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Duplicate of another approved link: 8287963

(Boing Boing)   Chimps found to be "astoundingly better" than humans at game theory, although they still haven't realized that the only way to win is not to play   ( divider line
    More: Interesting, game theory, chimpanzees, competitive gaming, Colin Camerer, Rapture of the Nerds  
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2014-06-11 09:38:29 AM  
You can't win if you don't play.
2014-06-11 10:35:19 AM  
I interpret that result as "Chimps are no where near as good as humans at recognizing patterns."
The problem is that humans are so good at recognizing patterns that we see shapes in clouds and stock market charts. We don't recognize that the probability underlying a binomial distribution associated with a random variable might change, because we never believe there is a random variable in the first place. Because we're smart. Random is rare. Merely chaotic is common.
Chimps on the other hand are willing to say, "Oh, fark it. This shiat is random." Just like a cheerleader in algebra class.
In other words, we never think an opponent in a game is rolling a die or tossing a coin. We always suspect there is a motive behind our enemy's strategy, and we correctly realize that our Nash equilibrium strategy is not optimal, if we could only see through his cunning. When the play really is random, when the enemy really is using an equilibrium strategy, then our response is optimal if we play the corresponding equilibrium strategy. That happens in this experiment, so we look stupid. It doesn't happen so much in nature, which is why monkeys are in zoos and we're on the outside.
2014-06-11 10:49:58 AM  
How about a nice game of chess?
2014-06-11 11:43:19 AM  
Not exactly a repeat, but another article on the same subject from a week ago.  In case anyone wants another review of the same material: re asoning-than-humans-are-This-also-applies-to-throwing-feces
2014-06-11 11:49:40 AM  
But how are they at the most dangerous game theory?
2014-06-11 11:57:24 AM  
The more interesting question is what did we get evolutionarily by giving that skill up?

More cooperation?
2014-06-11 11:58:05 AM  
Possibly they need to be better at that skill because their societies are less cooperative than our own.
2014-06-11 12:17:17 PM  
So the study proves that rugged individualism is causing humans to regress toward more base primate species?
2014-06-11 12:28:23 PM  
Come back when they're better at the prisoners dilemma.
2014-06-11 12:37:27 PM  
Our societies no longer require people to be as smart as a chimp to thrive and reproduce.
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