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Babies show the way | Neuro-patch
It is January and therefore we see the answers to the Edge Question. This year the question is "What do you consider the most interesting recent (scientific) news? What makes it important?" I have to say that I did not find this year's crop of short essays as interesting as in previous years – but there were some gems. For example N.J. Enfield's 'Pointing is a Prerequisite for Language' fits so well with what I think and is expressed so well (here). I have a problem with the idea that language is not primarily about communication but rather is about a way of thinking. I cannot believe that language arose over a short space of time rather than a long evolution (both biological and cultural evolution). And it began as communication not as a proper-ish language. "Infants begin to communicate by pointing at about nine months of age, a year before they can produce even the simplest sentences. Careful experimentation has established that prelinguistic infants can use pointing gestures to ask