Brain Bugs: How the Brain's Flaws Shape Our Lives

Brain Bugs How the Brain s Flaws Shape Our Lives A lively surprising tour of our mental glitches and how they arise With its trillions of connections the human brain is beautiful and complex than anything we could ever build but it s far from per

  • Title: Brain Bugs: How the Brain's Flaws Shape Our Lives
  • Author: Dean Buonomano
  • ISBN: 9780393076028
  • Page: 327
  • Format: Hardcover
  • A lively, surprising tour of our mental glitches and how they arise.With its trillions of connections, the human brain is beautiful and complex than anything we could ever build, but it s far from perfect Our memory is unreliable we can t multiply large sums in our heads advertising manipulates our judgment we tend to distrust people who are different from us supA lively, surprising tour of our mental glitches and how they arise.With its trillions of connections, the human brain is beautiful and complex than anything we could ever build, but it s far from perfect Our memory is unreliable we can t multiply large sums in our heads advertising manipulates our judgment we tend to distrust people who are different from us supernatural beliefs and superstitions are hard to shake we prefer instant gratification to long term gain and what we presume to be rational decisions are often anything but Drawing on striking examples and fascinating studies, neuroscientist Dean Buonomano illuminates the causes and consequences of these bugs in terms of the brain s innermost workings and their evolutionary purposes He then goes one step further, examining how our brains function and malfunction in the digital, predator free, information saturated, special effects addled world that we have built for ourselves Along the way, Brain Bugs gives us the tools to hone our cognitive strengths while recognizing our inherent weaknesses.

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    1 thought on “Brain Bugs: How the Brain's Flaws Shape Our Lives”

    1. travelling mp3, new car and an open roadDescription: A lively, surprising tour of our mental glitches and how they arise.With its trillions of connections, the human brain is more beautiful and complex than anything we could ever build, but it's far from perfect. Our memory is unreliable; we can't multiply large sums in our heads; advertising manipulates our judgment; we tend to distrust people who are different from us; supernatural beliefs and superstitions are hard to shake; we prefer instant [...]

    2. I think I was the wrong audience for this book. It wasn't that it was terrible, but as one with a science background and a long interest in how the brain works, there wasn't any new information here. It didn't help that the book reads like a fake textbook in the same way that Jon Stewart is fake news. It's not that there isn't actual information there, but it's not a citable source. Some kind of narrative framework would have done this book a world of good. I like a great many non-fiction works, [...]

    3. This book depicts a decent picture of our brains associative architecture which has been developed through millions of years of evolution and natural selection. The book explains numerous mechanisms of the brain that in the course of evolution were developed to protect and further help the survival of human beings but the very same mechanisms now are the source of many of our flaws in decision making and susceptibility to various exploits.The downside to the book was first: As far as I'm concern [...]

    4. We all know that our brains play tricks on us; if you have any doubt of this, just watch some Ted videos that give dramatic examples of this. But Dr. Buonomano’s excellent, lighthearted and very accessible book provides cogent examples of how and why our brains perform the tricks on us that they do, and how we often benefit. One of the first examples Buonomano cites is in his explanation of how “the brain edits and censors much of the the information it feeds the conscious mind [in] much the [...]

    5. There are far too many popular science books around about emotions and pleasure and goodness knows what, so it might seem that the whole idea of writing about brain-related issues has got a bit tired and then along comes Brain Bugs, which is an absolute delight to read and truly fascinating.Dean Buonomano identifies the places where the brain gets it wrong, either because of technical problems - a classic example being optical illusions (there's one of the best optical illusions I've seen in the [...]

    6. Very readable. Many books on the brain spend a lot of time on brain physiology which gets really esoteric for the layperson, and many fundamentals get lost. However Dean Buonomano discusses basics for how our thinking is composed, associatively, of neural networks and synapses. On the basis of Hebb's law (popularly described as "wired together fire together") and a few other considerations, such as that brain architecture is evolutionarily based, he is able to describe the foundations of a whole [...]

