The Black Swan: Second Edition: The Impact of the Highly Improbable: With a New Section: On Robustness and Fragility
ISBN: 081297381X
EAN13: 9780812973815
Language: English
Publication Date: May 11, 2010
Pages: 444
Dimensions: 1.1" H x 7.9" L x 5.2" W
Weight: 0.75 lbs.
Format: Paperback

The Black Swan: Second Edition: The Impact of the Highly Improbable: With a New Section: On Robustness and Fragility

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Book Overview

The most influential book of the past seventy-five years: a groundbreaking exploration of everything we know about what we don't know, now with a new section called On Robustness and Fragility.

A black swan is a highly improbable event with three principal characteristics: It is unpredictable; it carries a massive impact; and, after the fact, we concoct an explanation that makes it appear less random, and more predictable, than it was. The astonishing success of Google was a black swan; so was 9/11. For Nassim Nicholas Taleb, black swans underlie almost everything about our world, from the rise of religions to events in our own personal lives.

Why do we not acknowledge the phenomenon of black swans until after they occur? Part of the answer, according to Taleb, is that humans are hardwired to learn specifics when they should be focused on generalities. We concentrate on things we already know and time and time again fail to take into consideration what we don't know. We are, therefore, unable to truly estimate opportunities, too vulnerable to the impulse to simplify, narrate, and categorize, and not open enough to rewarding those who can imagine the impossible.

For years, Taleb has studied how we fool ourselves into thinking we know more than we actually do. We restrict our thinking to the irrelevant and inconsequential, while large events continue to Read More chevron_right

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