2.02.2006

The Geometric Brain
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A knowledge of geometry is crosscultural and innate.
Cognitive tests often report this finding.

Here is the piece


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Amazonian hunter-gatherers who lack written language and who have never seen a math book score highly on basic tests of geometric concepts, researchers said on Thursday in a study that suggests geometry may be hard-wired into the brain.

Adults and children alike showed a clear grasp of concepts such as where the center of a circle is and the logical extension of a straight line, the researchers report in this week's issue of the journal Science.

Stanislas Dehaene of the College de France in Paris and colleagues tested 14 children and 30 adults of an Amazonian group called the Munduruku, and compared their findings to tests of U.S. adults and children.

"Munduruku children and adults spontaneously made use of basic geometric concepts such as points, lines, parallelism, or right angles to detect intruders in simple pictures, and they used distance, angle, and sense relationships in geometrical maps to locate hidden objects," they wrote....



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