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The Fear Index (Paperback)

Author:  Robert Harris
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Learn more about The Fear Index:

Format: Paperback
ISBN-10: 0307948110
ISBN-13: 9780307948113
Sku: 230130856
Publish Date: 8/21/2012
Pages:  304
Age Range:  NA
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Dr. Alex Hoffmann has developed a revolutionary form of artificial intelligence that predicts movements in the financial markets. When an intruder breaches the security of his mansion, Hoffmann attempts to discover who is trying to destroy him.
From the Publisher:
At the nexus of high finance and sophisticated computer programming, a terrifying future may be unfolding even now.
Dr. Alex Hoffmann's name is carefully guarded from the general public, but within the secretive inner circles of the ultrarich he is a legend. He has developed a revolutionary form of artificial intelligence that predicts movements in the financial markets with uncanny accuracy. His hedge fund, based in Geneva, makes billions. But one morning before dawn, a sinister intruder breaches the elaborate security of his lakeside mansion, and so begins a waking nightmare of paranoia and violence as Hoffmann attempts, with increasing desperation, to discover who is trying to destroy him.
Fiendishly smart and suspenseful, The Fear Index gives us a searing glimpse into an all-too-recognizable world of greed and panic. It is a novel that forces us to confront the question of what it means to be human?and it is Robert Harris's most spellbinding and audacious novel to date.
In this thriller from Robert Harris, a scientist designs a computer program known as VIXAL, which is intended to guide hedge-fund decisions through the use of highly complex financial algorithms. In a plot twist reminiscent of the work of Philip K. Dick, VIXAL soon becomes too powerful, leading to an action-packed, cinematic climax.


"It's an energetically researched tale based on one of the back stories to the crash of 2008: bankers' hiring of physicists to devise hugely complex trading programs that few really understand, and those new strategies running dangerously amok. It's also a familiar story of hubris and its fallout." - Michiko Kakutani 01/27/2012

"If you're feeling paranoid about the future in general and the global economy in particular, you had better skip THE FEAR INDEX by Robert Harris. It could push you right over the edge.|But if you're looking for a timely, expertly executed bit of fiction, read on." - James Endrst 01/30/2012

"The climax of THE FEAR INDEX is so perfectly paced it should be read with a bag of popcorn....Like the hedge fund around which it revolves, the novel relies too heavily on formula. But like the algorithm that powers the fund, that formula works." - Sam Thielman 02/01/2012

"[t]he author revels in digressions on the operation of financial markets and Darwin's theory of natural selection. . . . Harris has done his homework on both, lifting several chilling quotations from Darwin and details of a one-day market panic from government reports on the real 'flash crash' in May 2010. Harris even goes for a touch of geek cred, showing us the first server for the World Wide Web." - John Schwartz 03/04/2012

Product Attributes

Product attributeBook Format:   Paperback
Product attributeNumber of Pages:   0304
Product attributePublisher:   Vintage Books
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