An In-Depth Look at a Pickpocket

January 27th, 2013

ThiefThe New Yorker gives an in-depth look at Apollo Robbins, a professional magician and lecturer whose act revolves around picking pockets. He’s so good at it that he can remove people’s glasses and engagement rings without them realizing it. This level of skill requires significant knowledge of human cognition, and he lectures about what he’s learned to law enforcement, the military, corporations, and neuroscientists. This knowledge of human nature is actually the most important part of being a master pickpocket, as opposed to manual dexterity (which is also a necessity, of course, but it’s not sufficient in and of itself). Also interesting is that he learned everything intuitively, and it was only after he studied the field of human cognition that he was able to put words to what he knew.

(via Neatorama)

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