Collective Action You are probably familiar with the prisoner’s dilemma. For those who don’t know, here’s a quick summation. The prisoner’s dilemma is the archetypical game theory situation. See the above example. If both players confess, both loose 6 points of utility. If neither confess, both loose one point of utility. But if one confesses, … Continue reading What is Social Capital?
Have you ever wondered why there is still a royal family in the UK? One that doesn’t ostensibly holds no power, and “rules” over (several) otherwise democratic countries? Have you ever wondered about seemingly arbitrary cultural practices, like marriage? Why businessmen wear a suit and tie? These things seem normal because they are the way … Continue reading Traditions and Junk DNA
In decision theory, the term "game" has a specific definition that is different from everyday use. Because this blog is based on decision theory, it is worth nodding to that fact. However, that is not the subject of this post. This post is about the term “game” in common usage. I would like to both … Continue reading Why do we play games?
A biologist I admire, Bret Weinstein, employs a four-part test to determine whether a trait is the product of evolution. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DtdOhBoZfNg Is it complex? Does it have a cost? Is there variation in the amount of cost that is spent? Does it persist over evolutionary time? If a trait has all of those characteristics, then … Continue reading The errors with Bret Weinstein’s four-part test of adaption
[Updated for clarification] Google defines "zero sum": (of a game or situation) in which whatever is gained by one side is lost by the other. Ask yourself, what gives something that property? I posit, it is something that one cannot create. Can only be taken. When it is impossible to create something, the only way to … Continue reading Land, Status, People