This month, Institutional Investor introduces Nerd
on the Street, a back-of-the-book feature inspired by my new
book, Nerds On
Wall Street: Math, Machines and Wired
Markets (Wiley 2009). In magazines,
back-of-the-book is the last inside page before the
back cover. Often there is a cartoon or some eye-catching
picture. These range from fighter planes to cute baby animals
to home-built armored vehicles, depending on whether you are
reading Aviation Week, Furry Friends,
or Soldier of Fortune.
Funny is good for the back, with not too much to read, since
there is plenty of that inside the magazine. Its much
easier find this kind of material for, say, motorcycle
magazines than for Institutional Investor, so I was
thrilled to provide a few of the pithy, funny, unique visual
financial illustrations found in "Nerds On Wall Street."
Looking into the workings of modern securities markets is
like looking under the hood of a Prius hybrid car. There are so
many complex and obscure parts it's hard to discern what's
going on. If you look under the hood of an auto from a simpler
era, for example a '64 Mustang, you can see parts and what they
do, and have a better chance of understanding their complex
This slideshow of photographs
about markets and technology is not intended in any way to be a
complete history of market technology, but rather an easily
digestible introduction to Institutional Investor 's
new feature, "Nerd on the Street."
History repeats and informs in market technologies. From the
days when front-running involved actual running to the
"Victorian Internet era" brought on by telegraphy, we can learn
a great deal from looking back at a simpler era.
"Progress might have been all right once, but it has
gone on too long."
Click here to view the Nerds On Wall Street
Please send your emails to firstname.lastname@example.org.