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Fact-Free Learning

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Author Info

  • Enriqueta Aragones

    (Institute d'Analisi Economica, CSIC)

  • Itzhak Gilboa

    (School of Economics, Tel Aviv University)

  • Andrew Postlewaite

    (Economics, University of Pennsylvania)

  • David Schmeidler

    (School of Mathematical Sciences, Tel Aviv Univ.)

Abstract

People may be surprised by noticing certain regularities that hold in existing knowledge they have had for some time. That is, they may learn without getting new factual information. We argue that this can be partly explained by computational complexity. We show that, given a database, finding a small set of variables that obtain a certain value of R^2 is computationally hard, in the sense that this term is used in computer science. We discuss some of the implications of this result and of fact-free learning in general.

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File URL: http://cowles.econ.yale.edu/P/cd/d14b/d1491.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University in its series Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers with number 1491.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2004
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in American Economic Review (2005), 95: 1355-1368
Handle: RePEc:cwl:cwldpp:1491

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Related research

Keywords: Computational complexity; Linear regression; Rule-based reasoning;

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References

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  1. Bray, Margaret M & Savin, Nathan E, 1986. "Rational Expectations Equilibria, Learning, and Model Specification," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1129-60, September.
  2. Itzhak Gilboa, 1990. "Philosophical Applications of Kolmogorov's Complexity Measure," Discussion Papers 923, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  3. Gilboa,Itzhak & Schmeidler,David, 2001. "A Theory of Case-Based Decisions," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521003117.
  4. Dekel, Eddie & Lipman, Barton L. & Rustichini, Aldo, 1998. "Recent developments in modeling unforeseen contingencies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 523-542, May.
  5. Aragones, Enriqueta & Gilboa, Itzhak & Postlewaite, Andrew & Schmeidler, David, 2014. "Rhetoric and analogies," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 1-10.
  6. Dekel, Eddie & Lipman, Barton L & Rustichini, Aldo, 2001. "Representing Preferences with a Unique Subjective State Space," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(4), pages 891-934, July.
  7. Kreps, David M, 1979. "A Representation Theorem for "Preference for Flexibility"," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(3), pages 565-77, May.
  8. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1999. "The Quality of Government," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 222-79, April.
  9. Anderlini, Luca & Felli, Leonardo, 1994. "Incomplete Written Contracts: Undescribable States of Nature," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(4), pages 1085-1124, November.
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  1. 'The Spread' is Absurd, So is Life
    by Eric Falkenstein in Falkenblog on 2011-03-30 01:42:00
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