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42 Reviews
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I think, therefore I err
`The art of thinking clearly' by Rolf Dobelli took 10 days to arrive. It is hardback, but thick paperback sized (326 pages), made up of 99 Chapters each of two to three pages.

Originally the text was written as a series short magazine articles, so this is in effect a bound collection all in one place.

Rolf tackles the many ways in which thinking...
Published 11 months ago by Cambridgereader

versus
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Read Taleb instead
I bought this because this genre interests me and it had a glowing reviews. But actually the writing style is simplistic bordering on patronising. The writer comes across as an enthusiastic hobbyist rather than an expert, and he presents some fairly obvious concepts as dramatic revelations. For instance, it turns out advertisers use pretty people to sell products (really,...
Published 9 months ago by Maciej K. Wasilewicz


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read this superb book on thinking errors, 25 April 2013
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In his book The Art of Thinking Clearly Dobelli listed almost 100 thinking errors. This begs the question: Why are there these traps? For many decades, the origins of these errors remained in the dark. Why should our brains of all things experience lapse after lapse?
Here is Dobelli's answer: Thinking is a biological phenomenon. Evolution has shaped it just as it has the forms of animals or the colours of flowers. Physically, and that includes cognitively, we are hunter-gatherers in Tom Ford clothes (or H&M, as the case may be). What has changed markedly since ancient times is the environment in which we live. Back then, in our hunter-gatherer past, things were simple and stable. We lived in small groups of about fifty to a hundred people. There was no significant technological or social progress. Only in the last 10,000 years did the world begin to transform dramatically, with the development of crops, livestock, villages, cities, global trade and financial markets. Everything is more sophisticated today, but also more complex and interdependent. The result is overwhelming material prosperity, but also systematic errors in thinking. If the complexity continues to rise these errors will only increase and intensify. That's why everyone in business should read this superb book.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Read Taleb instead, 5 July 2013
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I bought this because this genre interests me and it had a glowing reviews. But actually the writing style is simplistic bordering on patronising. The writer comes across as an enthusiastic hobbyist rather than an expert, and he presents some fairly obvious concepts as dramatic revelations. For instance, it turns out advertisers use pretty people to sell products (really, this was one of his breakthroughs). Having previously read Taleb, who is almost hero worshippes in Dobelli's book, I found the art of thinking clearly to be much less of a breakthrough. I would recommend Dobelli's book to anyone who has never thought about behavioural psychology before, but for most people Taleb is better (if in himself, a breathtakingly arrogant writer).
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Punchy little book!, 30 Jun 2013
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Great little book that has a lot of useful tips in.
Would recommend to anyone needing an easy to pick up/put down book as broken down into useful bite-sized chapters
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5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommended, 7 Jan 2014
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Very insightful and thought-provoking.
Well written in small digestible chapters with just the right amount of "tongue-in-cheek" humour.
Highly recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Really good and useful., 25 Dec 2013
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A book I would read again. Lots of interesting and useful material in this book. I found it an interesting read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Love this book, 2 Nov 2013
By 
R. Sinclair (UK) - See all my reviews
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I love psychology and theology, particularly sport psychology and this little book incorporates a lot of info from other books I've read. What I like about this book is that it's in an easy to read, bite size formula making the information accessible to everyone! I got a copy for my Dad for his birthday because I think there's something for everyone here and he's not a big reader so this won't over face him! Highly recommend this book to everyone!
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4.0 out of 5 stars A compendium of newspaper columns treating common difficulties in practical reasoning, 9 Oct 2013
By 
Paul Bowes (Wales, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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'The Art of Thinking Clearly' is a slightly misleading title. Rather than being a systematic manual of instruction in how to reason, the book collects a series of short observations about errors in practical reasoning that bedevil all of us at one time or another. These were composed as newspaper columns, and the book has the episodic structure and absence of clear development that one would expect from such a compendium. Nonetheless, some effort has been made to draw thematic links between the separate chapters, so that the interested reader may follow particular themes further if he so wishes; and there's an index.

This may give the impression that the book is trivial. In fact, it is entertaining and lucidly written. It might be an ideal introduction to the problems of thinking for an intelligent teenager. The short chapters and episodic structure lend themselves to dipping, but most of what Dobelli has to say is reasonable and accurate. He may focus on the negative side of reasoning - how to avoid error - but if we could all take these lessons to heart the world might be a saner place.

The faults in reasoning that Dobelli covers in his ninety-nine chapters are quite various: everything from purely logical fallacies to intellectual misunderstandings of probability and psychological weaknesses receives some attention. Dobelli is well versed in recent science - or at least in the popularised versions of recent science - and properly sceptical of our ability to detect the most likely flaws in our own reasoning and protect ourselves from the consequences.

The book has been very successful and widely translated; as a taster, one could do much worse. A reader genuinely interested in the subject will probably want to look further, but there is no shortage of books, many written for students, that take a more systematic approach.
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5.0 out of 5 stars excellent, 16 Sep 2013
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a must read for anyone and plenty to think about. a very positive review or am i thinking clearly? lol
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3.0 out of 5 stars Necesarily Superficial, 27 Aug 2013
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This is more of a list with accompanying notes than a detailed exploration. Of course, given that the author covers a hundred individual thinking errors, you can't really expected a detailed and illustrated discussion of each, but I was often left wanting more information on a point. Therefore I think the book makes a good starting point for researching these thinking errors but be prepared to go to other sources on more than a few occasions.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Is it that clear?, 27 Aug 2013
By 
Dr. David James "David James" (Henley, UK) - See all my reviews
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A strong book with some good thoughts and ideas. Is it put over that clearly though? I'm not sure. But, then again, it is a great read so do try it.
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