Jeff Ma Is Keynoting Defrag 2010

One of my favorite conferences, Defrag, is really heating up.  As always, Eric Norlin is doing a magnificent job of curating the agenda and already has some great headliners such as Esther Dyson, Paul Kedrosky, Vinnie Mirchandani, David Weinberger, Stowe Boyd, and Vivek Wadhwa.

Today, Jeff Ma agreed to keynote Defrag.  From Eric’s blog post:

Jeff Ma, who was the inspiration for the movie “21″ and the book “Bringing Down the House,” and is the author of the *awesome* new book, “The House Advantage” is coming to keynote Defrag. Besides being a world-famous card counter in the game of blackjack (which he, literally, can no longer play in casinos), Jeff has started several businesses (PROTRADE and Citizen Sports – which sold to Yahoo! in May of this year).  Jeff’s current focus is on applying the laws of statistics to business in order to give managers, entrepreneurs and leaders an edge (hence, “The House Advantage”).”

I was re-introduced to Jeff recently through our mutual friend Niel Robertson, the CEO of Trada.   I wrote about this, and Jeff’s great book, in my post The House Advantage.  We’e talked about getting together – it might be that the first time our paths cross physically will be at Defrag on November 17th and 18th in Boulder.

Come join us – register now for the Early Bird Price which is good through September 30th.

  • Boulderx

    I disagree, I would not call "The House Advantage" an awesome book, definitely not a book for those seeking to learn about how to apply statistics to business, in my opinion. I read the book on your recommendation but never found its "awesomeness". Though, the casino stories were fun. In general, I have enjoyed your book recommendations, so keep them coming!

    • http://www.feld.com Brad Feld

      Sorry you didn't like it. I thought it was excellent for the vast majority of people who don't know basic statistics (or – more interestingly – think they do but don't) in a business context.

      • Boulderx

        Well, it did get me to rent the movie 21 – not too bad. :)

        I was expecting more, as the cover does read, "Playing the Odds to Win Big in Business". The content was very simple: look at past performance, reject intuition… You are right, it may be a good book for the stats newbie, but no one is winning big with this content alone.

  • davidlukas

    Off topic, but 21 was SUCH a cheesy movie, which is all the more disappointing because the original story and subject matter were just begging for a masterful cinematic treatment.

    • http://www.feld.com Brad Feld

      Awww – c'mon. Nerdy hero. Beautiful nerdy heroine. Bad evil teacher. Las Vegas. What more could you want?

      • davidlukas

        My reasons: Kate Bosworth is way too "Hollywood" hot to be plausible as a brainiac card-counter; Kevin Spacey is a frail shell of his Ususal Suspects pinnacle, and the dialogue just had me grimacing. But to each his own.

        Seriously though, if you haven't seen it, the History Channel documentary on the same events is outstanding.

        • Boulderx

          Hot women can be brainiacs – they do exist, even in Cambridge. :)

          :

  • http://twitter.com/stevemann @stevemann

    Super! And Brad, don't forget that the Enterprise Irregulars will have a conference thread on platform shifts @ Defrag this year! I'm curating the EI Agenda.

    • http://www.feld.com Brad Feld

      Yup – that's going to be great. I'm psyched the EI's are coming.