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flano1
07-12-2001, 07:22 PM
many years ago there was a quiz doing the rounds.

after a series of questions a final one was asked:

what is your favorite vegetable?

in overwhelming numbers the answer given was "carrot"-i think

why? and what the hell were the preceding questions?

help!

curiousgeorgeordeadcat
07-12-2001, 09:28 PM
I remember people asking:
What is 3 times 5?
Name a vegetable.
The person doing this would then claim the numbers 3, 5,
15, and the word "carrot" are all stored in the same part
of the brain.

Really I think people just tend to think of carrots first
when asked to name a vegetable. Perhaps carrots are
actually the most popular?

flano1
07-12-2001, 10:20 PM
thanx cgdc

i'll test the 3x5 hypothesis, perhaps with a bunch of

other q's and see what happens.

it also raises the problem of the rate of change of the

mind. i.e. how does the brain assume new knowledge over

the entire population. in this case a number system and

a new vegetable. ( mind you, i have no idea where carrots

came from, nor when they became part of everyone's diet)

chrisn
07-12-2001, 10:55 PM
I've seen this effect achieved by getting people to repeat the word "aluminum" thirty times and then asking them to quickly name a vegetable. Of course, these were inebriated university students so that's really not saying much either.

I think the idea is that performing any distractor task makes it more likely that someone will say "carrot" because, for most people, its prototypical of the vegetable category.

curiousgeorgeordeadcat
07-13-2001, 12:58 AM
flano1:
You actually asked this question before. I guess you must
have lost track of the thread, as you are new. Here it is:
http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=76802
Welcome to the board.