...a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention...
Human beings, viewed as behaving systems, are quite simple. The apparent complexity of our behavior over time is largely a reflection of the complexity of the environment in which we find ourselves.
Learning is any change in a system that produces a more or less permanent change in its capacity for adapting to its environment.
Whereas economic man maximises, selects the best alternative from among all those available to him, his cousin, administrative man, satisfices, looks for a course of action that is satisfactory or 'good enough'.
What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention, and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it.
Viewed as a geometric figure, the ant's path is irregular, complex, and hard to describe.
In arguing that machines think, we are in the same fix as Darwin when he argued that man shares common ancestors with monkeys, or Galileo when he argued that the Earth spins on its axis.
The world is vast, beautiful, and fascinating, even awe-inspiring - but impersonal. It demands nothing of me, and allows me to demand nothing of it.
There are no morals about technology at all. Technology expands our ways of thinking about things, expands our ways of doing things. If we're bad people we use technology for bad purposes and if we're good people we use it for good purposes.
The social sciences, I thought, needed the same kind of rigor and the same mathematical underpinnings that had made the 'hard' sciences so brilliantly successful.
To deal with these problems - of world population and hunger, of peace, of energy and mineral resources, of environmental pollution, of poverty - we must broaden and deepen our knowledge of nature's laws, and we must broaden and deepen our understanding of the laws of human behavior.
Among my European ancestors were piano builders, goldsmiths, and vintners but, to the best of my knowledge, no professionals of any kind.
The density of settlement of economists over the whole empire of economic science is very uneven, with a few areas of modest size holding the bulk of the population.
No one has characterized market mechanisms better than Friedrich von Hayek.
My research career has been devoted to understanding human decision-making and problem-solving processes. The pursuit of this goal has led me into the fields of political science, economics, cognitive psychology, computer science and philosophy of science, among others.
What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients.
Engineering, medicine, business, architecture and painting are concerned not with the necessary but with the contingent - not with how things are but with how they might be - in short, with design.
Human knowledge has been changing from the word go and people in certain respects behave more rationally than they did when they didn't have it. They spend less time doing rain dances and more time seeding clouds.
I like to think that since I was about 19, I have studied human decision-making and problem-solving.