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Posts Tagged ‘behavior change’

smarter-than-you-think

In Smarter Than You Think, tech journalist Clive Thompson argues that digital technology is dramatically changing the ways people think and act. While he is not the first person to make such a claim, Thompson’s perspective on the matter is unique in that he believes these cognitive behavioral changes are largely positive. By investigating some of today’s most cutting-edge innovations and the transformative effects they have on work, relationships, education, and society as a whole, Thompson demonstrates that the rise of intelligent machines should be embraced rather than feared.

According to Thompson:

  • Technology is transforming people’s cognitive behaviors. By providing new ways for people to store memories, collaborate, and communicate, digital technology is upending existing mental habits.
  • The rise of intelligent machines should not be feared. Despite the fear that digital technology will render the human brain obsolete, it is actually making people smarter and society stronger.
  • The more connected people are to one another, the more they can accomplish. By facilitating widespread collaboration, the Internet enables people to tap into the power of collective intelligence and develop innovative solutions to some of the world’s biggest problems.
  • Technology is drastically improving literacy. In addition to creating a culture of avid writers, the Internet has facilitated the rise of data, video, and photo literacies.
  • For technology to create lasting social change, people must fight for their digital rights. Online activists need safe spaces on the Internet to conduct civic discourse.

To learn more, please visit http://www.bizsum.com

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The Power of 50 BitsPeople’s natural inclinations when making decisions tend to default to patterns that do not help them in the long run. While there is broad agreement among researchers about the science underpinning these tendencies, people need more solutions to help overcome the gap between what they really want to do and what they actually do. In The Power of Fifty Bits, Bob Nease offers a seven-pronged strategy to deal with common decision-making failures. He explains why people struggle with inattention and inertia and demonstrates how simple changes in environment can nudge people toward better overall outcomes.

People typically have good intentions, but they often struggle to act on them. This is because people’s brains have evolved in a way that makes inattention and inertia the two primary obstacles to action. Fifty bits design acknowledges the brain’s natural limitations and addresses them with the following seven strategies:

  1. Require choice: Interrupting a process, usually an existing one, and forcing a person to make a decision before he or she can continue the process.
  2. Lock in good intentions: Making some type of statement–a pledge, a signed document, or automatic reaction–in the present, which increases the chances that people will follow through on good behavior in the future.
  3. Let it ride: Making the desired behavior the default and asking people to opt out of a behavior rather than opt in, thereby using inattention and inertia for good.
  4. Get in the flow: Placing a cue or call to action in a location where people have already devoted their attention.
  5. Reframe the choices: Altering what a cue triggers in people, which directs people’s attention toward some aspects of an issue and away from others.
  6. Piggyback it: Making a behavior typically subject to inertia and/or inattention the side effect of something that people seek out or find pleasurable.
  7. Simplify…wisely: Removing barriers to change or improving fluency (the relative ease with which the brain processes information). Simplification of either type is usually, though not always, a smart design choice.

To learn more, please visit http://www.bizsum.com

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