and to associate those letter identities with positional information. Their coding of the statistical dependencies between position-coded letters is reflected in (i) their ability to discriminate novel words from nonwords (i.e., generalization), (ii) the significant correlation between bigram frequency and the accuracy of responses to words, and (iii) the increase in errors in response to nonword stimuli that were orthographically more similar to known words.
Michel Roland-Guill

Harvard Educational Review - Journal Article - 0 views

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    Reading is critical to students' success in and out of school. One potential means for improving students' reading is writing. In this meta-analysis of true and quasi-experiments, Graham and Herbert present evidence that writing about material read improves students' comprehension of it; that teaching students how to write improves their reading comprehension, reading fluency, and word reading; and that increasing how much students write enhances their reading comprehension. These findings provide empirical support for long-standing beliefs about the power of writing to facilitate reading.
Michel Roland-Guill

Q10 - 0 views

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    Q10 runs under Windows.
    No version for Linux or Mac is planned.

    Q10 is a simple but powerful text editor designed and built with writers in mind.
Michel Roland-Guill

Dark Room | they.misled.us - 0 views

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    Dark Room is a full screen, distraction free, writing environment. Unlike standard word processors that focus on features, Dark Room is just about you and your text.
Michel Roland-Guill

FocusWriter - Gott Code - 0 views

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    FocusWriter is a simple, distraction-free writing environment. It utilizes a hide-away interface that you access by moving your mouse to the edges of the screen, allowing the program to have a familiar look and feel to it while still getting out of the way so that you can immerse yourself in your work. It's available for Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X, and has been translated into many different languages.
Michel Roland-Guill

Information Architects - Writer for iPad - 0 views

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    The key to good writing is not that magical glass of Bordeaux, the right kind of tobacco or that groovy background music. The key is focus. What you need to write well is a spartan setting that allows you to fully concentrate on your text and nothing but your text. Many professional writers use SimpleText or Textedit because these are the only writing programs that are totally distraction free. But text editors are not perfect. That's why we made Writer.
Michel Roland-Guill

WriteRoom - Distraction free writing software for Mac & iOS - 0 views

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    For Mac iPhone, iPod, & iPad users to write without distractions. WriteRoom is a full screen writing environment. Unlike the cluttered word processors you're used to, WriteRoom lets you focus on writing. Requires Mac OS X 10.7+ or iOS 4.0+
Michel Roland-Guill

It's All Text! :: Add-ons for Firefox - 0 views

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    Edit textareas using an external editor, because it's all text!

    Right click on a textarea, select "It's All Text!" and edit the text in the editor of your choice.
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