I've had a lousy year trading ES. The lack-of-volatility, overlayed with six months of chemotherapy, just about prompted me to throw in the towel. First lesson: Don't trade while undergoing chemo. Second lesson: Well, that's the point of this post. Bear with me.... I just finished watching one of John Grady's excellent webinar videos on order flow. He appears to be a proponent of trading without charts, using just order flow info (in this case as presented on the Jigsaw platform). He asserts that prop firms don't allow newbie traders to use charts at all. Moreover, in this algo-driven enviroment, where the bots are scalping for two-to-four ticks, he says it makes sense to do what the bots do. He advocates trading extremes of the buzz-n-fuzz range for ticks. Ok, a couple of questions: 1) Why would I want to compete head on with bots at their own game? Doesn't any advantage of discretionary trading stem from the fact that skilled discretionary traders are able to transcend the noise and capitalize on imbalances that lead to price dislocation? 2) Doesn't such an approach leave one vulnerable to account-decimating overtrading? 3) Am I a Luddite, seeking to justify the old ways of doing things when those old ways just don't work anymore? Maybe "chemo brain" is not too blame for the cascade of poor entries and worse exists. Maybe charts really are yesterday's tech, and ES traders need to be order flow scalpers in order to survive. Thoughts, anyone?