Saturday, August 5, 2017

The Thought Express

What are racing thoughts? What speed should thoughts be?  Wikipedia tells us that racing thoughts is an expression that refers to the rapid thought patterns that often occur in manic, hypomanic or mixed episodes.  And I just expected to find out that sometimes we think fast and other times slower.  Instead the articles are about calculating how fast we think.

The website "The Conversation" (Academic rigour, journalistic flair) has an article on the speed of thought. This article says that a given thought can be generated and acted on in less than 150 ms.  This article identifies a 'thought':

"For our purposes, a “thought” will be defined as the mental activities engaged from the moment sensory information is received to the moment an action is initiated. This definition necessarily excludes many experiences and processes one might consider to be “thoughts.”"

"In sum, although quantifying a single “speed of thought” may never be possible, analyzing the time it takes to plan and complete actions provides important insights into how efficiently the nervous system completes these processes, and how changes associated with movement and cognitive disorders affect the efficiency of these mental activities."

Here's a great question on the internet:
Is the speed of my thoughts/imagination, faster than the speed of light?

And here's a fact:
According to a particular study it was seen that close to 99% of the thoughts in a human mind tend to be repetitive, with just 1% left for any original or new thought.

We're into the month of August and I found this  abstract interpretation of the restaurant August's sign, along with some abstracts from a restaurant ceiling in Toronto.

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