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The Black Swan by Nassim Taleb

Key Takeaways

  1. Human nature makes us concoct explanations for black swans after he fact, making it explainable and predictable

  2. Literally, just about everything of significance might quality as a black swan

  3. Black Swan logic makes what you don’t know far more relevant than what you do know

  4. It is much easier to deal with the Black Swan problem if we focus on robustness to errors rather than improving predictions

  5. What is surprising is not the magnitude of our forecast errors, but our absence of awareness of it

  6. Certain professionals, while believing they are experts, are in fact not

  7. You can set yourself up to collect serendipitous Black Swans (of the positive kind) by maximizing your exposure to them. Tinker as much as you possibly can to collect as many Black Swan opportunities as possible

  8. People often get into trouble as they tend to learn the precise, not the general. Also, people tend to only learn facts and not rules

  9. To the author, the rare event = uncertainty

  10. Platonicity – mistaking the map for the territory, forcing categorizations and forms when it is inappropriate (almost always)

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