Published on Feb 24, 2014
How do you investigate hypotheses? Do you seek to confirm your theory – looking for white swans? Or do you try to find black swans? I was startled at how hard it was for people to investigate number sets that didn’t follow their hypotheses, even when their method wasn’t getting them anywhere.
This video was inspired by The Black Swan: Second Edition: The Impact of the Highly Improbable: With a new section: “On Robustness and Fragility” by Nassim Taleb and filmed by my mum. Thanks mum!
Partly my motivation came from responses to my Facebook videos – social media marketers saying ‘Facebook ads have worked for me so there can’t be fake likes.’ Just because you have only seen white swans, doesn’t mean there are no black ones. And in fact marketers are only looking for white swans. They think it was invalid of me to make the fake Virtual Cat page: ‘well of course if it’s a low quality page you’re going to get low quality likes.’ But my point is this is black swan bait, something they would never make because their theory is confident in the exclusive existence of white swans.