With his book Thinking, Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman emerged as one of the most intriguing voices on the complexity of human thought and behavior. He is a psychologist who won the Nobel Prize in economics for helping to create the field of behavioral economics. He is a self-described “constant worrier.” And it’s fun, helpful, and more than a little unnerving to apply his insights into why we think and act the way we do in this moment of social and political tumult.
Tagged with “behaviour” (9)
On taking thought
Before a packed house, Kahneman began with the distinction between what he calls mental “System 1”—-fast thinking, intuition—-and “System 2”—-slow thinking, careful consideration and calculation.
System 1 operates on the illusory principle: What you see is all there is.
System 2 studies the larger context.
System 1 works fast (hence its value) but it is unaware of its own process.
Conclusions come to you without any awareness of how they were arrived at.
System 2 processes are self-aware, but they are lazy and would prefer to defer to the quick convenience of System 1.
“Fast thinking,” he said, “is something that happens to you. Slow thinking is something you do.“
System 2 is effortful
The self-control it requires can be depleted by fatigue.
Research has shown that when you are tired it is much harder to perform a task such as keeping seven digits in mind while solving a mental puzzle, and you are more impulsive (I’ll have some chocolate cake!).
You are readier to default to System 1.
“The world in System 1 is a lot simpler than the real world,” Kahneman said, because it craves coherence and builds simplistic stories.
“If you don’t like Obama’s politics, you think he has big ears.”
System 1 is blind to statistics and focuses on the particular rather than the general: “People are more afraid of dying in a terrorist incident than they are of dying.”
When faced with a hard question such as, “Should I hire this person?” we convert it to an easier question: “Do I like this person?“
(System 1 is good at predicting likeability.)
The suggested answer pops up, we endorse it, and believe it.
And we wind up with someone affable and wrong for the job.
The needed trick is knowing when to distrust the easy first answer and bear down on serious research and thought.
Organizations can manage that trick by requiring certain protocols and checklists that invoke System 2 analysis.
Individual professionals (athletes, firefighters, pilots) often use training to make their System 1 intuition extremely expert in acting swiftly on a wider range of signals and options than amateurs can handle.
It is a case of System 2 training System 1 to act in restricted circumstances with System 2 thoroughness at System 1 speed.
It takes years to do well.
Technology can help, the way a heads-up display makes it possible for pilots to notice what is most important for them to act on even in an emergency.
The Web can help, Kahneman suggested in answer to a question from the audience, because it makes research so easy.
“Looking things up exposes you to alternatives.
This is a profound change.”
On November 3rd, Dr. Cialdini, along with Dan Ariely, Ori Brafman, Pam Danziger, Dan Hill and Christophe Morin were interviewed for the Extraordinary Minds webcast, “Getting People Who Don’t Buy to Buy Enthusiastically”.
Why do smart people make irrational decisions every day? Why do we repeatedly make the same mistakes when we make our selections? How do our expectations influence our actual opinions and decisions? The answers, as revealed by behavioural economist Professor Dan Ariely of MIT, will surprise you.
Dan Ariely is author of Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape our Decisions, (HarperCollins, £14.99). He is Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Behavioral Economics at MIT where he holds a joint appointment between MIT’s Program in Media Arts and Sciences and Sloan School of Management. He is the principal investigator of the Lab’s eRationality group and co-director of the Lab’s SIMPLICITY consortium. He is interested in issues of rationality, irrationality, decision-making, behavioral economics, and consumer welfare. Projects include examinations of online auction behaviors, personal health monitoring, the effects of different pricing mechanisms, and the development of systems to overcome day-to-day irrationality.
Ariely received a PhD in business administration from Duke University, a PhD and MA in cognitive psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a BA in psychology from Tel Aviv University.
We all have a hard time admitting that we’re wrong, but according to a new book about human psychology, it’s not entirely our fault. Social psychologist Elliot Aronson says our brains work hard to make us think we are doing the right thing, even in the face of sometimes overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
Elliot Aronson, co-author, Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me); social psychologist; professor emeritus, psychology, University of California Santa Cruz.
Usability? Meh. Let’s talk about persuasion. Are you designing serendipity, arousal, rewards and other seductive elements into your applications? We’ll discuss specific ways that sites like Dopplr, iLike and LinkedIn leverage basic human psychology to motivate and shape online behaviors.
This Is Your Brain On Design: How neuroscience can help us create better user experiences – Andrew Hinton
Ever wondered why you just can’t seem to get through to some people? Or how users can do such unpredictable things with your designs? Or even why you sometimes look back on a project and wonder, ””what the heck was I thinking when I did that?”“
In this presentation, Andrew Hinton examines recent research in neuroscience and related fields, pointing out how some surprising discoveries not only affect the designs we create, but how we should go about creating them.
Tom Waits vs. Björk.
As suggested by Matt Jones on Twitter: http://twitter.com/moleitau/status/11937981518
And implemented by Joshua Ellis: http://twitter.com/jzellis/status/11955453741
We all know web design tricks to getting people to do what you want - make buttons bigger, use accent colors, etc. There are other strategies, however, that rely on the more proven tools of psychology; this session will explore reciprocity, scarcity, and more, and see how effective they can be.