Law of the instrument

Over-reliance on a familiar tool / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The law of the instrument, law of the hammer,[1] Maslow's hammer (or gavel), or golden hammer[lower-alpha 1] is a cognitive bias that involves an over-reliance on a familiar tool. Abraham Maslow wrote in 1966, "If the only tool you have is a hammer, it is tempting to treat everything as if it were a nail."[2]

The concept is attributed both to Maslow[3] and to Abraham Kaplan,[4][5] although the hammer and nail line may not be original to either of them.

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