Thursday, June 16, 2005

Back to books 

Let's get back to books.

It's been a hard week, for various reasons. But that's enough blogging about me - let's get back to books.

I'm starting Game Theory at Work by James Miller, a "practical application" of how game theory can be applied to your advantage at work when, say, bidding on a contract or asking for a job. So far, it's great. He's taking into account both rational and irrational responses to choices and the need to read your "opponent." Some games come down to a final choice in which your opponent must choose between both parties receiving nothing and him receiving $100 while you receive $200. It's in his best interest to take the $100, even though you get $200 - he's $100 richer, and life is not a zero-sum game. But maybe he's irrational, spiteful even, and he refuses to give you $200 even if it means he's turning down $100. This book discusses possible ways to deal with such people.

So far it's great. There are "practice exercises" at the end, the diagrams are clear, the examples come from real life and from an abstract rational world, and the text is understandable and exact, even without using equations.

Here's hoping it stays good. I could use a good read.

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