Study Guide

The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable Characters

Nassim Taleb
This Study Guide consists of approximately 34 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Black Swan.
This section contains 636 words
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Gaussians

Gaussians were what the author labeled those who used statistical analysis to predict future events. He coined the name from Carl Friedrich Gauss, the historical figure who popularized the bell curve. The author maintained that statistical analysis hardly ever yielded accurate predictions of anything outside a tightly closed system, therefore the predictive capabilities were not useful for the real world in which randomness played a primary role in shaping future events.

The author was also contemptuous of Gaussians because deep down they realized what frauds they were but still fiercely defended their techniques. Some had told the author that even though flawed, statistical analysis was all they had. Others could not abandon what had become their professions, even though what they did was next to useless. The author advised these people to find more useful occupations.

Benoit Mandelbrot

If the author had a hero, Mandelbrot filled those shoes...

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This section contains 636 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable Study Guide
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