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The Undoing Project

By: on December 14, 2016
$16.17
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The Undoing Project isn't so much a story of psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky's Prospect theory as it is of the uncanny, almost twin-like kinship and professional symbiosis the men developed during their years of research together. Many consider it one of the greatest partnerships in science. And if that sounds like a booorrrrringggg read to you, let me give the book a little more context: Michael Lewis wrote it. He also wrote Liar's Poker, Moneyball, The Blind Side, and Flash Boys. A compelling author, regardless of the topic.

But if you're into the human mind, how it works, how it decides, and how it makes predictably illogical and poor decisions All. The. Time. you'd probably dig The Undoing Project regardless of who put it into words.

For background, my (very rudimentary) breakdown of Prospect theory: Are you a risk-seeker or do you have an aversion to even the word itself? Maybe it depends on the situation. Your rational assessment of it, and your mind's logical conclusions about the best decision to make. According to Kahneman and Tversky, you--all of us--regularly make completely irrational risk-related decisions that seem completely rational in your mind, because your mind likes shortcuts. It convinces itself that by making a "good" decision about just one aspect of a complex problem (while ignoring all the others) it is making a good decision overall. Prospect theory has an entire model on how people systematically F-up when making real-life choices.

The Undoing Project traces the 40-year history of Prospect theory through the men that created it, and the bond they formed in the process. Kahneman and Tversky's work is the foundation for the field of behavioral economics, and has changed the face of Big Data studies and advanced evidence-based medicine.

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Faking It: How to Seem Like a Better Person

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Wooly Snuffle Foraging & Feeding Mat for Dogs

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The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

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Rorschach Mug

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The Secret Art of Being a Grown-Up

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While Bridget Watson Payne's delivery in The Secret Art of Being a Grown-Up: Tips, Tricks, and Perks No One Thought to Tell You largely takes the form of cartoons and quick blocks of conversational narrative, I think...

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North Paw Human Compass Trainer

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If Her creeped you out (and let's face it, just looking at Joaquin Phoenix for more than 30 seconds straight can sometimes do the trick) get ready to have your stomach turned inside out again: EmoSpark, an Android-powered...

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Thync Mood-Altering Headpiece

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When asked to describe their startup, Thync, in 3 words founders Isy Goldwasser and Dr. Jamie Tyler go with "How good feels." That's a relief. Because when I look at the sliver of wearable tech stamped on that dude's...

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Brain Hat

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Too stoic to wear your heart on your sleeve? Then wear your frontal lobe on your Bieber side-swept bangs! The "brainchild" of a self-proclaimed starving medical student, this clever, kitschy knitting pattern will earn...

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The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck

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Really? There's a whole book now to teach you about the principle by which I've already been living my entire life? Not giving a f*ck. I know, author Sarah Knight knows, and soon everyone else who reads The Life-Changing...