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You Are Not So Smart

You Are Not So Smart

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You Are Not So Smart is a show about psychology that celebrates science and self delusion. In each episode, we explore what we've learned so far about reasoning, biases, judgments, and decision-making.
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In this episode we sit down with Brian Klaas, author of Fluke, to get into the existential lessons and grander meaning for a life well-lived once one finally accepts the power and influence of randomness, chaos, and chance. In addition, we learn not to fall prey to proportionality bias - the tendency for human brains to assume big, historical, or m…
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In this episode, we are exploring the complexity of the concept of "genius" with two experts on the topic. First you’ll hear from David Krakauer, the president of The Santa Fe Institute, a research institution in New Mexico dedicated to the study of complexity science, and then you'll hear from professor Dean Keith Simonton, one of the world’s lead…
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In this episode we sit down with professor Neil Theise, the author of Notes on Complexity, to get an introduction to complexity theory, the science of how complex systems behave – from cells to human beings, ecosystems, the known universe, and beyond – and we explore if Ian Malcolm was right when he told us in Jurassic Park that "Life, um, finds a …
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Is a hotdog a sandwich? Well, that depends on your definition of a sandwich (and a hotdog), and according to the most recent research in cognitive science, the odds that your concept of a sandwich is the same as another person's concept are shockingly low. In this episode we explore how understanding why that question became a world-spanning argume…
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In this episode we sit down with psychologist Dacher Keltner, one of the world’s leading experts on the science of emotion, the man Pixar hired to help them write Inside Out. In his new book – Awe: The New Science of Everyday Wonder and How It Can Transform Your Life – he outlines his years of work in this field, the health benefits of awe, the evo…
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In this episode we welcome psychologist Mary C. Murphy, author of Cultures of Growth, who tells us how to create institutions, businesses, and other groups of humans that can better support collaboration, innovation, performance, and wellbeing. We also learn how, even if you know all about the growth mindset, the latest research suggests you not ma…
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In 1974, two psychologists, Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky, as the New Yorker once put it, "changed the way we think about the way we think." The prevailing wisdom, before their landmark research went viral (in the way things went viral in the 1970s), was that human beings were, for the most part, rational optimizers always making the kinds of ju…
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Jeremy Utley, Kian Gohar, and Henrik Werdelin sit down to discuss the surprising results of a new study into what happens when groups of people work together to brainstorm solutions to problems with the help of ChatGPT. Based on their research, Utley and Gohar created a new paradigm for getting the most out of AI-assisted ideation which they call F…
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Our guest in this episode is Charles Duhigg, a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and writer for the New Yorker Magazine who is also the New York Times Bestselling author of The Power of Habit and Smarter Faster Better. His new book is Supercommunicators, a practical and approachable guide to what makes great conversations work. In the episode we di…
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There are several ways to define pluralistic ignorance, and that’s because it’s kind of a brain twister when you try to put it into words. On certain issues, most people people believe that most people believe what, in truth, few people believe. Or put another way, it is the erroneous belief that the majority is acting in a way that matches its int…
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On this episode we learn about the history of the exclamation point, the question mark, and the semicolon (among many other aspects of language) with Florence Hazrat, a scholar of punctuation, who, to my great surprise, informed me that while a lot of language is the result of a slow evolution, a gradual ever-changing process, punctuation in the En…
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Temple Grandin didn’t develop speech until much later than most children, and she might have led a much different life if it hadn’t been for people who worked very hard to open up a space for her to thrive. In this episode we discuss all that as well as her latest book, Visual Thinking, about three distinct ways that human brains create human minds…
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In this episode David McRaney is interviewed by Andrea Chalupa about the psychological research covered in How Minds Change that could help if you expect to spend time with a family member this holiday who can't wait to pull you into an argument about politics, a wedge issue, or something else buzzing in the zeitgeist over which they'd love to star…
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