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comment by raysmuckles
raysmuckles  ·  3277 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: A Three-Question Quiz To Test Your Rationality

Supposedly the bias is that we give more credence to a more specific and credible-sounding description than something vague. In the book, Kahnemann asks three completely independent groups one of those three questions each and gets them to assign a likelihood. I think the '85% of people got this wrong' is an incorrect description of Kahnemann's experiment... it'd be more like "in 85% of cases, the probabilities assigned by independent groups gave an impossible result"

TheVenerableCain  ·  3276 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Interesting. I'm having trouble wrapping my head around the bias part. Are you saying that since the 3rd option is very specific, people are inclined to believe it? If so, I wonder why that is. Thanks for the information!

wasoxygen  ·  3276 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Not exactly because it is specific, but the specific details form a narrative that sounds plausible.

The Black Swan descibes Kahneman and Tversky asking forecasting professionals to give odds on the following two events:

a. A massive flood somewhere in America in which more than a thousand people die.

b. An earthquake in California, causing massive flooding, in which more than a thousand people die.

The first event was rated less likely than the second, even though that description includes the second scenario and more.

Another example:

Joey seemed happily married. He killed his wife.

This seems unlikely; it doesn't make sense.

Joey seemed happily married. He killed his wife to get her inheritance.

Now it seems more likely, even though we have reduced the possible scope of causes.

TheVenerableCain  ·  3276 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Thanks for the explanation! I think I was doing what cgod was doing on the 2nd question and looking at it too deeply, when it was a much simpler question than what I imagined.