The Financial Stanislav Petrov

Ugly discusses some career advise from futurist and inventor Ray Kurzweil, and how they relate to his fears that human traders will some day be obsolete.

I wouldn't worry too much about this. People are great catalysts for action, even if they need a lot of technological leverage to get that action accomplished, and we're much less linear than computers, which means we'll be able to spot weird and unnatural correlations and opportunities faster than a pure number-crunching machine can. One of my Forex-trading friends recently wondered just why he's necessary: All he really does is back-test patterns, wait for his computer to give a signal, and then input the order. Superficially, there's no need for a flesh-and-blood intermediary in that process. The computer should be able to handle it all. Unfortunately for determinists, futurists, and singularitarians, humans are still able to pick up on what computers miss, which is why I refer to my Forex friend and all his fellow computer-assisted traders as the financial Stansislav Petrovs.

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posted by Byrne Hobart at 2:39:00 PM


Anonymous Ugly said...

Thanks for you thoughts, but I still think it will happen. For example, telephone operators are becoming less needed as voice recognition software is improving quickly. Next, translators will become less and less needed as translation software continues to improve. Then trading along with many other professions.
It may be and seem impossible now, but things are changing quickly. A lot of things that were not possible only five years ago are happening today.

4:37 PM  

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