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Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions

In almost every domain we’ve considered, we have seen how the more real-world factors we include — whether it’s having incomplete information when interviewing job applicants, dealing with a changing world when trying to resolve the explore/exploit dilemma, or having certain tasks depend on others when we’re trying to get things done — the more likely we are to end up in a situation where finding the perfect solution takes unreasonably long. And indeed, people are almost always confronting what computer science regards as the hard cases. Up against such hard cases, effective algorithms make assumptions, show a bias toward simpler solutions, trade off the costs of error against the costs of delay, and take chances.
These aren’t the concessions we make when we can’t be rational. They’re what being rational means.