Monday, February 25, 2008

Thinking Differently

This NY Times article describes a new generation of anti-psychotic drugs that might actually treat cognitive problems as well as reducing hallucinations. The article focuses on Darryle Schoepp who ran the original trials of a drug that modifies glutamate uptake in the brain.

When asked what he would do if the larger trials failed, he said he would probably go out and have a beer.

"You have to define failure. If you collect information and it tells you what you need to know, you’re not a failure."

This beautifully illustrates two of my favorite principles:
  1. How we define something largely controls how we react to it.
  2. Scientists value negative feedback as much as positive, making them less vulnerable to confirmation bias.

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