Sometimes, i create these little equations in my head that suggest to me how people will act given certain circumstances, not very different from playing bridge or polar bear. i always look upon these equations with great suspicion, because quite often, the equations change because it’s usually made up of a bunch of variables which are, well, varying, but also because what the equations tell me is that there probably is a bunch of variables out there which i probably am not even aware of (plato’s cave) and the only persistent conclusion i can thus draw is that – the equations are inconclusive.

Another reason why the equations are problematic is because they are highly dynamic. One equation is usually inter-dependent on a series of other equations, which are in turn inter-dependent on a series of other equations, usually including the first one. In the end, based on the empirical evidence I’ve gathered, because people are aware of this series of inter-dependent relationships, the result is not people acting according to what would be highly rational thought-of actions considering at least most of the factors of the relevant equations, but instead actions that appear to be ENTIRELY RANDOM and JUST WHACK or at best, in response to a RANDOM variable which they liked and even then, MISUNDERSTOOD.

So in the end, if everything is going to be just random, it is impossible to form a calculated response to the situation at hand given the randomness of the person’s equation. and i guess that is the beautiful thing about human beings anyways.

Aiyah. but of course i’m referring to very specific kind of events which require highly complex and usually irrational equations. i do think we can generally draw patterns in human behaviors and even if we cannot always give reasons for them, constant statistical testing can assure us of persisting patterns that allow us to unfortunately use mathematic tools like CALCULUS to craft economic policy which i am supposed to be able to do in my midterm a few hours from now.

on a more serious note perhaps, in place of equations as a guiding tool to predictive device, we usually base our conclusions based on our own experiences. The idea that our thoughts on something or someone can reveal so much of our experiences scares me sometimes.


~ by moz on March 12, 2010.

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