Human innate desire to grok a problem – motivation on gaming

28/06/2012 16:16

Found this text online about gaming, and game mechanics.

Humans are wired to solve black boxes. It is a fundamental aspect of our neurological learning wetware. We get real chemical rewards when we grok* a problem or gain information that we suspect will help in grokking a black box. Evolution has selected for this behavior over thousands of generations since it is the biological reward system that encourages tool use and technological adoption. Without this built in addiction to problem solving, we would lack agriculture, medicine, architecture and other fundamental survival techniques that make the human species such a remarkably successful animal. [Daniel Cook]

* To grok is to intimately and completely share the same reality or line of thinking with another physical or conceptual entity.

I am very much convinced people are often challenged by a puzzle, or for instance in daily situations people to want to comprehend (grok*) what might be ‘off’ or different then expected. So we search for patterns we recognize, if these are as aspected, we are happy to be able to recognize it (conscious or unconsciously rewarded) when a pattern is distorted, we want to figure out what is the distortion and why it is distorted.

An example to illustrate:

You walk in a park relaxt, you are surrounded with a lot of people, cyclists speeding by, skaters and runners, you notice a couple in love on a bench, you see trees, grass, plants, people moving, you move, and suddenly your eye is being drawn to the dog… the dog… why? You wonder what you saw what makes you suddenly looking at the dog… that’s it! The dog only has three legs! And still it walks almost normal by jumping a little instead of walking on four legs consistently. You wonder what happened to the dog, whether it is born like that or an accident, you try to get clues while watching the dog and the owner, the way they move together, the details on the dogs leg… you are trying to make the pattern compleet again, this time with a dog with three legs instead of the other pattern you would have easily recognised and not have taken into any reconsideration, a park setting with a dog with four leggings.

But I wonder how come we are so well trained to notice these tiny little details in life which are only so little “off” the perfect image or pattern.

Categories

Alice, apply play, behaviorchange, english, favorite, psychology, puzzel, serious

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