Simple Heuristics That Make Us Smart invites readers to embark on a new journey into a land of rationality that differs from the familiar territory of cognitive science and ecomics. Traditional views of rationality tend to see decision makers as possessing superhuman powers of reason, limitless kwledge, and all of eternity in which to ponder choices. To understand decisions in the real world, we need a different, more psychologically plausible tion of rationality, and this book provides it. It is about fast and frugal heuristics-simple rules for making decisions when time is pressing and deep thought an unaffordable luxury. These heuristics can enable both living organisms and artificial systems to make smart choices, classifications, and predictions by employing bounded rationality. But when and how can such fast and frugal heuristics work? Can judgments based simply on one good reason be as accurate as those based on many reasons? Could less kwledge even lead to systematically better predictions than more kwledge? Simple Heuristics explores these questions, developing computational models of heuristics and testing them through experiments and analyses. It shows how fast and frugal heuristics can produce adaptive decisions in situations as varied as choosing a mate, dividing resources among offspring, predicting high school drop out rates, and playing the stock market. As an interdisciplinary work that is both useful and engaging, this book will appeal to a wide audience. It is ideal for researchers in cognitive psychology, evolutionary psychology, and cognitive science, as well as in ecomics and artificial intelligence. It will also inspire anyone interested in simply making good decisions.
Dr. Gerd Gigerenzer is the Director of the Center for Adaptive Behavior and Cognition, Max Planck Institute for Human Development. Dr. Peter M. Todd is Research Scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development.
ABC Research Group, Gerd Gigerenzer, Peter M. Todd