Incomplete Information

December 4, 2023

We watch Jeopardy! at the dinner table pretty much every night. One of my favorite parts of the game is the Daily Double. More specifically, watching how different people deal with incomplete information. In a flash, they have to grapple with the state of the game, their knowledge of the category, and calculate how much to wager. The whole game can change instantly, and I find it thrilling every time.

You get to see how the contestants manage risk, how much confidence they have in themselves, and if they have a strategy or not. There are two ways to play; believing in yourself by making big wagers – playing to win – or trying to keep yourself in the game – playing to not lose.

It's such a remarkable parallel to the decisions we have to make in life. You're almost always dealing with complete information, but you still need to make a wager. Are you playing to win or not lose?