icm2re logo. icm2:re (I Changed My Mind Reviewing Everything) is an 

ongoing web column edited and published by Brunella Longo

This column deals with some aspects of change management processes experienced almost in any industry impacted by the digital revolution: how to select, create, gather, manage, interpret, share data and information either because of internal and usually incremental scope - such learning, educational and re-engineering processes - or because of external forces, like mergers and acquisitions, restructuring goals, new regulations or disruptive technologies.

The title - I Changed My Mind Reviewing Everything - is a tribute to authors and scientists from different disciplinary fields that have illuminated my understanding of intentional change and decision making processes during the last thirty years, explaining how we think - or how we think about the way we think. The logo is a bit of a divertissement, from the latin divertere that means turn in separate ways.

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Isn't it time to start the calculation game?

About thinking styles and judgement errors that make human intelligence unaffordable for the machines

How to cite this article?
Longo, Brunella (2015). Isn't it time to start the calculation game? About thinking styles and judgement errors that make human intelligence unaffordable for the machines. icm2re [I Changed my Mind Reviewing Everything ISSN 2059-688X (Print)], 4.2 (February).

How to cite this article?
Longo, Brunella (2015). Isn't it time to start the calculation game? About thinking styles and judgement errors that make human intelligence unaffordable for the machines. icm2re [I Changed my Mind Reviewing Everything ISSN 2059-688X (Online)], 4.2 (February).
Full-text accessible at http://www.brunellalongo.co.uk/

February 2015 - Answering a question at the end of an interesting lecture about the status of artificial intelligence research (Computers and Brains, BCS Lovelace Lecture, Royal Society, 19 March 2015) Professor Stephen Furber said that so far "human brains are much more cheaper to make". Indeed, the wit suggested to me we should start thinking of computing power in terms of actual aids to human judgements now that the Imitation Game has been even glamourised by Hollywood.

If you wonder what happened to my application for rectification of false personal details made in the bankruptcy order I was affected by in 2013 (see Nothing like a wrong bankruptcy order to spoil my reputation? Nudging the nudgers on gamification of governance and cybercrime) or what was the outcome of the hearing for the annulment of the same bizarre bankruptcy order made against me at a PO BOX, there is unfortunately nothing very relevant to add but that I have not lost trust in the justice system in spite of the fact I have lost these claims (1).

This perhaps constitutes, per se, an extraordinary news. Together with the fact that... no orders for costs have been made in both cases.

I have not lost trust in the justice system in spite of the enormous wounded feelings the miscarriages of justice caused me. This not because of a blind faith, a casual miracle or because of stupid acquiescence or desire to avoid unpleasant thoughts - such as being represented as a caricature or targeted with libel by civil servants (that is possibly the most improbable type of reputation attack one could imagine these days).

No, I simply switched thinking style and I saw the matter within a completely different picture.

Awareness, understanding and possibly handling of thinking styles is another useful competence I gained from my former training business. It is something that I learned on the job and I reward - after more than ten years - among the most important skills developed thanks to my Palestra Internet Panta Rei agency, particularly for communications within digital environments.

Awareness of thinking styles simply helps discover there is an alternative way of seeing, believing and learning that for innate attitude, education or habits we may not have immediately available, especially when visual, verbal and emotional clues can be obstructed or limited because of technical peculiarities of the channel we use to communicate with each other (like social media or You Tube or email messages).

But if we know we can switch from a thinking style to another we are less familiar with (or prone to) it becomes easier to face a certain situation, goal or challenge more effectively. Being able to recognise we all have different types of intelligence can also help against aggressive manipulative developments of behavioural communications - those type of conversations that usually end with lot of credit card charges you cannot really explain or with the conviction your neighbour is a dodgy person even if you do not have any sensible and credible reason for thinking that.

Here is the case for thinking styles from my forthcoming 99 STARs book, with of course infinite tribute to Robert J. Sternberg that proposed such notion since the 1970s and more extensively since the late 1990s:


 SITUATION: A digital educational context with services aimed at adult workers.

 TASK: I had to  identify a solution ready available or devise and implement my own one so that the web format 

could be personalised in easily manageable ways, consistent with the users information behaviours and preferred learning patterns. 

 ACTION: Following an extensive  research, I identified  several theories about cognitive and learning styles that could be

 applied in an adult e-learning context. I partnered with a university professor  who helped me identify  in Stenberg's Thinking Styles 

the best theoretical framework I could rely on. After a period of trial and testing of a pilot version, I designed and implemented a simple 

questionnaire based on Steinberg's theory. The assessment was enough accurate to predict which activities each participant would 

prefer and which ones he / she would dislike. We could assign each participant within the first two hours of active enrollment to 

a specific group and the tutors could quickly  deliver appropriate versions of tasks, exercises and feedbacks to the diverse styles. 

The participants could  try and verify themselves the effectiveness of the guidance - and that was particularly useful to

 reinforce learning choices and motivations.

 RESULTS: The initiative was much appreciated. I presented it during an event organised by the local association 

for professional Training and Development and in other occasions in which I was required to give presentations about 

critical success factors in delivering quality e-learning programmes aimed at adult workers.

 

How did I apply my thinking styles skills in the case of my recent bankruptcy annulment claim?

Instead of competing with the judges and disputing on substantial and procedural matters from the disproportionately weak position of a self represented litigant, I looked at the whole matter from the point of view of the regulator switching from a judicial to a legislative mindset (Sternberg identified and defined twelve different thinking styles but I refer here to the functional ones that are the Executive, Legislative and Judicial thinking styles).

