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Fooled by Randomness : The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets

Paperback
Language: English
Length: 322 Pages
Publisher: Penguin
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Fooled by Randomness : The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets (Paperback) Price: Rs.219

Fooled By Randomness: The Hidden Role Of Chance In The Markets And In Life explains in detail the theory of luck, our popular conception regarding luck and its applications in everyday life.

Summary Of The Book

Our lives and specifically the market are so full of random aspects and complex structures. Understanding the behaviour of markets and attributing specific reasons to its behaviour is totally impossible and sometimes a useless task. As the title explains, Taleb’s theory explains how all of us get fooled easily by randomness. Taleb goes on to elaborate how we misconstrue luck and skill. Wherever true luck plays a role, we assume it to be the work of individual skill. Most impressive situations in life are only due to luck, claims Taleb. He uses the theory of black swans (rare events) to propound his idea and says that black swans cannot be predicted.

Taleb elucidates his theory through some popular examples using people like the baseball expert Yogi Berra, the philosopher Karl Popper, the ancient wise man Solon, the financier George Soros and the Greek voyager Odysseus. Most of all, journalists and traders fall for the randomness as well. In addition to real-life examples, Taleb also brings in the case of the fictitious hero Nero, who is smart enough to understand the play of randomness in his professional life, but is superstitiously foolish.

Taleb also constructs an invincible, nameless fool who seems to be at the right place at the right time. The fool has a steady string of followers who are ready to do anything for their Guru. But, the fool’s actions cannot be imitated. His success is one obtained by chance.

The most unexpected things will happen for sure. But, we become creatures of routine that we fail to identify it when it happens. Moreover, detecting risks and accepting them is done only by the emotional part of the brain. If we understand probability, then we can perceive the role of luck in everyday situations. The trick lies in recognizing it. Taleb says we must be aware of the trap that luck sets for us.

How do we distinguish a lucky poseur from a far-sighted visionary? How do we read an incident? How do we decide whether it is luck or talent that made the person successful?

Fooled By Randomness: The Hidden Role Of Chance In The Markets And In Life received wide recognition. Fortune named it as one of the smartest books of all time and the Financial Times termed it as the Book of the Year.

About Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Nassim Nicholas Taleb is an essayist, statistician and best-selling author.

He is also the author of The Black Swan, The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms and Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder.

Taleb was born in 1960 in Amioun, Lebanon. He graduated from the University of Paris with a Bachelor’s degree in Science and also holds a Master’s degree from the same university. He also has an MBA and Ph.D from Wharton School and the University of Paris respectively. Taleb has taught at London Business School, New York University and presently teaches at Oxford University and the Polytechnic Institute of New York University.

Specifications of Fooled by Randomness : The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets (Paperback)

Contributors
Authored By Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Book Details
Publisher Penguin
Imprint Penguin Books Ltd
Publication Year 2007
ISBN-13 9780141031484
ISBN-10 0141031484
Language English
Edition 1stEdition
Binding Paperback
Number of Pages 322 Pages
Dimensions
Depth 21 inch
Weight 276 g
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Book Reviews of Fooled by Randomness : The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets

4.1
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Most Helpful Reviews (5 of 11)

★★★★★
★★★★★
10 April 13
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Understanding Randomness

There are Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics. This is a very famous line known to most people practicing statistics. This book tries to explain how to see the truth from the statistics galore we see everyday in newspapers and other public media. This gives the essence of how ignoring simple facts can lead to completely unintended conclusions when it comes to statistics. This is just one part of the book

The most important part is explaining how luck plays major roles in most important phases of our lives. Taleb drives this point with so much explanation and many examples. He is too harsh at many places, but it can be attributed to him being a trader and seeing many examples where lucky idiots get unimaginable rewards. Taleb delves into human psychology to explain how we behave irrationally and emotionally, when we think we are acting rationally and intelligently. The book is a very interesting read to anyone who is fascinated to understand more about psychology.

But for people who are not familiar with trading world, this might be very confusing in some places. I suggest such people read Black Swan from the same author, which deals with similar concepts but doesn't deal so much with the trading world.

