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Game Theory: A Very Short Introduction
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Game Theory: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions #173)

3.24  ·  Rating Details  ·  370 Ratings  ·  41 Reviews
Games are everywhere: Drivers maneuvering in heavy traffic are playing a driving game. Bargain hunters bidding on eBay are playing an auctioning game. The supermarket's price for corn flakes is decided by playing an economic game. This Very Short Introduction offers a succinct tour of the fascinating world of game theory, a ground-breaking field that analyzes how to play g ...more
Paperback, 184 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published October 25th 2007)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,141)
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Andrew
Jun 14, 2015 Andrew rated it really liked it
I will admit my head hurts after this book and no its not a bad thing. I will start though by saying that to me mathematics is about numbers and not concepts - my line of work and experience makes me see numbers not symbols or concepts - so I will admit that I have had to work at this book. But why read something that is hard work - well for me the concept is fascinating - game theory has been quoted, mis-interpreted and yes even abused so many times it was about time to see what it was all abou ...more
บอมบุง พ่อยอดคะน้าอ่อน
Game Theory ไมใชทฤษฎีทีเขาใจงาย และยิงซับซอนเขาไปใหญผานการแปลทีเครงครัดจนเขาขายอานไมรูเรือง

บอกตามตรง ถาผมไมไดมีพืนฐานเลกนอยเกียวกับทฤษฑีเกมส หนังสือเลมนีคงเขาตาซายทะลุตาขวา เพราะเตมไปดวยศัพทแสงทีผมตองแปลกลับเปนภาษาอังกฤษถึงจะพอเขาใจ


'แองดึงดูด' 'ขอบเขตการมีเหตุมีผลจำกัด' 'พลวัตหนวยคัดสำเนา' 'กลยุทธครอบงำ' ศัพทเหลานีมีแตจะสรางความสับสนงุนงงจนยากทีจะอานหนังสือเลมนีเขาใจ

สำหรับผม บททีแยทีสุดคือทฤษฎีเกมสกับวิวัฒนาการ ทีสรุป 3 - 4 บทจากหนังสือ Selfish Gene ของ Dawkins มาเปนบทเลกๆ ความยาวไมกีหนา ซึงสำหร
...more
Maurizio Codogno
Nov 15, 2010 Maurizio Codogno rated it really liked it
Come cambiano le cose nel tempo! Quando mi capitò di vedere per la prima volta un libretto che raccontava la teoria dei giochi (una vecchissima edizione Zanichelli di fine anni '70) il tutto era senz'ombra di dubbio matematica. Questo libretto della meritoria serie OUP "A Very Short Introduction" è un testo di economia, con una rapida incursione nel campo biologico. Il teorema del minimax, ai tempi al centro della trattazione, è buttato lì quasi come un inciso; gli equilibri di Nash, che allora ...more
Ilya
Jul 31, 2009 Ilya rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
a mediocre introduction to a very interesting subject. the book doesn't really flow - just gives example games without connecting the subjects well. the big problem i had with the book is that the author is way too defensive about negative perceptions of game theory, and thus wastes a lot of space trying to remedy these misconceptions. also, without math it was hard for me to internalize some of the game theoretical results.

some of the interesting points:

* discussion of auction mechanisms, with
...more
Dan Cohen
May 25, 2014 Dan Cohen rated it it was ok

I was disappointed by this introduction. The author writes with considerable style and covers some aspects well, but I think that the core principles of game theory are not explained at all well and the examples and diagrams are explained particularly poorly. Not surprisingly, the book is best when covering the author's speciality - auctions. I also feel that the author devotes too much time to arguing against the straw man of ethical objections to game theory analyses - these could be dealt wit
...more
Jay Little
May 06, 2012 Jay Little rated it really liked it
While short, it's also to the point and lives up to it's title. It is a very short introduction to game theory, but it hits the important notes and gives just enough information to whet the whistle and prepare the reader for more complex, detailed books discussing game theory... such as the rest of Ken Binmore's books.

Think of it not so much as a primer or cliff notes version of Game Theory, but more of a sampler appetizer platter -- you get to try a little bit of everything before deciding if y
...more
xe01
Apr 12, 2016 xe01 rated it did not like it
Shelves: abandoned
Here comes my rant:

Wow! I can't believe I got this far (34% of the book)! This is one of the most BORING books I have ever read in my life! This was supposed to read like an introduction to the theory (hence the title a VERY SHORT introduction), not an undergrad texbook full of B.O.R.I.N.G examples and explanations! It's ridiculously tedious and managed to get on my nerves! This is definitely aimed at undergrads majoring in economics, not at the general reader! Full of technical terms - I just g
...more
Mac
Oct 15, 2015 Mac rated it it was ok
Binmore's book is about Game Theory. It is very short. But as an introduction, it could use some work. While the book succeeds in presenting what is, at its core, a complex mathematical system in accessible terms even to weak math students like me, the organization is weak. Moreover, Binmore writes from a first person point of view and his tone is frequently combative. This is off-putting for a number of reasons, but mostly because people reading "A Very Short Introduction" to a subject are not ...more
Calum
Nov 29, 2015 Calum rated it it was amazing
Shelves: game-theory
Game Theory: A Very Short was a great introduction, and got me excited about Game Theory.

It touches on a fairly surface understanding of concepts of Game Theory.
I'll admit at times it isn't easy to follow, But that just made me want to read more!

I think that's kinda the point of these "A Very Short Introductions" (although I will admit this is my first read of a book in the series). In my reading of *"Game Theory An Introduction" by Tadelis* (not the same book), I've realized just how 'math-y'
...more
Darius Daruvalla-riccio
Aug 31, 2015 Darius Daruvalla-riccio rated it really liked it
Game theory factors in to so many things that you don't always immediately see. I really think that all social scientists need to know about game theory because it has so many implications for so much of their work.

This book sells game theory very well and gives many examples of games and their applications. However, most of it I didn't understand without re-reading and parts of it I still don't understand. I blame this partly on game theory being complex but also on the explanations not really
...more
Maged Zeineldin
Feb 27, 2015 Maged Zeineldin rated it really liked it
This is my second book about the game theory after the Greg Cashman's: What Causes War?, which was more about political conflicts rather than the game theory per se: I read about game theory in other books dealing with strategies and political sciences. So, I decided to read more about it without going deep into its complicated mathematical equations. This book does that very elegantly. It does what the title suggest, a very short introduction. If you are looking for more than an introduction or ...more
Rich
Oct 30, 2015 Rich rated it it was ok
I get it...you're smarter than I am. So, you write a book that doesn't exactly explain a concept, but instead confirms a concept for those who already understand the concept. Well...maybe I'll learn about the concept and then come back and read your short introduction again so I can understand it.
Howard
Jul 23, 2015 Howard rated it liked it
Shelves: vsi
Contains some very interesting models and examples, but the explanation can be quite complicated for an introductory text.
It gets better as it progresses towards the end, and the last chapter on the fallacies/paradoxes is particularly interesting.
Vilém Zouhar
Nov 16, 2015 Vilém Zouhar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Considering my bad experience with 'aliter' books, this was a pleasant surprise. The book was easy to follow and used interesting examples and references. Good for reading together with The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins.
Taylor Pechacek
May 21, 2015 Taylor Pechacek rated it it was amazing
LOVE these little books. Game Theory was a great overview of the topic.
Jayant Yadav
May 29, 2015 Jayant Yadav rated it really liked it
Shelves: economics
A very good introduction, suitable for both the novice and experts
Kim Caudill
Feb 01, 2016 Kim Caudill rated it it was ok
IMHO, More of stochastic look at game theory. Obviously from the master himself but I did not take away a cohesive understanding (maybe that is just the point)
Darthnixa
Jan 12, 2016 Darthnixa rated it really liked it
A good book to get into economic game theory, though it does require some basic prior familiarity with the subject.
Chris
Jan 10, 2016 Chris rated it really liked it
Delivers on its title of a very short introduction. I would like to follow up with more reading.
Daniel Wright
Jul 28, 2014 Daniel Wright rated it it was ok
This book certainly does more-or-less what it says on the can: you will learn the basics of Game Theory from it. On the other hand there is much criticism that could be made of it. The tone is patronising, defensive, often adversarial. The mathematics (this is not the author's fault) is rather thin on the ground, which sometimes makes it difficult to follow. Not much recommended.
Mavromou
Oct 01, 2015 Mavromou rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
En realidad mas que introductorio el libro analiza únicamente juegos de dos jugadores, con varios ejemplos, y a pesar de ello no me pareció un libro muy didáctico. Es mas bien un libro de consulta para cuando se necesitan tener ejemplos de análisis de juegos de dos jugadores.
Justin McDonald
Apr 10, 2011 Justin McDonald rated it liked it
Very interesting, but technical. I kept waiting for him to talk about GTA IV, but nothing. Just "prisoner's dilemma" this and "Nash equilibrium" that.

Seriously though, Game Theory is an intellectually stimulating endeavor, but as an introductory text I think I need something a little more fun.

Explosions and chainsaw machine-guns would be a nice start.
Avinno
Dec 17, 2013 Avinno rated it liked it
Shelves: academic-main
The rating was not based on the merits of Game Theory,which is an excellent subject by its own right, but on a poorly written book with many clumsy explanations aimed at begginer readers.

I had no interest in the chapter "Evolutionary biology", but it would have been nice if he had elaborated more on the auction and regulatory aspects of game theory.
Kristina
May 06, 2015 Kristina rated it did not like it
Made a fascinating topic boring; my game theory text book in college was easier to follow.
Ed
Dec 04, 2007 Ed rated it really liked it
Good short text on Game Theory that would open your eyes to what this all about. Book has its flaws: the author is a tad arrogant and dismisses my favorite book on conflict: Getting to Yes in a way that suggests he fundamentally doesn't understand it. Application of Game Theory to Evolution is especially interesting and well written.
Ted Mccombs
May 08, 2013 Ted Mccombs rated it did not like it
Obscure and underwritten for beginners, uninteresting for non-beginners. Some of the first figure illustrations were wrong, abolishing any reader trust (and confusing the heck out of me for a while). Stopped after four chapters. If you're looking for a great and accessible introduction to game theory, keep looking.
Phil
Sep 09, 2013 Phil rated it really liked it
Even as an idiot's guide, still a bit mathematically challenging for, well, someone who scraped Maths O-level with a grade 6 (yes, before they discovered zero, and all that) - but I got the gist. It is actually fascinating stuff - just wish my brain had grasped the basics before it started falling apart...
Brent
Dec 30, 2009 Brent rated it liked it
Shelves: economics
This was a fascinating book. Game Theory is effective in explaining human behavior in so many different scenarios. After reading this book I definitely want to learn more about economics and also review some mathematics that I've clearly forgotten over the past few years.
Μιτς Γιωτίξ
Fucking finally... this was not as enjoyable as others from the "a very shot introduction" series.
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173852
Professor of Economics at UCL, after holding corresponding positions at LSE and the University of Pennsylvania and Michigan. Onetime Professor of Mathematics at LSE.

Author of 77 published papers and 11 books. Research in evolutionary game theory, bargaining theory, experimental economics, political philosophy, mathematics and statistics.

Grants from National Science Foundation (3), ESRC (1), STICER
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More about Ken Binmore...

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