Friday, November 19, 2010

Out of Context

Some random thoughts (with apologies to Thomas Sowell and The Church of Rationality):

1. I don't understand speed readers unless they're also speed thinkers.

2. People who use the word "perhaps" usually mean: "I'm so right about this that I need to make it sound humble."

3. "Natural" is used as a justification, and "unnatural" is used as a condemnation. But no one applies this consistently.

4. One of the most persistent biases is success. We care more about what causes success than about what causes failure.

5 comments:

LemmusLemmus said...

Ha! I thought the "apologies" link to me would go to this post. The format itself was certainly not invented by me (nor by Sowell, I'm guessing).

Ann Althouse said...

From the Skeptoid episode on speed reading:

"Fast readers need not be fast speakers; they simply have what's called a larger "recognition vocabulary". Rauding [sic] an unfamiliar word is subvocalized more slowly than a word already stored in our recognition vocabulary. We've learned that your recognition vocabulary, and thus your reading speed, can actually be improved; but the real technique is the opposite of what's taught in speed reading courses. Focus instead on reading comprehension. This will improve your recognition vocabulary, and you will probably begin to read faster....

"Test yourself at your normal reading speed, and you'll probably be surprised to learn that what you thought was slow is actually right in that normal range of around 300 words a minute. If you're much faster than that, you're among the few people with a highly developed recognition vocabulary. To improve this, stay away from gimmicky techniques that ignore the way the brain processes printed text, and focus on your comprehension. To read faster, concentrate on reading slower, and read more often."

In other words, the method that actually works to speed up reading is to speed up thinking.

John Althouse Cohen said...

LemmusLemmus: That post is more like my first post, where I said:

So many blogs pitch themselves as "random babblings" or "incoherent rants." Why all the self-deprecation? Anyway, I'll have none of that here!

XWL said...

Regarding point #3, I blame history's greatest villain, Jean-Jacques Rousseau...

(artifice used to be thought of as a good thing, a celebration of ingenuity)

Jim Ament said...

I liked number two...and your mother's comment. But at my age, I'm just hanging on.