Automate This: How Algorithms took over our Markets, our Jobs, and the World by Christopher Steiner

This book is primarily about the use of algorithmic trading, and the rise of automation in
the financial sector. Specifically, this book covers the history of a few innovators in the
field of automated trading, and it does a fine job of explaining this highly technical area
for the non-technical. I’d highly recommend this book for anyone that has any interest in
the US stock markets, and who does any trading at all. That being said, from the title of
the book I had hoped for much more. The book throws in a few examples of where algorithms
have been used elsewhere, but it’s by no means an anthology of the radical changes made to
the world around us by data-driven automation in the form of advanced algorithms, much less
heuristic algorithms, or algorithms as the results of machine-learning. Al though it does
cover the mathematics to a degree, the book certainly doesn’t list algorithms, or get into
the math behind them. So although this book is a good overview of the technology, it’s not
the book I’d hoped it would be from the title. I can’t take points off for missed
expectations, the book is a good read either way. I’m just hoping the author does a follow-up
book some day that expands the discussion deeper into the implications of algorithms in
network security, medical science, national security, and of course other areas of finance
beyond just US markets.

automate book cover

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