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27C3: Cognitive Psychology for Hackers (Sai)

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Published on Jan 2, 2011

Cognitive Psychology for Hackers

Bugs, exploits, and occasional patches

Experience firsthand some of the most interesting, surprising, and perspective-changing findings from cognitive and social neuropsychology. With perceptual illusions, priming, biases, heuristics, and unconscious influences, humans have tons of firmware "bugs". All have exploits; some even have patches.

Learn how to improve your own thinking, use others' bugs to your advantage, and gain new perspective on the unconscious and often illusory processes involved in your perceptions.

This interactive talk goes through as many interesting, surprising, perspective-changing findings from the cognitive sciences as I can fit in one hour while ensuring that as much as possible has a real, live demonstration that the audience participates in (rather than merely being told about).

It's not just a collection of 'stupid human tricks' (though I'll be using lots of those for examples); this is a coherent narrative about surprising ways in which humans are flawed, how these aren't just things that happen to "other people", and how one might go about improving the situation at least for oneself. Every point will be supported by good science, with references to papers for those who care to read up more about them.

Come to the meditation workshop afterwards to learn several more interesting and powerful techniques to proactively control your own mindstate.

Tags: #27c3 #cogsci @saizai (emails also appreciated)

See below for blinking disks illusion from Akiyoshi Kitaoka, inspired by Faubert and Herbert (1999). Stop staring at it if it makes you dizzy. No, it's not actually moving - if you point at / fixate on any part of it, that part will remain stable.

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