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

By Dean Buonomano, 2011, W.W. Norton, New York and London. US$29.95 list (at this writing $15.91 on Amazon.com), hardcover.

Dr. Buonomano is Professor in the Departments of Neurobiology and Psychology and the Brain Research Institute at UCLA (University of California at Los Angeles, California).

This is an excellent companion to Daniel Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow (Tip 124). Kahneman provides the empirical research into decision-making and suggests possible evolutionary explanations for why we are what we are. Buonomano describes some of the same behavior and suggests tentative explanations from brain physiology.

Here are some of the interesting ideas and factoids from the book:

I found the book highly interesting. If you're interested in cognitive illusions and other thinking traps, I suggest that you read Thinking, Fast and Slow first. Those readers interested in neural networks may want to first look at Tip 51.


—John Schuyler, February 2014

Copyright 2014 by John R. Schuyler. All rights reserved. Permission to copy with reproduction of this notice.