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May 23 2007

Time to Take a Risk?

Cognitive Daily, my I-haven’t-completely-abandoned-my-college-major daily read, has a link to this NPR interview with a probability expert on the futility of trying to predict the next Harry Potter phenom and other highly unlikely things. My favorite part (of course) of the Cognitive Daily article:

He also mentions the propensity to risk more to avoid losses than to make gains. This can explain why publishers are so quick to reject even promising works by unproven writers. Taleb suggests that publishers should be offering more contracts to writers because that small risk can have such a vast reward.

I’m all for that. Now, how do we convince them?