My research addresses questions at the foundations of natural language semantics and cognitive science using a variety of methods: philosophical, logical, computational, and experimental. Much of my work has been driven by the following question: in what ways does human cognition shape the structure of the natural languages that we speak? To that end, I have pursued explanations of semantic universals and of compositionality in terms of their impact on the learnability of meaning systems. Related interests include animal communication and expressivism in the theory of communication.
Before coming to Amsterdam, I was briefly a visiting researcher at Institut Jean Nicod at École Normale Supérieure. Before that, I did my PhD in Philosophy and Symbolic Systems at Stanford University. During Summer 2016, I was a research software engineering intern in the Research and Machine Intelligence division of Google. Before that, I studied Philosophy, Mathematics, and Computer Science at The Johns Hopkins University.
You can reach me via snail or electronic mail:
Guggenheim Hall, room 418D
Seattle, Washington 98195
shanest AT uw DOT edu
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "An Explanation of the Veridical Uniformity Universal", Journal of Semantics, forthcoming. [code]
Peter Hawke and Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "Informational Dynamics of Epistemic Possibility Modals", Synthese, vol 195 no 10, pp. 4309-4342 (DOI: 10.1007/s11229-016-1216-8)
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "Compositionality and Competition in Monkey Alert Calls", Theoretical Linguistics, vol 42 no 1-2, pp. 159-171 (DOI: 10.1515/tl-2016-0009)
Grigori Mints and Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "ADC Method of Proof Search in Intuitionistic Propositional Natural Deduction", Journal of Logic and Computation, vol 26 no 1, pp. 395-408 (DOI: 10.1093/logcom/ext032)
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Siamak Ardekani, Jose L.V. Mejino, Landon Todd Detwiler, James F. Brinkley, Michael Halle, Ron Kikinis, Raimond L. Winslow, Michael I. Miller, and J. Tilak Ratnanather, "Ontological Labels for Automated Location of Anatomical Shape Differences", Journal of Biomedical Informatics, vol 45 no 3, pp. 522-527 (DOI: 10.1016/j.jbi/2012.02.013)
Fausto Carcassi, Shane Steinert-Threlkeld (co-first), and Jakub Szymanik, "The emergence of monotone quantifiers via iterated learning", Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019). [paper, code]
Iris van de Pol, Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, and Jakub Szymanik, "Complexity and learnability in the explanation of semantic universals", Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019). [paper, code]
Lewis O'Sullivan and Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Neural Models of the Psychosemantics of "Most", Proceedings of the 9th Workshop on Cognitive Modeling and Computational Linguistics (CMCL2019). [paper, poster, code]
Sandro Pezzelle, Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Raffaella Bernardi, Jakub Szymanik, "Some of them can Be Guessed! Exploring the Effect of Linguistic Context in Predicting Quantifiers", Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL 2018) [paper, code].
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "Uniform Definability in Assertability Semantics", Proceedings of the 21st Amsterdam Colloquium, eds. Alexandre Cremers, Thom van Gessel, and Floris Roelofsen, pp. 445-454.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Gert-Jan Munneke, and Jakub Szymanik, "Alternative Representations in Formal Semantics: A case study of quantifiers", Proceedings of the 20th Amsterdam Colloquium, eds. Thomas Brochhagen, Floris Roelofsen, and Nadine Thelier, pp. 368-379.
Peter Hawke and Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "Informational Dynamics of `Might' Assertions", Proceedings of Logic, Rationality, and Interaction (LORI-V), eds. Wiebe van der Hoek, Wes Holliday, and Wen-fang Wang, pp. 143-155. (DOI: 10.1007/978-3-662-48561-3_12)
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "Learning to Use Function Words in Signaling Games", Proceedings of Information Dynamics in Artificial Societies (IDAS-14), eds. Emiliano Lorini and Laurent Perrussel.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "On the Decidability of Iterated Languages", Proceedings of Philosophy, Mathematics, Linguistics: Aspects of Interaction (PhML2014), ed. Oleg Prosorov, pp. 215-224.
Jakub Szymanik, Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Marcin Zajenkowski, and Thomas F. Icard, III., "Automata and Complexity in Multiple-Quantifier Sentence Verification", Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Cognitive Modeling (ICCM)
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Siamak Ardekani, Jose L.V. Mejino, Landon Todd Detwiler, James F. Brinkley, Michael Halle, Ron Kikinis, Raimond L. Winslow, Michael I. Miller, and J. Tilak Ratnanather, "Ontological Labels for Automated Location of Left-Ventricular Remodeling", Proceedings of 2011 Fifth IEEE International Conference on Semantic Computing, pp. 572- 573 (DOI: 10.1109/ICSC.2011.99)
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld and Jakub Szymanik, "Ease of Learning Explains Semantic Universals", under revision.
Peter Hawke and Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, paper on epistemic modals, under revision.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, paper on the emergence of non-trivial modification, under review.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld and Zachary Steinert-Threlkeld, "Social Network Structure and the Repression-Dissent Puzzle", under review.
Sonia Ramotowska, Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Leendert van Maanen and Jakub Szymanik, experimental paper on "most" vs "more than half", in prep.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, Emmanuel Chemla and Philippe Schlenker, paper on the evolution of general calls and scalar reasoning, in prep.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "Communication and Computation: New Questions About Compositionality", PhD Dissertation, Stanford University (reprinted as ILLC Dissertation Series 2017-05).
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld, "Lambda Calculi", Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld and J Tilak Ratnanather, "Open standards, web-based mathlets: making interactive tutorials using the html5 canvas element, Loci/JOMA.
My Erdös Number is 4, via at least three paths: