EppsNet Archive: Experts

Experts and Empty Suits

Our inability to predict in environments subjected to the Black Swan, coupled with a general lack of awareness of this state of affairs, means that certain professionals, while believing they are experts, are in fact not. Based on their empirical record, they do not know more about their subject than the general population, but they are much better at narrating — or, worse, at smoking you with complicated mathematical models. They are also more likely to wear a tie. — Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Black Swan Read more →

Topics

The top five problems you have with <topic> and how to solve them Why <topic> sucks and what we can do about it Mistakes I made in <topic> and what I learned The most frequently asked questions and brilliant answers about <topic> The truth about <topic> and how it can help you Smart shortcuts and clever tricks only experts know about <topic> The five reasons you win by giving me <topic> Why <topic> will change your life forever, for free, right now Read more →

When Death Is Not Death

A certain man was believed to have died, and was being prepared for burial, when he revived. He sat up, but he was so shocked by the scene surrounding him that he fainted. He was put in a coffin, and the funeral party set off for the cemetery. Just as they arrived at the grave, he regained consciousness, lifted the coffin lid, and cried out for help. “It is not possible that he has revived,” said the mourners, “because he has been certified dead by competent experts.” “But I am alive!” shouted the man. He appealed to a well-known impartial scientist and jurisprudent who was present. “Just a moment,” said the expert. He then turned to the mourners, counting them. “Now we have heard what the alleged deceased has had to say. You fifty witnesses tell me what you regard as the truth.” “He is dead,” said the witnesses. “Bury… Read more →

‘Expert’ Predictions for the NBA Finals

26 experts give their predictions for the championship series rematch between the Warriors and Cavaliers. — ESPN.com “Experts.” Provide some insight or context if you have any. How does a prediction add to anyone’s understanding or enjoyment of the game? What is the difference between a prediction from an “expert” and a prediction from a random loudmouth drunk at a sports bar? I notice that a large majority of the “experts” are predicting a victory by the favorite (the Warriors), which is the same result you’d get from a bunch of drunks at a sports bar, or a group of dart-throwing monkeys (of course adjusting the monkeys’ targets to provide a proportionally larger area for the favorite). So what have we learned? Read more →

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

The notion that we have limited access to the workings of our minds is difficult to accept because, naturally, it is alien to our experience but it is true: You know far less about yourself than you feel you do.   A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily distinguished from truth.   It is the consistency of information that matters for a good story, not its completeness. Indeed, you will often find that knowing little makes it easier to fit everything you know into a coherent pattern.   The exaggerated faith in small samples is only one example of a more general illusion — we pay more attention to the content of messages than to information about their reliability, and as a result end up with a view of the world around us that is simpler and more coherent than… Read more →

Which Experts Predicted a UConn-Kentucky Title Game?

PunditTracker tracked March Madness 2014 brackets for 26 “experts” from ESPN, Yahoo, Sports Illustrated and CBS Sports, plus President Obama. Number of pundits who picked UConn to win the tournament: Zero. Number of pundits who picked either UConn or Kentucky to reach the final game: Zero. Number of pundits who picked either UConn or Kentucky to reach the Final Four: Zero. Number of pundits who picked either UConn or Kentucky to reach the Elite Eight: Zero. Read more →

Which Experts Predicted a Red Sox-Cardinals World Series?

With two storied franchises making the 2013 Fall Classic, let’s take a look at which of the 63 experts we tracked this year (from ESPN, Sports Illustrated, CBS, Yahoo, and Fox) pegged the series correctly. (… Calculating …) (… Calculating …) Well, how’s this for embarassing: 0 of the 63 so-called experts had both the Red Sox and Cardinals in the World Series. Perhaps this is not a huge surprise, as Vegas gave each team less than a 10% probability of making the Series. So let’s lower the bar considerably and look at the pundits who picked either the Red Sox OR the Cardinals to make it. (… Calculating …) You guessed it — zero. Not one. — PunditTracker Read more →