The story of smart Hans

The story of smart Hans

Sometimes, some inadvertent subtle movements that are inadvertently made are only a one-fifth of a millimeter of moving distance, but Hans can use it as a signal to stop tapping.

  At the beginning of the 20th century, a horse named Hans caused a huge sensation.

  The owner of Hans is a retired middle school teacher named William von Osten.

In the eyes of others, Osten is a weirdo.

He is very simple in his daily life, rarely interacts with people, but he likes to deal with horses very much.

In 1901, he bought Hans and began to teach it.

He wants to figure out how much a horse’s thinking ability can be improved and developed through systematic lectures.

  The first skill that Osten taught to Hans was counted by tapping the hoof.

He put a few bottleposts on the table, then he kneels beside Hans, grabs its hooves, and teaches it to tap according to the number of bottles: three bottles are knocked three times, fourThe bottle column knocked four times. At the same time, he also pointed out the number loudly and clearly, just like teaching a child who just learned to count.

Hans shows amazing learning ability.

It didn’t take long for it to count on the hoof itself, and even just read a number out loud or write it on the blackboard, and Hans can count it correctly.

What is even more amazing is that under the guidance of the master, the intelligent Hans has mastered four basic mathematical operations through the training of displacement.

When people present an arithmetic transformation to it, it will use the hoof to surprisingly knock out the exact answer.

Hans also learned to recognize words by tapping the hoof: each letter can be translated into a numeric code, and Hans can use the number of hoots to represent the letter.

  Osten began to perform in public, but not for profit.

When someone asks how much a ticket is, he always answers: “We don’t collect money here, you just need to concentrate on watching it!

In one performance, Bethmann Hollweg, who later became German Chancellor, was one of the audience.

People introduced his name to Hans and read it several times until Hans nodded.

After a quarter of an hour, Hans did not hesitate to slap with his hoof. The audience could easily compare Hans’s “spelling” according to what was hanging in front.

As a result, Hans knocked out “Betmann”, and the other letters were not bad except for the inappropriate h.

The attendees were stunned and then jubilant.

The wise Hans and its owner, Osten, became the subject of extensive coverage in the German media, and the public was able to calculate and the spelled Hans attracted.

But there are also skeptics who think that there may be something tricky in the performance, or something tricky.

  Later, the clever Hans caught the attention of scientific institutions.

People set up a test committee to conduct scientific appraisal of smart Hans.

Members include E. Stumford, a psychology professor at the University of Berlin, and another psychologist, as well as a zoo director and circus manager, a veterinarian and a cavalry officer.

Osten had great confidence in Hans’s intelligence and actively cooperated.

On September 12, 1904, the committee made an identification indicator: no deceptive tricks were found.

  The results of the appraisal made people more confused: Can Hans really make things that people in the past thought the animals could not do?

Do animals really have the ability to think beyond people’s imagination?

Scientists have also had great differences on how to explain the clever Hans problem.

Biologist Hecker thinks that Hans does have the ability to think, and the psychologists represented by Professor Sturmford hold the opposite view. They don’t think that smart Hans has real thinking ability.

So, how will the skeptics explain the unquestionable achievements of this horse?

  The skeptics set up a second “Hans Committee” and they wanted to conduct a more in-depth investigation to see what was going on.

In the new survey, people found that if the person present was not aware of the answer when questioning the horse, Hans would immediately become confused, neither counting nor calculating, let alone clarifying the word.It is.
  If you want to let Osten know the wrong answer, then in this case, smart Hans always prompts the wrong answer.

  It seems that Hans will not calculate at all.

The truth seems to be that when Osten knew the correct answer, he gave Hans some hints.But Osten explicitly denied that he had helped his horse in this way.

For an inadvertent bystander, it is really difficult to pruning what Osten did.

Oscar Pfungster, a young researcher at the Berlin Institute of Psychology, reveals the mystery.

He noticed that when the horse began to count, Osten would make an almost imperceptible nod, and when Hans stepped on the correct count, he would tilt his head slightly.

The movements he did were quite careless, but Ma Chacha got the signal.

For example, if you let the horse count 7, it starts to pat with the hoof. When it is enough, Osten sends a tiny signal telling it that it is enough, it stops.

Hans is very sensitive, even if Osten’s eyebrows are slightly picked, even the tiny expansion of his nostrils is enough to get the correct answer.

Not only that, Hans will get clues to the correct answer through the “subconscious signal” of the surrounding viewers.

For example, whenever Hans’s hoof hits the right number of times, the audience will make some subconscious reactions of “sudden relaxation.”

Sometimes, some inadvertent subtle movements that are inadvertently made are only a one-fifth of a millimeter of moving distance, but Hans can use it as a signal to stop tapping.
Interestingly, Pvonst himself also involuntarily provided clues to the horse.

Therefore, if he verifies that Hans finds the answer to the question through the clues provided by the vision, Pvonster asks the questioner to ask questions outside the horse’s field of vision, such as the paragraph.

As a result, Hans lost its “computing power.”

  In fact, the truth of the matter is that Osten did not deliberately deceive, and Hans did indeed type the correct answer to the arithmetic problem, but Hans did not have the ability to calculate.

It has another special ability – keen insight, which allows it to get subtle hints from a wide variety of people to get the right results.

  The mystery was solved, and the problem of clever Hans, which caused perfusion to everyone, was finally overwhelmed.

The way of scientific thinking has overcome human credulity and prejudice.