Interface Strategies: Optimal and Costly Computations by Tanya Reinhart

By Tanya Reinhart

During this monograph Tanya Reinhart discusses suggestions allowing the interface of alternative cognitive structures, which she identifies because the platforms of ideas, inference, context, and sound. Her aspect of departure is Noam Chomsky's speculation that language is optimally designed—namely, that during many circumstances, the naked minimal wanted for developing syntactic derivations is adequate for the total wishes of the interface. Deviations from this precept are considered as imperfections. The ebook covers extensive 4 parts of the interface: quantifier scope, concentration, anaphora answer, and implicatures. the 1st query in each one quarter is what makes the computational process (CS, syntax) legible to the opposite structures on the interface—how a lot of the data wanted for the interface is coded already within the CS, and the way it's coded. subsequent Reinhart argues that during every one of those components there are specific points of which means and use that can't be coded within the CS formal language, on either conceptual and empirical grounds. this sediment is ruled through interface recommendations that may be considered as fix of imperfections. They require developing and evaluating a reference set of different derivations to figure out even if a fix operation is certainly the single strategy to meet the interface standards. facts that reference-set computation applies in those 4 components comes from language acquisition. the necessary computation poses a critical load on operating reminiscence. whereas adults can take care of this load, childrens, whose operating reminiscence is much less constructed, fail in projects requiring this computation.

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Both conjuncts are derived in full, as in (38). QR has applied, independently to both. The result, then, is that the two VPs are precisely identical, and the second one need not be realized phonetically, so the PF is the string in (37). If QR does not apply in precisely the same way to both conjuncts, no ellipsis is possible, as witnessed by the fact that (37) cannot have di¤erent scope construals in the first and second conjuncts. The question, now, is why the same is not true also for (35). For ellipsis to be possible under the wide-scope construal of every patient, QR should apply in both conjuncts, as in (39).

But we are still left with the question of which interface considerations do enforce reference-set computation. It cannot simply be the need to apply a superfluous operation, because as we just saw, there may be many innocent superfluous operations. The intuition that (47) enabled us to state is that applying the operations in question violates some principle that prohibits their normal application (even if (47) is not itself the relevant principle in all cases). As I have mentioned, in the case of QR, the principle violated may still be (47), if it is formulated to apply to covert movement only.

The wide scope of every patient is obtained by movement to the topmost IP position, as in (34b). Assuming that a quantified VP-internal argument can adjoin either to VP or to IP to be interpreted, it appears that the MLC should determine that only the first is allowed in practice, since the link between the quantifier and its trace is shorter in (34a) than in (34b). However, if the MLC does not compare just derivations, but hd, ii pairs of a derivation and its interpretation, the movement in (34b) is licensed, since it yields a distinct interpretation from the shorter derivation in (34a).

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