Tuesday, November 8, 2011

I, Robot: The Evidence For Determinism Is Mounting


The scientific evidence coming from the fields of neuropsychology and the other cognitive sciences continues to support the deterministic model of cognition and decision making behaviors. The latest is a study by Anita Eerland, a psychologist at Erasmus University Rotterdam in the Netherlands and colleagues Tulio Guadalupe and Rolf Zwaan, which shows that how you are physically positioned can have effects on your cognition, specifically your estimates of quantities like sizes, numbers or percentages.
This study joins the already overwhelming, yet constantly growing, number of studies into phenomena such as psychological priming, which seem to indicate fairly conclusively that what we innately consider to be a rational and internally transparent process by which we make decisions based on known evidence and self-evident motivations is actually a much more irrational, emotional, complex, opaque and ultimately deterministic process.

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