A Neural Model of Number Interval Position Effect (NIPE) in Children

  • Michela Ponticorvo
  • Francesca Rotondaro
  • Fabrizio Doricchi
  • Orazio Miglino
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9107)


In the present paper we describe an artificial neural model of the Number Interval Position Effect (NIPE;[5]) that has been observed in the mental bisection of number intervals both in adults and in children. In this task a systematic error bias in the mental setting of the subjective midpoint of number intervals is found, so that for intervals of equal size there is a shift of the subjective midpoint towards numbers higher than the true midpoint for intervals at the beginning of decades while for intervals at the end of decades the error bias is directionally reversed towards numbers lower than the true midpoint. This trend of the bisection error is recursively present across consecutive decades.

Here we show that a neural-computational model based on information spread by energy gradients towards accumulation points based on the logarithimic compressed representation of number magnitudes that has been observed at the single cell level in rhesus monkeys [9] effectively simulates the performance of adults and children in the mental bisection of number intervals, in particular replicating the data observed in children.


Artificial Neural Models Numerical Cognition Mental Number Line Bisection of Number Intervals NIPE effect 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michela Ponticorvo
    • 1
  • Francesca Rotondaro
    • 2
  • Fabrizio Doricchi
    • 2
  • Orazio Miglino
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Humanistic StudiesUniversity of Naples ”Federico II”NaplesItaly
  2. 2.Department of Psychology, SapienzaUniversity of RomeRomeItaly

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