KentuckyFC writes writes to share a new online test that is being touted as the "financial Turing test
." The web-based exercise asks users to distinguish between real and randomly generated financial data. "Various economists argue that the efficiency of a market ought to be clearly evident in the returns it produces. They say that the more efficient it is, the more random its returns will be and a perfect market should be completely random. That would appear to give the lie to the widespread belief that humans are unable to tell the difference between financial market returns and, say, a sequence of coin tosses. However, there is good evidence that financial markets are not random (although they do not appear to be predictable either). Now a group of scientists have developed a financial Turing test to find out whether humans can distinguish real financial data from the same data randomly rearranged. Anybody can take the test and the results indicate that humans are actually rather good at this kind of pattern recognition."