(Math) Logic: Fish Capable of Human-like Logic
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#1: (Math) Logic: Fish Capable of Human-like Logic Author: adediosLocation: Angel C. de Dios PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 7:19 am

Fish Capable of Human-like Logic

By Robin Lloyd
Senior Editor
posted: 24 January 2007
01:17 pm ET

Fish have the reasoning capacity of a 4- or 5-year-old child when it comes to figuring out who among their peers is "top dog," new research shows.

Stanford University scientists made the discovery—said to be the first demonstration that fish can use logical reasoning to figure out their social pecking order—by studying fights among small, highly territorial, spiny-finned fish called cichlids, common in freshwater in tropical Africa, including in Lake Tanganyika in central Africa.

Logan Grosenick, a graduate student in statistics, and his colleagues found that a sixth fish could infer or learn indirectly which were the 1st through 5th strongest simply by observing fights among them in adjacent, transparent tanks, rather than by directly fighting each fish itself or seeing each fish fight all four others [image].

This type of reasoning, called transitive inference (TI), is a developmental milestone for human children, showing up nonverbally as early as ages 4 and 5; it also has been reported in monkeys, rats and birds. It allows thinkers to reason that if A is bigger than B, and B is bigger than C, then A is also bigger than C.

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Questions to explore further this topic:

What are patterns?


What is a proof?


What is critical thinking?


What are deductive and inductive reasoning?


What is logic?


What is the logic and set theory?


What is mathematical logic?




#2: Sudoku Class Author: adediosLocation: Angel C. de Dios PostPosted: Sat Feb 03, 2007 8:48 am
Week of Feb. 3, 2007; Vol. 171, No. 5

Sudoku Class
Ivars Peterson

Perhaps inevitably, sudoku puzzles are showing up in the mathematics classroom. Although these extremely popular puzzles don't involve even arithmetic, they're wonderful exercises in logic—and lend themselves to illuminating excursions into such mathematical topics as combinatorics, Latin squares, polyominoes, computer algorithms, chess problems, graph colorings, and permutation group theory.

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#3: Hmm ... Rats Think Like Humans Author: adediosLocation: Angel C. de Dios PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2007 1:35 pm
Hmm ... Rats Think Like Humans

By Charles Q. Choi
Special to LiveScience
posted: 09 March 2007
09:16 am ET

Rats appear capable of reflecting on what they know and don't know, a complex form of thinking previously found only in humans and other primates.

"If rats can do it, this capability may be more widespread than imagined," Jonathon Crystal, a comparative psychologist at University of Georgia, told LiveScience.

Humans are often aware of what knowledge they possess or lack and what they are or are not capable of.

"Imagine, for instance, that you're a student going into a classroom to take an exam," Crystal said. "You will often have some idea how well you're going to do on the test. You know before you answer the questions whether you know or don't know the answers. This pretty complex form of cognition, known as metacognition, is at the heart of the human condition."

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#4: Bad Decision-Makers Lack Reasoning Skills Author: adediosLocation: Angel C. de Dios PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 9:41 am
Bad Decision-Makers Lack Reasoning Skills
By Melinda Wenner, Special to LiveScience

posted: 22 May 2007 08:22 am ET

People who are walking disaster areas-the types who bounce checks monthly, miss flights and vomit on the boss at the company picnic-are the same people who have poor reasoning skills, new research shows.

Reasoning abilities are influenced by intelligence and socioeconomic status, but they are also skills that can be learned and honed with practice, says a "decision scientist" at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

Many people are affected by the way that information is framed, marketed or spun, as in advertisements, thereby exhibiting poor decision-making skills, says Wändi Bruine de Bruin. But people with strong reasoning skills make the same choices no matter how information is presented to them.

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#5: Anger Fuels Better Decisions Author: adediosLocation: Angel C. de Dios PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2007 1:36 pm
Anger Fuels Better Decisions
By Melinda Wenner, Special to LiveScience

posted: 11 June 2007 08:01 am ET

The next time you are plagued with indecision and need a clear way out, it might help to get angry, according to a surprising new study.

Despite its reputation as an impetus to rash behavior, anger actually seems to help people make better choices—even aiding those who are usually very poor at thinking rationally. This could be because angry people base their decisions on the cues that "really matter" rather than things that can be called irrelevant or a distraction.

Previous research has shown that anger biases people’s thinking—turning them into bigger risk-takers and making them less trusting and more prejudiced, for instance.

But little has been done to study how, exactly, anger affects a person’s thinking.

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#6: Kidney Matchmaking Author: adediosLocation: Angel C. de Dios PostPosted: Sun Sep 02, 2007 6:15 am
Week of Sept. 1, 2007; Vol. 172, No. 9

Kidney Matchmaking
A new method of matching patients and donors could make transplants possible for thousands more
Julie J. Rehmeyer

People are born with two kidneys but need only one to survive. That can be a blessing for those with two failed kidneys, because sometimes they can receive a donated kidney from a family member. But the good fortune can turn bitter: a third of the time, the donor and the recipient aren't a compatible match.

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