Economics

Will Rogers on Deficit

Will Rogers

Will Rogers

“Alexander Hamilton started the U.S. Treasury with nothing, and that was the closest our country has ever been to being even.”

–Will Rogers

Wealthy Janitors

Frank Lloyd Wright

Frank Lloyd Wright

“Many wealthy people are little more than janitors of their possessions.”


–Frank Lloyd Wright

E-Book Sales Top Paperbacks For First Time

On April 15, 2011, CNN Money reported that sales of E-books outpaced those of paperbacks for the first time.

The growth of e-books is stunning; sales rose 202% from February 2010 to February 2011, and Amazon reported in January 2011 that its sales of e-books surpassed those of paperbacks.

Good news for trees, writers, and Amazon. Bad news for traditional book publishers and traditional book stores.

The PACE of the shift is what is so stunning to analysts. And this pace spells doom to bookstores who are unable to accept this new reality and make quick and nimble adjustments to their business model. The world has fundamentally changed.

got enemies?

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill

“You have enemies?

Good.

That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.”


–Sir Winston Churchill

Geek Out: Google Domestic Trend Charts

Here’s a cool resource for economic freelancers (or for anyone who is interested in real world charts and graphs): America’s past economic performance, as demonstrated by trends in Google searches, adjusted for search volume.

The first page shows a couple of fascinating charts: the first is the “Google Retail Index and Clothing Store Sales” and one called the “Auto Buyers Index.” Actual retail sales figures are added on the Retail Index chart–interesting trends here.

It’s also obvious from the Auto Buyers Index that Cash for Clunkers had a dramatic effect, as was widely reported by the news media.

You can generate all types of charts by clicking through the lists on the left sidebar. Google also invites you to download the data, search for trends, & report back your results. You can learn more about this resource here.

There’s even MORE info about this project on the Google Research Blog.

What?

George Carlin

George Carlin

“Not only do I not know what’s going on, I wouldn’t know what to do about it if I did.”


—George Carlin

Book Review: Googled by Ken Auletta

Googled: The End of the World As We Know It

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* * * Interesting in Parts, But Reads Too Much Like A Corporate Dossier

(Snapshot Review by Kerri Elders)

Without a doubt, Ken Auletta’s Googled is thoroughly and expertly researched.

However, it took me numerous ambivalent weeks to read it (BTW, it is not at all unusual for me to read 3 books at once and be finished with them all in two days and I am most positively interested in technology). Unfortunately, this one didn’t “grab” me like I thought it would, given its topic: the most brazen, upstart Corporation in the History of the Universe. The Anti-Microsoft. What I call “The God Box,” otherwise known as Google.

Although I can say I learned a lot I didn’t know before (like the incredible level to which we have all been contributing personal data streams to cable, satellite, internet, and phone companies for YEARS; the commercial value of this information; the fact that My Favorite NerdHero, Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos, is one of the original angel investors in Google; AND that Amazon’s search technology is based on an offshoot of Google’s), it felt like those nuggets of wisdom were buried in a lot of unnecessary background noise.

I think if you personally knew some of the people covered in this book, you would find it more engaging than I did. For me, the first 2/5ths of the book read like a corporate dossier, reciting the degrees and digital pedigrees of individual employees and associated boardmembers, etc.

What I really wanted to read about was what the title promised: how Google transformed the world and how it would build it anew. I also hoped it would delve into how Google might be addressing the problem of Search Engine Optimizers who are gaming Google’s algorithm and degrading the quality of search results.

I HATE to criticize a talented writer who has obviously poured so much effort into a project, but this book just fell short on delivery of its promised “sizzle,” for my tastes.

However, if you are fascinated by all things technical, the final 3/5ths of the book offer some interesting insights into Google’s worldview and its current domination of the advertising marketplace (yes, it has morphed into an ADVERTISING and data collection behemoth). Worth reading, if you can slug your way through the corporate biographies!

[Review First published on WordPros blog 12/9/09]

The Best Stock Advice I Ever Heard

Will Rogers

Will Rogers

“Don’t gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it till it goes up, then sell it. If it don’t go up, don’t buy it.”


–Will Rogers

The Grapes of Wrath

Will Rogers

Will Rogers

“When the Okies left Oklahoma and moved to California, it raised the I.Q. of both states.”


–Will Rogers

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