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The Intelligence Trap Book

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Perhaps the best analogy of intelligence is a car. A faster engine can get you places more quickly if you know how to use it correctly. But simply having more horsepower won’t guarantee that you will arrive at your destination safely. Without the right knowledge and equipment – the brakes, the steering wheel, the speedometer, a compass and a good map – a fast engine may just lead to you driving in circles – or straight into oncoming traffic. And the faster the engine, the more dangerous you are.

The Intelligence Trap Book is about why intelligent people act stupidly – and why in some cases they are even more prone to error than the average person. The book focuses on the strategies that we can all employ to avoid the same mistakes: lessons that will help anyone to think more wisely and rationally in this post-truth world.

The Intelligence Trap by David Robson is a great read that sheds light on many cognitive biases we all have; David shares some great strategies for identifying them and some insights on working on them. It is not what we know that gets us into trouble; it is what we think we know for sure that ain’t so. The author gives various examples of how brilliant people make seemingly stupid mistakes.

Intelligence can help you to learn and recall facts, and process complex information quickly, but you also need the necessary checks and balances to apply that brainpower correctly. Without them, greater intelligence can actually make you more biased in your thinking.

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, The Intelligence Trap: Why Smart People Make Dumb Mistakes by David Robson: