dhr. dr. B.G. (Bart) de Boer
Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen
1012 VT Amsterdam
About Bart de Boer
Bart de Boer works at the institute of phonetic sciences on the NWO-vidi project modelling the evolution of speech . Some information about this project can be found on the other pages of this site. Older information and a more complete publication list can be found on his personal page at the artificial intelligence laboratory of the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.
Course: Evolution of Speech
This course is a master's course for students of artificial
intelligence and of phonetics.
After following the course, students will have a basic knowledge of the background information of the evolution of speech, and will have studied a number of example computer models of the evolution of speech.
In order to make the course accessible to students from different backgrounds, variants with stronger or weaker focus on computer modeling can be given.
Research: Modeling the evolution of Speech
I investigate the evolution of speech and I use computer
models for this purpose. With speech I mean the acoustic
signals that are used for communicating language
. However, in order to understand evolution it is also
sometimes necessary to look at acoustic signals that are not
used for language (such as involuntary vocalizations by humans,
or animal vocalizations). It is also sometimes necessary to
look at non-acoustic signals that are used for language, such
as sign language.
Evolution in this project is mostly biological evolution : slow change over the generations of the genetic endowment for using speech. Another type of evolution that occurs in language is cultural evolution, which results in language change. This type of evolution isstudied less directly in this project (at the moment). However, it is clear that the evolution of speech and language can only be understood as a complex interaction between cultural and biological factors.
As evolution is a complex process, computer simulations can be helpful in investigating it. In this project two types of simulation are used: acoustic simulations of vocal tracts and agent-based simulations of interactions in a population of language users. At the moment, the focus of the research is on modeling the vocal tracts of apes and hypothetical human ancestors, but as soon as good models are available, agent-based simulations will be based on them.
This project is funded by a Vidi-grant from the NWO.
LSA 2008 presentation
- T. Verhoef, S. Kirby & B.G. de Boer (2013). Combinatorial structure and iconicity in artificial whistled languages. In M. Knauff, M. Pauen, N. Sebanz & I. Wachsmuth (Eds.), Cooperative Minds: Social Interaction and Group Dynamics (pp. 3669-3674). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society.
- B. de Boer (2012). Loss of air sacs improved hominin speech abilities. Journal of Human Evolution, 62 (1), 1-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jhevol.2011.07.007
- B. de Boer & T. Verhoef (2012). Language dynamics in structured form and meaning spaces. Advances in Complex Systems, 15 (3-4), 1150021-1-1150021-20. doi: 10.1142/S0219525911500214
- T. Verhoef, B. de Boer & S. Kirby (2012). Holistic or synthetic protolanguage: Evidence from iterated learning of whistled signals. In T.C. Scott-Phillips, M. Tamariz, E.A. Cartmill & J.R. Hurford (Eds.), The evolution of language: Proceedings of the 9th international conference (EVOLANG9): Kyoto, Japan, 13-16 March 2012 (pp. 368-375). New Jersey: World Scientific.
- T. Verhoef & B. de Boer (2011). Cultural emergence of feature economy in an artificial whistled language. In The 17th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences: Hong Kong, China, August 17-21, 2011: congress proceedings (pp. 2066-2069). Hong Kong: Department of Chinese, Translation & Linguistics, City University of Hong Kong.
- G. Kootstra, B. de Boer & L.R.B. Schomaker (2011). Predicting eye fixations on complex visual stimuli using local symmetry. Cognitive computation, 3 (1), 223-240. doi: 10.1007/s12559-010-9089-5[go to publisher's site]
- B. de Boer (2011). Modeling evolution of speech: comment on "Modeling the cultural evolution of language" by Luc Steels. Physics of Life Reviews, 8 (4), 361-362. doi: 10.1016/j.plrev.2011.10.015
- B. de Boer (2011). First formant difference for /i/ and /u/: a cross-linguistic study and an explanation. Journal of Phonetics, 39 (1), 110-114. doi: 10.1016/j.wocn.2010.12.005
- B. de Boer (2010). Investigating the acoustic effect of the descended larynx with articulatory models. Journal of Phonetics, 38 (4), 679-686. doi: 10.1016/j.wocn.2010.10.003
- T. Verhoef & B. de Boer (2010). The critical period and preservation of emerged vowel systems. In A.D.M. Smith, M. Schouwstra, B. de Boer & K. Smith (Eds.), The evolution of language: proceedings of the 8th International Conference (EVOLANG8), Utrecht, Netherlands, 14-17 April 2010 (pp. 509-510). Singapore: World Scientific.
- B. de Boer (2010). The perceptual effect of air sacs. In A.D.M. Smith, M. Schouwstra, B. de Boer & K Smith (Eds.), The evolution of language: proceedings of the 8th International Conference (EVOLANG8), Utrecht, Netherlands, 14-17 April 2010 (pp. 395-396). Singapore: World Scientific.
- B. de Boer (2010). Modelling vocal anatomy's significant effect on speech. Journal of Evolutionary Psychology, 8 (4), 351-366.
