From Tools to Theories

Gerd Gigerenzer

in Adaptive Thinking

Published in print March 2002 | ISBN: 9780195153729
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199849222 | DOI:

Series: Evolution and Cognition Series

From Tools to Theories

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This chapter is about the impact of new technologies on creative thinking — an impact of a productive rather than a disruptive kind. New tools can suggest new scientific ideas and metaphors about nature, society, and the mind. When this happens, one can trace discoveries back to the changing technological environment in which they evolved rather than attributing them to some mystical process inside a scientist’s head. The tools-to-theories heuristic, one of several heuristics of discovery, can explain the emergence of a broad range of theories and shed light on their limitations and potentials.

Keywords: creative thinking; discovery; scientific tools; technologies; nature; society; mind

Chapter.  11038 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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