Posts Tagged: feedback

issues of feedback, learning from feedback

Paper: Social influence and collective opinion formation

The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.
Mark Twain, Christian Science (1907, Book 1, Ch. 5)




Mehdi Moussaïd, Juliane E. Kämmer, Pantelis P. Analytis, Hansjörg Neth

Social influence and the collective dynamics of opinion formation

Abstract:  Social influence is the process by which individuals adapt their opinion, revise their beliefs, or change their behavior as a result of social interactions with other people. In our strongly interconnected society, social influence plays a prominent role in many self-organized phenomena such as herding in cultural markets, the spread of ideas and innovations, and the amplification of fears during epidemics. Yet, the mechanisms of opinion formation remain poorly understood, and existing physics-based models lack systematic empirical validation. Here, we report two controlled experiments showing how participants answering factual questions revise their initial judgments after being exposed to the opinion and confidence level of others. 

Paper: Melioration as rational choice

Maximization (…) is not a general explanatory principle for behavior. (…)
Melioration (…) is the dynamic process controlling allocation of time across response alternatives.
Herrnstein & Vaughan (1980). Melioration and behavioral allocation, p. 143+172

Chris R. Sims, Hansjörg Neth, Robert A. JacobsWayne D. Gray

Melioration as rational choice: Sequential decision making in uncertain environments

Abstract:  Melioration — defined as choosing a lesser, local gain over a greater longer term gain — is a behavioral tendency that people and pigeons share.  As such, the empirical occurrence of meliorating behavior has frequently been interpreted as evidence that the mechanisms of human choice violate the norms of economic rationality.  In some environments, the relationship between actions and outcomes is known. In this case, the rationality of choice behavior can be evaluated in terms of how successfully it maximizes utility given knowledge of the environmental contingencies.  In most complex environments, however, the relationship between actions and future outcomes is uncertain and must be learned from experience.  When the difficulty of this learning challenge is taken into account, it is not evident that melioration represents suboptimal choice behavior. 

Paper: Feedback design for controlling a dynamic multitasking system

If an organism is confronted with the problem of behaving approximately rationally,
or adaptively, in a particular environment, the kinds of simplifications that are suitable
may depend not only on the characteristics—sensory, neural, and other—of the organism,
but equally on the nature of the environment.
H.A. Simon (1956), Rational choice and the structure of the environment, p. 130

[Copyright, 2008]:

Hans Neth, Sunny Khemlani, Wayne Gray (2008)

Feedback design for the control of a dynamic multitasking system: Dissociating outcome feedback from control feedback. Human Factors Journal, 2008.

Hansjörg Neth, Sangeet S. Khemlani, Wayne D. Gray

Feedback design for the control of a dynamic multitasking system: Dissociating outcome feedback from control feedback

Objective: We distinguish outcome feedback from control feedback to show that suboptimal performance in a dynamic multitasking system may be caused by limits inherent to the information provided rather than human resource limits.

Paper: Juggling multiple tasks in a synthetic task environment

Doing two things at once, like singing while you take a shower,
is not the same as instant messaging while writing a research report.
Don’t fool yourself into thinking you can multitask jobs that need your
full attention. You’re not really having a conversation while you write;
you’re shifting your attention back and forth between the two activities quickly.
You’re juggling. When you juggle tasks, your work suffers AND takes longer
— because switching tasks costs.
Gina Trapani, Work Smart,

[Copyright, 2006]:

Hans Neth, Brittney Oppermann, Sunny Khemlani, Wayne Gray (2006)

Juggling multiple tasks: A rational analysis of multitasking in a synthetic task environment.

Paper presented at HFES 2006, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Hansjörg Neth, Sangeet S. Khemlani, Brittney Oppermann, Wayne D. Gray

Juggling multiple tasks: A rational analysis of multitasking in a synthetic task environment

Abstract:  Tardast (Shakeri 2003; Shakeri & Funk, in press) is a new and intriguing paradigm to investigate human multitasking behavior, complex system management, and supervisory control.  We present a replication and extension of the original Tardast study that assesses operators’ learning curve and explains gains in performance in terms of increased sensitivity to task parameters and a superior ability of better operators to prioritize tasks.  We then compare human performance profiles to various artificial software agents that provide benchmarks of optimal and baseline performance and illustrate the outcomes of simple heuristic strategies.  Whereas it is not surprising that human operators fail to achieve an ideal criterion of performance, we demonstrate that humans also fall short of a principally achievable standard.  Despite significant improvements with practice, Tardast operators exhibit stable sub-optimal performance in their time-to-task allocations.