10 MAR 2019 by ideonexus

 Outboard Brain

Following in the grand tradition of nearly every new technology, nobody started to panic about the potential downsides of cognitive outsourcing until kids starting doing it, and doing it in ways that their parents didn't understand. They type with their thumbs in ugly slang and funny symbols. They have short attention spans. They can't remember their own phone numbers. They spend more time on social media than they did with their friends irl (that's "in real life," my daughter tells me). They...
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08 JUL 2011 by ideonexus

 Psychological VS Mechanical Causality in Infant Understan...

As scientists we think that everything is mediated by physical causality of some sort, including our interactions with other people. There are, in fact, light and sound waves that go from one person to another even if we can't see them with the naked eye. But from our everyday point of view, it appears we are able to influence people without any direct physical contact at all. (It's probably that fact that makes telepathy seem plausible to so many people.) After all, just looking at someone a...
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Babies learn the differences between psychological and physical causality, before this they tend to make the mistake of using psychological means to influence the physical world... Magical thinking in adults may be a holdover of this habit.

07 JUL 2011 by ideonexus

 Babies Don't Remember How They Learned Things

Alison has done other experiments that point in a similar direction. For example, three-year-olds seem to be unable to remember how they learned about something, even when the events took place only a few moments before. In one study the experimenter hid a cup under a cloth "tunnel," a wire arch covered with cloth, with an opening at either end. Children found out what was underneath the tunnel in one of three ways: they picked up the tunnel and saw the cup, they put their hands in the tunnel...
Folksonomies: babies learning memory
Folksonomies: babies learning memory
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Around the age of three, children are unable to explain how they learned things, calling into question their testimony in legal cases since their memories can be implanted without knowing their origin.

19 JUN 2011 by ideonexus

 A Brief History of People Resisting Technological Advance...

Look at how often change is fought in history. Here’s an example that always tickles me. The chain of events back in the twelfth century that set Europe going economically after the Dark Ages was essentially the textile revolution. A new loom came in from Arab Spain. It had foot pedals, which left the weaver’s hands free to weave faster and make more cloth cheaper. The Dutch weavers smashed the thing up because it would have put people out of work. (That was a new idea in the twelfth cent...
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Even though the advances ultimately benefit society as a whole, people resist and riot because they are put out of work or may lose power from the change.