Thursday, March 31, 2011

Layer 8: IT "geek squad" wins $319 million Mega Millions lottery

Layer 8: IT "geek squad" wins $319 million Mega Millions lottery

Selective reporting? How about talking about the million people who did not play and saved their money and are thus able to buy a beer. Here is a test story.

Joe did not buy into the ABC company lottery pool. They did not win meaning Joe is two dollars less poor than he would otherwise be. Joe is happy with his 40 ouncer bought with the money saved. Joe understands under 50 cents per dollar paid for tickets gets back to buyer in NPV.

Managers Reap Big 2010 Pay Even at Lagging Hedge Funds -

Managers Reap Big 2010 Pay Even at Lagging Hedge Funds - "In fact, the hedge fund industry as a whole did not do better than the stock market last year. The HedgeFund Intelligence Global Composite Index, which tracks nearly 4,000 hedge funds around the world, had a median gain of 8 percent in 2010, trailing the 11.7 percent rise in the MSCI World Index of stocks and the 12.7 percent rise in the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index."

For hedge funds on average not to nearly match the index would be somewhat surprising. I question even Paulson's prescience. How many major calls have together comprised the majority of his track record? Is he just the luckiest one of the bunch with the sales skills to bet with other people's money?

Uh, but he doesn't and clarifies that he doesn't

'Dilbert' Creator Scott Adams Compares Women Asking for Equal Pay to Children Demanding Candy [UPDATED] - ComicsAlliance | Comic book culture, news, humor, commentary, and reviews

I hope she get's a pay cut for using an inaccurate title.

Cool and scary

Former truck driver deciphers top secrets of first atomic bombs - CNN

Amazing and another example that people should not judge intelligence by one' eduction or occupation. There are a lot of smart, talented people who just haven't been in the right place at the right time to benefit financially. Likewise, many mediocrities with the right upbringing and connections do very well but are entirely unimpressive.

Windows Phone as No. 2 by 2015? Really? - Computerworld

Windows Phone as No. 2 by 2015? Really? - Computerworld: "They noted that Microsoft performed poorly with Windows Mobile as a smartphone OS and hasn't performed well with early Windows Phone 7 devices by failing to include copy-and-paste functions at launch time."

So a single, very-addable feature is the primary source of criticism of the entire OS?

The iPhone did not have this until version 3 and it was pretty well liked.

I like Aldi

Where Wal-Mart Failed, Aldi Succeeds -

How did the author not mention that one has to buy bags, use empty boxes, or BYO case for their groceries? I am guessing that the snobby author walked through the store but did not buy anything. Maybe he just performed an interview of an executive.


Syria in crisis / Should the people believe Assad's pledges for reform? - Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News

Of course, don't you see the Israeli and U.S. forces shooting you?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A special report on the future of the state: Go East, young bureaucrat | The Economist

A special report on the future of the state: Go East, young bureaucrat | The Economist: "Western civil services often have pretty good people at the top, but in Singapore meritocracy reigns all the way down the system. Teachers, for instance, need to have finished in the top third of their class (as they do in Finland and South Korea, which also shine in the education rankings). Headmasters are often appointed in their 30s and rewarded with merit pay if they do well but moved on quickly if their schools underperform. Tests are endemic."

What would U.S. teachers and their unions say about this?

Arizona outlaws abortions based on race, sex

Arizona outlaws abortions based on race, sex

"The law allows the father of an aborted fetus - or, if the mother is a minor, the mother's parents - to take legal action against the doctor or other health-care provider who performed the abortion. convicted of the felony, physicians would face up to seven years in jail and the loss of their medical license."

Doctor's should be scared of this trap. As an example, a white woman goes for an abortion knowing that the fetus is mulatto. The black father threatens charges are extorts money from the doctor. If I performed abortions in AZ legally, I'd leave. Illegally, I'd look forward to expansion. Clearly abortions will be pushed out of state, for the well off, and underground for the rest. I wonder if the back-alley-abortionist industry is a campaign donor?

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

What are the productivity impacts of...

How much productivity growth was there during 2007-2009?

Facebook and Netflix?

They consume how much of people entertainment time almost for free? This is a huge increase in consumer surplus being that otherwise people would likely have to pay for entertainment. Here is an example. If one drops cable at $1oo/month and gets Netflix for $10 as a replacement they are likely happier watching what they want when the want. I recommend the gems of Wire in the Blood, Davinci's Inquest, and Intelligence. All crime dramas. All awsome.

