Classic Desert Island Discs: Ricky Gervais

Another chance to listen to the comedian, Ricky Gervais speaking to Kirsty Young in 2007. In just twelve episodes, his show The Office changed the face of British television comedy. At its centre was the comic monster, David Brent, a middle-manager being filmed for a mock-documentary who saw the ever-present cameras as his route to…

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Survivor Bias Silliness

Survivor bias is a perennial problem in systems testing. Put simply survivor bias is  the logical fallacy of ascribing a value to something that has past a given bench mark or hurdle by virtue of longevity. In doing so you overlook those things that have disappeared along the way. For example lets assume I was…

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Why do we bother with stock market forecasts?

“Forecasting: the attempt to predict the unknowable by measuring the irrelevant; this task employs most people on Wall Street.” (Brilliant description – wish I had thought of it) The words of Jason Zweig, author of the Devil’s Financial Dictionary, are particularly apt at this time of year. We hear a lot from financial forecasters every…

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Why Facts Don’t Change Our Minds

The economist J.K. Galbraith once wrote, “Faced with a choice between changing one’s mind and proving there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy with the proof.” Leo Tolstoy was even bolder: “The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of…

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The Aging Athlete

Trail running has long been my happy place.  Actually, any form of running enables me to start my day invigorated and ready to go. Regular exercise associates with many upsides.  Exercising so that we can live longer is a draw for a few.  Most master athletes I have met exercise because they have to.  They…

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Final Thoughts – Trader of the Year

IF I WAS TO FRONT up to your doorstep carrying a huge ‘Trader of the Year’ trophy, what would your reaction be? Would you feel worthy of accepting this award because you’re a disciplined, consistent trader? Or, would you hang your head in shame? It’s up to you to give yourself your own accolades as…

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Louise’s Shameless Bribe

THIS WORLD OF SOCIAL media and new fandangled ways of doing business sometimes have me scratching my head. One thing that I’ve just found out is that people look at these things called ‘Google Reviews’. Who knew, hey? The only thing is… because I’ve just found out about it, I’ve never promoted it. So, here’s…

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The Pain…

FREUD ONCE SAID “One day, in retrospect, the years of struggle will strike you as the most beautiful”. What pain are you willing to go through to become a profitable trader? So many of us want to skip the struggle and go straight to the reward. Life doesn’t work that way. The traders who decide…

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A Cocktail With Stockbot

“AHHH… STOCKBOT… What an insightful, mechanical trader you are!” I said, as I sipped my margarita. “Teach us your ways, oh wise one. We are but mere fallible trading humans, struggling to achieve your level of perfection.” And… at that… Stockbot took a liberal gulp of his own cocktail – a long, cool glass of…

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Can meditation really slow ageing?

It’s seven in the morning on the beach in Santa Monica, California. The low sun glints off the waves and the clouds are still golden from the dawn. The view stretches out over thousands of miles of Pacific Ocean. In the distance, white villas of wealthy Los Angeles residents dot the Hollywood hills. Here by…

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