Skip to main content

Nassim Taleb on Antifragile at Google

 

Authors @ Google presents Nassim Taleb, discussing the concepts from his latest book, Antifragile: Things that Gain from Disorder

Here, Taleb offers his view that the opposite of fragility is not "robustness", as commonly supposed, but anti-fragility. Whereas things that are fragile need to be handled with care and kept in a state of tranquility, things that are anti-fragile benefit from volatility. 

According to Taleb, fragility and anti-fragility can be measured, whereas risk cannot (in spite of what Ivy League academics with risk models may think). You'll hear why anti-fragile systems have benefits that outweigh their risks, and why some fragile systems are vulnerable to "prediction error" and hidden, intolerable risks which vastly outweigh any associated benefits.

Using the example of Seneca, a wealthy Stoic philosopher who often imagined himself to be poor, Taleb suggests we should always try to have more upside than downside from random events - "and then you're anti-fragile". 

So let's hear it for an anti-fragile world of "many highway exits and options". It sounds a lot better than a world centered around top-down planning by the supposed elites.

Related posts

1. Nassim Taleb on Antifragility at Princeton.

2. Econtalk interview with Nassim Taleb on Antifragility.

Popular posts from this blog

The Dot-Com Bubble in 1 Chart: InfoSpace

With all the recent talk of a new bubble in the making, thanks in part to the Yellen Fed's continued easy money stance , I thought it'd be instructive to revisit our previous stock market bubble - in one quick chart. So here's what a real stock market bubble looks like.  Here's what a bubble *really* looks like. InfoSpace in 1999-2001. $QQQ $BCOR pic.twitter.com/xjsMk433H7 — David Shvartsman (@FinanceTrends) February 24, 2015   For those of you who are a little too young to recall it, this is a chart of InfoSpace at the height of the Nasdaq dot-com bubble in 1999-2001. This fallen angel soared to fantastic heights only to plummet back down to earth as the bubble, and InfoSpace's shady business plan , turned to rubble. As detailed in our post, " Round trip stocks: Momentum booms and busts ", InfoSpace rocketed from under $100 a share to over $1,300 a share in less than six months.  In a pattern common to many parabolic shooting stars, the s

Jesse Livermore: How to Trade in Stocks (1940 Ed. E-book)

If you've been around markets for any length of time, you've probably heard of 20th century supertrader, Jesse Livermore . Today we're highlighting his rare 1940 work, How to Trade in Stocks (ebook, pdf). But first, a brief overview of Livermore's life and trading career (bio from Jesse Livermore's Wikipedia entry). "During his lifetime, Livermore gained and lost several multi-million dollar fortunes. Most notably, he was worth $3 million and $100 million after the 1907 and 1929 market crashes, respectively. He subsequently lost both fortunes. Apart from his success as a securities speculator, Livermore left traders a working philosophy for trading securities that emphasizes increasing the size of one's position as it goes in the right direction and cutting losses quickly. Ironically, Livermore sometimes did not follow his rules strictly. He claimed that lack of adherence to his own rules was the main reason for his losses after making his 1907 and

New! Finance Trends now at FinanceTrendsLetter.com

Update for our readers: Finance Trends has a new URL!  Please bookmark our new web address at Financetrendsletter.com Readers sticking with RSS updates should point your feed readers to our new Finance Trends feedburner .   Thank you to all of our loyal readers who have been with us since the early days. Exciting stuff to come in the weeks ahead! As a quick reminder, you can subscribe to our free email list to receive the Finance Trends Newsletter . You'll receive email updates about once every 4-8 weeks (about 2-3 times per quarter).  Stay up to date with our real-time insights and updates on Twitter .