Congratulations! A one page fitness guide

From Frumpy to Fitness Model: How Jennie Lost 70 Pounds - That's Fit

Why do people need 200 pages to tell themselves what this girl clearly explains in a page. Good for her. The irony would be if her fiancée was a chubby chaser and left her after she got fit.

How many of these are really changing rather than dieing?

Top 10 Dying Industries - Real Time Economics - WSJ

1. Communication is at an all time high, but the wires are no longer necessary for much of it. Not a dieing industry but a de-monopolization.

2. Mills like other low skilled factory jobs that create easily transported not nonperishable products will go to where labor is cheap and regulations lax.

3. Newspaper publishing is another change. More text than ever is being produced and distributed via the Internet. The newspapers were simply confused by thinking their products required paper. If they had each embraced the online model each would likely dominate their local market for news, real estate and classifieds. Maybe not the glory days, but still in business.

4. Apparel manufacturing is the same as mills.

5. Assume everything that can be reduced to binary will be delivered over the internet. Again, Blockbuster had the opportunity to partner with Netflix and passed it up because they thought there product was plastic boxes not delivering stories.

6. Manufactured homes are an inferior good than might disappear as we get wealthier but was in the short term damaged by recession. In the future they will come from China anyways.

7. Video production services are not dieing but getting more efficient. The revenue is shrinking but the amount of video produced is surely expanding. Ever hear of

8. Record stores are similar to video rental.

9. Photofinishing another physical to digital transition. More photos than ever are being produced.

10. Formal wear and costume rental is gone thanks again to China et al.

In all of this cases the implication of the "industry's" demise is better and cheaper alternatives. Prices are falling incredibly quickly. I have not bought music in years, yet can hear any song I want withing 10 seconds of having the impulse by searching I hope to never attend another movie theater and watch great content for about $10 a month on Netflix. Decent shirts and pants are $20 or less are Ross and TJ. MAXX and the microfiber lasts for years. Our income might be stagnating, but our product availability is increasing.

What is the next industry to be disrupted? Maybe medical? Doctors primarily provide information. I get much from the Mayo Clinic and other sites as surely do other literate people. I can buy prescriptions over the internet, import them when traveling, or have friends abroad send ship them. When will we be able to plug a thermometer, blood pressure gage, and chemical sensor (blood and saliva) into our computers USB port to receive a diagnosis from an Indian doctor over video chat for $5? Maybe this will be my next startup. If your going to do it, leave a comment.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Donald Trump: Genuine 'birther' or just furthering his personal brand? -

Donald Trump: Genuine 'birther' or just furthering his personal brand? -

In reference to my previous post. Get over it people.

On the truth

Objective truth exists in many cases but is not that important. Human's make most important decisions but the decisions are based on perceptions and expectations that bear little resemblance of the truth.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Welcome to the world of finance Future Babble: Why Expert Predictions Are Next to Worthless, and You Can Do Better (9780525952053): Dan Gardner: Books

Do you ever laugh at the hubris of reporters and pundits who claim that a stock is posed to really up to a specific price, yet they talk for a living rather than simply making a few bet's and retiring. Never trust the stock prediction of someone who is not a billionaire.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

People are realizing that scoring is only a small part of hoops

The Curious Case of Chuck Hayes -

Are more encompassing stats such at +/- or efficiency per 48 minutes having an impact?

How about Denver's improvement and the Knicks mediocrity since the Melo trade?

The big three Heat have been good, but not a dominant team.

The Spurs are the best team in the league, winning with a balanced 3 point shooting attack.

How I'd love to find a good way to quantify individual defensive contributions.

Good defense requires all five acting as a unit. Decent offence often involves 2 players in a pick and roll with shoots around the outside. Great defense is under-appreciated. I wish announcers would start highlighting rotations the cause the shot clot to expire rather than break away dunk that work just as well as a layup.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Poor dude

How to lose you street cred exhibit A

YouTube - Rebecca Black - Friday (OFFICIAL VIDEO)

I feel sooooo badly for the black guy rapping near the end (2:30) of this video. Will he ever go anywhere without getting heckled, especially for the line "fast lane, switchin' lanes" which reminded me a bit too much of Tupac's "Doin 80 on tha freeway" from "how Do You Want It".

