Like a flock of chickens hunting grubs and seeds, humans appear to be hardwired to follow a social pecking order. Researchers at the National Institute of Menal Health conducted an experiment in which subjects played a computer game for money. They were told they were competing simultaneously against others whom they couldn't see and were assigned a rank based on their playing skill. In actuality, the results were entirely predetermined and the other participants were no one but the computer. Instructed to ignore the scores and pictures of the others, people playing the game were instead found to be closely attentitive to the others and their brain activity was highly influenced by the implied heirarchy.