You Are Not So Smart is a blog byÂ journalist David McRaney, who also â€œloves psychology, technology and the internet.â€ Its area of focus is dedicated to showing us how we are not actually the rational, logical beings we like to think we are.
Written in plain English and free from unnecessary technical terminology, You Are Not So Smart manages to make pretty complex, high level decision making theories and the idea of cognitive biases easily understood by the average Joe. His journalistic background means the writing is of an exceptionally high quality and filled with pithy statements that stick in your mind long after youâ€™ve clicked back to Youtube. McRaney also manages to make his potentially dry subject matter highly entertaining by peppering his posts with modern-day, contextual examples that just about anyone can relate to â€“ ranging from Farmville to Halloween costumes â€“ to illustrate the points he is making.
In one of his latest posts, The Sunk Cost Fallacy, McRaney uses the popularity of Facebook games like Farmville to explain why humans experience loss more acutely than gain, and manages to do this in a highly engaging manner without trivializing the subject matter. By the end of the post, readers have a clear idea of why they inevitably are compelled to â€œthrow good money after badâ€ â€“ a concept that frequent gamblers would gain much from grasping.
Other brilliant posts include Confirmation Bias, which posits that your opinions are not the result of rational, objective analysis but rather â€œthe result of years of paying attention to information which confirmed what you believed while ignoring information which challenged your preconceived notions.â€ And Deindividuation, which suggests that under the right conditions, people are prone to losing their individuality and behave in a manner they otherwise would not.
A really easy, enjoyable read that wonâ€™t make your brain hurt, but will certainly make you smarter.Â Without a doubt, this blog deserves a 4.3/5; considering it’s a great read, hopefully the activity and posting frequency increases.