    7. In writing a review I often find it most difficult to be verbose concerning books that I agree with and thus most of my favorite books don't contain reviews. But when I differ with an author, boy, my fingers get to typing. Please forgive me as I pontificate.I am quite put off by religious fundamentalist who assume they and their own alone have a perfectly objective grasp of Truth, and yet at the same time are utterly oblivious to their unsupported presuppositions, assumptions and circular reason [...]

    8. Though many points in the book are interesting, the book suffers from several serious flaws.First is Buonomano's insistence that everything humans do be explained exclusively in terms of stories about what must have, or at least might have, led our ancestors to live longer and thus be able to have more sex. The telling of such stories is, evidently, what "doing science" amounts to these days, in some disciplines.The reduction of everything to the amount of sex our great, great, great, . . . grea [...]

    9. The information in the book was interesting, but there were points that got a little too condescending for my taste. Apparently if you are in any way spiritual or religious, you are a primitive yokel who needs to look to science for answers rather than have faith. Apparently the draw to believe in something more powerful than yourself is a flaw in your brain that you need to overcome. That being said, the majority of this book is good. The author is able to provide a myriad of research to back u [...]

    10. This was a very interesting and informative book. The author draws on (and provides detailed references to) a wide variety of research on how our brains work, and specifically, how they are wired. He points out specific ways that our brains have not caught up to the complex decisions that our modern society call for and why we often make poor long-term choices. I especially liked: Chapter 4 - Temporal Distortions and the section where he illuminates the Subjectivity of Time; Chapter 5 - Fear Fac [...]

    11. A review of research organized to explain why our brains sometimes lead us astray or do not work efficiently. Buonomano uses mostly well known and accepted research covering such topics as how we make decisions, how information biases our thinking, ghost limbs after loss of limb, tinnitus, and many more. He treats each of these as bugs in wiring and, for some, also discusses the value of the bug to our ancestors. In some cases the bug works beautiful under some circumstances and gets in trouble [...]

    12. Well, I’ll probably never get around to reading this one. I’ve read quite a few PopCog books, and don’t see any immediate evidence that this one will add anything fundamentally new. But it does seem like a good selection to point towards for someone new to the topic.The author was interviewed on NPR’s Fresh Air on July 14, 2011. To check out highlights of the interview, listen online or download an MP3, click over to “Brain Bugs”: Cognitive Flaws That “Shape Our Lives”.­

    13. It was a good book, but it took me a while to finish it because some element was missing. Something that would make the argument more interesting, hence 4 stars.

    14. Initially, I like the writing style and what the author promises to deliver. Much better start than last book. It is a short book, but well-written and interesting.Intro: Our brains' 'flaws' shape our lives. This book provides an examination of brain flaws from an evolutionary perspective. The brain is the most complex, known device in the universe. But it is imperfect -- it is limited and biased, especially in terms of memory, susceptibility to marketing. And now we, all creatures, really, live [...]

    15. Great book written with humour and ample sarcasm towards humans in general. Chapter 5 on natural fear responses was my personal favourite, especially in light of some of the 2016 political results such as Trump being elected and Brexit. I suspect this book may have been longer with even more hilarious and scary examples if it had been written after those results. Chapter 8 was unexpected, describing religion as a brain bug may alienate some readers. Describing it as impeding acceptance of scient [...]

    16. A full executive summary of this book is available here: newbooksinbrief/2012/01/28As much as we rely on our brains to navigate the complex world before us, anyone who has ever forgotten someone's name, or misread a situation, or made a poor decision in the heat of the moment knows that the brain does not always work as we would want. In his new book `Brain Bugs', neurobiologist Dean Buonomano explores the brain's many pitfalls and mistakes (and how and why it makes them), and also offers up som [...]

