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Our behaviour in bulk is more predictable than we like to imagine

Our behaviour in bulk is more predictable than we like to imagine

https://aeon.co/essays/our-behaviour-in-bulk-is-more-predictable-than-we-like-to-imagine

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Social Physics

Social Physics

Psychohistory is a fictional way to predict the future of humanity, using mathematical techniques.

Applying maths on human behaviour was initiated by Adolphe Quételet in the 19th centur...

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Statistics

This is an invaluable tool for the fields of biology, medicine, economics, arts and humanities and the administrative services of the government.

Statistics provides useful tools, but those...

109 SAVES


Adolphe Quételet's Estimations

Adolphe Quételet's Estimations

Quételet, the mathematician turned astronomer who was performing social physics miracles as the central figure of Belgium science, got better in his game by learning probability theory and making u...

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Francis Galton's Eugenics

Francis Galton's Eugenics

The data analysis method was adopted by many pioneers in social science which made use of the various techniques and improvised upon them, studying everything from human evolution, human traits, th...

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Poll Predictions

One of the biggest implications of social physics turned out to be election results and the surveys that provide accurate poll result predictions.

Random samples worked in...

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Patterns Of Human Behaviour

Our public records, the internet and social media have provided a lightning-fast way to collect data and predict outcomes.

Telephone calls, search history, credit-card purchases and global...

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

The Neuroscientist Karl Friston

The Neuroscientist Karl Friston
  • Karl Friston, a neuroscientist, published a radical theory called the ‘Free Energy Principle’ that has the neuroscience field in a tizzy. His papers, published in various journals, are heavil...

The Free Energy Principle

It states that the world is uncertain and full of surprises. Our brain, through perception, beliefs and action are trying to remain stable by minimizing the spikes, triggers and surprises.

We live inside our brains, and each of us has a unique perception of the outside world. Anything we say or document is just our way to explain the world we have lived. It has nothing to do with reality.

The Beautiful Mind

  • Our mind is programmed to sample the world so that the immediate future can be predictable, as a way to survive it with minimum surprises and disruptions, and as a way to conserve energy.
  • Free energy, outside the mind, maybe incomprehensible and even impossible to grasp fully, but our mind filters and curates much of the information and presents it to us in palpable format.
  • Our mind, when seen neurologically, is infinitely vast, much like the universe, which it even resembles visually.

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Early History

The connection between genius and possible insanity was first documented in 1891 in the Italian physicians’ book The Man Of Genius.

In 1869, this was taken up by the cousin of Charles Darwi...

Genius and Heredity

In a 1904 study by English physician Havelock Ellis, a list was made of 1030 individuals through extensive research, examining thoroughly the intellectual distinction people had by the various factors like heredity, general health, and social class.


These works established that genius minds are often hereditary.

Genetic Studies Of Genius

A body of work of Stanford psychologist Lewis M. Terman, was an in-depth multi-decade study of gifted individuals, and an attempt to improve the measurement of genius and its association with the degradation of mental stability. This also included an enhanced version of the French IQ (Intelligence Quotient) test.

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Describing wonder

Wonder is said to be a childish emotion. However, as adults, we experience it when gaping at something unexpectedly spectacular.

Adam Smith, an 18th-century moral philosopher, describes wond...

Bodily symptoms

The bodily symptoms of this strange appearance point to three dimensions:

  • Sensory: The marvelous things take hold of our senses - we stare and widen our eyes.
  • Cognitive: We are perplexed because we don't have a past experience to understand them. It leads to a suspension of breath, similar to when we are startled.
  • Spiritual: We look upwards in veneration, which makes our heart swell.

The scale of wonder

At the mild end of this emotion, we talk about things being marvelous. More intense emotions might be described as astonishing. The extreme of this experiences is met with expressions of awe.

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