The Power of Uncertainty
Studies show that when a decision's outcome is uncertain, people act more risk averse than the situation truly merits. This could spell trouble for our uncertain economic times.
The fear of uncertainty can have profound consequences on human decision-making. ... One can easily imagine a similar bias at work in the current economy. Because every decision is shaded with uncertainty—nobody knows what will happen, and those who pretend to know what will happen disagree—we discount the value of expected rewards. The hint of risk triggered the amygdala, and that aversive feeling made us less interested in shopping at Barnes and Noble, even when we were getting a guaranteed gift certificate. This the curse of uncertainty: it makes everything feel unappealing.
Firefighters in California are still struggling to contain several wildfires nearly one week after they broke out.
- Hundreds of people are still missing after three wildfires spread across Northern and Southern California last week.
- 48 of the 50 deaths occurred after the Camp Fire blazed through the town of Paradise, north of Sacramento.
- On Tuesday night, a fourth wildfire broke out, though it's mostly contained.
We know the dangers of too little sleep. Now for the other side of the story.
- Western University researchers found that sleeping over eight hours per night results in cognitive decline.
- Oversleepers suffer similar difficulties on certain cognitive tests as those who sleep under seven hours.
- Not all the news is bad: One night of oversleeping results in a cognitive boost.
Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.
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