Showing posts from May, 2016

Interview with Anders Ericsson

K. Anders Ericsson is a Swedish psychologist who is a professor at Florida State University. In the beginning of his career he worked with among other Nobel laureate Herbert Simon. He is recognized as the most prominent researcher in the area of expertise development. Together with his colleagues, he has done research into how experts in different areas have managed to reach the top of their fields. Uptil now he has mostly scientific publications. But now he and Robert Pool have published a popular book about expertise development: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise. Here is an interview with Ericsson about this new book. 

Epistemological interviewing

Irrational beliefs can be harmful to ourselves and others. Therefore, being prepared to update our beliefs (making them more realistic/rational) can be wise. However, this is usually not easy because there can be multiple obstacles to do it. But if if we see the usefulness of letting go of irrational beliefs a few practical tips can help us make progress. Helping other people to get rid of irrational beliefs is another matter. We usually recognize other people's irrationality easier that our own irrationality (if we'd clearly see that our beliefs were irrational we would not hold on them in the first place). Seeing other people's irrationality can make us want to confront them about their irrationality. However, such confrontations seldom work.

23 Cognitive biases, heuristics and effects

One of the ways we can counter irrational beliefs is by informing ourselves about some well documented cognitive biases, heuristics and effects which all to some extent skew are perception of reality, usually without us being aware of it. I'll keep my explanations brief because it is quite easy to learn more about each of these biases, heuristics and effects by googling them.