Intuition is Not Pseudoscience, Say Researchers

Intuition "I don't trust books. They're all fact, no heart. And that's exactly what's pulling our country apart today. Because face it, folks, we are a divided nation. Not between Democrats or Republicans, or conservatives and liberals, or tops and bottoms. No, we are divided by those who think with their head, and those who know with their heart...”
~ Stephen Colbert, The Colbert Report

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'That Damn Bird!' -Alex, Genius Parrot Who Dazzled Scientist Dead at 31

Alexperch2_2 In three decades as a research subject, Alex 31 (an acronym for Avian Learning EXperiment), an African Grey parrot, dazzled the world with his ability to talk, count and identify colors and shapes, along the way providing scientists with unprecedented insights into the avian brain.

Alex, who died unexpectedly last week, was the subject of a thirty-year-long experiment conducted by animal psychologist Irene Pepperberg, initially at the University of Arizona and most recently at Harvard and Brandeis University. Pepperberg bought Alex in a pet shop when he was about one year old.

In 2002, Pepperberg's book "The Alex Studies: Cognitive and Communicative Abilities of Grey Parrots" brought the bird and her research widespread attention, showing that creatures so evolutionarily separate from humans can perform the same types of complex cognitive tasks as young children.

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The Cognitive Revolution: Integrating Computers & the Human Mind

Cognitive_theory Imagine a world where machines know you on a personal level. By modeling a virtual "you" into their programming—including how you think and your expertise on a subject—it would know just how to accommodate your particular preferences. It’s the kind of world where your car understands how you drive and compensates for your weaknesses, and where your home computer knows not to greet you too cheerfully when you’re having a bad day.

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