DANIEL LEVITIN ~ THE ORGANIZED MIND ~ 2014

~ TMI-TMD ~ Too Much Information – Too Many Decisions

~ AT-IAD-CWAC-DO ~ All This – Ignoring And Deciding – Comes With A Cost – Decision Overload

~ TD-MNIOBDP-WCHTSTTFTI-A-ATIPMUT-NALCWAM;TNOAGTS-A-WTBWH-E-WEF ~ The Decision-Making Network In Our Brain Doesn’t Prioritize – We Can Have Trouble Separating The Trivial From The Important – And – All This Information Processing Makes Us Tired – Neurons Are Living Cells With A Metabolism; They Need Oxygen And Glucose To Survive – And – When They’re Been Working Hard – We Experience Fatigue

~ T-PCOTCM-HBEA-120BPS-B-TSLFTTOIWCPCATAAOT-IOFSTBEAPOYE-YNTHPCATI ~ The – Processing Capacity Of The Conscious Mind – Has Been Estimated At – 120 Bits Per Second – Bandwidth – The Speed Limit For The Traffic Of Information We Can Pay Conscious Attention To At Any One Time – In Order For Something To Become Encoded As Part Of Your Experience – You Need To Have Paid Conscious Attention To It

~ A-ITMEMRFAO-IDWAOTEWDW-A-MOTT-VASP-MTCCAWGPTTOCA ~ Attention – Is The Most Essential Mental Resource For Any Organism – It Determines Which Aspects Of The Environment We Deal With – And – Most Of The Time – Various Automatic Subconscious Processes – Make The Correct Choice About What Gets Passed Through To Our Conscious Awareness

~ HSP ~ Highly Successful Persons

~ TBIAECD ~ The Brain Is An Exquisite Change Detector

~ A-IAL-CR-TADLTTNOTWCATAO ~ Attention – Is A Limited-Capacity Resource – There Are Definite Limits To The Number Of Things We Can Attend To At Once

~ WDKWWM-B-OBCCITTANIPATM-EITARIFOOE-IB ~ We Don’t Know What We’re Missing – Because – Our Brain Can Completely Ignore Things That Are Not Its Priority At The Moment – Even If They Are Right In Front Of Our Eyes – Inattentional Blindness

~ B-WASC-WAESB-F-PS-A-VA-O-ASE-OBFO-V-S-A-MT-D-B-SA ~ But – We Are Social Creatures – We Are Easily Swayed By – First-Person Stories – And – Vivid Accounts – Of – A Single Experience – Our Brains Focus On – Vivid – Social – Accounts – More Than – Dry – Boring – Statistical Accounts

~ OBTD-MS ~ Our Brains Take Decision-Making Shortcuts

~ AS-T-OWOA-IIAEPOB-O-E-A-P ~ Active Sorting – Triage – One Way Or Another – It Is An Essential Part Of Being – Organized – Efficient – And – Productive

~ WTWAOEGOAU-HLOTWWAP-ISOTOFTWGIA ~ We Think We’re Aware Of Everything Going On Around Us – How Little Of The World We Actually Perceive – In Spite Of The Overwhelming Feeling That We’re Getting It All

~ D-A-M-W-A-ANSOTB ~ Daydreaming – And – Mind-Wandering – Are – A Natural State Of The Brain

~ PA-AHAC-WWPATOT-WANTAAFSE ~ Paying Attention – Attention Has A Cost – When We Pay Attention To One Thing – We Are Necessarily Taking Attention Away From Something Else

~ WTTR-TMRI-WEOAL-B-NAWA-TFI ~ We Tend To Remember – The Most Recent Items – We Encountered On A List – But – Not As Well As – The First Item

~ OOT-BR-I-NLT-IT-R-O-TDP ~ One Of The – Big Rules – In – Not Losing Things – Is The – Rule – Of – The Designated Place

