I love hearing from people in all walks of life who have read On Second Thought and recognize its relevance to their lives and work. This thoughtful piece is from Denny Coates, a performance expert and life coach, who riffs a bit about the Decoy Heuristic and the Futuristic Heuristic.
I’m a self-identified political progressive, so I’m feeling pretty low right now. The country’s future looks bleak, and the Tea Party scares the bejesus out of me. But I’m taking some solace in what I’ve learned about the heuristic mind, in particular the “futuristic heuristic.” This powerful cognitive bias makes it very difficult to accurately… Read more
Both the LA Times health section and the Washington Post health section have excellent articles today on heuristics and health. It’s gratifying that health writers are recognizing the perils of automatic thinking in the arena of personal health. The Momentum Heuristic tells me that there is no such thing as being “on a roll” but… Read more
. . . in Southwest Airline’s in-flight magazine, Spirit.
Listen to this nine-minute monologue by the poet Ted Hughes on thinking–and on thinking about thinking. This is the same territory I cover, as a science writer, in On Second Thought, but viewed through the experiential lens of a master poet.
Here is some new work on the Fluency Heuristic, discussed at length in Chapter 4 of On Second Thought. This study comes from Danny Oppenheimer of Princeton, published in the journal Cognition, and the gist is that learning improves if information is printed in a difficult-to-read font. That’s because easy-to-read fonts are cognitively palatable, so… Read more
I am a long-time contributor to Scientific American Mind, but had no inside intelligence about their plans for On Second Thought. How gratifying to read these kind words from science journalist Ferris Jabr.
Tootsie Rolls to fight fatigue? Fascinating NYT piece on the history and psychology of candy–and why we perceive confections as unnatural and evil. This is pure, unadulterated cooties heuristic at work in our irrational neurons.