Ecological Intelligence

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

Ecological Intelligence

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Human color vision is adapted to the spectral properties of natural sunlight. More generally, the perceptual system has been shaped by the environment in which human ancestors evolved, the environment often referred to as the “environment of evolutionary adaptiveness”, or EEA. This chapter proposes that human reasoning processes, like those of color constancy, are designed for information that comes in a format that was present in the EEA. It focuses on a class of inductive reasoning processes technically known as Bayesian inference, specifically a simple version thereof in which an organism infers from one or a few indicators which of two events is true.

Keywords: color vision; color constancy; perceptual system; environment of evolutionary adaptiveness; Bayesian inference; inductive reasoning; breast cancer

Chapter.  7804 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy

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