Difference between revisions of "Mind projection fallacy"

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"The map is not the territory, but you can't fold up the territory and put it in your glove compartment".}}
 
"The map is not the territory, but you can't fold up the territory and put it in your glove compartment".}}
  
Our minds are not transparent windows unto veridical reality; when you look at a rock, you experience not the the rock itself, but your mind's ''representation'' of the surface of the rock, reconstructed from nerve impulses resulting from photons reflecting off the surface of the rock and being absorbed by your retina. Sugar in and of itself is not ''inherently'' sweet; the sugar itself only has the chemical properties that it does, which your brain, making inferences from cues given by your tongue, interprets as sweet.  
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Confusion is in the mind, not in reality; mysteriousness is in the map, not in the territory. When you look at a rock, you experience not the the rock itself, but your mind's ''representation'' of the rock, reconstructed from photons bouncing off its surface. Sugar in and of itself is not ''inherently'' sweet; the sugar itself only has the chemical properties that it does, which your brain evaluates as ''sweet''.
  
Physicist and [[Bayesian]] philosopher [[E.T. Jaynes]] coined the term '''mind projection fallacy''' to refer to this failure to distinguish between epistemological claims (statements about belief, about your map, about what you can ''say'' about reality) and ontological claims (statements about the territory, about how things really truly are out there in the world). In particular, the concept was applied in the critique of [[frequentist]] interpretation of the notion of [[probability]] as a property of physical systems rather than an epistemic device concerned with levels of certainty, [[Bayesian probability]].
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Physicist and [[Bayesian]] philosopher [[E.T. Jaynes]] coined the term '''mind projection fallacy''' to refer to this kind of failure to distinguish between epistemological claims (statements about belief, about your map, about what you can ''say'' about reality) and ontological claims (statements about the territory, about how things really truly are out there in the world). In particular, the concept was applied in the critique of [[frequentist]] interpretation of the notion of [[probability]] as a property of physical systems rather than an epistemic device concerned with levels of certainty, [[Bayesian probability]].
  
 
==Related concepts==
 
==Related concepts==
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*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/oj/probability_is_in_the_mind/ Probability is in the Mind] by [[Eliezer Yudkowsky]]
 
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/oj/probability_is_in_the_mind/ Probability is in the Mind] by [[Eliezer Yudkowsky]]
  
==References==
 
 
*{{Cite journal
 
| author      = E. T. Jaynes
 
| year        = 1990
 
| title      = Probability Theory as Logic
 
}} ([http://bayes.wustl.edu/etj/articles/prob.as.logic.pdf PDF])
 
 
{{stub}}
 
 
[[Category:Fallacies]]
 
[[Category:Fallacies]]

Revision as of 11:26, 7 September 2009

"The map is not the territory, but you can't fold up the territory and put it in your glove compartment".

Confusion is in the mind, not in reality; mysteriousness is in the map, not in the territory. When you look at a rock, you experience not the the rock itself, but your mind's representation of the rock, reconstructed from photons bouncing off its surface. Sugar in and of itself is not inherently sweet; the sugar itself only has the chemical properties that it does, which your brain evaluates as sweet.

Physicist and Bayesian philosopher E.T. Jaynes coined the term mind projection fallacy to refer to this kind of failure to distinguish between epistemological claims (statements about belief, about your map, about what you can say about reality) and ontological claims (statements about the territory, about how things really truly are out there in the world). In particular, the concept was applied in the critique of frequentist interpretation of the notion of probability as a property of physical systems rather than an epistemic device concerned with levels of certainty, Bayesian probability.

Related concepts

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