~ A-O-LTIFOBAITE;UTEITRYOWNTBD ~ Affordances – Off-Loading The Information From Our Brain And Into The Environment; Use The Environment Itself To Remind You Of What Needs To Be Done

~ TBIAECD-B-TBHTTTDC ~ The Brain Is An Exquisite Change Detector – But – The Brain Habituates To Things That Don’t Change

~ W-OP-FTRBTKATHOATTTGAPOS-TBAEP ~ When – Organized People – Find Themselves Running Between The Kitchen And The Home Office All The Time To Get A Pair Of Scissors – They Buy An Extra Pair

~ E-PD-O-CARDSS-WW ~ Either – Providing Duplicates – Or – Creating A Rigidly Defined Special Spot – Works Well

~ MCPFTTTBCPB-S-UAUTM ~ Many Creative People Find The Time To Be Creative Precisely Because – Systems – Unburdening And Uncluttering Their Minds

~ TFTOBAIGACCIAPLFOOL-WCCOHAWEISAWTTBEOOB-C-LTNOTOTTC ~ The Fact That Our Brains Are Inherently Good At Creating Categories Is A Powerful Lever For Organizing Our Lives – We Can Construct Our Home And Work Environments In Such A Way That They Become Extensions Of Our Brains – Categories – Limit The Number Of Types Of Things They Contain

~ MVTTYNR-A-HTTYD ~ Make Visible The Things You Need Regularly – And – Hide Things That You Don’t

~ T-H-DTRFUIWAAOWAPSL-OWTETHNSOMSITCDWSFTDKOWWD ~ The – Hippocampus – Does The Remembering For Us If We Associate An Object With A Particular Spatial Location – One Way To Exploit The Hippopotamus’s Natural Style Of Memory Storage Is To Create Different Work Spaces For The Different Kinds Of Work We Do

~ DSMT-FAC-TYRO-S ~ Don’t Spend More Time – Filing And Classifying – Than You’ll Reap On – Searching

~ ETWTWGALD-I-M-T-MUDLE ~ Even Though We Think We’re Getting A Lot Done – Ironically – Multi-Tasking – Makes Us Demonstrably Less Efficient

~ M-T-HBFTITPOTSHCAWATF-O-FHA-WCOYBACMFOST ~ Multi-Tasking – Has Been Found To Increase The Production Of The Stress Hormone Cortisol As Well As The Fight-Or-Flight Hormone Adrenaline – Which Can Overstimulate Your Brain And Cause Mental Fog Or Scrambled Thinking

~ ITOT-D-M-I-VHOYNR-A-LDATTUAMEABO-OOTFTWLI-IC-AM-LOID-WCEUM-TBDASI ~ It Turns Out That – Decision-Making – Is – Very Hard On Your Neural Resources – And – Little Decisions Appear To Take Up As Much Energy As Big Ones – One Of The First Things We Lose Is – Impulse Control – After Making – Lots Of Insignificant Decisions – We Can End Up Making – Truly Bad Decisions About Something Important

~ O-L-MF-ITPW-RTIYC-MW ~ Off-Load – Memory Functions – Into The Physical World – Rather Than Into Your Crowded – Mental World

~ TPOCE:WHTRWSI?-PIPWYWNI ~ The Principle Of Cognitive Efficiency: Why Have To Remember Where Something Is? – Put It Precisely Where You Will Need It

~ WNTB-PARS-BDTT-ROWB-ENAA-ATM-WMTKIR-A-STWF ~ We Need To Be – Proactive About Reducing Stress – By Doing Things That – Reset Our Working Brains – Experiencing Nature And Art – Allowing The Mind-Wandering Mode To Kick In Regularly – And – Spending Time With Friends

~ T-A-R-STTYM ~ Tickler – A – Reminder – Something That Tickles Your Memory

~ EM-CI-OP-TM ~ Externalizing Memory – Can Include – Other People – Transactive Memory

