Goals are more important than physical similarity
Chapter 5 endnote 31, from Lisa Feldman Barrett.
Some context is:
...studies show that infants can more easily learn a goal-based concept, given a word, than a concept defined by physical similarity without a word.
In one recent series of studies, 14-month-olds were able to efficiently learn that the same word applied to different-looking objects performing the same behavior (e.g., different geometric shapes in different colors that chase another object), as opposed to a set of visually-identical objects performing different behaviors.
Notes on the Notes
- Yin, Jun, and Gergely Csibra. 2015. "Concept-based word learning in human infants." Psychological Science 26 (8): 1316-1324.