    17. Really good read. Right up there with the best of the books on the brain/cognitive science/neuroscience/evolutionary psychology (of which there is a growing number): comparable to The Invisible Gorilla: And Other Ways Our Intuitions Deceive Us and Subliminal: How Your Unconscious Mind Rules Your Behavior, Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength, Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions, though a little shy of the two best, Kahenman and Tversky's Thinking, F [...]

    18. I really enjoyed this book! Axons and dendrites and synapses, oh my!!It's interesting to understand our cognitive processes and I think anyone who reads this book could learn something useful from it. From how to phrase questions so that you have a higher chance of getting the answer you want, to understanding the primitive and irrational nature of your fear of spiders. I listened to it on tape [unabridged], so I'm not sure if actually reading the pages would have made this more dry.It was defin [...]

    19. Another great addition to the repository of knowledge about the systematic failures of the human brain, alongside the works of Dan Ariely. It explores a wide variety of topics ranging from the inherent unreliability of human memory, the brain's idiosyncratic time measuring devices, the brain susceptibility to propaganda, etc.Of course, as a misanthrope, this books makes me even less hopeful about the future of humanity, because I do not see any way for us to overcome the great challenges of our [...]

    20. I learned some new things, particularly about how easily we are duped into believing irrational things. To wit, people intuitively think very hard about who would perform heart surgery on them, because it is assumed that this is life or death. Yet people do not spend much time or effort thinking about leaders who might have control of the nuclear arsenal. Dan Quayle or Sarah Palin as a heart surgeon would give more people pause than as country leader, yet one is personal and one is much more far [...]

    21. I wish this hadn't been recommended to me; I wish I had put it down early instead of reading it all. There is little here that hasn't been reported in the popular science press, Discover, Science News, etc. Moreover, I was distracted by errors in spelling, grammar, or usage on nearly every page. Don't bother with it.

    22. An interesting book with information on quite a range of "brain bugs": Buonomano covers brain quirks that make advertising work, tells how false memories can be created, gives us the "why" behind optical illusions, and offers theories as to why evolution favors the religious mind. Worth reading.

    23. There was little in this book that was new or interesting to me. I've got to stop buying so many audible books that are on sale.

    24. كتاب بديع رائع. جمع فيه صاحبه أشتاتا من علوم العقل ؛ وعرض لها بأسلوب سهل سلس. وحاول ربط الظواهر بالبنية الشبكية للدماغ.

    25. this book is for scientist and laypersons equally. Well set out examples for points made, well-written, easily understood. with the exception of one segment of chapter 4 explaining how neurons work in the brain with is later simplified and analogues are given for better understanding. I would recommend to anyone over 12 years old to 100.

    26. Durante uma demonstração típica, vemos uma mulher dizendo algo em um vídeo. Quando olhamos para seu rosto, vemos os lábios se mexendo (mas não se tocando) e a ouvimos dizer várias vezes "dada dada". Mas ao fecharmos os olhos, o som se transforma em "baba baba". É surpreendente perceber que o que ouvimos depende do fato de nossos olhos estarem abertos ou fechados.

    27. if you've read other brain books or studied mid level psychology and biology, there's not much new here.

    28. Brain Bugs is an interesting book for sure. No one can doubt that. It is always trippy to read about how the brain works. And because you are trying to figure out this very concept with the very same brain, it becomes a circular pattern of thinking that would blow the mind of even the most casual pot smoker. The theme of the book seems to suggest that the faults or defects in our brain are actually built-in mechanisms that help promote our survival as a human race. The book postulates that many [...]

    29. Have you ever wondered about how the brain is able to fulfill the needs of all the unique people in the world? Brain Bugs by Dean Buonomano uncovers and gives an overview of the basic workings of the brain. It explains how we are able to catch a ball through estimating its complex trajectory, while we aren’t able to multiply and complete mathematical operations that takes next to no time on a computer. He also gives insight on the many “bugs” left over from prehistoric times that we now pe [...]

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