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View Diary: The Week in UFO Phenomenon: UFOs Over Disneyland (26 comments)

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  •  here's how "I know what I saw" works. (0+ / 0-)

    I'm sure you know about all the usual errors such as confirmation bias.

    But there's another that is almost universal among humans:

    "Emotional intensity equals truth value."  

    In other words, "the more intense the feeling, the more that something is true."  

    Now of course there are all kinds of instances where that is correct, and it exists because it's had natural selection advantages over time.  And there is also the confound that if someone is told that something they perceived with their sober senses isn't real, they're going to protest strongly.

    Last but not least there's the confound that occurs by the routine insertion of the logical-NOT as a means of offsetting this phenomenon ("the stronger someone feels about something, the greater the likelihood that it's not true").  

    So when dealing with these kinds of puzzles that tend to generate strong feelings, one needs to exercise caution in both directions.  

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