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Posts Tagged ‘Cognitive Bias’

“Stocks only go up, $TSLA to the moon” — Elon Musk (probably)

December 3rd, 2020 No comments
A graph of $TSLA (Tesla Inc.) stock price going up.

A graph of $TSLA (Tesla Inc.) stock price going up.

I hope that you haven’t put all your life savings on $TSLA after seeing that juicy green graph. Hopefully, you won’t open the Robinhood app on your phone before reading this article. Even if you are one of the teenagers contributing to Robinhood’s 4.3 million daily average trades, I suggest you read this post before you go make another trade from your (or worse, your mom’s) life savings.

Here is a simple game for you. From what you can observe in the graph above, where do you think Tesla stock will go next. Would you buy some stocks? What about if you already had some Tesla stock. Would you hold, buy more, or sell? There is a lot of information missing from the graph, however, this type of graph remains the most important visual information that everyone sees first when. If you are a reader of this blog, you can probably guess that our primate brain isn’t as rational as we would like it to be!

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Your Horoscope for Today: You may download or delete a horoscope app on your phone

November 21st, 2020 No comments

Real footage of exhausted, Gen Z college kids acting flabbergast at zodiacs predicting their lives

Link to meme:https://images.app.goo.gl/Y4Kmu1R9xujSdmeP9

Maybe you have read somewhere that those who take astrology seriously are suckers(the meme world has verified this information as you can see in the image next to the this post) and are prone to a variety of biases. Maybe you yourself have made fun of that one friend in the group who seems to take the “star sign thing” way too seriously and who is ready to choose a life partner by their chart compatibility. And maybe despite that, like me and countless other people, when you come across a “reading” or a horoscope prediction, you read every word intently to see if it matches you. And maybe you have done this a few times: sucked your teeth when you read the horoscope for a day that has just ended but see that not a single thing on it lines up with the day you have just had. And maybe after that, you swore never to read the damn things again. But if I checked right now, it has probably just been a few days since you opened the notifications from an astrology app like Costar or ran a google search for character traits of others like you who were born within the month-long interval that determines your shared “sun sign. Life right now is so unpredictable so we hold on to sources of predictions because SOME idea of what is going to happen would be nice. But astrology’s hold is not due to that reason alone. Humans are susceptible to many biases in our thinking and in this blog post, I’ll break down our shared mental weak links that have even science majors picking out partners and friends according to their sun sign compatibility.

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Is raising a puppy actually as much fun as you think it is? Rosy Retrospection will lead you to say yes.

November 20th, 2020 No comments

Do you really want to adopt that puppy?

During the summer of 2020 Covid-19 quarantine, one of the most popular ideas floating around online to help pass the time was to adopt or foster a new animal. But, did people remember how difficult that task actually is? Do they remember all those early mornings, pee puddles, and chewed up furniture? Rosy retrospection may explain why people were likely to adopt despite the difficulty of raising and training a new animal. Rosy retrospection is the process by which we remember past events as generally better than they were by forgetting or downplaying the negative aspects. Before I get into all the definitions, think about whether you have ever participated in something that is difficult mentally or physically while you do it, but then somehow when you look back on it, it doesn’t seem so bad and you’d do it again? This could be adopting an animal, running a marathon, or helping a friend move. In the moment, you are aware of the discomfort and negative aspects, but in the future you are willing to do it again because you remember the best parts of the experience. I’m going to be using the example of raising a new puppy to highlight how rosy retrospection and a few other aspects of memory can change how we view the past. 

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