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ciphergoth comments on Hindsight bias - Less Wrong

53 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 16 August 2007 09:58PM

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Comment author: ciphergoth 04 March 2010 01:36:06PM 2 points [-]

Hindsight ≠ foresight: the effect of outcome knowledge on judgment under uncertainty

B Fischhoff

Correspondence to:
 B Fischhoff, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel


One major difference between historical and nonhistorical judgment is that the historical judge typically knows how things turned out. In Experiment 1, receipt of such outcome knowledge was found to increase the postdicted likelihood of reported events and change the perceived relevance of event descriptive data, regardless of the likelihood of the outcome and the truth of the report. Judges were, however, largely unaware of the effect that outcome knowledge had on their perceptions. As a result, they overestimated what they would have known without outcome knowledge (Experiment 2), as well as what others (Experiment 3) actually did know without outcome knowledge. It is argued that this lack of awareness can seriously restrict one’s ability to judge or learn from the past.