What are cognitive biases?



Don't Blink - a Pursuit in Cognitive Bias

Speakers: Michelle Brush, Brandy Poiry

People evolved to react quickly on limited information stored in bad memory. This works well for us when we’re trying to avoid real danger. It does not work well when we’re trying to make technical decisions and mitigate project risk. Now we have fast computation of decisions across hundreds of machines. We have petabytes of memory. We have big data. We can make better decisions. Yet, the heuristics our brains developed to deal in a more scarce environment still linger. We still make decisions based on gut feelings and intuition. Sometimes we celebrate it.

This talk is an anthology of bad assumptions. It’s a narrative of intuition gone wrong. Throughout it, we will highlight established cognitive biases, give individuals opportunity to reflect on their own fallibility, and provide suggestions for how to mitigate. We will show how bias and quick judgement can lead to suboptimal decisions in our work, but also how we can reframe those decisions with data and feedback.
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