Some one should start a witness protection type program for this guy so he can live in peace.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Why I do not do social networking exhibit A

The Onion: Facebook “Is Truly A Dream Come True For The CIA” (Video)

Why I do not do social networking exhibit A.

An 'African solution' to Libya? You cannot be serious – Telegraph Blogs

An 'African solution' to Libya? You cannot be serious – Telegraph Blogs

Obviously the other despots don't want a successful revolution inspiring hope in their own subjects. An African solution is exactly what they, as solution to their concerns of rebellion. Poor, disorganized, uninformed, quarreling people are easier to control.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Finally, a Startup Visa That Works

Finally, a Startup Visa That Works: "The investor must be a qualified venture capitalist, a “super angel” (U.S. citizen who has made at least two equity investments of at least $50,000 every year for the previous three years), or a qualified government entity."

I bet the "Investors" love this one, because it means that an entrepreneur will be limited to these investors when raising capital and cannot take standard angel money and stay in the country. Interesting how the funders of free enterprise are trying to form a guild through the visa game.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Brilliant or they don't understand markets--Failure anticipated

It took me a while to determine what was being bet on.  The answer is the price when the player is retired, meaning the price when the players team is eliminated from the playoffs.  Oddly, and unlike futures markets, their is no deliverable and no link to an underlying valuation.  The price is based on supply and demand, but to no intrinsic value.  The price of the league MVP could be the same as the price of a 12th man and there is no way to arbitrage.  The prices are not linked to performance other than by the preferences of users to buy and sell.  Very strange!!!  I bet it will fail.  Pun intended, even though they argue that the site facilitates investing not betting, so it is legal.  

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Money and power corrupts, but not Lauren Hill

I agree with her that manners should not overwhelm the truth. 

Vatican controversy

On December 13, 2003, Hill made headlines by denouncing "corruption, exploitation, and abuses" in reference to the molestation of boys by Catholic priests in the United States and the cover-up of offenses byCatholic Church officials.[27] The statements were made during a performance at a Christmas benefit concert at the Vatican. Reading from a prepared statement,[27] Hill told the crowd of 7,500:
I am sorry if I am about to offend some of you. I did not accept my invitation to celebrate with you the birth of Christ. Instead I ask you why you are not in mourning for him in this place? I want to ask you, what have you got to say about the lives you have broken? What about the families who were expecting God and instead were cheated by the Devil? Who feels sorry for them, the men, women and children damaged psychologicallyemotionally and mentally by the sexual perversions and abuse carried out by the people they believed in? Holy God is a witness to the corruption of your leadership, of the exploitation and abuses which are the minimum that can be said for the clergy. There is no acceptable excuse to defend the church."[28]
Hill called on the church leaders to "repent" and encouraged the crowd to "not seek blessings from man but from God."[29] She then performed the songs "Damnable Heresies" and "Social Drugs".[29] High-ranking church officials in attendance included Cardinal Camillo Ruini, Monsignor Rino Fisichella and Cardinal Edmund Szoka.[30] Pope John Paul II was not present.[30] The segment was cut from the television broadcast. Both the Vatican and Columbia Records refused to issue official statements regarding Hill's actions.[31][32] Monsignor Fisichella told reporters that Hill had acted "in poor taste and very bad mannered. It showed a complete lack of respect for her invitation and for the place where she had been invited to perform".[33] The Catholic League called Hill "pathologically miserable" and claimed her career is "in decline".[34] Hill responded to the controversy on December 16: "What I said was the truth. Is telling the truth bad manners? What I asked was the church to repent for what has happened."[35] The following day, several reporters suggested that Hill's comments at the Vatican may have been influenced by her "advisor" Brother Anthony.[36]

What kinds of skill will be valuable

Cowen on Chess and AI

To summarize Tyler computers are excellent at doing what they are told, but the people telling them what to do are not so good at telling them how to do things that are original.  In some ways an algorithm for creativity is an oxymoron, but recombination/selection programs might be.  It depends on how we model creativity.  Tyler has written that much of what we consider creativity is actually recombination, such as Navaho rugs and Reggae music.  Maybe then computers can be creative.

What computers are less likely to do well is sell.  The highest paid person in organizations is typically the CEO and the second is the top salesperson.  It will be a while before computers will be able to take clients golfing or to strip joints.  At what point will people believe that a computer truly feels their pain?

