Friday, April 29, 2011

Thursday, April 28, 2011

What do I want to do before I die?

1. not worry about money
2. travel a lot
3. be in a porn video
4. have some kids
5. Watch my son play in the NBA ( not likely but a dream)
6. have my entire body covered in breasts
7. Play basketball until I'm 50 (now almost 40)
8. Eat good food, preferably with friends

How about you?

Just in case you thought Google was a charity

Still not a bad deal, but not as generous as before and likely to get less generous and time goes on.  Funny to see as Google converges with Microsoft.

We recently announced upcoming changes to the maximum number of users for Google Apps. We want to let you know that, as a current customer, the changes will not affect you.
As of May 10, any organization that signs up for a new account will be required to use the paid Google Apps for Business product in order to create more than 10 users. We honor our commitment to all existing customers and will allow you to add more than 10 users to your account for at no additional charge, based on the limit in place when you joined us.

The Google Apps Team"

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Case sounds easy, but is not

Tanya McDowell's case continued following press conference - StamfordAdvocate

Most would agree that children of homeless parents should be able to go to school. If so, where can they go? School districts that I am aware of allow admittance based on residence is a geographic area. If homeless you have no residence so can the kids go nowhere? Anywhere? Or just public schools that don't mind having them? I was fortunate enough to attend a very exclusive public school (not an oxymoron). The school and town applies great social pressure to donate to the school. An anecdote, according to my mom, when Sean Penn moved into town he refused to pay his share for his children and was apparently socially ostracized. He eventually started paying. The odds are low that Ross would allow a homeless mothers kid into Ross School. If schools have to take all comers according to a lottery, first come first serve, test scores, etc. then the idea of a local school is gone. Towns would not longer associated with their schools. Real estate values would equilibrate across town borders. Communities would be less tight knit around the school. I'm not sure whether the implications are good or bad on net.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

After Visa, American Express Takes On PayPal With Digital Payments Platform

After Visa, American Express Takes On PayPal With Digital Payments Platform: "After that period, it will cost 2.9% + 30c/per load to put money into Serve accounts (discounted to 0% for cash, debit and ACH) and $2.00 for ATM cash withdrawals."

Why would I want to use this rather than a debit or credit care, or even the much loathed Oh, this is why...

Interestingly, Serve also offers users the ability to create, manage, and specify sub-accounts for friends, family members or colleagues. Linked to the master account, they allow users to set spending profiles for “everything from children’s allowances to dog walker fees”.

Or, you can just give them cash or send it to their paypal, moneybookers or whatever. This is metooism without a clue. I'm not saying that Visa shouldn't try, but please come with a gun not if knife to the fight. I would like to know their specific target market and the comparative advantage that will allow them to capture it.

Midicaid universal health plan

This idea is half baked but might just spawn some thought.  Someone else has very likely floated a similar idea, so please don't accuse me of stealing so and so's idea, just let me know who's idea it was first so that I can read their version.

Now you have to typically be a poor women who is pregnant or with young children to qualify.  How about opening up enrollment and adding a deductible an HSA component.  If one signs up, then they pay 5% of their income.  Their deductible is 5% of their income.  Coverage over the deductible would be covered at 90% up to max out of pocket of 15% of income.  2.5% of income goes into an HSA account.

The benefit of the program is that is leverages a program already in existence while establishing universal, or near universal coverage in the U.S.  Obviously all the numbers are guessed facilitating the example.  I surely don't support the idea in its present form, but think its worth more thought in this direction.  I'm likely not in favor of a federal program guaranteeing health care for all.  Anyone who says this is an easy choice has only lived or seen the on one of the halved of society lives.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Benefits from local knowledged

Fidelis College Raises Money to Actually Support Our Troops

Great combination of technology and domain specific knowledge. This is where I see many multi-million dollar businesses being built. Find an expert in an industry and codify his knowledge. This is more groundbreaking, but involving the same alchemy.

"Birther" might be my favorite position of his

Donald Trump: Robert De Niro, Jerry Seinfeld and Charlie Sheen take shots at Donald Trump - "But Trump has insisted that he does have political positions, including getting tough with China on economic issues and taking on OPEC. He has said he is more militaristic than Obama and would seize oil wells in Iraq to prevent them from falling to Iran."

1. China: Recipe for deficit via rising federal borrowing rates?
2. OPEC: Not sure how one does this peacefully.
3. Iraq: How to make dire prophesies come true.

Trump does not even try to conceal his arrogance. He drowns us in it. My theory is that he is constantly compensating for extremely small genitalia.

What do you want, guy in the green shirt

The Crash and Burn of an Autism Guru -

1. All signs are that the research is crap.
2. Green shirt, whatever you are, what is a green vaccine. Does this qualify?
"The vaccine is a mixture of three live attenuated viruses, administered via injection." From the Wikipedia MMR page.
3. Just another example of connotative communication, that I find discrediting rather than convincing.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sathya Sai Baba - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

People will believe whatever they want regardless of the evidence, which is a source of curiosity and frustration for me. For example, why do people believe that their personal financial advisor can pick winning stocks, so has the capacity to make millions/billions, yet chooses to speak to them personally about how to invest their $100,000 IRA?

