A computational model of frontal lobe dysfunction: Working memory and the Tower of Hanoi task

Vinod Goela, S. David Pullara, Jordan Grafman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations

Abstract

A symbolic computer model, employing the perceptual strategy, is presented for solving Tower of Hanoi problems. The model is calibrated-in terms of the number of problems solved, time taken, and number of moves made-to the performance of 20 normal subjects. It is then "lesioned" by increasing the decay rate of elements in working memory to model the performance of 20 patients with lesions to the prefrontal cortex. The model captures both the main effects of subject groups (patients and normal controls) performance, and the subject groups (patients and normal controls) by problem difficulty interactions. This leads us to support the working memory hypothesis of frontal lobe functions, but for a narrow range of problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)287-313
Number of pages27
JournalCognitive Science
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

Keywords

  • 3CAPS
  • Computational model
  • Executive functions
  • Frontal lobes
  • Planning
  • Problem solving
  • Production systems
  • Short-term memory
  • Tower of Hanoi
  • Working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Artificial Intelligence

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