Michel Pireu Columnist

In his best-seller The Black Swan, Nassim Taleb asks us to play two thought experiments. In a section called “Travels Inside Mediocristan”, he asks us to, “Assume you round up a thousand people randomly selected from the general public and have them stand next to each other in a stadium ... Imagine the heaviest person you can think of and add him to that sample. Assuming he weighs three times the average, between 400lb and 500lb, he will rarely represent more than a very small fraction of the weight of the entire population (in this case, about 0.5%).

“You can get even more aggressive. If you picked the heaviest biologically possible human on the planet (who yet can still be called a human), he would not represent more than, say, 0.6% of the total, a very negligible increase.”

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