Category: Mental Perspective

Methods of the mind, morals, superstitions, and techniques

Martian Ethics

Normally, when I read a book, I try to make a few notes to remind myself of my reactions to the contents—otherwise, my reactions seep into my general mindset and I have little recollection where they came from. And more importantly, when the book comes up in a discussion, I’ll remember I read it, but…

Live by the Word

Facts are surrounded by words

I spend a lot of time reading words, writing words, and thinking in words. And I’ve noticed a peculiar feature which sometimes happens to me. I start following the words of people who are involved in a dispute – both sides – more than I refer back to the actual actions involved. My thought train…

Quirks of Thinking

Edison didn't call unsuccessful tests failures, but finding ways that didn't work

Do you have this quirk of thinking? Have you ever made this error? I’m afraid I have. For yourself, your actions as motivated by reasoning. For others, their actions as caused by personality traits. This error is so common it is named the fundamental attribution error. Fundamental Attribution Error Your mistakes are caused by the…

Learning by Ignoring Details

Input enters black box. output exits

Lately I have been trying to see if I can program the Propeller microcontroller chip to act like a neuron. Using the Hydra kit—propeller chip, SPIN programming language, and peripheral drivers pre-coded for a game machine—I’m overwhelmed by the eight hundred page guide, the intricate links between the components, and the electrical know-how presumed but…

Pattern-Matching and Invariance

Seawall with waves crashing against it

In neuroscience, the process I call pattern-matching is often called invariance. Yohan John in Quora raises the question and suggests the form of the answer: How does your brain discover similarity in the midst of so much dissimilarity? The answer is that the brain somehow creates invariant representations of objects and patterns. What is invariance?…