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I'm a believer in 'Fat Tony Science.'
I imagine that Fat Tony is some sort of quasi-questionable figure, or maybe just a street-wise person, like so many of the people I could observe growing up in Brooklyn. Fat Tony Science attempts to inject a healthy dose of street smarts into the decision tree by looking beyond simple facts and assumptions to things like ulterior motives and inter-personal realpolitik. Fat Tony Science becomes especially handy when parsing patient histories.
Here's an example:
You flip a coin 99 times and every toss comes up heads. What are the odds of it coming up tails on the next toss?
Little old lady at the slots:
It will come up tails, it's bound to after so many heads.
The same odds as always, 50-50.
It will come up heads, since only a rigged coin will produce 99 consecutive heads.
(More precisely, it's a thought experiment posed by Taleb, of bringing together two real people -- christened "Fat Tony" and "Dr. John" to discuss the odds of flipping a coin.)
Yes! Thank you for sharing this info. I had forgotten exactly where I had read of this anecdote. Great book.
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