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Thinking, Fast and Slow (2011)

by Daniel Kahneman

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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9,550204643 (4.14)169
In this work the author, a recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his seminal work in psychology that challenged the rational model of judgment and decision making, has brought together his many years of research and thinking in one book. He explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. He exposes the extraordinary capabilities, and also the faults and biases, of fast thinking, and reveals the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behavior. He reveals where we can and cannot trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking. He offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both our business and our personal lives, and how we can use different techniques to guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble. This author's work has transformed cognitive psychology and launched the new fields of behavioral economics and happiness studies. In this book, he takes us on a tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think and the way we make choices.… (more)
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In order to write these comments I must set aside my natural system 1 mode of being (lazily automatic) and enter the far more arduous mode, System 2, and THINK for MYSELF. We don't spend as much time actually thinking in this mode as we would like to believe we do (which is itself a non-rational and emotionally based stance of System 1). Thinking is HARD WORK. Our brains and bodies are programmed to conserve energy as well as to protect us from . . . well . . . ourselves as THINKING not only uses a lot of energy but is often bewilderingly difficult and overwhelming. (As in, having to change your mind, admit you have no idea what to do, etcetera.) You know the difference between 1 and 2. The former tends to work smoothly and automatically and you like best being in that mode. Anything you prefer to put off or avoid doing altogether is probably a System 2 activity, from balancing your checkbook to deciding who to vote for or choosing the right school for your child or evaluating care for your grandmother. All of these choices most of you (including me) would love to leave to others. (And all too often do.)

Possibly the most crucial takeaway is accepting that we are not capable, not a single one of us, of making rational decisions all the time. Some may succeed more often than others, but really, no one. In fact, those who insist on rationality as the basis for all human endeavor are likely to be the most deluded of all. They want to believe themselves purely rational, but belief is emotionally based and not rational. Sorry.

Are you aware that the way a question is put to you affects how you answer it? (The researches call this 'focalism'.) So if you are asked to put a check in a box to donate your organs (on yr driver's license renewal) you are less likely to check that box. However, if you are asked to check that box if you DON'T want to donate your organs you leave the box blank. Why? Didn't you immediately have an ugh feeling for the former? I did. And pretty much no feeling at all at the second choice? I'm fine with that. You have to overcome an instinctive reluctance (System 1) to make the rational (System 2) choice. Or how about this. Are you aware that all unconsciously your answer to an unrelated question is affected by very recent luck or loss (literally, like finding a dime before someone asks you how you are feeling generally about almost anything, if it is a nice day or whatever.) Or that the way the Experiencing self, moment to moment, is supplanted by the story the Remembered self (which is a System 2 creation) has put together. (Official word is Duration Neglect and you add to it Peak-End Rule-that the most recent thing, the last thing in an experience is what you remember the most, both from System 1). System 1 is a mighty broth of basic instincts, deeply learned skills (driving would be one most of us share), habits that allow us all to make instant decisions, choices, opinions. Usually for the best, but not always. A useful acronym is WYSIATI (What You See Is What There Is) -- what you don't know or see before you, you don't (can't) include in your decisions. (Food labelling is fiendishly clever in this regard. As are many media outlets.) The reality of how we think and decide what to do with our lives is a complicated dance between the two and the better you are at recognizing which mode is needed, the better off you will be.

Much of the research involves having people choose between types of bets -- often bets that appear to be weighted one way or another because of the wording, but are either the same in outcome or biased the opposite of what your System 1 tends to be attracted to. System 2 has to be engaged to make the 'right' choice. I had difficulties with ALL of these questions as my instinct is to recoil (and I mean that) as I find betting and gambling so pointless (losing is the only outcome for the majority, duh) I couldn't wrap my head around any of it. I would likely have been dismissed by the researchers.

An intriguing find in the research is that as regards overall happiness or satisfaction our lives appear to depend on two foundations: Enough money for needs to be met -- curiously, more than that provides nothing, happiness and satisfaction flatten right out. The second piece is having goals and ambitions that are achievable (for some it is making money, btw). This fits in well with the (more philosophical) book on agency that I read not so long ago, by [[Agnes Caillard]]. Another undeniable factor is luck. Good or bad. Although the likelihood is, given the fact that this erratic thing, while beyond our control, tends to affect us all rather evenly--although in greater and lesser degrees depending on what risks a person takes, I would imagine. We must all take some, of course.

Another gem is that we tend to expect happiness from acquisition of material objects rather than from friendships and doing things with others. The officialese for this is using 'affective forecasting' that results in 'miswanting' (oh how I love that word!). Things never win out over fellowship. Take that to heart.

The end of each chapter has a kind of 'summary' in the form of statements that illustrate the points Kahneman just made and they are really helpful. He's a good writer, the clarity is stunning. I cannot recommend [Thinking Fast and Slow] more highly. It is a thoroughly System 2 read from beginning to end, so be patient with yourself if you do take it on. And please do.

