Why? Mario Livio

  • Epistemic curiosity is the type Einstein had in abundance
  • Specific curiosity - when u want to know what film that actress was in
  • Diversive curiosity - restless desire to explore. Seeking of novel stimulation to avoid boredom. Checking for new email. Impatient etc.
  • Empathic curiosity - trying to understand a person as in citizen Kane plot
  • Morbid curiosity - can't look away

Details about Leonardo

He started many more projects than he finished

He was not well read (thankfully! As his experiments were not thus hampered by too many wrong ideas.)

He started by using science to improve his art but finally used art to improve his science.

"Cyberchondria" "a diagnosis based on apparent symptoms that is induced by an internet search"

Novelty can be mapped on these axes:

Specific <---> diversive

A specific thing that once found will satisfy the seeking, or

Diversive: the ceaseless seeking to ward off boredom

Perceptual <---> epistemic

Perceptual is aroused by surprising novel or ambiguous

Epistemic is the genuine yearning for new knowledge

Wait - isn't there arousal toward stimulation and secondly satisfaction of the arousal - and you may need to classify it based on both ends of the curiosity arc

Four factors that lead to things being worthy of curiosity:

  • Novelty
  • Complexity
  • Uncertainty and
  • Conflict

Curiosity is a cognitive induced deprivation- an information gap

Eg in sudoku we have a clear information gap - small enough that we can fill it and we must fill it

Having filled it a new gap is thus made smaller and within reach - or we believe it is and then we must fill that - and so on.

(Could We model the size of the information gaps at each stage of a game of sudoku, and work out if or when it is maximally satisfying - when are people least likely to lose interest? - and from this develop genetic algorithms that evolve novel games with maximally enjoyable rulesets? Again modeling the human brain in some rudimentary way is an obvious need of such systems. A definition of fun. )

"Everywhere there is a source of food there's some form of life that finds it." Told to Feynman by his dad in relation to lice on birds whose excretions caused bacteria to blossom

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