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Using intensive reinforcement for developing intellectual abilities

r norman rsn_ at _comcast.net
Wed Jan 21 08:53:50 EST 2004

On Wed, 21 Jan 2004 12:52:25 GMT, "Glen M. Sizemore"
<gmsizemore2 at yahoo.com> wrote:

>1.) Why use brain stimulation rather than more conventional reinforcers? 2.)
>Both positive and negative reinforcement have played a large role in the
>"development" of most human beings. 3.) You do know that there is a large
>literature on the "Law of Effect" discovered by Thorndike (of course,
>"hedonism" was a philosophical precursor) and widely investigated by the
>scientific field (founded by BF Skinner; the "experimental analysis of
>behavior" or "behavior analysis," nowadays), right? 4.) There is a
>successful behavioral technology based on the principles discovered in the
>basic laboratory (which uses both humans and non-humans) called "Applied
>Behavior Analysis." For some of the basic research from about '56 or '57 on
>see "The Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior." Much applied
>work can be found in the "Journal of the Applied Analysis of Behavior"
>founded, I think, in the '70s.

I think the real reason is that the "old fashioned way" is a lot of
hard work --  read books, take exams, study, practice, get scolded and
praised by your parents or boss.  Why bother with all this when you
can just stick in an electrode and give yourself a jolt?  It is the
same way of thinking that says we don't have to pay attention to diet,
exercise, life style or cope with really sad and depressing events
that happen to us.  After all, medicine will just give us pill we can

Note:  I am NOT a Luddite anti-technology freak.  But technology has
its place and that place is not to replace living.

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