Tomás Veloz Webpage

University of British Columbia


We assume that concepts are the basic units of thought, and that when we think of a concept, we are under the influence of a context that frames our understanding of it. This understanding is modeled by a set of typical exemplars and a set of applicable properties to the concept. For example, the property “Has needles” for the concept TREE is applicable in context “Christmas”, but not in context “Desert Island”, where the exemplar “Palm Tree” is more typical than “Christmas tree”.

In our model (State Context Property theory of concepts), every concept exists in a state of potentiality until it interacts with a context. This interaction makes it collapse to some state where the properties and exemplars are determined. This process is analogous to the quantum measurement process, where quantum particles collapse to a state and its energy, spin, etc. is affected by the measurement. I am working on the exploration of this analogy (see papers section). Please contact me for related papers or more info.

Concepts and quantum structures

Chemical organization theory

Chemical reaction networks are compounded by a set of molecular species {a,b,c,d,...} and a set of reactions. For example:

2a+b+c —> a+2b+d   is a reaction.

The picture on the left shows how to represent a system where multiple reactions can occur.

Chemical organization theory explains how to use information provided by the network to predict long-term qualitative behaviour, mainly the stability or decaying of the species.

For a detailed introduction visit here, or contact me for more info.

Furthermore, the reaction network approach can be used to model social systems. Most social models are besed on agents as the basic unit of modeling (MAS). In our approach, rather than simulate agents, we use molecular species that represent decisions that agents can take. The interaction among these decisions generates new decisions (molecular species). We can apply chemical organization theory to study the stability of large scale decision systems. (see papers section).





Molecules in this case are {a,b,e,z,w} Reactions are:

y—>x;     x+e—>y+e;    z—>w;    w+e—>z+e.


Molecule “e” is marked in yellow to point out its role as catalizer, i.e. molecule “e” is reactive but is neither consumed nor produced by the set of reactions.

Material Cultural Evolution

With Liane Gabora and the archaeologist Ilya Tëmkin, we are developing a psychologically informed software program for reconstructing human material cultural history. The software is referred to as WE (for Worldview Evolution). WE allows the user to enter the attributes of found artifacts, and it then postulates cultural lineages amongst them, i.e. patterns of relatedness (see papers section).


Example of point-projectile lineage network that incorporates conceptual information

Tomás  Veloz  González 

Mathematics Departments, Okanagan campus, University of British Columbia.

Email: Phone: 250-300-3421