- B. de Boer & W. T. Fitch (2010). Computer models of vocal tract evolution: an overview and critique. Adaptive Behavior, 18 (1), 36-47.
- P. Vogt & B. de Boer (2010). Editorial: Language evolution: computer models for empirical data. Adaptive Behavior, 18 (1), 5-11.
- B. de Boer & W. Zuidema (2010). Multi-agent simulations of the evolution of combinatorial phonology. Adaptive Behavior, 18 (2), 141-154.
- G. Kootstra & B. de Boer (2009). Tackling the premature convergence problem in Monte-Carlo localization. Robotics and Autonomous Systems, 57 (11), 1107-1118.
- B. de Boer (2009). Acoustic analysis of primate air sacs and their effect on vocalization. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 126 (6), 3329-3343.
- W. Zuidema & B. de Boer (2009). The evolution of combinatorial phonology. Journal of Phonetics, 37 (2), 125-140.
- B. de Boer (2009). Why women speak better than men (and its significance for evolution). In R. Botha & C. Knight (Eds.), The prehistory of language Vol. 11. Studies in the evolution of language (pp. 255-265). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- G. Kootstra, A. Nederveen & B. de Boer (2008). Paying attention to symmetry. In M. Everingham, C.J. Needham & R. Fraile (Eds.), Proceedings of the British Machine Vision Conference 2008 (pp. 1115-1125). Leeds: British Machine Vision Association.
- B. de Boer (2008). The joy of sacs. In A.D.M. Smith, K. Smith & R. Ferrer i Cancho (Eds.), The evolution of language : proceedings of the 7th International Conference (EVOLANG7), Barcelona, Spain, 12-15 March 2008 (pp. 215-216). Singapore: World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
- L. Steels & B.G. de Boer (2007). Embodiment and self-organization of human categories : a case study for speech. In T. Ziemke, J. Zlatev & R.M. Frank (Eds.), Body, Language and Mind I: Embodiment (Cognitive Linguistics Research, 1) (pp. 241-259). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
- W.H. Zuidema & B.G. de Boer (2013). Modeling in the language sciences. In R.J. Podesva & D. Sharma (Eds.), Research Methods in Linguistics (pp. 428-445). Cambridge University Press.
- B. de Boer (2012). Infant-directed speech and language evolution. In M. Tallerman & K.R. Gibson (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of language evolution (Oxford handbooks in linguistics) (pp. 322-327). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- B. de Boer (2012). Self-organization and language evolution. In M. Tallerman & K.R. Gibson (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of language evolution (Oxford handbooks in linguistics) (pp. 612-620). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- T. Verhoef, B. de Boer, A. del Giudice, C. Padden & S. Kirby (2011). Cultural evolution of combinatorial structure in ongoing artificial speech learning experiments: technical report. (unknown, CRL newsletter, no Vol. 23, No. 1). La Jolla, CA: Center for Research in Language, University of California at San Diego.
- T. Verhoef & B. de Boer (2011). Language acquisition age effects and their role in the preservation and change of communication systems. Linguistics in Amsterdam, 4 (1), 2.[go to publisher's site]
- M. Schoonhoven, R. Pfau & B. de Boer (2010). Colors on hands: phonological markedness of sign language color terms. In D. Brentari, R. Wilbur, D. Quinto-Pozos, G. Mathur, S. Adams & S. Neumann Solow (Eds.), Theoretical Issues in Sign Language Research 10: research methodologies in sign language linguistics (TISLR 10), September 30-October 2, 2010: Purdue University, Stewart Center, West Lafayette, Indiana (pp. 173-175). West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University.
- B. de Boer (2009). [Review of the book The origin of speech]. Lingua, 119(7), 1106-1109.
- B. de Boer & W. Zuidema (2009). Models of language evolution: does the math add up? (Preprints, ILLC preprint series, no PP-2009-49). Amsterdam: University of Amsterdam, Institute of Logic, Language and Computation.
- B. de Boer (2008). Modeling the acoustics of air sacs. In S. Heimlich & D. Mellinger (Eds.), Acoustic Communication by Animals: Second International Conference : extended abstracts (pp. 47-48). Corvallis, OR (USA): Oregon State University.
- B. de Boer (2008). Acoustic tubes with maximal and minimal resonance frequencies. In Proceedings of Acoustics '08 (pp. 5063-5068). Paris: Société Francaise d'Acoustique.
- B. de Boer (2008). The acoustic role of supralaryngeal air sacs. In Proceedings of Acoustics '08 (pp. 5945-5950). Paris: Société Francaise d'Acoustique.
- B. de Boer (2008). [Review of the book Evolution and Culture]. Artificial Life, 14(2), 223-225.
- W. Zuidema & B. de Boer (2008). Evolutionary explanations for natural language: criteria from evolutionary biology. (intern rapport, ILLC Preprint Series, no PP-2008-54). onbekend: ILLCcap.[go to publisher's site]