Mentat Wiki

The Mentat Wiki

This wiki is devoted to gathering information to increase your mental capabilities…the end goal being able to rival a mentat.

The first question you will probably ask is what is a mentat?

In Dune by Frank Herbert, following the defeat of the thinking machines by humanity in the Butlerian Jihad, it is forbidden to create sentient machines. The Mentat discipline is developed as a replacement for computerized calculation, just as the Bene Gesserit and the Spacing Guild take on functions previously performed by thinking machines. For thousands of years, society considers Mentats the embodiment of logic and reason.

Unlike computers, however, Mentats are not simply calculators. Instead, the exceptional cognitive abilities of memory and perception are the foundations for supra-logical hypothesizing. Mentats are able to sift large volumes of data and devise concise analyses in a process that goes far beyond logical deduction: Mentats cultivate “the naïve mind”, the mind without preconception or prejudice, so as to extract essential patterns or logic from data and deliver useful conclusions with varying degrees of certainty. They are not limited to formulating syllogisms; they are the supreme counselors of the Dune universe, as menial as an economist or a historian who might advise leadership, or as grand as advisor to the Emperor. So the Mentat is not a purely “left brain” type of intelligence with only a simplistic-autistic cognition, they are profoundly aware of nuance, subtlety and the kind of “sensitivity to initial conditions” which is studied in Chaos theory. Additionally, they take in information through visual as well as other media and their calculations are delivered not as numerical probabilities but as flowing paths, subject to new variations through the influence of new factors.

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