“Inferences from mental simulation and rule-based approach utilize different cognitive processes.
Within mechanical reasoning, the representational medium and the referent is fundamentally spatial due to the science of motion.
Motion is undeniably a spatial property.
Therefore mechanical reasoning is determined by visual spatial information.
For example the connectivity, shape, and location of objects.
It also encompasses reasoning about non-visible yet spatially distributed objects such as force, magnetism, and velocity.
Mental simulation is often complemented by the conscious occurrence of having a mental image of the physical circumstances.
In the rule-based approach a sentential or propositional explanatory representation is a set of facts or universal rules about the representational medium and referent (Hegarty, 2004).”