I have been gifted a new book for the holidays that I am currently excited about. It was on my list for a long time and finally it has made it to my hands this week. It is the widely popular work called "Thinking Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kanheman.
I figured I'll just quickly document (apologize for errors!) a few key insights and takeaways from this really interesting book.
1. Resemblance plays a key role in predictions. For a large part, this pattern recognition is helpful. When you see a ball traveling towards your face, you naturally duck to avoid the hit. When we have to make difficult predictions however, our mind still searches for a spontaneous answer and presents us with something. It comes from either an expert intuition or some type of a heuristic.
Heuristic = rule of thumb used when solving a problem (pertaining to a trial-and-error method of problem solving used when an algorithmic approach is impractical)
2. The expert intuition is developed over time by practicing a certain skill or being familiar with a certain decision-making process for years. Lebron James responds much more quickly and accurately on where to shoot a jumper from during a tense buzzer beater play than any one of us. This information is automatic for him because he has been doing this for years and it becomes second nature to it. (expert intuition)
3. We rely a bit too heavily on heuristics like above (resemblance heuristic) when we have to make difficult predictions with incomplete data. Another example is the "availability" heuristic where we remember things that have happened recently more vividly than others. We tend to answer difficult and even often unrelated questions with this working memory. The author wrote in detail about 20 such biases or heuristics that will further be discussed in a future chapter.
When it first came out, this original work from the author challenged the dogmatic assumption that human mind is rational and logical.
4. The spontaneous search for an "intuitive" solution is called System 1 thinking. When this sometimes fails -- neither an expert solution nor an heuristic answer comes to mind, in such cases, we often find ourselves switching to a slower, more deliberate and effortful form of thinking. This is called System 2 thinking.
5. As recent research suggests, the intuitive System 1 is more influential than your experience tells you and it is the secret author of many of your judgements and choices you make. This is the premise on which the book is written.
That's all I have for today. Thanks for reading. If you've already read this book, please let me know in the comments below and I'd love to pick your brain to collect some insights that you have captured.