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Trends Cogn Sci. 2010 May;14(5):223-32. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2010.02.005. Epub 2010 Apr 1.

Scaling laws in cognitive sciences.

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1
Cognitive and Information Sciences University of California , Merced, 5200 North Lake Rd., Merced, CA 95343, USA. ckello@ucmerced.edu

Abstract

Scaling laws are ubiquitous in nature, and they pervade neural, behavioral and linguistic activities. A scaling law suggests the existence of processes or patterns that are repeated across scales of analysis. Although the variables that express a scaling law can vary from one type of activity to the next, the recurrence of scaling laws across so many different systems has prompted a search for unifying principles. In biological systems, scaling laws can reflect adaptive processes of various types and are often linked to complex systems poised near critical points. The same is true for perception, memory, language and other cognitive phenomena. Findings of scaling laws in cognitive science are indicative of scaling invariance in cognitive mechanisms and multiplicative interactions among interdependent components of cognition.

PMID:
20363176
DOI:
10.1016/j.tics.2010.02.005
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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