How many of the Ten Commandments can the average person name? Almost no one aces this test including respondents in a survey by Kelton Research who were able to name the seven ingredients in a Big Mac, but not recall the commandment, “thou shalt not kill.” Yet the Ten Commandments are the equivalent of a social contract that informs our legal system, our civil behavior, and our love and respect for God. The Commandments are shared by Jews and Christians, but other religious groups subscribe to many of the same principles. So why can’t we name them all? I believe it’s because we can’t hold more than 7 independent objects in short term memory—a proposition that was proved scientifically in 1956 by George Miller, then a professor at Harvard who wrote the seminal paper, “The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on Our Capacity for Processing Information.”
Miller is known as the father of cognitive science, and I often wonder how he would apply his magical…
and the GOP should look at tax reform as a "deal" instead of an
overdue entitlement. For years, Republicans have been loath to hand over their
“hard-earned money” to the federal government on April 15th, even
though they benefit as much—if not more—than most Americans from the services
the government provides. Many
in Congress have even taken a pledge concocted by Grover Norquist of Americans
for Tax Reform never to raise taxes or
eliminate tax loopholes. In effect, many Republicans have come to see tax
reform as a right, on a par with free speech and other constitutional mandates.
no doubt that a tax code that totals
more than 10 million words needs reform—or at least a good editor. It costs
American businesses a bundle in accounting, compliance, legal, and auditing costs.
And none of those expenditures go toward productivity; they’re defensive and
there are likely to be winners and losers in the GOP plan, and one obvious
loser is the U…
Remember the letter that Stephen Hawking, Elon Musk, Bill Gates and others released in August 2015 warning the world about artificially intelligent weapons could destroy civilization? An organization called autonomousweapons.org has turned that prophesy into a compelling short video. Please take a look and tell me your thoughts.