~ ALPOOOSWS-LAE-IIWWWFI ~ A Large Part Of Organizing Our Social World Successfully – Like Anything Else – Is Identifying What We Want From It

~ SMTA-UTITTBS ~ Spending More Time Alone – Under The Illusion That They’re Being Social

~ HTTBISOO ~ Humans Tend To Be Innately Suspicious Of Outsiders

~ OWHA-S-WTNT-RTS-WI-DA-N-D-E-A-‘E’ ~ Once We Have A – Stereotype – We Tend Not To – Reevaluate The Stereotype – We Instead – Discard Any – New – Disconfirming – Evidence – As – “Exceptions”

~ YMST-TFOTWD-AOT-O-AO-GB ~ You Might Say That – The Fate Of The World Depends – Among Other Things – On – Abolishing Out-Group Bias

~ IYH-SBYWTGD-BIUI-C-M/I/D-C-TNSATCOES ~ If You Have – Something Big You Want To Get Done – Break It Up Into – Chunks – Meaningful / Implementable / Doable – Chunks – There’s Neurochemical Satisfaction At The Completion Of Each Stage

~ PAD-RSPOTB ~ Planning And Doing – Require Separate Parts Of The Brain

~ D-TMUT-FTITM-WGIH-B-WDATDMO ~ Do – The Most Unpleasant Task – First Thing In The Morning – When Gumption Is Highest – Because – Willpower Depletes As The Day Moves On

~ RWADHGOOCIOOTGCOL ~ Realizing When A Diversion Has Gotten Out Of Control Is One Of The Great Challenges Of Life

~ DNSMTOADTIW ~ Do Not Spend More Time On A Decision Than It’s Worth

~ WTTORE ~ We Tend To Overweight Rare Events

~ WFBWWAUSCAAATEICWTC ~ We Function Best When We Are Under Some Constraints And Are Allowed To Exercise Individual Creativity Within Those Constraints

~ MSTAAOTIH-IICTEOUTRFVTIWE-TIAEI ~ More So Than At Any Other Time In History – It Is Crucial That Each Of Us Takes Responsibility For Verifying The Information We Encounter – Testing It And Evaluating It

DANIEL LEVITIN ~ A FIELD GUIDE TO LIES ~ 2016

~ U-MPHTTCANBTIBT ~ Unfortunately – Many People Have Trouble Thinking Clearly About Numbers Because They’re Intimidated By Them

~ TCROA-PC-IT-TPHTAUT100 ~ The Cardinal Rule Of A – Pie Chart – Is That – The Percentages Have To Add Up To 100

~ TMFWTLWASGITNLTA ~ The Most Fundamental Way To Lie With A Statistical Graph Is To Not Label The Axes

~ I-AOUB-LW-T-SPO-A-TROTFTMPWSWTDTC ~ Infographics – Are Often Used By – Lying Weasels – To – Shape Public Opinion – And – They Rely On The Fact That Most People Won’t Study What They’ve Done Too Carefully

~ STSBRITRO ~ Sometimes The Statistic Being Reported Isn’t The Relevant One

~ CATO-OWTLWSITCT-D/P/TOP-TADFOA-A-PTTN ~ Comparing Apples To Oranges – One Way To Lie With Statistics Is To Compare Things – Datasets / Populations / Types Of Products – That Are Different From One Another – And – Pretend That They’re Not

~ JBTANOI-DMTTNWAAP-R-P-GS-P-CWTC-HTGAC-TAAHOEABTCEITCP-A-CL-T-TWC ~ Just Because There’s A Number On It – Doesn’t Mean That The Number Was Arrived At Properly – Remember – People – Gather Statistics – People – Choose What To Count – How To Go About Counting – There Are A Host Of Errors And Biases That Can Enter Into The Collection Process – And – Can Lead – To – The Wrong Conclusions

