Why Do You Grab Your Bag When Running Off a Burning Plane? Imagine trying to get out of a plane, but the passenger ahead of you is blocking the aisle as he tries to wrestle his carry-on free. Frustrating, right? … Continue reading Cognitive disorientation
How AI Will Rewire Us Fears about how robots might transform our lives have been a staple of science fiction for decades. In the 1940s, when widespread interaction between humans and artificial intelligence still seemed a distant prospect, Isaac Asimov … Continue reading Live with robots
The Tipping Paradox Yesterday, at a Starbucks, I wondered if I had lifted tipping totals when I gave the barista a $5 bill. Actually, when I said I wanted to give her $1, she placed the five in the tip … Continue reading Insight on tip jars
The Art of Decision-Making In July of 1838, Charles Darwin was twenty-nine years old and single. Two years earlier, he had returned from his voyage aboard H.M.S. Beagle with the observations that would eventually form the basis of “On the … Continue reading Choose wisely
An Economist Goes Christmas Shopping “The Deadweight Loss of Christmas” is the sort of academic paper that makes ordinary people think economists are kind of crazy. “I find that holiday gift giving destroys between one-third and one-tenth of the value … Continue reading Did you buy presents?
Simple Heuristics That Make Algorithms Smart Gerd Gigerenzer’s debate with Daniel Kahneman, Amos Tversky, and collaborators in the heuristics and biases research program has been one of the more interesting sideshows in psychology. Although the debate often appears to be … Continue reading Anchoring and adjustment
The cigarette smoker as two-self economic man In a landmark report released in May 1988, the Surgeon General of the United States concluded that the nicotine in cigarette smoke was an addictive drug. The report described cigarette smoking as a … Continue reading Are you rationally addicted?