When will computers be capable of managing and motivating humans?

People are as necessary as ever to manipulate, motivate, and manage people and this ain't changing soon.

This means we want more control so we can monetize

The goal in this policy is to give users a seamless experience.,2817,2381854,00.asp

Might Jobs have said the same thing?

Might Apple, not Google, buy Twitter?

Friday, March 11, 2011

How could this be?

Philadelphia Archdiocese Suspends 21 Priests - "The charges come at a stressful time for the church, with membership and parochial school enrollment declining."

Some parents are deciding not to send their children to an organization that protected child molesters for PR and financial purposes. Shocker!

If your kids really sexy maybe it can get a priest sponsored scholarship. Yucky...

Apple fan boys, please stop saying Apple has better code

Google's Chrome and Android survive hack attacks; Apple falters - International Business Times

Finally Apple is worth hacking, and guess what, it hackable. Not perfect as many are lead to believe.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

What kind of clever is ok?

Wisconsin Republicans cut collective bargaining | World news |

So it is OK for Dems to flee the state to avoid a bill, but not OK for the bill to change so you don't have time to return to oppose the a vote. Whoever came up with the strategy deserves a cookie.

This is just a test

Is their anything so awful and so wrong, such as genocide, infant rape, suicide bombers, etc. that is so bad that god would not consider it a test that is part of his plan, but rather an oversight or screw up?

Are these parties really a problem

Miami Beach officials deem billionaire’s Star Island party illegal - Miami Beach -

How about the greedy city simply charge for a party permit if they want to defray the expense. They net inflow to the economy is clearly huge. Why would it be chased away.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Who loves vomit bread?

Subway Overtakes McDonald’s as #1 Fast Food Chain, Looks Overseas for Growth « Bizmology

Are my girlfriend and I the only people who think their rolls smell like baking puke?

I just love experts

2008 NBA Draft: Overrated/Underrated | "Love further compounds his weaknesses with his lack of agility and lateral movement, which may result in him becoming a major defensive (and rebounding) liability, especially in pick and roll situations."

By the way, Love leads the NBA in roubounding with 15.7/game. Dwight Howard in second with 13.9. and he's scoring over 20 pts. while shooting 47% from two, 42% from 3 and over 87% from the line. He leads the league in efficiency.

People almost always overestimate their insight, whether in picking players, games, or stocks.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

What an evil interest group

Men’s Journal » Print » The Blind Man Who Taught Himself To See: "According to Kish, a colleague once overheard members of the federation refer to him as Clicker Boy. “The blindness field is firmly based in tradition and dogma and is very slow to evolve,” says Kish. “It’s been traditionally dominated by sighted people who feel the need to tell blind people what to do.”"

Clearly this group desires the blind to remain dependent. Disgusting.

Regarding American parents

Men’s Journal » Print » The Blind Man Who Taught Himself To See: "The first is Kish’s general ethos about how blind children should be raised. “Running into a pole is a drag, but never being allowed to run into a pole is a disaster,” he writes. “Pain is part of the price of freedom.”"

I look at playgrounds these days and am depressed by the risk aversion in the designs. Dealing with danger and pain are necessary for survival skills and toughness. I hope I let me eventual children get hurt so they learn.

Another attention getting misleading headline

How a 19-Year-Old Earned $5 Million to Revolutionize Search

All the commenters are confused because Google primarily searches other people's stuff and Greplin searches you own stuff, but the article does not make this distinction clearly.

Amusing that people are criticizing his lack of a college degree when Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Larry Elison, and Mark Zuckerburg all lack one.

Friday, March 4, 2011

More barriers to entry please

Some game developers unhappy with Apple, Nintendo - "But Thursday, Hawkins was much more critical. Apple has pitched its App Store to game developers as a place where there's 'no tyranny from publishers, no tyranny from Walmart,' he said. But the store's overcrowding is another problem, because it makes it hard for most games to get noticed, he added."

Apparently game executives don't like that they no longer control the hub in the network, Apple does in this case.

And the true nightmare of "Big Games"...
"There is a place that we can all gravitate to over the years," Hawkins said. "Think more about the browser. The browser will set you free."

Thursday, March 3, 2011

This 26-Year-Old Is Making Millions Cutting Out Traditional Publishers With Amazon Kindle

This 26-Year-Old Is Making Millions Cutting Out Traditional Publishers With Amazon Kindle

Other than providing a seal of approval, what are publishers for anymore?