~ TBAG-AS-HTBR ~ To Be Any Good – A Sample – Has To Be Representative

~ R-HTATTT-CVTAETIOCDO-STTTMANOOADTM ~ Researchers – Have To Avoid The Tendency To – Capture Variables That Are Easy To Identify Or Collect Data On – Sometimes The Things That Matter Are Not Obvious Or Are Difficult To Measure

~ PSLWATO ~ People Sometimes Lie When Asked Their Opinions

~ MMBS-TMB-C-R-A-P-P-F-CD-STEPWCIDIITSW-EPWICHTCITSW ~ Measurements Must Be Standardized – There Must Be – Clear – Replacable – And – Precise – Procedures – For – Collecting Data – So That Each Person Who Collects It Does It In The Same Way – Each Person Who Is Counting Has To Count In The Same Way

~ ME-OIEM ~ Measurement Error – Occurs In Every Measurement

~ HSIDOCCMABDITSYEUW ~ How Something Is Defined Or Categorized Can Make A Big Difference In The Statistic You End Up With

~ ADCBWATTAAIP-OPBAAQUS ~ A Definition Can Be Wrangled And Twisted To Anyone’s Advantage In Public-Opinion Polling By Asking A Question Just-So

~ IASICO-ASOPDM-G-M-O-M-O-FE-TRCWBF ~ If A Statistic Is Composed Of – A Series Of Poorly Defined Measures – Guesses – Misunderstandings – Oversimplifications – Mismeasurement – Or – Flawed Estimates – The Resulting Conclusion Will Be Flawed

~ W-HATTACTOTTWDW ~ We – Have A Tendency To Apply Critical Thinking Only To Things We Disagree With

~ WAAST-S-A-ASS-ESBTOOO ~ We Are A Story-Telling Species – And – A Social Species – Easily Swayed By The Opinions Of Others

~ THBOMUIMBO-EC-AT-STJT-A-TBIAVOS-JM ~ The Human Brain Often Makes Up Its Mind Based On – Emotional Considerations – And Then – Seeks To Justify Them – And – The Brain Is A Very Powerful Self-Justifying Machine

~ ETSOUCBF ~ Even The Smartest Of Us Can Be Fooled

~ MAIAE-BCAWIT ~ Make An Informed And Evidence-Based Choice About What Is True

~ WUDWTSEO-HDWIT? ~ We Usually Do Well To Seek Expert Opinions – How Do We Identify Them?

~ IE ~ Identifying Expertise

! SH-S-INTEANW-IJT-S-TMLTBR ~ Stuff Happens – So – It’s Not That Experts Are Never Wrong – It’s Just That – Statically – They’re More Likely To Be Right

~ EITN ~ Expertise Is Typically Narrow

~ B-IAE-TTB-DS-CTTPBTIIA-S-UQ ~ But – Intelligence And Experience – Tend To Be – Domain-Specific – Contrary To The Popular Belief That Intelligence Is A – Single – Unified Quantity

~ WIBI? ~ Who Is Behind It?

~ CTWBOUANMTDY? ~ Could The Website Be Operating Under A Name Meant To Deceive You?

~ WLTTWP? ~ Who Links To The Web Page?

~ P-RJ ~ Peer-Reviewed Journals

~ RA ~ Regulated Authority

~ SI ~ Supporting Information

~ B-IYLOF-SE-Y-NDPR-BY-ITCE-TMB-AL-OT-O-AL-B-YDK-B-YHL-‘C-P’-TDTSYH ~ But – If You’re Looking Only For – Supporting Evidence – You’re – Not Doing Proper Research – Because Your – Ignoring The Contradictory Evidence – There Might Be – A Little – Of This – Or – A Lot – But – You Don’t Know – Because – You Haven’t Looked – “Cherry-Picking” – The Data That Suit Your Hypothesis

~ SS-AUNR-LS-MARTSOTW-S-CT-TLOLN ~ Small Samples – Are Usually Not Representative – Larger Samples – More Accurately Reflect The State Of The World – Statisticians – Call This – The Law Of Large Numbers

~ B-WIEAYIAWSTI-W-W-TENCTEIW-P? ~ But – What If Everyone Around You Is Agreeing With Something That Is – Well – Wrong – The Exquisite New Clothes The Emperor Is Wearing – Perhaps?

