Alex Pentland Quotes

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  • Near the end of the 1700s, philosophers began to declare that humans were rational individuals. People were flattered by being recognized as individuals, and by being called rational, and the idea soon wormed its way into the belief systems of nearly everyone in the upper class. Despite resistance from Church and State, the idea of rational individuality replaced the assumption that truth comes only from god and king.

    Kings   Class   Ideas  
  • The largest factor in predicting group intelligence was the equality of conversational turn taking; groups where a few people dominated the conversation were less collectively intelligent than those with a more equal distribution of conversational turn taking.

    "Social Physics: How Social Networks Can Make Us Smarter". Book by Alex Pentland, January 30, 2014.
  • It is not simply the brightest who have the best ideas; it is those who are best at harvesting ideas from others. It is not only the most determined who drive change; it is those who most fully engage with like-minded people. And it is not wealth or prestige that best motivates people; it is respect and help from peers.

    Ideas   People   Peers  
    Alex Pentland (2014). “Social Physics: How Social Networks Can Make Us Smarter”, p.8, Penguin
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