The computational costs of recipient design and intention recognition in communication


Understanding the communicative intentions of others based on their behavior can be seen as an `inference to the best explanation', a.k.a. abduction. As abduction is often an intractable task, it has been suggested that communicators alleviate the work of an addressee by performing recipient design, adapting their behavior to the presumed beliefs and knowledge of the addressee. In this paper we show that communicators performing recipient design inherit the computational load of their addressees. Thus, recipient design in itself cannot explain the speed of everyday human intentional communication.

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