[<< | Prev | Index | Next | >>]

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Marginally Predictive Pleasures and Pains

My comment to a recent entry of Aaron's:

Just because one course will bring you the most pleasure doesn't mean that's the one you will take. Pleasure is the mechanism by which we learn to seek, prefer, or perform certain hard-to-hardwire behaviors. More deeply hard-wired behaviors, by contrast, don't necessarily require pleasure feedback. A great deal of what we actually do might be easily explained by genetic utility without any apparent personal utility (yet still we do it!). Pleasure, happiness, pain, and sadness may be merely marginal predictors of human behavior, with the substrate dictated by less subjectively evident programming.

Also related: The old man and the sea.

[<< | Prev | Index | Next | >>]

Simon Funk / simonfunk@gmail.com