"Heads or tails?"--a reachability bias in binary choice.

  title={"Heads or tails?"--a reachability bias in binary choice.},
  author={Maya Bar-Hillel and Eyal P{\'e}er and Alessandro Acquisti},
  journal={Journal of experimental psychology. Learning, memory, and cognition},
  volume={40 6},
When asked to mentally simulate coin tosses, people generate sequences that differ systematically from those generated by fair coins. It has been rarely noted that this divergence is apparent already in the very 1st mental toss. Analysis of several existing data sets reveals that about 80% of respondents start their sequence with Heads. We attributed this to the linguistic convention describing coin toss outcomes as "Heads or Tails," not vice versa. However, our subsequent experiments found the… CONTINUE READING
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