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  1. #1
    breaking out of my cocoon SearchingforPeace's Avatar
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    Default The role of luck

    http://nymag.com/scienceofus/2016/05...verything.html

    Very interesting. I always have seen the importance of luck or chance in life. While some would like to discount those who talk of luck as sour grapes or envy, it is obvious to any one who backs away from dogma and looks at events and society.

    Malcolm Gladwell highlights certain events and situstions external to the individual determine success in his book Outliers.

    But back to the article.

    In it, Frank had argued that, “Contrary to what many parents tell their children, talent and hard work are neither necessary nor sufficient for economic success.” The missing ingredient, he explained in an argument he would eventually expand upon in his new book Success and Luck: Good Fortune and the Myth of Meritocracy, is luck.

    .....

    Varney, like many people who get upset by Frank’s argument, ignored a full half of it: Frank does think hard work, and merit more broadly, play important roles in determining success. Most successful people worked very hard to get there, and indeed are quite talented. But merit and hard work aren’t enough — because there are so many people who are smart and hardworking, but only so many “slots” for the best jobs, for most successful artistic endeavors, and so on, luck invariably plays an important role.

    ....

    Because people have such an unbalanced view of the luck-versus-skill equation, they fail to understand that there is good reason to have programs that can help redress some of the imbalances that arise in such a luck-oriented world.

    ....
    The article goes on to discuss why the Mona Lisa and Bryan Cranston are examples of luck, as well why the lucky ones hate being told they are lucky, as well as a possible way to talk to lucky folk about luck without them getting defensive.

    Read the whole.
    Quote Originally Posted by Archilochus
    The fox knows many things--the hedgehog one big one.
    And I am not a hedgehog......

    -------------------

    Jesus said "Blessed are the peacemakers" not "blessed are the conflict avoiders.....

    9w8 6w5 4w5 sx/so

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    “Orthodoxy means not thinking--not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.”
    ― George Orwell, 1984

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by SearchingforPeace View Post
    Why Americans Ignore How Luck Affects Everything -- Science of Us

    Very interesting. I always have seen the importance of luck or chance in life. While some would like to discount those who talk of luck as sour grapes or envy, it is obvious to any one who backs away from dogma and looks at events and society.

    Malcolm Gladwell highlights certain events and situstions external to the individual determine success in his book Outliers.

    But back to the article.



    The article goes on to discuss why the Mona Lisa and Bryan Cranston are examples of luck, as well why the lucky ones hate being told they are lucky, as well as a possible way to talk to lucky folk about luck without them getting defensive.

    Read the whole.
    Luck does exist; however, probability comes from possibility.

    If I go to the store and invest in 1 lottery ticket, then I have one possibility out of very many possibilities, and thus my probability of winning is low. If I instead invest in 100,000 tickets, then I have many possibilities of the greater set of possibilities, and thus my probability of winning is significantly higher. Although either situation may win, I either have the personal possibility of investment on chance within me already or I do not. If the 100,000 tickets situation won, then this personal possibility of investment on chance was well-served, and thus I now have the personal possibility of advantage over probability; I have positive possibilities. If the 1 ticket situation won, then this personal possibility of chance was no different than any one else's possibility of chance, and thus I now have a false impression of the personal possibility of advantage over probability or I accept that I do not have the personal possibility of advantage over probability; I have negative possibilities. The former has more possibility to subsequently invest on chance to further their material wealth. The latter does not.

    Life is similar. Da Vinci placed emphasis on his personal growth of possibilities, evident by his diverse subject matter. The Mona Lisa was a chance; however, this could have been the end of it. Instead, Da Vinci's entire persona has become iconic throughout time. The Mona Lisa was a possibility out of an very many possibilities, and thus it was sheer chance that Da Vinci rose to iconic stature. Or was it? By his iconic stature existing through the ages, he has had the advantage over probability of the possibility of fading into history after the Mona Lisa was painted, thus having had positive possibilities after the painting. By having had positive possibilities after the painting, he thus had advantage over probability of his possibilities that he could paint the Mona Lisa before it was painted, thus having positive possibilities before the Mona Lisa. By having positive possibilities before the Mona Lisa, he thus had many possibilities of a greater set of possibilities before the Mona Lisa. By having had many possibilities of a greater set of possibilities before the Mona Lisa, he thus invested in more possibilities before the Mona Lisa. By investing in more possibilities before the Mona Lisa, he thus worked to be able to invest more possibilities before the Mona Lisa. By working to invest more possibilities before the Mona Lisa, he thus had the personal possibilities of the advantage over the probability that he would fade away into time; he had positive possibilities.

    So, is there chance? Does it affect success? Yes, but if you succeed by chance, your success will not last. If your success lasts, then you did not succeed by chance; you succeeded by hard work.

    Disclaimer: First time I thought about such things, and I intended to go through a reverse of the gambling part in the Da Vinci part, but then I got lazy and half-assed it, so none of it may make sense or may not make the end-case I was going for lol

  3. #3
    breaking out of my cocoon SearchingforPeace's Avatar
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    I read a book once about Roman religion. Of all the temple offerings found, the most by far were to fortune.

    Of course, Machiavelli talked a lot about fortune, almost as much virtú. But he argued that people of great virtú could force fortune to their will.

    As the article says, it is a combination of talent, hard work, and luck.