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★★★★★
★★★★★
24 October 13
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Towards the middle and end of the book I thought like getting fooled by the writings.

Bought with great expectations due to the brand and publicity of the author.

So the Book is all about justifying the authors view on randomness in life, being aware and knowing about the substantial percentage of noise embedded in any experimental and knowledgeable data.
As long as the author strikes to the theme of these idea, the pages were interesting. Certain view on the happiness and pang of life by letting oneself to over-judge and over-examine the events on a minuscule time frame are quite factual and interesting. However many of the pages were a kind of collection of ideas which referred a lot many contemporary intellectual writers like Versky, Kahneman and others. Many short titles hanging without solid impressions.

The book really started well. The idea is unique. But the whole framework could have been improved if the author had move out of the iconoclastic mind set and accepted the possibilities in a broader perspective.

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0 of 0 users found this review helpful.
★★★★★
★★★★★
26 October 12
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certified buyer
Simply Beautiful!

Being an ardent devotee of 'randomness' I simply found this book to be a beautiful conversation on randomness. A difficult subject explained in such a simple manner. Anyone who cares to get to the core of the book would be greatly helped to master decision making in the face of uncertainty.

The author, Nassim Nicholas Taleb skillfully combines dialectic thinking and Bayesian probability to help readers discover the flaws in commonsense thinking, set beliefs and to discover things through the 'Stove is Hot' method (self discoveries).

Anyone who has boldly attempted to master uncertainty has always treated every day as a clean state without the obligation to explain his actions not born out of his closely held beliefs.

What I liked best was "The only article Lady Fortuna has no control over is your behavior" And it is up to you to change your behavior and therefore your luck. No one can change it for you.

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★★★★★
★★★★★
04 April 12
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certified buyer
Fooled by Randomness

Ranked amongst 'the smartest books' by Fortune!

I bought it because my Finance Professor at the B.School recommended it and I thank him for that.

Taleb brilliantly proposes and proves that what we term as 'analysis' in the context of the markets is only 'play of chance for a non repeatable situation' and that 99% chance of success IS NOT EQUAL TO 100%,the decisions taken on this information weigh very lightly the possible consequences of that doomed 1%,one Black swan is sufficient to turn a King into a pauper.

Go for it,if you are interested in understanding the actual market dynamics which can be extrapolated to understand 'Random events' in real life.

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★★★★★
★★★★★
17 March 12
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certified buyer
Good one

extremely good book to understand wht life is and how randomness plays a role.

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1 of 1 users found this review helpful.

Most Recent Reviews

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★★★★★
★★★★★
The 'certified buyer' badge indicates that this user has purchased this product on flipkart.com.
certified buyer
Another of Taleb's bestsellers

It's a must-read for anyone who wants to get a feel about the dynamics of stock markets. Unputdownable!!

Read More
09 February 14
★★★★★
★★★★★
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An "Off-track" book

A great book to be read by anyone who has any interest in the world business. This book implicitly rejects the idea of One Crea...

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19 November 13
★★★★★
★★★★★
The 'certified buyer' badge indicates that this user has purchased this product on flipkart.com.
certified buyer
Towards the middle and end of the book I thought like getting fooled by the writings.

Bought with great expectations due to the brand and publicity of the author.

So the Book is all about justifying t...

Read More
24 October 13
★★★★★
★★★★★
The 'certified buyer' badge indicates that this user has purchased this product on flipkart.com.
certified buyer
Nice book, unnecessarily ellongated

Nice book, would have been better if crisp. The author stretches on and on. More illustrations would have been better. Also no...

Read More
06 October 13
★★★★★
★★★★★
The 'certified buyer' badge indicates that this user has purchased this product on flipkart.com.
certified buyer
Understanding Randomness

There are Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics. This is a very famous line known to most people practicing statistics. This book trie...

Read More
10 April 13
    Book: Fooled by Randomness : The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets by
    ISBN Number: 0141031484, 9780141031484, 978-0141031484

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