Sathya Sai Baba - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: "In April 1976, H. Narasimhaiah, a physicist, rationalist and then vice chancellor of Bangalore University, founded and chaired a committee 'to rationally and scientifically investigate miracles and other verifiable superstitions'. Narasimhaiah wrote Sathya Sai Baba three letters that were widely publicized, in which he publicly challenged Baba to perform his miracles under controlled conditions.[105] Sathya Sai Baba said that he ignored Narasimhaiah's challenge because he felt his approach was improper.[106] Sathya Sai Baba further said about the Narasimhaiah committee, 'Science must confine its inquiry only to things belonging to the human senses, while spiritualism transcends the senses. If you want to understand the nature of spiritual power you can do so only through the path of spirituality and not science. What science has been able to unravel is merely a fraction of the cosmic phenomena ...'[106] Narasimhaiah's committee was dissolved in August 1977."

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Time consistent?

Yemen’s president to hand over power in 30 days - The Boston Globe

What are the chances that if the protests stop that his departure will be delayed. I'd try this ploy also.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The economics of Bitcoin — Marginal Revolution

The economics of Bitcoin — Marginal Revolution

What anchor's a currency? I know that is an denotatively unclear question with a connotative suggestiveness. What makes a currency valuable is the ability to buy and save, and the ability to save is the confidence in the future ability to buy, which depends on others' expectations of their future ability to buy. So what is the source of confidence. Convertabilty to a useful or valued commodity such as gold was common. Now confidence is based either or the need to get fiat money to pay taxes or wishful thinking that the next seller will accept the money. Bitcoin is not collecting taxes any time soon, and they don't have a track record of wide acceptance, so convertibility might be their answer. Maybe become the technical basis for a gold, basket of commodity, or basket or currency system. I think the developers are long on technology and short on economics.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Uh, My hero?

Imageshack - mrcoolicej.jpg

I guess to each their own. I hope this look maximizes his happiness.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Insane in the membrane...

LivingSocial Files To Authorize Up To $565M In Series E [Update: And Raises $400M]

This round values Living Social at $3.5 billion. What is their intellectual capital? What is their brand equity? What are the barriers to entry? Potential entrants? Current competitors? Power of suppliers? Power of buyers?

Any 0f these can squeeze the profit box dry. In this case the threat is competitors and potential competitors. The buyers cannot collude and neither can the businesses.

Know that the deal sites are not even worried about their brand equity. I know because they run ads by known scammers, port producers like Cole Whittaker who, according to her, hired my girlfriend to do teeth whitening by never paid her. To the best of my knowledge he runs adds on deal sites, flakes on many appointments and pockets the cash after not even paying the temp offices in which he sets up shop. The point is the deal sites do not even plan on establishing brands which is a short term perspective. Deal software can also be bought for a couple hundred bucks so that is no barrier.

How about a simple tax code and less wasted time

ROI: How to Avoid Paying Income Taxes -

Tax preparation is one of the most annoying costs of rent seeking. How many smart people are occupied squabbling with the government rather than producing something. Argh!

Groupon beware

Coming soon: Better Ads in Gmail - Gmail Help\

Google, and surely MSN but Yahoo! is likely to lame, will soon combine their "Places" service with their email users and offer daily deals. Google is typical fashion will likely automate the majority of the deal registration process and cut their percentage take which for most deal sights is 40-50% of the discounted price. What does Groupon have that Google does not? Google has more email address, most likely, more relationships with businesses, more brand equity, more engineers...all Google is missing is a sales force for the product, which will be less necessary that for a company without so many users, such brand equity, and experience automating, especially after the markets has been educated by Groupon.

Google's $6 billion offer for Groupon will start sounding sweet pretty soon.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

What do they want done?

Protests over Koran burning spread in Afghanistan, with 9 dead in Kandahar - The Washington Post

Change our constitution to ban burning of the Koran?
Is this just a focal point for a desire for foreign forces to leave?
Is it a focal point for common people to display a general displeasure with their current situation which is blamed on occupation and being taken advantage of by the Taliban who is inciting violence?

Can democracy function in such a populous?
Is a smooth transition of power between governments after an election foreseeable?
If not, what are the options of the U.S. and its allies?
Leave a power vacuum? Leave it glowing?
Maybe the best us defense is to keep they Muslim world fighting among themselves, because trying to bring democracy has has such limited success.
Democracy required a desire to live by the rules of the game, meaning, stop fighting prior to death. Can this be taught for an acceptable price?
Sadly, after trying to introduce civil society, I think we should give up and accept that the best we can do is covert operations to keep the region fighting with themselves in civil war, border disputes, and sectarian violence.

Friday, April 1, 2011

I suggest using this for interrigations

YouTube - Rebecca Black - Friday (OFFICIAL VIDEO)

News or Ad?

Channel 4 News - How To Save Money In A Recession

News companies are financially desperate and thus have short time horizons increasing their discount rates and motivating them to sell their credibility. Now we know not to trust Channel 4.

Is this a commercial for the comfort of a Lazy Boy?

Bellaire Man Found Stuck in Chair Dies at 43 - WTRF-TV -

An eye for an eye a book for eight lives?

At Least Eight Killed During Koran Burning Protest at UN Office in Afghanistan -

At least one white guy can jump.

YouTube - Illinois College's 5'10" Guard, Jacob Tucker, Wins the NCAA Slam Dunk Contest

Android will take 45 per cent of smartphone market share by 2016- The Inquirer

Android will take 45 per cent of smartphone market share by 2016- The Inquirer

And how would anyone know this? I love predictions full of false certainty. The iPhone has only been out since 2007. Who knows what new will arrive.