The future is hard to predict, especially if you pretend that you can see it.

The blind forecaster beats a panel of industry “experts“. This isn’t really news, as reports like this are published as articles or books quite regularly. It is good, though, to always remind oneself of how most of economics and all of sociology is NOT at all like physics. There is no determinism. There are no equations of motions.

People, as the actors in the system, mess everything up. Second, are at least equally important, is that the number of variables in the system is fantastically large.

Can you think of any other systems with fantastically large numbers of variables for which people regularly make headlines for predicting the future?

-JD Cross

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