Kitty can't cope with a card trick

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/06/13/kitty-cant-cope-with-a-card.html

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This kind of tricks are so nice to get an idea of how much of their surroundings an animal understand. The kat clearly realized that the card ought to have flown away since it was no longer in the man’s hand.

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Cats catch birds. I can’t catch a bird. Cats routinely jump like five times their own body length.

I would never have thought their general spatial awareness was something to sneeze at.

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True, but I too noticed something more than spatial awareness. Cats are famous for being enormously (supposedly) stupid, but this one clearly remembers other cards sailing around the room.

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Holy shit! Whenever that guy tucks a card into the palm of his hand with his thumb, the backs of his knuckles vanish. Mind. Blown.

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probably better production values than talking animals as there is no audio present

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My cat does this without sleight of hand. I just make a throwing motion and she looks to see if something lands and gets confused. Cats understand being swatted in the face. Tricking them isn’t something they understand. You clearly did a throwing thing so there should be a landing thing.

The confusion is amplified if the thing you’re pretending to throw is a treat. Then it is both incredibly important and urgent that the object should be located.

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Ah, the alliteration…

credulous kitten

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That’s a smart cat. Most will just look at the hand, and never track on a thrown object, real or imagined.

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I am always amazed as how close to AI/machine learning we are (and vice-versa). The kitty brain is trained for something, and it can’t handle this edge case. That seems to have the same root as when I see the Facebook face recognition trying to tag some building window/roof combination just because it fits the algorithm. Or this:

TL;DR: are we on a simulation and this AI needs more training?

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Congratulations, you fooled a cat. You must feel like a king now.

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Funny how rarely we speak of patterned human behaviors as the result of “training.” Maybe because our masters want us to think we have more free will than we actually do?

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Glad to see the tricks didn’t get their hopes up for nothing. It seems a bit cruel to make them believe they’re going to play, only to be let down…

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Re: Cat vs. Dog: @sarc, that is some amazing animal training. Thanks for posting!

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Well, we do come with some very specific behaviors encoded, and other features to capture the patterns around the world.

No one has even commented about how cute that little cat is. Adorable!

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Look, cats have spent hundreds of years being treated with suspicion and fear because idiots thought they were witches’ familiars, so it’s not surprising that the natural reaction to any sort of magic trick is to act clueless and easily impressed.

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We used to mess with my cat by getting it to chase a flashlight beam (laser pointers weren’t a thing then) and turning it off as it “ran” under the fridge.

Baldric would wait ages to pounce on it when it came out again.

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