If you look at the track record of publishers they seam to let some wheat slip through their fingers anyways.

Grenada - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Grenada - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: "After Hurricane Ivan, the government of the People's Republic of China (PRC) paid for the new $40 million national stadium, and provided the aid of over 300 labourers to build and repair it.[9] During the opening ceremony, the anthem of the Republic of China (ROC, Taiwan) was accidentally played instead of the PRC's anthem, leading to the firing of top officials.[10][11]"

Maybe the biggest diplomatic snafu ever.

Obama: Qaddafi Has Lost Legitimacy, Must Leave; Chavez Offers to Negotiate -

Obama: Qaddafi Has Lost Legitimacy, Must Leave; Chavez Offers to Negotiate -

This reminds me of the husbands mistress providing them marital counseling. Who could be perceived and more biased, calculating, and craving person power?

Media fulled the flames

Rodney King, 20 years later - "Powell's attorney, Michael Stone, said the unedited video worked against King and helped prove the officers' case."

I was living in a SDSU dorm and saw the coverage a hundred times but never King running at the cops. The media inflamed the situation by not showing the entire tape. Typical. Riots increase new viewers. Perfect.

Tracee Hamilton - Brandon Davies cracked the code, and he and BYU pay the price

Tracee Hamilton - Brandon Davies cracked the code, and he and BYU pay the price

I went to SDSU. All these rules were broken by the majority of the students most days. When we failed to break them all is was typically because we were unwillingly "chaste". I might recommend BYU to my eventual daughter, but never my son.

I guess you have to respect the schools consistency and dedication, because kicking off your starting center during a great year of hoops is a high cost. Wonder what it will do for their recruiting?

These demographics are amusing.

26% of students are married. I might have been to in college, a bunch of times, as they allow in Iran to have casual sex in compliance with the Koran.
98.5% mormon
52% male
176/29794 = 0.0059072296 = black student population

What % of these are involved in athletics? Not criticizing blacks, but merely pointing out that they are allowed in to BYU for essentially one reason.
One significant change was the ordination of black men to the priesthood in 1978, which reversed a policy originally instituted by Brigham Young in 1852.[56]

Of course many other schools have similar admittance policies.

Aerotropolis: The Airport-Based Global City of Tomorrow -

Aerotropolis: The Airport-Based Global City of Tomorrow -

As physical space becomes less important in many ways due to cheep communication, entertainment piped to ones computer, video conferencing, air travel, and high speed rail, why is clustering into cities occurring? What are the economies of scale and/or scope that are so facilitated by in person contact? The instant cities described are unlikely to have the uniqueness of old fashioned cities so the rational for visiting them for fun is diminished.

I wonder how planned these cities are. Is the location of all restaurants and the chains that are to fill the slots predetermined? Have the rights to operate all stores of a single type or to sell a single product been auctioned as in airports. An example is I can rarely get a $1 ice cream in a McDonald's at an airport because the exclusive rights to sell frozen deserts have been sold to the specialist. I'm afraid that the ability to plan will corrupt and rather than set up bastions of economic freedom and personal expression by providing basic private property, low taxes, and tolerable justice along with some infrastructure a high tech mercantilism will emerge.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Rants, Raves and Drugs - ABC News

Rants, Raves and Drugs - ABC News

Charlie kicks ass!!! Finally someone not ashamed of doing what many of want to do, and that I do to a more limited extent. More in the future...

Charlie Sheen: Watch 20/20 Special Edition Full Interview - ABC News

Charlie Sheen: Watch 20/20 Special Edition Full Interview - ABC News

At least he's honest. I am actually more of a fan. Ironically, I have used the "I only do crack socially." line myself.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Anyone else think this ad on fees are BS

I hate fine print. Crooks...

Sprint Surcharges $4.37
Hide Details And Explanation of Charges
Sprint Surcharges are rates we choose to collect from you to help defray costs imposed on us. Surcharges are not taxes on you or amounts we are required to collect from you by law. Surcharges other charges incurred to recover costs associated with governmental programs, and certain taxes imposed upon Sprint. The amounts, and the components used to calculate Surcharge amounts, are subject to change.
Federal-Univ Serv Assess Non-LD $1.52
California State-PUC User Fee $0.07
Administrative Charge $1.98
Regulatory Charge $0.80