How to expect the unexpected

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Are you more likely to become a professional footballer if your surname is Ball? Is winning the National Lottery not once, but twice really as unlikely as it sounds? Why did so many Pompeiians stay put while Mount Vesuvius was erupting? How do you prevent a nuclear war? Ever since the dawn of human civilisation, we have been trying to make predictions about what's in store for us. We do this on a personal level, so that we can get on with our lives efficiently (should I hang my laundry out to dry, or will it rain?). But we also have to predict on a much larger scale, often for the good of our broader society (how can we spot economic downturns or prevent terrorist attacks?). For just as long, we have been getting it wrong. This book will teach you how and why predictions go wrong, help you to spot phony forecasts and give you a better chance of getting your own predictions correct.