How a band of maverick physicists used chaos theory to trade their way to fortune on Wall Street.
How could a couple of rumpled physicists in sandals and Eat the Rich T-shirts, piling computers into an adobe house in Santa Fe, hope to take on the Masters of the Universe from Goldman Sachs? Doyne Farmer and Norman Packard may never have read The Wall Street Journal, but they happen to be among the founders of the new sciences of chaos and complexity. Who better to try to find order in the apparently unreasoned chaos of the global financial markets? Thomas Bass first made readers aware of Farmer and Packard in The Eudaemonic Pie, in which he chronicled their assault on the casinos of Las Vegas. Here, Bass takes us inside their start-up company, at first a motley collection of long-haired Ph.D.s, nervously testing their computer forecasting models. As confidence builds, Farmer and Packard make their way to the centers of financial power, where they find investors and ultimately go live with real money. Once they are off and running, The Predictors becomes a dizzying, often hilarious tale of genius and greed, power brokers and rebels, as well as a brisk education in chaos, complexity, and the world financial markets.