How did it happen? At a certain point, my stomach ordered me to leave. It seemed that was the only serious thing to do in a paradoxical hearing in which a Judge was entertaining herself on the reasons why she should not change her mind about a bankruptcy order she herself had made in 2013 against me, a self represented litigant who had failed to have her claim for damages even heard.

That changing mindset simply made me think I was fighting against a sick justice system.

So, I left the Court at 1:15pm (the hearing had been scheduled for 30 minutes and started punctually at 12:00).

I asked myself: what can be done to prevent such terrible cases of protracted abuses and miscarriages of justice to be repeated?

For the last twenty years, since I left the Berlusconi media empire in 1994/1995 after an outplacement exercise that turned out in a criminal case with myself physically and verbally assaulted by Nicola Grauso, a Berlusconi friend and partner of first generation Mediaset and Publitalia projects in Sardinia, Poland and other markets, I have never been able to be legally represented neither in Italy nor in England, where I moved in 2008.

In some circumstances, the italian lawyers who helped me to deal with minor day by day business issues made clear they would drop litigations because of "costs reasons".

Over the years I managed to stay very well away from the Courts being aware that the civil law - especially when dealing with commercial and intellectual property matters - tend to be very risky for small businesses and individuals not legally represented.

I negotiated some good win-win agreements with customers and suppliers, I compromised in other occasions, I managed to withdraw myself from situations that would be too risky, difficult or ambiguous in terms of non compliance, to confront myself with Judges and Masters, to discuss legal questions with law experts, to buy and sell my homes in Italy.

I kept on writing and sharing know how on legal resources and some legal information topical matters in connection with technologies of information and communication. I have never lost the confidence but also the humility of a person who trust the role of justice in a democratic system. And I did not come to England in search of compensation for bygones legal cases. Nevertheless I found myself entrapped in a legal nightmare.

In 2012 I failed to convince Master Cook in the High Court that a charitable company must produce vat invoices at the right tax point as any other company - and who knows if he decided that was not the case because of a possible temporary lack of arithmetic skills or because he may have a relative working in the same charitable company. These were not pertinent facts. He made a material mistake in a judgement, then an amendment order, then an incomprehensible confusion in respect of costs. Nonetheless, he appreciated my writings. I made him aware that according to some Terms and Conditions of legal databases I should have not provided photocopies within a bundle of authorities. Few weeks later the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales issued a new Citation of Authorities Practice Direction 2012 that reminded the public nature of legislation and reported cases - hopefully once and to all database vendors.

In the case of my bankruptcy, at first it seemed to me a bruising but technically convenient compromise to stop a property lawsuit that I had little chance to win without being legally represented. Then it turned out to be instead the vehicle to exploit my time, my assets and even the debt I had with my mother even further.

How can it be explained or justified the abuse of my personal pension, started with a contracted out policy in 1983 and then tracked and documented along thirty years of savings?

A District Judge Clarke in the Central London County Court decided that there is nothing wrong if a property in the Land Registry is falsely attributed to myself.

Furthermore, there was nothing wrong for the same District Judge Lambert who ordered first the petition to be gazetted as it was made in the High Court instead of a County Court and then produced the bankruptcy order, to even deal with the application for the annulment made on grounds it ought not to have been made. I respectful suggested she might wish to pass the case to a Registrar in the upper Court or, at least, to a different District Judge. She disagreed. Perhaps she got the idea she could suggest a claim for damages against the appointed trustees: that would be another opportunity to provide further learning to the Minister of Justice on changing Insolvency Law.

And that is not all. The attempt I made to reopen the property case that lead to the bankruptcy itself was motivated by the appalling disrespect of the appointed trustees for my personal pension and for my mother and a disabled brother vested interests in it. It ended in what I felt as a further intimidatory threat: after I filed my application for the annulment of the bankruptcy, a District Judge Advent in the same Central London County Court, out of the blue, produced a warrant for repossession of the property where I live now, that is not in the Central London jurisdiction nor is in any way subject to possession proceedings. But it happens that Judge Advent is the same judge who caused my eviction in 2012 from New College Court, in spite of the fact I had started a claim for damages in 2011 because that was the property I should have had the right to buy - so that a claim for repossession should have not been even issued. A "crazy injunction" was even re-issued with different dates following the order of a Deputy District Judge Rollason whilst court officers provided evidence they had not shared previous Orders causing an astonishing waste of time for the Court and for myself in the meantime.

And so on and so forth, from a judicial point of view facts may be made appearing less or more relevant than they actually are, can be framed and reframed changing the context and can be misrepresented by deliberate or unintentional procedural errors even when there are few doubts about the actual course of actions, scrupulously documented and controlled.

But facts can also trigger new thinking and that means we can always have the option of writing new rules, something the fastest and powerful computer processors are really long way off.

Notes

(1) On the 26th January 2015 I logged the application for the annulment of the bankruptcy order made by Judge Lambert on 12 March 2013. The bankruptcy had already been discharged authomatically (13 March 2014) and all the alleged debt been paid but the appointed trustees were refusing to bring the bankruptcy to a closure and keeping interfering with my affairs on the grounds of further fraudulent data such as odd registrations in the land registry. My application was dismissed with a judgement made by the same Judge Lambert that ordered the bankruptcy.