Wednesday, December 18, 2013


I'm so proud that I came up with a riddle.  I think it is original (or, if not, at least I have never heard it anywhere else).

What can one hold only in two hands but never in both?

Wednesday, December 11, 2013


When does Apple start to be perceived as a bully?  Perhaps it has already happened and I am just late.

Monday, August 19, 2013

police stops as a proxy for social equality

I wonder what the incidence is of police stops of high-end cars around the world?  I'm thinking this could be an interesting measure of evenhanded enforcement/social arrangements around the world.  For example, notwithstanding its relatively high gini-coefficient, my guess is that most new BMW drivers feel they are as likely (or perhaps even MORE likely) to get stopped by the police.  I wonder how common this feeling is in other places.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Targeted broadcast television advertising

Given the high value of digital advertising, much of which is based upon the better targeting, why haven't cable providers and broadcasters joined forces to deliver targeted ads?  I think this should be relatively straightforward (massive because of the numbers but straightforward nevertheless): with broadcasters' permission, cable providers would replace the ads with those better targeted to the specific household.  Delivery should be relatively simple.  Ads could be pre-loaded during low demand periods to avoid the need to stream ads in realtime (DVR equipped cable boxes may be able to do this without hardware modifications).

I believe advertisers would object if they perceive their ratecards as losing value (we paid for x households, instead we got y).  So we would have a combination of broadcast program and narrowcast ads. Which, in fact, is how adserving works generally anyway.  And could very well be why Google is getting in the broadband business.

Monday, July 8, 2013

fast and the furious 16

The old crew now runs a museum dedicated to old internal combustion engines. An evil-doer uses an EMP to knock out all modern cars.  Time to roll into action with their ancient iron.  Vroom.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

iOS 7 and drowning in contacts

Dear Apple,

If just this one wish for iOS 7 is granted, I'll be pretty happy:

Please let me know which database/source my contact information is drawn from WITHOUT needing to turn off each database individually.  I just want to clean up my multiple instances of John Doe so I consolidate on fewer databases.  Some sort of label, color, or tag would be fine.  Something smarter than I can think of would be even better.  I am drowning in contacts.


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

unrelated nearly simultaneous threats

I know humans find patterns where none exist but it is spooky how 9/11 and anthrax are echoed in Boston and ricin.

Starbucks black hole

Why are there no Starbucks locations within the rectangle bounded by Park Avenue and the East River from 32nd street up to 41st street?  In comparison, there are TWO locations on a SINGLE block nearby (the block bounded by Madison and Fifth between 35th and 36th).

a period of inefficient utilization of computers

I wonder if the past decade will be seen, oddly enough, as a trough of efficiency and productivity.  I wonder this because we are currently hampered by both our inputs (keyboards are unwieldy, voice is inaccurate, etc.) and outputs (screens are still small and only recently have ultra-high resolutions).  Until I can replicate the massive amount of readily visible and accessible information as I have in an unfolded road map, I think there may be a lot of room for productivity gains from computers.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

bond yields

What if people are using bond proceeds to buy bonds (leveraged bond purchases)?  Would it be possible for the demand side of this to result in lower overall rates?  And so reinforce a low rate environment?

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Libratone Zipp

This is crazy.  It delivers music over wi-fi using a dedicated network?  Forget connecting to Pandora, etc., even the default music player on an iPhone could be handicapped if it is relying on iTunes in the cloud.  And one could not use any internet-reliant apps (including safari) while playing music.  Unless you feel like using your cellular data connection.

Shame on the NYT (where I first heard about this) for not calling out the severe shortcomings of this device.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Google and Britannica

I wonder why Google hasn't purchased Britannica.  It would seem to fit the bill of putting the world's knowledge online.  And it can't be too expensive.  And is consistent with purchases such as zagat, etc.