Brain Oddities: Spelling is Irrelevant to Comprehension

Posted: December 16, 2010 in science & technology
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By Barry Ritholtz – December 13th, 2010, 9:15AM

In trying to make sense of the world around us, our brains have evolved to do some very odd things. The more we learn about our cognitive processes, the more it seems we have inherited a very weird wetware set, filled with bizarre and misleading foibles.

While most of the cognitive errors I reference here work against us — especially as investors — today’s example of a cognitive process works strangely in the brain’s favor: Spelling don’t matter. Comprehension remains essentially unchanged, even when all letters of a word are totally mixed up — just so long as the first and last letters are in their proper place.

Spelling, it seems, is irrelevant to comprehension. Try this jumble below and see if the flawed wetware you call a brain can read it:

Pretty cool, eh? Quite a marvelous set of neurons you got there . . .

[Taken from Barry Ritholtz’s blog The Big Picture]

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