Thinking, Fast and Slow

Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Thinking, Fast and Slow
Kahneman exposes the extraordinary capabilities and also the faults and biases of fast thinking, and the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on peoples' thoughts and choices.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2011
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780374275631
Branch Call Number: 153.42 K
Characteristics: 499 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.


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Mar 03, 2015
  • kityojames rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is almost an entirely new system of decision making of system 1 and system 2 that one can exploit in all major situations. Daniel Kahneman, in addition to imbuing imagination and urging us to exploit our algorithmic sensibilities, puts everything down in plain language. One of a kind that enriches our vocabulary at every stage, highly practical and very engaging.

Dec 19, 2014

There have been books in the past that have covered either thinking fast or slow. This one covers both.

Feb 26, 2014
  • john_doh17 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

My key recollections- A life time of research on how our brains don't quite work right and where they go wrong. The primary concept is the there are two main parts to how people think. Type 1 thinking is the fast thinking that has evolved over millennia and helps us make quick decisions (that used to be life or death). Type 1 is where we have developed short cuts that unconsciously impact our decision making. Type 2 thinking is what kicks in when we have to think harder and make analytic decisions, but is still influenced by type 1 thinking. The book flows pretty well moving from concept to concept. There are a few areas where it takes a lot of concentration and needs to be read a couple times to get what he is saying (for me it was the Regression to the Mean, and the four fold pattern - which honestly I am still not sure I got).

The good I love this statement from chapter 34 (page 263). "An unbiased appreciation of uncertainty is a cornerstone of rationality- but it is not what people and organizations want." This is probably my favorite chapter (thanks confirmation bias). It basically goes over how most people are optimistic and over confident (which is probably another consequence of evolution). I also love how he shot down the core economic theory that people will always act rationally (the Prospect theory- people make decisions based on the feeling of gain or loss rather than the final out come. He and Tversky won the Nobel for the theory and the chapter makes it look so obvious in hind sight. It makes you wonder what else we are missing that is obvious on reflection. The Bad Well really I don't have anything bad to say about this book. I can see some bad effects that science has, and I think this quote sums it up "I have yet to meet a successful scientist who lacks the ability to exaggerate the importance of what he or she is doing". The ugly Not following your own advice. In one section he goes through how he was working on a text book as part of a team. They are a couple chapters into the book, and he asks everyone to write down how long they think it will take to finish the book. He then asks the only person on the team to do a project like this a few questions (How long did it take you to finish, how do we compare to that team). He finds out that only 40% of these efforts get completed, and that the books takes easily twice as long to finish as they thought, and that the current team is below average compared to those that finished. They then ignore that information and proceed to get back to work without considering if they should abandon the project. The book was finished 10 years later, but was never published. Ouch!

Aug 22, 2013
  • JCLChrisK rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I'm afraid I waited to long to review this one and forgot what I wanted to say. I listened to it, then got a copy of the book and was going to go back into the details, but never got around to it. I know there were some parts that really delighted and amazed me, some things I definitely felt were worth revisiting. Some real applications I'd love to consider in my workplace about the limits of intuition and the need for careful analysis and reflection. But at this point I think that means rereading from the start and taking proper notes, and I'm not in a place to do that at the moment. Sometime, though, I will, because this is a fascinating book about how our minds process information and how to use that knowledge to think more effectively.

Jun 04, 2013
  • WVMLStaffPicks rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This book transforms your assumptions about how people make decisions. Written by a research psychologist who won the Nobel Prize in Economics, Daniel Kahneman explores how susceptible human beings are to irrational persuasion when we hear a familiar word or a persuasive image in a commercial. This book is as startling as it is readable.

Feb 21, 2013
  • rationallady rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is the best science book I read in the past year.

Jan 14, 2013
  • rudyone rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Kahneman describes from his oddesy of probing the human mind our thinking biases and flaws primarily by showing how the quick attitude-driven system provides us with survival value but is flawed when it comes to more complex decision-making.

Aug 12, 2012
  • craigc rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

A discussion of the 2 types (per the author) of thinking. The fast emotional snap judgment and the slow deliberate thought process. He discusses the pros and cons of each and how to improve your decision making by knowing when to use each and both

Jul 29, 2012
  • mcschroeder rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Excellent (and dense) summary of research on how we think and how we make decisions. Awareness of how we make decisions (consciously and unconsciously) can lead to much clearer thinking. Despite the density, it's well written and not hard to plow through.

Jul 22, 2012
  • JCS3F rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Excellent introduction to the principles of behavioral economics pioneered by Kahneman and Tversky over 30 years ago. With neo-classical economics a beaten-down shell of its former self, it's hard to call this book an indictment of the flawed foundations of that school (namely uniform dissemination of perfect information and perfect rationality among all market participants). Rather, Thinking Fast and Slow is more like a victory lap and a primer for non-PhDs to understand the psychological loop holes in their thinking process. With so much dependent on the financial decisions we make every day, reading Thinking Fast and Slow and internalizing its warnings (such as the impact of framing, artificial mental 'accounting', and the disconnect between experiences and decisions) is a no-brainer.

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Thinking, Fast and Slow
Kahneman, Daniel, 1934-
Thinking, Fast and Slow

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