Archive for March, 2017

antifragile

While I was doing some stock and financial research, I came across an article that interested me. It was about Apple. Apple the company. In the past calendar year, Apple has been through ups and downs. Companies and people always go through peaks and valleys. Apple was no exception.

There were stories, from reliable sources, that blasted Apple’s market share and their lack of new products. If that wasn’t enough, here came news of Apple’s lack of innovation. Now, remember that this is while Apple is constructing their “mothership”. This is the nickname of their new research facility which resembles a big flying saucer. To me, Apple is always a model of innovation. Apparently, not everyone thought that way.

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But while the negatives that were coming out on Apple, some major “players” were buying the stock like investment houses and hedge funds. Warren Buffet was a big buyer of Apple stock and always spoke highly about the company.

Well, the post I came across specifically mentioned Apple as being “antifragile”. As I read on, it was brought out that antifragile was incorrect as to describing Apple and should have mentioned Amazon as being antifragile. Antifragile is described as:

“Some things benefit from shocks. They thrive and grow when exposed to volatility, randomness, disorder and stressors and love adventure, risk, and uncertainty. Yet, in spite of the ubiquity of the phenomenon, there is no word for the exact opposite of fragile. Let us call it antifragile.”

This original definition is from Nassim Taleb. Antifragile is assigned to entities which are small companies, companies that can pivot, companies with embedded options, investments with open-ended outcomes and companies led by owners/operators and/or aggressive tinkerers.

“If the designation antifragile is rather vague and limited to specific sources of harm or volatility, and up to a certain range of exposure, it is no more and no less so than the designation fragile. Antifragility is relative to a given situation. A boxer might be robust, pale when it comes to his physical condition, and might improve from fight to fight, but he can easily be emotionally fragile and break into tears when dumped by his girlfriend.”

Taleb_mug

Nassim Taleb

 

The term “antifragile” is vague. Perhaps it should not have been applied to Apple, but instead to Amazon.

Think of antifragility in terms of “a thing” and volatility. Antifragility isn’t what you should be under all circumstances. Sometimes you have to accept being on top and perhaps consequently vulnerable.

Apple: Antifragile it is Not was the source and inspiration for this post.

 

 

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