***** and then some. ( )
  sibylline | Jul 13, 2022 |
This is the definitive book about cognitive biases and the mental systems that lead to them. It's definitive not only because Kahneman's role as one of the key researchers of the field, but also because of his ability to build up a mental model without losing rigor. Even though the book contains a lot of content, the key ideas are easy to remember because Kahneman builds off of a small number of fundamental concepts, primary the metaphor of the two system mind: System 1 is fast, automatic, and approximate and great at pattern matching. System 2 is slow and deliberative and requires a lot of effort to use. Building off of this, this book provides insight into everything from when intuition can be trusted to real world economics to how we evaluate our own happiness.

This book avoids being just a catalog of different cognitive biases. It also avoids overstating both the strengths and weaknesses of both our intuitive mind and our deliberative mind. It's a crucial read for anyone who wants to know how people actually work. ( )
  eri_kars | Jul 10, 2022 |
interesting a wonderful read so far, I can wait to finish this book ( )
  AlexandriaAugust | May 31, 2022 |
Daniel Kahneman, recipient of the Noble Prize in Economic Sciences for his seminal work in psychology that challenged the rational model of judgment and decision making, is one of our most important thinkers. His ideas have had a profound and widely regarded impact on many fields-including economics, medicine, and politics-but until now, he has never brought together his many years of research and thinking in one book.

In the highly anticipated Thinking, Fast and Slow, Kahneman takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. Kahneman exposes the extraordinary capabiites-and also the faults and biases-of fast thinking, and reveals the pervsive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behaviour. The impact of loss aversion and overconfidnece on corporate strategies, the difficulties of predicting what will make us happy in the future, the challenges of properly framing risks at work and an home, the profound effect of cognitive biases on everything from playing the stock martket to planning the next vacation-each of these can be understood only by knowing how the two systems shape our judgments and decisions.

Engaging the reader in a lively conversation about how we think, Kahneman reveals where we can and cannot trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking. He offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both our business and our personal lives-and how we can use different techniques to guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble. Thinking, Fast and Slow will transform the way you think about thinking.

Daniel Kahneman is Eugene Higgins Professor of Psychology Emeritus at Princeton University and Professor of Psychology and Public Affairs Emeritus at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He received the 2002 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his pioneering work with Amos Tversky on decision making.

'Daniel Kahneman is among the most influential psychologists in history and certainly the most important psychologist alive today. He has a gift for uncovering remarkable features of the human mind, many of which have become textbook classics and part of the conventional wisdom. His work has re-shaped social psycohogy, cognitive science, the study of reason and of happiness, and behavioral economics, a field that he and his collaborator Amos Tversky helped to launch. The appearance of Thinking, Fast and Slow is a major event.'-Steven Pinker, Johnstone Family Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and author of How the Mind Works and The Better Angles of Our Nature

'This is a landmark book in social thought, in the same league as Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations and Sigmund Freud's The Interpretation of Dreams.'-Nassim Nicoloas Taleb, author of The Black Swan

'This book is a tour de force by an intellectual giant; it is readable, wise, and deep. Buy it fast. read it slowly and repeatedly. It will change the way you think, on the job, about the world, and in our life.'-Richard H. Thaler, Professor of Economics, University of Chicago, and coauthor of Nudge

'Thnking, Fast and Slow is a masterpiece-a brilliant and engaging intellectual saga by one of the greatest psychologists and deepest thinkers of our time. Kahneman should be parking a Pulitzer next to his Nobel Prize.'-Daniel Gilbert, Professor of Psychology, Harvard University; author of Stumbling on Happiness; and host of This Emotional Life

'Daniel Kahneman is one of the most original and interesting thinkers of our time. There may be no other person on the planet who better understands how and why we make the choices we make. In this absolutely amazing book, he shares a lifetime's worth of wisdom presented in a manner that is simple and engaging, but nonetheless stunningly profound. This book is a must-read for anyone with a curious mind.'-Steven D. Levitt, William B. Ogden distinguished Service Professor of Economics, University of Chicago, and coauthor of Freakonomics and SuperFreakonomics

