The London Underground Diagram as an example of cognitive niche construction

Abstract

The London Underground Diagram (LUD) is a cognitive artifact and a well-known example of representational efficiency, having been copied by urban transportation systems worldwide. Here we describe the design of the LUD as an example of cognitive niche construction happening through iconic meaning of a problem space. We argue that the LUD's meaning is grounded on the offer of opportunities for action through diagrammaticity. Our examination suggest that iconicity is at the core the cognitive niche construction.


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