On Clustering Illusion

Clustering illusion: The human brain seeks patterns and rules. If it finds no familiar patterns, then it invents them.


  1. Seeing shapes in clouds
  2. Hearing messages in background noise
  3. Seeing an image where none exist: in bread, in ashes, in tortillas and planets
  4. Seeing patterns in stock market data
  5. Seeing patterns in random sequences

In almost all cases, we have been fooled.


  • Be aware that we find patterns where none exist.
  • If you think you have discovered a pattern, first consider it pure chance.
  • If you think it is true, find a mathematician and have your data tested statistically.

-notes from “The Art Of Thinking Clearly” by Rolf Dobelli


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