From the best-selling author of The Black Swan and one of the foremost thinkers of our time, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, a book on how some things actually benefit from disorder.
In The Black Swan Taleb outlined a problem, and in Antifragile he offers a definitive solution: how to gain from disorder and chaos while being protected from fragilities and adverse events. For what Taleb calls the "antifragile" is actually beyond the robust, because it benefits from shocks, uncertainty, and stressors, just as human bones get stronger when subjected to stress and tension. The antifragile needs disorder in order to survive and flourish.
Taleb stands uncertainty on its head, making it desirable, even necessary, and proposes that things be built in an antifragile manner. The antifragile is immune to prediction errors. Why is the city-state better than the nation-state, why is debt bad for you, and why is everything that is both modern and complicated bound to fail? The audiobook spans innovation by trial and error, health, biology, medicine, life decisions, politics, foreign policy, urban planning, war, personal finance, and economic systems. And throughout, in addition to the street wisdom of Fat Tony of Brooklyn, the voices and recipes of ancient wisdom, from Roman, Greek, Semitic, and medieval sources, are heard loud and clear.
Extremely ambitious and multidisciplinary, Antifragile provides a blueprint for how to behave - and thrive - in a world we don't understand, and which is too uncertain for us to even try to understand and predict. Erudite and witty, Taleb’s message is revolutionary: What is not antifragile will surely perish.
©2012 Nassim Nicholas Taleb (P)2012 Random House Audio
"[This] is the lesson of Taleb...and also the lesson of our volatile times. There is more courage and heroism in defying the human impulse, in taking the purposeful and painful steps to prepare for the unimaginable." (Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point)
"[Taleb writes] in a style that owes as much to Stephen Colbert as it does to Michel de Montaigne." (The Wall Street Journal)
"The most prophetic voice of all.... [Taleb is] a genuinely significant philosopher...someone who is able to change the way we view the structure of the world through the strength, originality and veracity of his ideas alone." (GQ)
Once you get past the first 1/3 it is not so bad. He likes to invent his own words. Get used to the root word "fragile". Finding it tedious though. Once you get past that & the geopolitical talk there are diamonds in the garbage. I wouldn't recommend though. The only reason I am listening to it is because of Tim Ferriss's recommendation.
It may be a good introduction to a certain brand of libertarian, fiscal conservative thought--if you like Ayn Rand's work you'll probably enjoy this.
Methodically work through his arguments, research his example cases more thoroughly, and try to resolve some of the contradictions he produces.
The performance kept my attention. But it's hard to tell if the braggadocio is in the narrator's voice or the writer's tone. Probably both: if that's the case, the narrater did a good job carrying Taleb's smugness across.
It had some interesting ideas and examples--unfortunately they were too few and far between.
The difficulty in non fiction that suggests time is the best predictor of value, or at least that old things are more likely to stand the test of time than new things--the difficulty is that the work of non fiction must be born old. This book distills years of thought by Nassim into a collection of "books."
I love to read but there is much I do not know. I look forward to reading this book again because the items I did understand were so important. First, the continuum presented in the book has on one side Fragility, on the other Antifragility, and in the middle Robust. Antifragility deals with those items that benefit from disruption or difficulty.
Second, instead of working towards resilience, a good long term focus might be to focus on robust systems or even anti fragile systems.
Thank you for your work, Mr Taleb.
The ideas in this book will make you rethink the way you view the world. They have the simple brilliance that comes with an idea that you know, once you hear it, is just true.
Don't be put of by Nassims obnoxious and pretentious writing style, and try to understand the ideas expressed.
For the last couple weeks this book jump started my day. The truths discussed are timeless and "culture-less." If you want a better understanding of the world, economics, and why we do what we do then invest a moment of your time.
I love this book. Read black Swan beforehand and this book takes it a step further. The view on ethics and the ethic responsibility to create anti fragile systems is spot on. The narrator has a very nice voice and is able to pronounce the Italian English Latin etc fluently. Thanks for offering this book
Eclectic bookworm...I listen to a little bit of everything. Give up after listening to something for 20 minutes and don't like it.
I gave up a third of the way through partly because I didn't like the narrator's voice, and partly because the writing was was too rambly for me. I found the narrator's voice to be nasally and fake, as in a radio commercial. Eventually, just listening to his voice became tedious.
Meanwhile, the book seemed to be unnecessarily long, and probably could have been distilled into a shorter and more concise version. I found it a bit presumptuous for the author to assume readers would be willing to indulge him in his rambles for so long. That said, I did appreciate the general gist of what he was saying, and gleaned some insights that I could apply to my life. If they were to make a cliff notes version, I'd buy it and finish it.
Taleb had summed up an idea that has been running around his other books. This idea is that robust is not an end, but just putting off the environment rather than embrace it. This makes for a powerful concept.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb offers a no-nonsense commentary on how risk is managed in our world, and how it can be better understood. He offers practical applications of his ideas in the public, private, and personal sectors of life. He pulls no punches, critiquing politicians, libraries, large corporations, individual propensities, school systems, and all of the other things that drive us crazy in life.
This book has altered my life-philosophy, which I thought was very well-established to begin with. READ IT!
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