You can’t predict in general, but you can predict that those who rely on predictions are taking more risks, will have some trouble, perhaps even go bust. Why? Someone who predicts will be fragile to prediction errors. An overconfident pilot will eventually crash the plane. And numerical prediction leads people to take more risks.

Ideas, [Mike Jones, an engineer at Google] explained, were like babies — everything about their environment said they shouldn’t exist. But they do. You can’t dwell on problems too early, or they will swamp the virtues and you will decide not to do the project.