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The Undoing Project: A Friendship That…
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The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds (original 2016; edition 2017)

by Michael Lewis (Author)

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8963614,622 (3.77)35
Member:johnboles
Title:The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds
Authors:Michael Lewis (Author)
Info:W. W. Norton & Company (2017), Edition: 1, 368 pages
Collections:Non-Fiction
Rating:****
Tags:None

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The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds by Michael Lewis (2016)

  1. 30
    Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman (Stbalbach)
    Stbalbach: About Kahneman's early days working with Tversky on cognitive biases, his work on prospect theory, and his later work on happiness.
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Showing 1-5 of 34 (next | show all)
Michael Lewis is a great story-teller and his latest book ‘The Undoing Project’ is as good as the previous ones. This is a biography of two Israeli psychologists who had such an impact on economics that one of them – Daniel Kahneman won the Nobel Prize. This is also a biography of the idea that people are not as rational as they think they are; moreover, their mistakes aren’t random, they are predictable and just like optical illusions even after you know you’ve been fooled you still see them.
A great book, recommended.
( )
  Oleksandr_Zholud | Jan 9, 2019 |
I have read most of the books of Michael Lewis. When The Undoing Project came out last year, I grabbed a copy to read right away.

Mr. Lewis picks the story of Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky who created the field of behavioral economics. Their work came to the attention of Mr. Lewis after Moneyball came out. Cass Sunstein and Richard Thaler pointed out in their review that Moneyball was really about behavioral economics and mentioned the work of Kahneman and Tversky. That reference lead Mr. Lewis to write this book.

It seems like the classic formula for Mr. Lewis: take a complicated topic and explain it using interesting people.

But when I started reading The Undoing Project, I kept putting it down. A year later, I finally decided to read it. (I needed to read a book about social science for the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge.)

I found this to be the least favorite of the Michael Lewis books I have read. I think the problem is that the book is much more of a biography than a concept study using people. It’s not that Kahneman and Tversky are uninteresting. I just didn’t find the lengthier biographical sections of the book to be compelling to read. Most of the first half of the book is biographical.

The book really shines when it focuses on the work of Kahneman and Tversky.

Kahneman and Tversky showed that in decision-making and judgment human beings did not behave as if they were statisticians. Instead our their judgments and decisions deviate in identifiable ways from theoretical models. Human errors are common and predictable.

It’s not that The Undoing Project is a bad book. I just that I had much higher expectations. A mediocre Michael Lewis book is still better than 90% of the books on my shelf.

Originally appeared: https://www.compliancebuilding.com/2018/01/27/weekend-reading-the-undoing-project/ ( )
  dougcornelius | Sep 21, 2018 |
A delightfully written account of Tversky and Kahneman, the two psychologists who made a major contribution to Economics. Kahneman famously won the Nobel prize for Economics without ever taking an Economic subject at university.
The story of the two academics is fascinating, and needs no embellishment to be a page turner, and this author obliges. The writing is so crisp and clear that it almost disappears and the reader absorbs the story. There is enough detail to flesh out the lives, with little speculation where the record is lacking.
The one irritant in this masterful writing style is the first chapter. Before introducing the main characters or their work, there is a lengthy diversion about American sports teams and the efforts of a few to improve judgements about player potential by the use of data. Of course, much of this is underpinned by the work of Tversky and Kahneman, but there is no attempt to make the link, and the whole chapter seems like an editor's misguided attempt to make the book more appealing to the lay reader. The book doesn't need it, and is diminished by it. ( )
1 vote mbmackay | Jul 19, 2018 |
Good biography of the two men. It covers some of their thought as well, but the book to read for that is _Thinking, Fast and Slow_ by Kahneman. I'm thankful I read that second book before this one. It made this one more worthwhile. ( )
  ajlewis2 | Jul 11, 2018 |
Thorough analysis of a friendship between two brilliant men who, together, revolutionized attitudes toward the reliability of basing studies of decision-making purely on the concept of a "rational" person.

Personally, since statistics was one of my favorite college courses, i was slowed in reading this by my desire to thoroughly understand the concepts presented. That was what fascinated. Am not really sure how someone without that history would respond to the book -- probably just as a study of a friendship. Definitely worth my time. ( )
  abycats | May 11, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 34 (next | show all)
Lewis is the ideal teller of the story. [...] But he is also a vastly better raconteur than most other writers playing the explication game. You laugh when you read his books. You see his protagonists in three dimensions — deeply likable, but also flawed, just like most of your friends and family.
 

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0393254593, Hardcover)

Best-selling author Michael Lewis examines how a Nobel Prize–winning theory of the mind altered our perception of reality.

Forty years ago, Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky wrote a series of breathtakingly original studies undoing our assumptions about the decision-making process. Their papers showed the ways in which the human mind erred, systematically, when forced to make judgments about uncertain situations. Their work created the field of behavioral economics, revolutionized Big Data studies, advanced evidence-based medicine, led to a new approach to government regulation, and made much of Michael Lewis’s own work possible. Kahneman and Tversky are more responsible than anybody for the powerful trend to mistrust human intuition and defer to algorithms.

The Undoing Project is about the fascinating collaboration between two men who have the dimensions of great literary figures. They became heroes in the university and on the battlefield―both had important careers in the Israeli military―and their research was deeply linked to their extraordinary life experiences. In the process they may well have changed, for good, mankind’s view of its own mind.

(retrieved from Amazon Sat, 18 Jun 2016 18:51:38 -0400)

Forty years ago, Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky wrote a series of breathtakingly original studies undoing our assumptions about the decision-making process. Their papers showed the ways in which the human mind erred, systematically, when forced to make judgments in uncertain situations. Their work created the field of behavioral economics, revolutionized Big Data studies, advanced evidence-based medicine, led to a new approach to government regulation, and made much of Michael Lewis's own work possible. Kahneman and Tversky are more responsible than anybody for the powerful trend to mistrust human intuition and defer to algorithms.The Undoing Project is about a compelling collaboration between two men who have the dimensions of great literary figures. They became heroes in the university and on the battlefield--both had important careers in the Israeli military--and their research was deeply linked to their extraordinary life experiences. Amos Tversky was a brilliant, self-confident warrior and extrovert, the center of rapt attention in any room; Kahneman, a fugitive from the Nazis in his childhood, was an introvert whose questing self-doubt was the seedbed of his ideas. They became one of the greatest partnerships in the history of science, working together so closely that they couldn't remember whose brain originated which ideas, or who should claim credit. They flipped a coin to decide the lead authorship on the first paper they wrote, and simply alternated thereafter.This story about the workings of the human mind is explored through the personalities of two fascinating individuals so fundamentally different from each other that they seem unlikely friends or colleagues. In the process they may well have changed, for good, mankind's view of its own mind.… (more)

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