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Adaptive ThinkingRationality in the Real World$
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Gerd Gigerenzer

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780195153729

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195153729.001.0001

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How to Make Cognitive Illusions Disappear

How to Make Cognitive Illusions Disappear

(p.241) 12 How to Make Cognitive Illusions Disappear
Adaptive Thinking

Gerd Gigerenzer

Oxford University Press

Cognitive illusions have been linked to perceptual illusions, suggesting that they are “inevitable illusions”. This chapter criticizes the narrow norms that make humans look irrational and shows how to make inevitable illusions “evitable”. These so-called cognitive illusions largely disappear when one pays attention to conceptual distinctions. Cognitive illusions largely disappear due to the following: polysemy — not all probabilities are mathematical probabilities; a mathematical probability refers to a reference class, which may differ depending on the task; and natural frequencies facilitate Bayesian reasoning.

Keywords:   cognitive illusions, human rationality, Bayesian reasoning, probabilities, polysemy, natural frequencies

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