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Fooling ourselves

May 10, 2016

A Yale psychologist created a clever experiment to show that people fool themselves into thinking they made a choice they never made. Our brain can rewrite our very short-term memory to create the illusion of choice. (Cite.)

Robert Frank explains how and why we discount the role of luck in our lives. And how that affects our views and behavior.

It is hardly surprising that evolution generates sensory systems that are fit, rather than ones that are isomorphic to reality. But I think Donald Hoffman overstates the case. That perception isn’t linear or that our primary colors are entirely a result of our visual system, and less rich than those of many birds, doesn’t mean that our perception is detached from reality. Only that it is filtered.

Swiss neuroscientists are investigating how the brain mixes external and internal stimuli. As example, we mostly are unaware of our own heartbeat, and the part of the brain responsible for that suppression gets fooled by a visual figure that flashes in sync with our pulse. (Cite.)

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