tonyyet + insight   12

In search of insight
This paper describes the process of attaining the insight required to solve a particular problem—the Mutilated Checkerboard (MC) problem. It shows that attaining insight requires discovering an effective problem representation, and that performance on insight problems can be predicted from the availability of generators and constraints in the search for such a representation. To test these claims we varied the salience of features leading to the critical concept of parity in the MC problem. Using chronometric measures, verbal protocols, and computer simulations, we explored first why it is difficult to find a representation for the Checkerboard problem, and then tested four potential sources of search constraint for reducing the difficulty: cue salience manipulations, prior knowledge, hints, and heuristics. While subjects used each of these four sources of constraint, a particular heuristic—noticing properties of the situation that remained invariant during solution attempts (the Notice Invariants heuristic)—proved to be a particularly powerful means for focusing search. In conjunction with hints and independently, it played a major part in producing the insight that yielded an effective problem representation and solution.
august 2015 by tonyyet

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