Black Swan Theory

Black Swan Theory – I had not heard of this, blew me away given the current state of the world.

The black swan theory or theory of black swan events is a metaphor that describes an event that comes as a surprise, has a major effect, and is often inappropriately rationalized after the fact with the benefit of hindsight.

The theory was developed by Nassim Nicholas Taleb to explain:

1.The disproportionate role of high-profile, hard-to-predict, and rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations in history, science, finance, and technology.
2.The non-computability of the probability of the consequential rare events using scientific methods (owing to the very nature of small probabilities).
3. The psychological biases that blind people, individually and collectively, to uncertainty and to a rare event’s massive role in historical affairs.

Unlike the philosophical “black swan problem“, the “black swan theory” refers only to unexpected events of large magnitude and consequence and their dominant role in history. Such events, considered extreme outliers, collectively play vastly larger roles than regular occurrences. More technically, in the scientific monograph Silent Risk , Taleb mathematically defines the black swan problem as “stemming from the use of degenerate metaprobability”.

This is just the sort of thing that makes me think about how things are and how they have gotten that way.  While I have doubts that it explains some important events it would surely give us some insight to some of the events that we have witnessed recently and historically.

Thank you Wikipedia!

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