Strange Harry Potter eBook Terms

I know there are a lot of weird things in legal documents that aren’t actually enforceable. It’s one of the reasons every contract has a part that says invalidation of one part of this contract doesn’t invalidate the whole contract. But this one makes 0 sense to me for eBooks: “You may not:copy or burn …

Bitcoin Roundup

Boing Boing pointed me to a few Bitcoin articles and then there was another one on Ars on 6 May. I’d be pretty surprised if you haven’t heard about Bitcoin; it’s been all over the news because of the crazy bubble the Bitcoin exchange rate was having recently. But, just in case, Bitcoin is a …

Too Big to Fail? Perhaps not for long

Matt Taibbi wrote a story on 1 May about how there is a possibility of the end of banks that are too big to fail. The biggest issue I have with the way the financial crisis has been dealt with is the complete hypocrisy. Now, I’m not so naive as to fail to realize that …

An Open Plea for Sanity to Amazon and Valve

Dear Amazon and Valve, I write this to you because you are the largest and most powerful companies in your ecosystems.  The digital world has become ridiculous and you need to be leaders in rectifying the situation.  Let’s start with Amazon.  The two biggest digital things you sell are books and music.  Back in the …

The Price of Technology

We all know that technology continues to get cheaper and cheaper every year.  But this was brought into sharp relief yesterday when I looked up the invoice for Dave’s computer to see what components it contained.  I built Dave’s computer in 2006.  It was a graduation present from my parents and meant to be Dave’s …

The NeoEconomy

There’s a new system of exchange of goods and services that threatens to rock the economic system and it’s not some new form of derivatives. Digital goods and services are growing larger and larger, but economics has not yet caught up. This is scary because more and more of our economy is based upon digital …

The Current Financial Mess – We Never Should have ended up Here

Today I was listening to Fresh Air on NPR.  They had an economics guy on who’s now a professor at one of the University of Maryland campuses and was involved in Clinton’s economic team.  (Although he didn’t always see eye to eye with Clinton’s treasury secretary)  This guy put the current economic crisis in the …

Airlines Getting Desperate for Cash?

On a recent business flight I took, I noticed that my tray table had become an advertisement for cough drops Also, a plane ticket, which I, regrettably, did not photograph, had an advertisement for Papa Johns Pizza. Has it come to this? Are the airlines so desperate for cash that they have resorted to selling …

It’s the end of the world….

Our sexually crazy and confused friends over in Japan have decided to contribute to the end of humanity with the Honey Doll (warning link contains some images/sounds NSFW) :   Unlike the blowup doll everyone makes fun of, the Honey Doll is supposed to mimic real women. It looks real (or creepily almost real) and …

It’s not World Bank Leader’s Fault…

It’s not Paul Wolfowitz’s fault that he used nepotism to give his girlfriend a job at the state department paying $200k a year. No, no…. You see, he told use yesterday why he did it – He was new to the bank and didn’t know that it was wrong. Of course! The World Bank obviously …

Tax Cuts Explained with a story

Whenever one political party expresses wishes to give a fixed percentage tax cut to all Americans, the other party portrays it as tax cuts for the rich. (I’ve complained on this blog about this before) Their proof: the rich get back a few thousand bucks while the poor only get back a few hundred. The …

MMORG and Real Economies Clash

As I was driving home last week, I heard something interesting on NPR. I knew that people had been selling their MMORG characters on Ebay. They would spend a few sleepless nights getting their character up to a really high level and then sell the character on Ebay to the highest bidder. I’ve heard stories …

New Capitalism

With all of the job cuts being announced right before the holidays, I was wondering if it might be time for a new capitalism. Here’s a rhetorical question, what if the board lowered their salaries and the CEO’s salary instead of firing people? A typical CEO for these big companies like Delta makes a few …

If the world was a series of gas station….

I am coming to the end of the Lexus and The Olive Tree. In part three of his book, he had a very interesting analogy for the world’s economic systems. If they were a gas station…. Japan – the gas costs $5/gal, but there are five guys who service your car. They pump your gas, …