Distinguishing Between Intentional and Unintentional Sequences of Actions


Human beings, from the very young age of 18 months, have been shown to be able to extrapolate intentions from actions. That is, upon viewing another human executing a series of actions, the observer can guess the underlying intention, even before the goal has been achieved, and even when the performer failed at achieving the goal. We identify an important preliminary stage in this process, that of determining whether or not an action stream exhibits any intentionality at all. We propose a model of this ability and evaluate it in several experiments.

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