book | Thinking: Fast and Slow

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book title: Thinking: Fast and Slow
special label: Winner of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences
author: by Daniel Kahneman, PhD
year: 2011


— about the book —
description: by publisher

The best selling book Thinking: Fast and Slow is written by Daniel Kahneman Phd — a well known researcher in the field of behavioral economics and winner of the 2002 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences.

Drawing on decades of research in psychology that resulted in a Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, Daniel Kahneman PhD takes readers on an exploration of what influences human thinking.

System 1 and System 2, the fast and slow types of thinking, become characters that illustrate the psychology behind things we think we understand but really don’t, such as intuition.

Kahneman’s transparent and careful treatment of his subject has the potential to change how we think, not just about thinking, but about how we live our lives. Thinking: Fast and Slow gives deep insight into: the psychological basis for reactions, judgments, recognition, choices, conclusions.

hinking, Fast and Slow is a best selling book published in 2011 by Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences laureate Daniel Kahneman. It was the 2012 winner of the National Academies Communication Award for best creative work that helps the public understanding of topics in behavioral science, engineering and medicine.[2]

The book summarizes research that Kahneman conducted over decades, often in collaboration with Amos Tversky.[3][4] It covers all three phases of his career: his early days working on cognitive biases, his work on prospect theory, and his later work on happiness.[not verified in body]

The central thesis is a dichotomy between two modes of thought: “System 1″ is fast, instinctive and emotional; “System 2″ is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. The book delineates cognitive biases associated with each type of thinking, starting with Kahneman’s own research on loss aversion. From framing choices to people’s tendency to replace a difficult question with one which is easy to answer, the book highlights several decades of academic research to suggest that people place too much confidence in human judgment.[not verified in body]


Two systems
In the book’s first section, Kahneman describes two different ways the brain forms thoughts:

System 1: Fast, automatic, frequent, emotional, stereotypic, unconscious. Examples (in order of complexity) of things system 1 can do:
see that an object is at a greater distance than another
localize the source of a specific sound
complete the phrase “war and …”
display disgust when seeing a gruesome image
solve 2+2=?
read a text on a billboard
drive a car on an empty road
come up with a good chess move (if you’re a chess master)
understand simple sentences
connect the description ‘quiet and structured person with an eye for details’ to a specific job
System 2: Slow, effortful, infrequent, logical, calculating, conscious. Examples of things system 2 can do:
brace yourself before the start of a sprint
point your attention towards the clowns at the circus
point your attention towards someone at a loud party
look out for the woman with the grey hair
dig into your memory to recognize a sound
sustain a higher than normal walking rate
determine the appropriateness of a behavior in a social setting
count the number of A’s in a certain text
give someone your phone number
park into a tight parking space
determine the price/quality ratio of two washing machines
determine the validity of a complex logical reasoning
solve 17*24
Kahneman covers a number of experiments which purport to highlight the differences between these two thought systems and how they arrive at different results even given the same inputs. Terms and concepts include coherence, attention, laziness, association, jumping to conclusions, WYSIATI (What you see is all there is), and how one forms judgments. The System 1 vs. System 2 debate dives into the reasoning or lack thereof for human decision making, with big implications for many areas including law and market research.[5]


on the web | essentials

Wikipedia | Daniel Kahneman PhD
Wikipedia | book • Thinking: Fast and Slow

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