Notes on the Distinction Between Memory-Based Versus On-Line Judgments
When we observe other people, we make many inferences about them; inferences about hidden characteristics, intentions, their future behavior, the causes of their behavior, and generalizations about the essence of their personalities and temperaments. We also make inferences about our own reactions to another person and relationships with them. Do we like them? Are we superior or inferior, the same or different on various comparative dimensions? The flood of information, much of it inferred, that is tapped when we reflect on our memories of almost any acquaintance or public figure is compelling evidence of our proclivity to make "on-line" inferences.