Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 8th Oct 2012 21:54 UTC
In the News "Ask adults from the industrialized world what number is halfway between 1 and 9, and most will say 5. But pose the same question to small children, or people living in some traditional societies, and they're likely to answer 3. Cognitive scientists theorize that that's because it's actually more natural for humans to think logarithmically than linearly." Fascinating. The human brain is such a magical machine.
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kwan_e
Member since:
2007-02-18

This seems like a lot of work to explain a peculiar result, when I see no evidence that the researchers even tried to verify that those answering 3 (or even 5) actually understood the question. The bias could come from having an unexpected interpretation of "half way," where a more careful definition might yield a different answer.


You, like a lot of the other commenters, missed the point of this research. This research isn't about testing how smart or dumb people are.

The research is about teasing out the way the brain actually works. That's why they want people to answer intuitively without thinking much about it. That way, we can see that 1) There really is a discrepancy between our intuition and learned behaviour 2) What form this discrepancy takes.

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