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News noise

Nassim Taleb in Antifragile: The link points to an excerpt posted on the Farnam Street blog, which I stopped following years ago — too much noise in the form of wisdom nuggets — but still has its uses. You should really read the whole of Incerto

The more frequently you look at data, the more noise you are disproportionally likely to get (rather than the valuable part called the signal); hence the higher the noise to signal ratio. And there is a confusion, that is not psychological at all, but inherent in the data itself.

Now let’s add the psychological to this: we are not made to understand the point, so we overreact emotionally to noise. The best solution is to only look at very large changes in data or conditions, never small ones.

Alan Jacobs today:

If you’re reading the news several times a day, you’re not being informed, you’re being stimulated. Try giving yourself a break from it. Look at this stuff at wider intervals, and in between sessions, give yourself time to think and assess.

Always good to see convergence on important topics. I now get most of my news from books.

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