Slide 1 - California State University_ Dominguez Hills

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					        Means-end analysis
• Reducing differences between current
  state and goal state
  – Stop when difference is 0 (no difference)

• Subgoals
  – Intermediate goals – not your final goal-state
  – Means-end analysis is also considered a way
    to break up a problem into pieces (subgoals)
             Mate example
• Goal-state = ideal mate
• Subgoal = utilize a dating service
• Establish a further subgoal
  – Locate dating services
  – Then, next subgoal = sign up or register
• Borrowing a solution already used to solve
  a similar problem
• Example problem
  – Patient has a tumor in location that makes it
  – One possibility is to use a high-powered beam
    to destroy the tumor from the outside
  – Problem: beam will also damage surrounding
    healthy tissue
           Similar problem
• Evil king lives in a castle with his army
• Good king wants to destroy the evil king
• Good king amasses a huge army to defeat
  the evil king
• Problem: only narrow roads bordered by
  natural (immovable) obstacles lead to evil
  king’s castle; no single road can hold the
  entire good king’s army
    Solution to castle problem
• Good king divides the army into smaller
  – Each division goes down a separate road at
    the same time
  – All divisions meet at the castle simultaneously
    to overtake the evil king and his army
    Solution to tumor problem
• Divide beam into weaker beams
• Send all weak beams into body
  simultaneously but from different angles
• Combined strength of beams at tumor site
  will destory tumor
   Problems analogous to finding
            ideal mate
• Maybe finding perfect job
  – Networking, Internships, Improve job skills
• Maybe finding a great car
  – Shop around, read reviews, research
• Maybe choosing a major
  – Career guidance (seek guidance), model it
    after someone in career you like, pick a major
    you love
General problem-solving strategies
• i.e., heuristics (backward search, trial-and-
  error, means-end analysis, analogy)

• New example problem
  – T E S C E L  SELECT
  – Algorithm : list every possible combination of
  – Takes too long to use algorithm & hard 2 track
           Another anagram
• Another example
  – To solve, we use heuristics (strategies)
    • E.g., word doesn’t start with a Z
  Problem-solving phenomena
• Insight
  – Sudden awareness of a solution to a problem
  – Experimental demonstration
  – Give hard problems; allow people to think
    about them
  – People report how close they are to the
    answer as they solve the problem (1-10)
  – Some problems people show no knowledge
    (score =1) until suddenly getting answer
• Incubation
  – Stop solving problem for a while; when you
    begin again, you’ve made extra progress
• Unconscious problem-solving
  – One theory of incubation  we continue to
    work on problem unconscioulsy
• Fresh perspective
  – Other theory; taking a break allows a fresh
    perspective on the problem
         More on incubation
• Extremely difficult and rare to demonstrate
  incubation in a laboratory setting
        Functional fixedness
• Stuck when solving a problem because
  you cannot see a new or alternative way to
  use an object or tool
• Refer to page 356
• Duncker’s candle problem

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