~ C-MPTLLF-A-T-SCMOPHBTB ~ Counterknowledge – Misinformation Packaged To Look Like Fact – And – That – Some Critical Mass Of People Have Begun To Believe

~ IITAT-ICE-NEIE-B-NEWOOR ~ It’s Important To Accept That – In Complex Events – Not Everything Is Explainable – Because – Not Everything Was Observed Or Reported

~ AHOUADNDOUAW-ETTIBOTOPOE-Y-TAATATHOACT ~ A Handful Of Unexplained Anomalies Does Not Discredit Or Undermine A Well-Established Theory That Is Based On Thousands Of Pieces Of Evidence – Yet – These Anomalies Are Typically At The Heart Of All Conspiratorial Thinking

~ TPO-A-IN-D;TI-ABOSOCODNMS ~ The Plural Of – Anecdote – Is Not – Data; That Is – A Bunch Of Stories Or Casual Observations Do Not Make Science

~ MORCLUTIODEWCUTPO ~ Misunderstandings Of Risk Can Lead Us To Ignore Or Discount Evidence We Could Use To Protect Ourselves

~ PBA ~ Persuasion By Association

~ OIHB-TOETMRT-CFT ~ Our Imperfect Human Brains – Those Of Even The Most Rigorous Thinkers – Can Fool Themselves

~ IC-TBIAGPD-A-ISTEOASFWOATBRC ~ Illusory Correlation – The Brain Is A Giant Pattern Detector – And – It Seeks To Extract Order And Structure From What Often Appear To Be Random Configurations

~ FOP ~ Framing Of Probabilities

~ FR ~ Framing Risk

~ SWAPC ~ Start With A Plausibility Check

~ AOFOHCIT-OWFABOAAC-IVHFUTLG-EITFOO-WEASPTTC ~ An Odd Feature Of Human Cognition Is That – Once We Form A Belief Or Accept A Claim – It’s Very Hard For Us To Let Go – Even In The Face Of Over-Whelming Evidence And Scientific Proof To The Contrary

~ PH-EPH-‘B-THAT-TMHCT’ ~ Post Hoc – Ergo Propter Hoc – “Because – This Happened After That – That Must Have Caused This”

~ KWYDK ~ Knowing What You Don’t Know

~ WWRHY-A-CUAODAI-ATTYTYKBD ~ What Will Really Hurt You – And – Cause Untold Amounts Of Damage And Inconvenience – Are The Things You Think You Know But Don’t

~ ECLAT ~ Every Contact Leaves A Trace

~ AECOCTIKWWDK ~ An Essential Component Of Critical Thinking Is Knowing What We Don’t Know

~ A-A-SB-HEPDATW ~ An – Anti-Science Bias – Has Entered Public Discourse And The Web

~ W-NCA-CWTROMARWAOMFO-TRFVCFOEOU ~ With – No Central Authority – Charged With The Responsibility Of Monitoring And Regulating Websites And Other Material Found Online – The Responsibility For Verifying Claims Falls On Each Of Us

~ CT-INSYDOWAIATDI-IAAAOP ~ Critical Thinking – Is Not Something You Do Once With An Issue And Then Drop It – It’s An Active And Ongoing Process

~ WFBOKAMNOTWCTALNOTTMNBS ~ We’re Far Better Off Knowing A Moderate Number Of Things With Certainty Than A Large Number Of Things That Might Not Be So

~ TKSOL-HUTMCTIOHAST ~ True Knowledge Simplifies Our Lives – Helping Us To Make Choices That Increase Our Happiness And Save Time