Six Degrees of Idiocy

In both poker and finance, Aaron Brown writes, an individual's strategic idiocy can be quantified and analyzed.

One of the classic works of poker, and risk management, is Herbert Yardley’s 1957 best-seller, The Education of a Poker Player, Including Where and How One Learns to Win.

Yardley is an important transitional figure. 19th century poker was forged in self organized frontier societies such as mining camps, farm settlements and transshipment points. During the first half of the 20th century, it evolved into a game of extraordinary mathematical and psychological subtlety. Yardley learned his poker from a genuine old west gambler with deep 19th century roots. He later applied his talents to codebreaking, running the US efforts during World War I and after. That experience imbues his poker analysis with 20th century applied mathematics and proto-game theory.

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