A way to develop intuition

Intuition is regarded as a very illusive thing , something mysterious like a superpower or something. The mechanism of how we develop intuition is quite vaguely understood. A prime example of development of intuition is related with a strange job of chicken sexing. This is a job in which people try to find out the gender of a chicken whether it will be a rooster or a hen. Mind you it is a very important job because at large scale it could create vast profits in big poultry farms and experts are paid handsomely. For long people tried to train other people in this job but it was impossible to tell someone what to look for. The experts were able to recognize the gender but they didn’t knew what exactly they were looking for. The method they adopted to teach others is something non- trivial. The trainee looked at a chicken and tried to guess the gender of the chicken. The expert then told him the correct answer. After thousands of repetitions of this simple exercise the trainees became experts at their job and like their masters they were not able to tell what exactly they search for. There are multiple instances of such intuition at play in nurses where they in a way sensed that something is wrong with the patient and that turned out to be true. This phenomenon is seen in a lot of different fields. Expert coders are able to sense that something is wrong with the code any person has written just by taking a quick glance. They use words like this code smells bad. Here is an example of Kathy Sierra(American programming instructor and game developer) explaining it . The best example I’ve found is of David Eagleman, a neuroscientist showing its application in his TED video. He and his team developed a jacket which is worn by a person. This jacket gives a unique physical response when it is given a signal. In his video he has shown giving audio signals to the jacket. This jacket is worn by a deaf person. After several instances of this simple exercise the person is able to tell which word he understood from the jacket. He also shows example of a person controlling a drone with this jacket. If this method reminds you too much of machine learning then you have to understand that it is the other way around. The neural nets are made to model the human brain and learn in this exact way. About the application of this thing we can employ these methods with development of intuition for doctors, or training of sports players and coders. Intuition is illusive because the amount of information our brain registers and trains on is way much more than what we consciously register as important data. These intuitions might have given rise to our prejudices for we never stop training our brain with data.