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For a mental model, connecting what has just happened with what will happen in the very near future is the task with the highest stakes.

That sounds unnatural to me. Can someone suggest a rewording?

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closed as not a real question by FumbleFingers, Jasper Loy, Mitch, kiamlaluno, Daniel Jun 27 '12 at 23:01

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Can you at least suggest what you are actually trying to say here? –  JeffSahol Jun 7 '12 at 17:55
    
For mental models (as opposed to complete scientific theories or computer models) connections between events in the immediate past and immediate future are the most critical. They reward you the most, in your ability to manipulate the world. The smaller the time between the events, the more important it is to be certain of the correlation. –  Nathan Jun 7 '12 at 18:30
    
See amended answer...you supplied the word that was needed, "critical". –  JeffSahol Jun 7 '12 at 18:40

3 Answers 3

up vote 1 down vote accepted

It sounds like this is about mental models understanding cause-and-effect, so...

The most critical task for a mental model is connecting past events to future results.

or

For a mental model, connecting past events to future results is the most critical task.

Most critical task seems to convey the same meaning as "the task with the highest stakes". For concision, you could probably drop the most and just call it the critical task.

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-1 Good rewording, but I think you lost the nearness of the events i.e. just happened and very near future. To get that meaning back you should say "The most critical task for a mental model is connecting very recent events to immediate future events." As well, there is no causation between past and future events implied in the original statement, so I don't think you can use "results" in your rewording. –  zooone9243 Jun 7 '12 at 18:58
    
@zooone I personally feel that causation was implied. A mental model is a system designed to find causation and discover patterns. I did drop the proximity of the events, while could easily be added in. –  Lawton Jun 7 '12 at 19:27

For a mental model, connecting what has just happened with what will happen in the very near future is the task bearing the greatest risks and greatest rewards.

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For a mental model, connecting what has just happened with what will happen in the very near future is the most critical task.

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"stake" == "risk"/"importance". "payoff" == "reward". "reward" != "risk"/"importance". –  SigTerm Jun 7 '12 at 17:46

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