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The simulation heuristic is a psychological heuristic, or simplified mental strategy, first theorized by Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky as a specialized adaptation of the availability heuristic to explain counterfactual thinking and regret .
According to this heuristic, people determine the likelihood of an event based on how easy it is to picture mentally. Partially as a result, people regret more missing outcomes that had been easier to imagine, such as "near misses" instead of when accomplishment had been much further away,
- Kahneman, D. & Tversky, A. (1982). The simulation heuristic. In D. Kahneman, P. Slovic & A. Tversky (eds.). Judgment under uncertainty: Heuristics and biases. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. pp. 201-210.
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