Stories like the one in Figure 2.1 seem to serve a number of different functions in our social and psychological lives. They question our own assumptions about the way the world works, challenge the assumptions of others when we use stories to make particular points, and teach us far more about people and the world
we live in than we could learn from personal experience alone. The belief that we utilize past stories like these when we are engaged in new problem-solving behavior is the central tenet of the theory of Case-Based Reasoning. While the term is meant to encompass a wide assortment of theoretical approaches, all adopt a metaphorical view of memory as a place in which cases are stored, later to be retrieved, adapted, and applied to current situations that are similar or analogous. This metaphor fits particularly well with the computational metaphors used in Cognitive Modeling, and has generated interest in the development of computational theories of case-based explanation, case-based parsing, and casebased planning.