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Black_Dragon43

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Great post @Kung Fu Steve !

My thought originally was always "if I could just get ONE thing out of this, it was worth it. Even if I learn what NOT to do."
You know, I think you're right! When I took Tony's (I remember you work for him, or maybe used to work for him?) Mastering Influence program, I remember the Big Guy being like "If you only learn about POWER MOVES, or if you only learn about HOW TO GIVE COMPLIMENTS, or ... think about what difference it would make in your life" and on it went right at the end of the course, and I was like... "he's so right". Just one of those things, in my business, is going to be SUPER valuable to me, more than the $400 or so I paid.

So I think that you definitely get something out of the experience if, as you say, you know your goals and use an intelligent approach.
 

Black_Dragon43

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I guess this is where we disagree. I don't believe using this method will provide any additional benefit, other than perhaps serving as a confirmation bias -- if you want to buy the course, this method will provide reinforcement of that decision, and if you subconciously don't really believe the course will help you, this method will likely support that decision. The key is that the assumptions you plug into the model (for example, likelihood of the course being beneficial) will reflect your preconceived ideas.

But, if it makes you feel better about your decision, go for it!
Yeah, I think you are right, we do disagree over here. I see it much like in engineering we tend to make some assumptions, and those assumptions end up determining if the math we do is of any value or not. To me though, this doesn't mean that doing the math is useless - just that you must make the correct assumptions (or as close to the correct assumptions as possible) before you do the math.

Thanks for the insight with regards to the Kelly Criterion - I'll definitely be looking into it. I'm familiar with Poker math (Rule of 2 & 4, Draw Odds, Pot Odds, etc.) but have never come across it before!
 

S.Y.

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From Principles book (by Ray Dalio)

5. Learn how to make decisions effectively
5.3 Synthetize the situation through time​
5.3.b Be imprecise
Understand the concept of “by-and-large” and use approximations. Because our educational system is hung up on precision, the art of being good at approximations is insufficiently valued.

OP approach is too complicated for this kind of decisions. It will be counterproductive for me.

I use much simpler heuristics.

Edit:
It reminds me of something Charlie Munger said:
"It is remarkable how much long-term advantage people like us have gotten by trying to be consistently not stupid, instead of trying to be very intelligent."
 
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Black_Dragon43

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OP approach is too complicated for this kind of decisions.
Thanks for contributing!

To the contrary, I view it as a simple heuristic that I can easily apply. I mean, if this is hard to apply, then I don't know what you count as "easy". But then not everyone has the same POV when it comes to these things.

I use much simpler heuristics.
What are they? Do you mind sharing? :)

5. Learn how to make decisions effectively
5.3 Synthetize the situation through time5.3.b Be impreciseUnderstand the concept of “by-and-large” and use approximations. Because our educational system is hung up on precision, the art of being good at approximations is insufficiently valued.
I appreciate Ray Dalio - he is a very smart man, and I've learned a lot from him. There are some things I disagree with that he says, but this is not one of them. I agree with him. However, as many people have pointed out, my equation and method is anything but precise - it is an approximation, and its usefulness depends on the prior assumptions that you make. It's a fast tool that you can use in combination with others. That is the conclusion of this thread as far as I see it.
 

Dominik_M

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@Black_Dragon43 The problem with your system is that it depends solely on two variables that you can only guess.
Humans are not good at guessing.

Those two variables are:
x = Added value by the course
y= Chance of achievement of x

There is NO mathematical way of solving the equation.
All you can do is assume - and that's the problem.
 

Black_Dragon43

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@Black_Dragon43 The problem with your system is that it depends solely on two variables that you can only guess.
Humans are not good at guessing.

Those two variables are:
x = Added value by the course
y= Chance of achievement of x

There is NO mathematical way of solving the equation.
All you can do is assume - and that's the problem.
The point is that with the math you can calculate the effects of your assumptions. Without it, you're a bit in the dark as to whether or not it's going to be profitable given your particular assumptions.

More info added to the OP to make things clearer too :)
 
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Kevin88660

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My general rule of thump is if you see something interesting. Buy the book, do not sign up for courses.

There is never a single book that I regretted buying, even if it sits on the shelf and I have no time to read.

How much is a book? 15-30 dollar? Kindle online version are even cheaper.
The biggest opportunity cost in reading a book is actually the time spent, if you value your time as 50 dollar an hour. Even an idea in a book can help you improve your productivity by 2 percent it will be much more valuable than the cost.

Only sign up a thousand dollar course if you are very certain.

I am generous for buying all books and against signing up all courses. Success is a long journey. No one is not going to get rich on relying on single idea/concept or training for a useful skill for two weeks.
 

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