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Better living through scientific concepts

By Ezra Klein,

The Edge magazine asked 159 thinkers a great question: “What scientific concept would improve everybody’s cognitive toolkit?” The first reply is from Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman, and he says, “Nothing in life is as important as you think it is, while you are thinking about it.” The second comes from evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, who nominates the double-blind, controlled experiment. Behavioral neurologist Vilayanur Ramachandran says to focus your attention on anomalies that the establishment ignores because they can’t think of a good way to explain them. Economist Richard Thaler proposes attaching the word “aether” to substitute for any variable that is asserted rather than proven -- so, “business aren’t investing because of aether,” as opposed to “businesses aren’t investing because of uncertainty.”

That leaves about 155 for you to read on your own.

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