If an ape is taught to ring a bell when it's hungry then that's how they will communicate and tell you they are hungry. Apes are not able to physically speak, so they use their words through their actions. In some way, you can relate them to babies. Babies cannot talk as soon as they’re born so they communicate with their hands and eyes to ask for stuff and communicate with adults. In an important article, Terrace, Petitto, Sanders, and Bever reported that apes were imitating and were being taught by their trainers’ commands, rather than naturally speaking.
With the exploratory analysis of the existing primate species, it can be quite helpful in attempting to comprehend the possible behaviour of early hominids. The social behaviour of primates is discovered amongst the investigative research of primatology, which provides evidence that the fissure between humans and other primates are beginning to decrease (McGrew, 1998: 302). This tends to result in a change of mind concerning the human conditions and the re-identification of what makes us human. The making and the regular use of tools were once considered to be what separated humans from other primates, however, primates such as Chimpanzees and Orangutans have been found making and using tools as well which keeps us wondering. What makes us human?
The difficulty with validating whether animals have minds is that we cannot share experiences with animals, communication is difficult. Though this may be changing. Experts in symbolic language with chimps and apes are able to communicate with each other in sign language. ‘Experiments with chimps Koko and Washoe and gorilla Kenzi have shown that they are able to invent new words, construct abstract phrases and express their feelings using American Sign Language or computer-based symbolic language.’ This is hard scientific evidence proving that these primates do have intelligence and a mind nearly like our own, though the extent is far from being displayed.
Although "speech is commonly recognized as the dividing line between humans and the rest of the animal world" (Amy Stafford, Chimpanzee Communication), studies have shown that chimps and other primates partially share that capability too. "Human language is used for expression of thought, for establishing social relationships, for communication of information and for clarifying ideas." (Noam Chomsky) "So by studying the communication abilities and development of language in chimps and other great apes, we can learn more about ourselves and our own language capabilities." (Amy Stafford, Chimpanzee communication) Chimps are able to deliberately communicate with others, and their comprehension "behind the exchanges is a level of understanding unseen elsewhere in the animal world." (Amy Stafford, Chimpanzee Communication) Chimps have been taught up to a vocabulary of 200 words using ASL, or American Sign Language.
Another common argument is simply why are there still monkeys if we have evolved from them? This paper will provide evidence that proves these assumptions wrong. significant research has been done to show that we are, in fact, still evolving. There has been a significant amount of research and supporting the fact that we are still evolving. When thinking about evolution most people think way back to the time we evolved from apes.
Can apes create sentences? Having in mind these two questions, I tried to find the answer using the literature written by researchers belonging to both «traditional» and «modern» doctrines. Can great apes meaningfully relate words? «Traditional» researchers believe that great apes cannot meaningfully relate words. They believe that apes just use words which are mostly liked by their trainers in each concrete situation, but they can be meaningless to apes.
Presentation Summary: Language Development The development of human language is something that has peaked the interest of researchers and inquisitive minds alike for centuries. Homo sapiens are unique in so many ways however the trait that truly sets us apart from other mammals is our ability to use complex language to communicate. Though human DNA is very similar to that of our ape cousins, humans are the only primates who are physiologically, and cognitively, capable of making the sounds necessary to produce complex language. Within this brief essay I will summarize the content of my presentation on language development including: the origins of human language; language development in humans; and how humans learn language. By doing so, I will provide the reader with a general overview of language development in humans that considers evolution, anatomy and physiology, cognitive development, and social factors as the basis for language development in humans.
The ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.” So how can we get a computer to be intelligent? Let’s start with the origin of it all. British Mathematician, Alan Turing published a paper called “Computing Machinery and Intelligence. In the paper, Turing argued that if a machine could past a certain test, then we would have evidence to say that the computer was intelligent. The test turns out to be the ‘Turing test;’ a human being asking questions through a computer terminal to either a human being and another computer.
According to Chomsky (1972), language acquisition is one of the exclusive characteristics of human beings and is known as the jewel in the crown of cognition (Pinker, 1994). It is well known that other species on earth have communication system also, but differ substantially in their qualities from human communication. Several attempts have been made to teach apes to speak (Allen & Gardner, 1969; Savage-Rumbaugh, Sevcik, & Hopkins, 1988), but language acquisition is a mystery of human beings, it starts before a child is born (DeCasper & Spence, 1986). Until today, no artificial intelligence has been created which can learn a language. Healthy newborn children acquire seemingly effortlessly and rapidly the language of any part of the world, independently from the parents native language.
Chomsky describes his theory as language unfolding through natural cognitive ability (Torr, 2015). Instead of the idea of learning language from social interactions and other people, language is something already in the mind that is unlocked (Grammar before meaning, nativist’s perspective). This innate ability is called “Language Acquisition Device (LAD)” (Chomsky 1987, Cited in Harris, 2009, pp.12) and is something children are born with. This device is unrelated and unchanged by the environment and social circumstances of the child, (Torr, 2015). The theory is viewed as unpopular due to a question researchers had in its early stages, (“How could infants possibly learn the underlying syntactic rules of the language on the basis of their exposure to such poor linguistic input?” (Torr 2015, pp.