If the prescriptions for getting rich that are outlined in books such as The Millionaire Next Door
and Rich Dad Poor Dad
are successful enough to make the books bestsellers, then one must ask, Why aren't there more millionaires? In Fooled by Randomness
, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, a professional trader and mathematics professor, examines what randomness means in business and in life and why human beings are so prone to mistake dumb luck for consummate skill. This eccentric and highly personal exploration of the nature of randomness meanders from the court of Croesus and trading rooms in New York and London to Russian roulette, Monte Carlo engines, and the philosophy of Karl Popper. Part of what makes this book so good is Taleb's ability to make seemingly arcane mathematical concepts (at least to this reviewer) entirely relevant in evaluating and understanding everything from the stock market to the success of those millionaires cited in the aforementioned bestsellers. Here's an articulate, wise, and humorous meditation on the nature of success and failure that anyone who wants a little more of the former would do well to consider. Highly recommended. --Harry C. Edwards
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"[Taleb is] Wall Street’s principal dissident. . . . [Fooled By Randomness] is to conventional Wall Street wisdom approximately what Martin Luther’s ninety-nine theses were to the Catholic Church.”
, The New Yorker
“Fascinating . . . Taleb will grab you.”
–Peter L. Bernstein
, author of Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk
“Recalls the best of scientist/essayists like Richard Dawkins . . . and Stephen Jay Gould.”
, author of Serious Play
“We need a book like this . . . fun to read, refreshingly independent-minded.”
–Robert J. Shille
r, author of Irrational Exuberance From the Trade Paperback edition.
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