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Belief Machine

This version was saved 8 years ago View current version     Page history
Saved by swanson@...
on June 27, 2012 at 8:05:39 am
 

It is that which we do know which is the great hindrance to our learning, not that which we do not know.

Claude Bernard http://exp.lore.com/post/23733586533/it-is-that-which-we-do-know-which-is-the-great

 

 

Maybe start a presentation with type1 & type 2 errors. make a story out of it. story about savanna or jungle or something. we are hardwired for cause and effect, we tell stories, we give explanations, belief comes first, then explanation. Emotion --> then logic

 

Connect with something you believed

"To me, when I relate to a piece of fiction, you know, or a novel or something, it isn't that it makes me step outside myself, although sometimes there are those kinds of books. But I mean, the things that I really relate to is when I read something that has articulated something that I felt but haven't been able to articulate."

Charlie Kaufman, 10/23/08, Fresh Air

 

 

 

Kentucky chapter- a shooting, beliefs come to add explanation

 

Living in a society where info is "too big to know"

 

We can find information to support anything

 

Well structured vs Ill structured questions 

 

Nature of belief

 

Virus example: 

-death rates from small pox, polio, measles, flu (epidemics in US small pox, polio. flu)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1918_flu_pandemic
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1837-38_smallpox_epidemic

 

-history of fear of vaccines

-connecting fear of autism to vaccines

-form communities of belief, attack experts, misrepresent evidence, shift beliefs in spite of evidence, (they claim an evil empire of schools, gov't & corporations which has evolved over around 150 years "cog in medical machine") 

-vaccines as ill-structured problems (fear of unknown-proving negatives)

-beliefs preserve themselves 

 

Spanish American War: 13 from sickness to 1 death on battlefield

WWI: 1:1

WWII: 1:85

 

1920-1955 life span of average american increased by 25%

same period, California cases of diphtheria went from 110,000 (700 death) to 72 cases (4 deaths)  (stats above from Panic Virus)

-1916 polio epidemic in New York  9,000 people died. There was a 25% death rate among infected. : Time Magazine: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2027479_2027486_2027527,00.html

 

 

Teach about info

Stress background & grasping the topic

Ask then to recognize their own beliefs

 

Observation is useful but not enough

 

One study can be good but you need multiple to really understand a phenomenon

 

Studies measure reality

 

Some questions deal with measurable reality more than others

 

Science must be our belief system

Recognizing the role & interplay of our beliefs is crucial

 

We must be skeptical but not fool ourselves 

 

 

To really understand something we need: 1) theory 2) connections between actions & events (correlation) 3) understanding of the mechanics. Many times we hvae 1 & 2 but not three. 

 

 

“We have inherited an image of ourselves as Homo sapiens, as thinking individuals separated from the other animals because of our superior power of reason.

This is mankind as Rodin’s thinker—chin on fist, cogitating alone and deeply. In fact, we are separated from the other animals because we have phenomenal social skills that enable us to teach, learn, sympathize, emote, and build cultures, institutions, and the complex mental scaffolding of civilizations.”

David Brooks, the social animal

 

 

Do I want to emphasize:

1) confirmation bias

2) freezing & seizing 

3) 

 

 

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