Contents

Introduction
Part I Two systems
1 The characters of the story
2 Attention and effort
3 The lazy controller
4 The associative machine
5 Cognitive ease
6 Norms, surprises, and causes
7 A machine for jumping to conclusions
8 How judgments happen
9 Answering an easier question
Part II Heurisitcs and biases
10 The law of small numbers
11 Anchors
12 The science of availability
13 Availability, emotion, and risk
14 Tom W's specialty
15 Linda: Less is more
16 Causes trump statistics
17 Regression to the mean
18 Taming intuitive predictions
Part III Overconfidence
19 The illusionof understanding
20 The illusion of validity
21 Intuitions vs. formulas
22 Expert intuition: When can we trust it?
23 The outside view
24 The engine of capitalism
Part IV Choices
25 Bernoulli's errors
26 Prospect theory
27 The endowment effect
28 Bad events
29 The fourfold pattern
30 Rare evens
31 Risk policies
32 Keeping score
33 Reversals
34 Frames and reality
Part V Two selves
35 Two selves
36 Life as a story
37 Experienced well-being
38 Thinking about life
Conclusions
Appendix A: Judgment under uncertainty
Appendix B: Choices, values, and frames
Notes
Acknowledgments
Index
  AikiBib | May 29, 2022 |
Fróðleg og yfirgripsmikil umfjöllun um uppbyggingu hugans. Vel þess virði að lesa. ( )
  SkuliSael | Apr 28, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 186 (next | show all)
The replication crisis in psychology does not extend to every line of inquiry, and just a portion of the work described in Thinking, Fast and Slow has been cast in shadows. Kahneman and Tversky’s own research, for example, turns out to be resilient. Large-scale efforts to recreate their classic findings have so far been successful. One bias they discovered—people’s tendency to overvalue the first piece of information that they get, in what is known as the “anchoring effect”—not only passed a replication test, but turned out to be much stronger than Kahneman and Tversky thought.

Still, entire chapters of Kahneman’s book may need to be rewritten.
added by elenchus | editSlate.com, Daniel Engber (Dec 1, 2016)
 
"It is an astonishingly rich book: lucid, profound, full of intellectual surprises and self-help value. It is consistently entertaining and frequently touching..."
added by melmore | editNew York Times, Jim Holt (Nov 25, 2011)
 
Thinking, Fast and Slow is nonetheless rife with lessons on how to overcome bias in daily life.
 

» Add other authors (23 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Daniel Kahnemanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Chamorro Mielke, JoaquínTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Egan, PatrickReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Eivind LilleskjæretTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gunnar NyquistTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Every author, I suppose, has in mind a setting in which readers of his or her work could benefit from having read it.
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extreme outcomes (both high and low) are more likely to be found in small than in large samples. This explanation is not causal. The small population of a county neither causes nor prevents cancer; it merely allows the incidence of cancer to be much higher (or much lower) than it is in the larger population. The deeper truth is that there is nothing to explain. The incidence of cancer is not truly lower or higher than normal in a county with a small population, it just appears to be so in a particular year because of an accident of sampling. If we repeat the analysis next year, we will observe the same general pattern of extreme results in the small samples, but the counties where cancer was common last year will not necessarily have a high incidence this year. If this is the case, the differences between dense and rural counties do not really count as facts: they are what scientists call artifacts, observations that are produced entirely by some aspect of the method of research - in this case, by differences in sample size. p 111
Even now, you must exert some mental effort to see that the following two statements mean exactly the same thing: Large samples are more precise than small samples. Small samples yield extreme results more often than large samples do. p 111
When experts and the public disagree on their priorities, [Paul Slovic] says, 'Each side must respect the insights and intelligence of the other.' p 140
You can also take precautions that will inoculate you against regret. Perhaps the most useful is to b explicit about the anticipation of regret. If you can remember when things go badly that you considered the possibility of regret carefully before deciding, you are likely to experience less of it. You should also know that regret and hindsight bias will come together, so anything you can do to preclude hindsight is likely to be helpful. My personal hindsight-avoiding policy is to be either very thorough or completely casual when making a decision with long-term consequences. Hindsight is worse when you think a little, just enough to tell yourself later, 'I almost made a better choice.'     Daniel Gilbert and his colleagues provocatively claim that people generally anticipate more regret than they will actually experience, because they underestimate the efficacy of the psychological defenses they will deploy - which they label the 'psychological immune system.' Their recommendation is that you should not put too much weight on regret; even if you have some, it will hurt less than you now think.p 352
Unless there is an obvious reason to do otherwise, most of us passively accept decision problems as they are framed and therefore rarely have an opportunity to discover the extent to which our preferences are frame-bound rather than reality-bound. p 367
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In this work the author, a recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his seminal work in psychology that challenged the rational model of judgment and decision making, has brought together his many years of research and thinking in one book. He explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. He exposes the extraordinary capabilities, and also the faults and biases, of fast thinking, and reveals the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behavior. He reveals where we can and cannot trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking. He offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both our business and our personal lives, and how we can use different techniques to guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble. This author's work has transformed cognitive psychology and launched the new fields of behavioral economics and happiness studies. In this book, he takes us on a tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think and the way we make choices.

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Le système 1 est rapide , intuitif et émotionel ;le système 2 est plus lent , plus réfléchi , plus controléet plus logique .Fruit d toute une vie de recherche ''Système 1/Système 2" dessine une théorie brillante ,qui offer des prolongements pratiques immédiats dans la vie quotidienne et professionnelle.
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