Fantastic Beasts and How to Rank Them Consider the yeti. Reputed to live in the mountainous regions of Tibet, Bhutan, and Nepal. Also known by the alias Abominable Snowman. Overgrown, in both senses: eight or ten or twelve feet tall; … Continue reading The plausibility of impossible
Believing widely doubted conspiracy theories satisfies some people’s need to feel special Unrelenting faith in the face of insurmountable contradictory evidence is a trait of believers in conspiracy theories that has long confounded researchers. For instance, past research has demonstrated … Continue reading The psychology of conspiracy belief
Go Ahead, Heap Rewards on Your Kid A few months ago, my husband and I met a psychologist who advised us to start using rewards with our 6-year-old. Our son is happy, but he struggles at times with his behavior … Continue reading Incentives for kids?
The Role of Motivation in Delusional Belief Rational beliefs are formed on the basis of solid evidence and are open for appropriate revision when emerging evidence makes them less likely to be true. In contrast, a person with a delusion … Continue reading The effect of delusion
Why you tip as much as you do At a cafe in Upstate New York, a waiter paused for a moment in the kitchen to draw a playing card from a shuffled deck before bringing a check out to a … Continue reading Tipping anxiety
Rationalizing the “Irrational” Economists are famous for attempting to rationalize seemingly irrational behavior. One of the more extraordinary is Gary Becker and Kevin Murphy’s theory of rational addiction, in which they hypothesized that addicts plan their consumption of addictive goods. … Continue reading Misunderstanding irrationality
Why autistic people may be less susceptible to marketing tricks We know from past research that autistic people process the world differently at a perceptual level, including showing reduced sensitivity to context. One consequence is that they’re better than average … Continue reading Autism implies more consistency