The Tyrant Inside Your Mind

Christopher G. Moore in CulturMag:

History records many examples of some person, tribe or nation taking an advantage based on better information than their rivals. Whether it is war, economic activity, love and romance or career the competitive edge leading to victory is enjoyed by those who possess the ability to extract and use information to increase the probability of their predicted outcomes. Use the word probability, forecasting, and prediction and thoughts start to wander, your mind has trouble gaining traction. Why is that?

It takes a good story to grab and hold our attention. And it takes a special, brilliant story for us to remember it tomorrow. Every day you hear and tell hundreds of stories. Those tiny assembled bundled vignettes we consume like Swiss chocolate, filled with a rich confection of character, situation, conflict, weirdness, turning point, and surprise. Stories are addictive. We feel slightly guilty when we read tracts of wisdom, knowledge, philosophy, and mathematics, which mainly lack a personal story. There’s the key. A great story is about me. It’s about you. It has an emotional kick like mule. Without the mule’s kick, the abstract story is marooned in a dark, empty pasture left pretty much on its own.

Information disparities are nothing new.

More here.