If our writing is to be logical, convincing, and interesting, we must draw inferences and support them with relevant facts.

Nov. 4, 2019, 11:35 p.m.

When To Expect Good Work

By Maurice Ticas





I found in my Google Feed Gregory Zuckerman's Wall Street excerpt about Jim Simon, an interesting mathematician who did very well in finding order from financial chaos. The excerpt was from Zuckerman's new book titled The Man Who Solved The Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution. The hardcover will be available to purchase tomorrow. What I most found interesting was the age at which Simon began to seek a new career in finance. He was in his forties when he decided to reinvent himself.

The article about Simon and his path to creating one of the most successful investment funds was a very refreshing story to read, especially now that I'm trying to reinvent myself as I'm approaching my forties. I am hopeful that I can find my own success stories as I fast approach middle age.

There is data to support an upbeat outlook in life. Reading from Zuckerman's excerpt about Mr. Simon encouraged me to share meaningful data, albeit small in size.

Earth goes around sun Copernicus 1543 40
Telescope, basic laws of astronomy Galileo 1600 34
Principles of motion, gravitation, calculus Newton 1665 23
Nature of electricity Franklin 1746 40
Burning is uniting with oxygen Lavoisier 1774 31
Earth evolved by gradual processes Lyell 1830 33
Evidence for natural selection controlling evolution Darwin 1858 49
Field equations for light Maxwell 1864 33
Radioactivity Curie 1896 34
Quantum theory Planck 1901 43
Special theory of relativity Einstein 1905 26
Mathematical foundations of quantum theory Schrodinger 1926 39

If we are to have a sense of where the true average age is located for a person to produce their best work, and are given only these 12 data points of very remarkable people to make such an inference, then we can conclude that there is a 90% chance that the age range from 31.6687 to 39.1646 contains the true average, where the center of this interval is the mean 35.4167.

I find this to be good news now. My age this year still is within this confidence interval.

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