Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Gambler’s Fallacy


Maladaptive Decisions – Random Incidents – Gambler’s Fallacy - GF

Humans often tend to make maladaptive decisions with regards to random incidents, one of which is the gambler’s fallacy – Gambler’s Fallacy, which is a certainty that incidence of a particular random event is probably after a series of the same incident. The Gambler’s Fallacy is observed to prejudice individuals’ conclusion as well as decisions in several situations like gambling, stock investment, lottery play and several other tasks.

 A characteristic pattern of the decisions directed by the Gambler’s Fallacy  is that people seem to be more probable in predicting the break of a line when it tends to get longer. Traditionally the GF is considered as an experimental bias regarded by the law of small numbers – 5,6, which could be a section of a random sequence that could reflect the general distribution.

Though the experimental bias hypothesis recommends that the Gambler’s Fallacy  is supported by fast, emotional as well as instinctive system, it can be overcome by planned reasoning, emerging evidence mostly from neuroscience studies which indicates that Gambler’s Fallacy  could be the outcome of imbalanced cognitive as well as emotional decision making appliances.However from the data received from a huge sample of college students, it was found that individuals’ utilization of the Gambler’s Fallacy  strategy seemed to be positively correlated with their general intelligence as well as decision-making functions.

Working Memory & Conflict Resolution

These could be working memory and conflict resolution though adversely correlated with their affective decisions making potentials, measured by the Iowa Gambling Task. Results have provided fresh awareness in the mechanisms underlying the Gambler’s Fallacy  which enhances the important role of affective mechanisms in adaptive decision making function.

The hypothesis has been formulated that the Gambler’s Fallacy  is connected with weak function in the effective decision making method and strong functions in the reasoning structure supported by the lateral prefrontal cortex – LPFC.

With regards to decision making, the LPFC has an important role in constructing and detecting patterns as well as updating decision making policies as per the context which are two element processes essential in implementing the GF strategy. The Gambler’s Fallacy  decisions for instance, more risk taking conduct after losses rather than wins, was connected with left prefrontal cortex activity.

Brain Responses to Left LPFC

Recent research utilised a mixture of functional magnetic resonance imaging – MRI and trancranial direct current stimulation –tDCS technologies in an effort to establish underlying relationship between activities in the prefrontal cortex as well as the use of the Gambler’s Fallacy  strategy.

The outcome indicated that the brain responses in the left lateral prefrontal cortex to the current result preceded the use of the GF approach followed by 10 seconds thereafter. Moreover, the anodal tDCS over the left LPFC that improved the LPFC function increased the use of the GF approach. While on the other hand, the GF could also be increased further by a weak affective decision making mechanism.

Individuals with impaired affective decision making owing to lesions in the mesial OFC/ventromedial prefrontal cortex as well as the amygdala displayed behavioural patterns which gather the Gambler’s Fallacy. For instance, in the case of the Iowa gambling task – IGT, which stimulates daily life decision making and healthy participants slowly tend to shift to advantageous decks by creating predictive somatic responses to disadvantageous decks while patients with focal brain damages in the ventromedial PFC tend to keep choosing the disadvantageous decks after experiencing severe losses.

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