Algorithms to Live By (2016)

Algorithms to Live By

THE COMPUTER SCIENCE OF HUMAN DECISIONS

Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths

How many people do you need to date before you can be confident that this one is “the one”? 37. You need to have benchmarked 37% of your potential partners and then take the next one who is better then the best of this benchmark group. According to Christian and Griffiths this is but one of the many algorithms that we use (or should be using) in our lives. They delve from human decisions, to computer logic to auction strategy. Spoiler Alert — The Vicar’s Auction is terrific.

How do we sort our work? What ways can we avoid procrastination? Why is a stack of papers on your desk a perfectly good sorting strategy?

Learn about the secretary problem and the traveling salesman problem. What is the prisoner’s dilemma? You will want to know!

Basically, a book on decision making and other nerd-like issues that most people will not be interested in — but should.