Countering Expert Failure

Andrew Sullivan —  Sep 6 2011 @ 5:21pm

How do we make predictions more valuable?

A new model of analysis must replace the old: one that is at once more modest and more adventurous. Modesty pertains to prediction and probability. We should give up the illusion that human events are like the orbit of Halley’s comet, and accept them as complex, historical, and brimming with group and individual intentions:  understandable, if at all, from within their own internal logic, their narratives of themselves, their character. Adventure pertains to the nature of complex systems, which force the analyst to abandon tableaux vivant prophetic productions and become a rider on the open range of improbability, tracking the sources of change.

Erica Grieder likewise mulls the benefits and limits of crystal ball reading. And Robin Hanson endorses personal prediction markets.