This month, a lot is going on in the tech department of our hedge fund: we’re upgrading all of our development servers (with the latest AMD Ryzen CPU), we’re preparing new trading servers which will be moved to Chicago (closer to the exchange) and we’re getting everything ready to launch new CTA programs (we’re scaling up fast).
Meanwhile, I got the latest Huawei P20 Pro mobile phone (just to check out if this latest tech is as awesome as all the reviews say), fancy Bluetooth Sennheiser earbuds (I love thinking about new trading ideas while listening to music), and the recent 2017 Surface Pro (just because I want to travel even lighter and because I also love this device).
Yes, I do love tech, like probably most of you. And I also love to own the latest and the greatest developments. :-)
But when it comes to trading, when I get asked what’s the best tech for trading (the most common question I get), my answer usually shocks many:
The best trading tech in the Universe is a pen and paper…
…there will always be something much more important than tech—and that is fresh, original, savvy, innovative trading ideas.
There will always be something much more important than tech—and that is fresh, original, savvy, innovative trading ideas. Click To Tweet
That’s also why during my trading career of 10+ years, I probably spent a lot more time with pen and paper than coding and watching markets.
I still remember endless hours spent with pen and paper when I made the decision to design one of the toughest robustness testing procedures ever seen in this industry (to be certain that my trading strategies would work in live trading).
Quite often, I was gazing for long hours at the blue horizon in front of me (that time, I was living in Portugal) and desperately waiting for an idea to pop up.
My only company at that time was a pen and a paper.
Even in the following months, when I already had plenty of ideas, I still had to put them together and design them into a viable, powerful framework.
Again, I spent most of the time scratching different concepts, different process flows, and different ways to connect the dots.
And to my surprise, nothing helped me move forward faster than pen and paper!
Nothing helped me move forward faster than pen and paper! Click To Tweet
In fact, any tech was simply too distracting, and all I needed was a clear, fully-focused mind and a simple way to put my thoughts out there.
So, after all this time, I still believe that the combination of pen and paper is the best invention (which is what trading is all about)!
This is how I invented my whole automated development and my very tough robustness testing procedures (which I share in the Breakout Masterclass).
This is how I came up with the idea of slashing drawdowns drastically with the help of Market Internals (again, all my proprietary Market Internals conditions were designed on a piece of paper first).
This is also how I designed the most powerful solutions to Smashing False Breakouts and, obviously, how I started my own hedge fund too.
There is nothing fancier than a pen and a paper.
The very foundation of many great ideas and inventions.
Simply the best tech ever invented – even for traders.
Tomas & Andrew
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