I read this interesting thought today:

"You hear a rustle in the grass. Is it the wind or a dangerous predator?

If you guess that it's a dangerous predator but it's just the wind, you've made a mistake—believing that something is real when it's not (a "false positive," as cognitive scientists call it)—but a rather harmless one. On the other hand, if you guess that the rustle in the grass is the wind but it turns out to be a hungry lion, your mistake is more serious: The lion was real but you thought it wasn't (a "false negative"). In this case, you're lunch, and you won't get the chance to be more cautious next time."

If today a similarly evolved lady expressed a great deal of anxiety over the possibility the world would end in 2012, bet her $1000 ($1T, etc) it wouldn't, because:

1. If you are right she pays
2. If you are wrong, you don't have to.


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