    A great example of this is Harrison Ford. He had been a struggling actor for years. He picked up carpentry to pay bills. He was doing work for Francis Ford Coppola when George Lucas was there talking about trying to cast Han Solo. If Harrison Ford hadn't been working that day, he might not have ever been cast as Han Solo, even though Lucas knew him from American Graffiti.

    His entire career depended upon luck. But he was not sitting at home waiting for luck to happen. He was working hard and getting contact to a lot of Hollywood players while doing carpentry work. He made some of his own luck.

    I would argue there is a huge random factor in much of life. Seemingly random events shape life. This is what Gladwell argue as well (so that merit isn't as big as some would like to claim).

    By acknowledging that it was not just skill and hard work alone, we understand that some are being rewarded mostly for luck and not for any other reason.
    Quote Originally Posted by Archilochus
    The fox knows many things--the hedgehog one big one.
    And I am not a hedgehog......

    -------------------

    Jesus said "Blessed are the peacemakers" not "blessed are the conflict avoiders.....

    9w8 6w5 4w5 sx/so

    ----------------------

    “Orthodoxy means not thinking--not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.”
    ― George Orwell, 1984

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    Quote Originally Posted by SearchingforPeace View Post
    I read a book once about Roman religion. Of all the temple offerings found, the most by far were to fortune.

    Of course, Machiavelli talked a lot about fortune, almost as much virtú. But he argued that people of great virtú could force fortune to their will.

    As the article says, it is a combination of talent, hard work, and luck.

    A great example of this is Harrison Ford. He had been a struggling actor for years. He picked up carpentry to pay bills. He was doing work for Francis Ford Coppola when George Lucas was there talking about trying to cast Han Solo. If Harrison Ford hadn't been working that day, he might not have ever been cast as Han Solo, even though Lucas knew him from American Graffiti.

    His entire career depended upon luck. But he was not sitting at home waiting for luck to happen. He was working hard and getting contact to a lot of Hollywood players while doing carpentry work. He made some of his own luck.

    I would argue there is a huge random factor in much of life. Seemingly random events shape life. This is what Gladwell argue as well (so that merit isn't as big as some would like to claim).

    By acknowledging that it was not just skill and hard work alone, we understand that some are being rewarded mostly for luck and not for any other reason.
    Rewarded for luck? Yes, but the rewards are connected to time. Something seeming to be random is not necessarily "seemed" correctly. Possibilities, probabilities... Your personal probabilities of success through time are directly connected to your possibilities, which are synonymous with your potential.

    Notice: Harrison Ford was rolling the dice trying to make it big, and got stuck doing basic low-level work to make up for his poor dice rolling, and ended up only making it big by subjecting himself to the low-level work when he just so happened to be in the right place at the right time; this is Hans Solo.

  5. #5
    Fabula rasa Kas's Avatar
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    We can't influence luck.

    I say let's do what we can with what we have.

    Luck influences a lot our lives, but if we keep emphasizing the role of luck, we will just sit and wait things to happen. Instead of making them happen.


    2. When it comes to luck, people often freak out when you tell them stuff that’s obviously, incontrovertibly true.

    Frank kept circling back to the fact that absolutely nothing he’s saying is at all controversial. That’s why the Varney exchange is so telling: The host got extremely heated and personally offended (or performed offense, at least) simply because Frank pointed out that it takes some luck to be a successful person. Every thinking person understands this intellectually, and yet a lot of people react really aggressively to what is a thoroughly commonsense notion.

    Part of the problem is hindsight bias, of course — hard work and merit constitute a tighter, more linear and straightforward story, and therefore one that’s easier to process cognitively. The other problem is that people tend to react very poorly to any ideas that chip away at their sense of who they are. People hear “Luck is a contributing factor,” and think what the speaker is actually saying is “You didn’t earn what you have.” They make a giant leap, simply because acknowledging the role of luck can feel like such a blow to one’s self-concept.
    This part is interesting. But personally I never met this attitude, successful people I met used to say they were lucky and were right time in right place etc.
    “The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes." A.C. Doyle


  6. #6
    Queen hunter Virtual ghost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kas View Post
    We can't influence luck.
    We can, but there is no way we can control it 100%.






    For me this topic is trully no brainer. You just have to look at the world and it is obsevable beyond any doubt that luck plays a significant role in the lives of people.

  7. #7
    Fabula rasa Kas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Virtual ghost View Post
    We can, but there is no way we can control it 100%.
    I think luck is uncontrollable by definition. But what we do influences our success.
    “The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes." A.C. Doyle


  8. #8
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    Even worse, there are droves of folk unlucky enough to born without work ethic, without deep forms of intelligence, without aesthetic appeal - let alone without capital, without resources, without any semblance of infrastructure in their environment.

    The best decisions one can make economically, given only modest means of doing so, provide half the returns of plain and simple big capital to toss around. It's the truth.
    tiny purple fishes run laughing through your fingers
    and you want to take her with you, to the hard land of the winter

  9. #9
    Queen hunter Virtual ghost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kas View Post
    I think luck is uncontrollable by definition. But what we do influences our success.

    We can influence the odds and therefore to some degree our luck. (in my opinion)
    Likes Kas liked this post

  10. #10
    Senior Member riva's Avatar
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    Yeah luck matters quite a lot. That is NO secret.

    However, the harder you work the more likely that you would try out different options and therefore something you never expected to happen would just land on you.
    .
    Likes SearchingforPeace liked this post

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