Saturday, April 3, 2010
WSJ:The January 1975 issue of Popular Electronics featured on its cover a box with switches and blinking lights called the Altair 8800, considered by many to be the first personal computer. Ed Roberts, who died Thursday at age 68, created the Altair, the computer that brought Microsoft Corp. founders Bill Gates and Paul Allen into desktop computing. His machine inspired a legion of hobbyists who became the foundation of a vibrant new industry...."Ed deserves to be called the father of the personal computer," says Bill Gates in an email...."He was a seed of this thought that computers would be affordable," says Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple Computer Inc. Mr. Wozniak credits an Altair demonstration at the first meeting of the storied Palo Alto Homebrew Computer Club for convincing him that microprocessor-based computers, as opposed to mainframes, could be worthwhile....New companies soon opened to provide circuit boards and other peripherals that made the Altair more useful. The Altair helped inspire some of the first computer magazines and conventions, and also the first clones—copies built on the same design principles around the same Intel Corp. chip....Mr. Roberts in 1977 sold MITS to Pertec Computer Corp. of Los Angeles, a manufacturer of disk drives. He took up farming and later attended medical school.
at 5:37 PM
Can't fool me! I am going to PROTECT my Consumer Surplus!!! Not going to fall for the blatant Price Discrimation going on here!!!
An alternative way to understand First Degree Price Discrimination is as follows: This type of price discrimination is primarily theoretical because it requires the seller of a good or service to know the absolute maximum price that every consumer is willing to pay. As above, it is true that consumers have different price elasticities, but the seller is not concerned with such. The seller is concerned with the maximum willingness to pay (or reservation price) of each customer. By knowing the reservation price, the seller is able to absorb the entire market surplus, thus taking all of the consumer's surplus from the consumer and transforming it into revenues. From a social welfare perspective though, first degree price discrimination is not necessarily undesirable. That is, the market is still entirely efficient and there is no deadweight loss to society. In a market with first degree price discrimination, the seller(s) simply captures all surplus. Efficiency is unchanged but the wealth is transferred.
at 1:56 PM
Friday, April 2, 2010
A GREAT motion graphic on the evolution of foreign ownership of US National Debt...AMAZING how China in just the last couple of years has provided financing for our Government AND US consumers to consume more than we produce...WORTH A LOOK!!!
at 6:49 PM
at 6:21 PM
Thursday, April 1, 2010
On 2 May 1968, 12 Green Berets were surrounded near Loc Ninh, South Vietnam, by an entire battalion of NVA. They were thus outnumbered, 12 men versus about 1,000. They dug in and tried to hold them off, but were not going to last long. Benavidez heard their distress call over a radio in town and boarded a rescue helicopter with first aid equipment. He did not have time to grab a weapon before the helicopter left, so he voluntarily jumped into the hot LZ armed only with his knife.
He sprinted across 75 meters of open terrain through withering small arms and machine gun fire to reach the pinned down MACV-SOG team. By the time he reached them, he had been shot 4 times, twice in the right leg, once through both cheeks, which knocked out four molars, and a glancing shot off his head.
He ignored these wounds and began administering first aid. The rescue chopper left as it was not designed to extract men. An extraction chopper was sent for, and Benavidez took command of the men by directing their fire around the edges of the clearing in order to facilitate the chopper’s landing. When the aircraft arrived, he supervised the loading of the wounded on board, while throwing smoke canisters to direct the chopper’s exact landing. He was wounded severely and at all times under heavy enemy crossfire, but still carried and dragged half of the wounded men to the chopper.
He then ran alongside the landing skids providing protective fire into the trees as the chopper moved across the LZ collecting the wounded. The enemy fire got worse, and Benavidez was hit solidly in the left shoulder. He got back up and ran to the platoon leader, dead in the open, and retrieved classified documents. He was shot in the abdomen, and a grenade detonated nearby peppering his back with shrapnel.
The chopper pilot was mortally wounded then, and his chopper crashed. Benavidez was in extremely critical condition, and still refused to fall. He ran to the wreckage and got the wounded out of the aircraft, and arranged them into a defensive perimeter to wait for the next chopper. The enemy automatic rifle fire and grenades only intensified, and Benavidez ran and crawled around the perimeter giving out water and ammunition.
The NVA was building up to wipe them out, and Benavidez called in tactical air strikes with a squawk box and threw smoke to direct the fire of arriving gunships. Just before the extraction chopper landed, he was shot again in the left thigh while giving first aid to a wounded man. He still managed to get to his feet and carry some of the men to the chopped, directing the others, when an NVA soldier rushed from the woods and clubbed him over the head with an AK-47. This caused a skull fracture and a deep gash to his left upper arm, and yet he still got back up and decapitated the soldier with one swing of his knife, severing the spine and all tissue on one side of the neck. He then resumed carrying the wounded to the chopper and returning for others, and was shot twice more in the lower back. He shot two more NVA soldiers trying to board the chopper, then made one last trip around the LZ to be sure all documents were retrieved, and finally boarded the chopper. He had lost 2 quarts of blood. Before he blacked out, he shouted to one of the other Green Berets, “Another great day to be in South Vietnam!”
This battle lasted six hours. He had been wounded 37 times.
at 7:20 AM
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
The "Misery Index" is the sum of the Inflation Rate PLUS the Unemployment Rate. The Misery Index was created by economist Arthur Okun and is found by adding the inflation rate to the unemployment rate to give an overall indication of the state of the economy (Inforgraphics). The graphic also includes the measure along with the majority party in power in Congress at the time...
at 7:31 PM
Nice graphic on the Wealth and the population shift from rural to urban areas in China...The numbers are staggering!!
Nice graphic on the Wealth and the population shift from rural to urban areas...The numbers are staggering!!
at 7:18 PM
at 7:13 PM
Conservatives don't be happy, Liberals don't be unhappy---No drilling will take place--see may gurarantee...
"That's why my administration will consider potential areas for development in the mid and south Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico, while studying and protecting sensitive areas in the Arctic."WILL CONSIDER means just that...A very non-committal commitment...Environmental impact studies, ad nauseum, will have to be done this will NOT happen any time soon, if at all...This is just a shewrd political tactic to calm the waters after the Healtcare Bill controversy. Call me cynical, but if I was a political advisor this is exactly what I would do--Genius! Swing back to the middle. I will be bold myself...If ONE site in these areas has an oil platform in it within 5 years from now, I will buy ANYONE who leaves a comment on this post TWO FREE tanks of gasoline...I am that confident... :)
at 5:58 PM
Allocative Efficiency decision 25 years ago has moved it from an agrarian economy ("Consumer Goods") to an industrialized one ("Capital Goods"). It has utilized its resources over this time period to increase its productive capacity by investing in public and private infrastructure (roads, bridges, power capacity, factories, etc), attracking business to become the world manufacturing floor, and educating the current generation of leaders (govt and business)...
From The Economist: CHINA’S rise has long appeared inexorable. Despite a decline in total world trade, China has seen its exports fall less than those of other big powers. A new report by the World Trade Organisation calculates that the total value of merchandise exports fell by a staggering 23% in 2009. Among the top ten exporters, Japan’s shipments were worst affected (falling by 26%). Although China's exports also fell (by 16%), the contraction was less painful than in Germany (down by 22%). As a result China is now the single largest exporter. The global downturn has helped to reduce global imbalances; the leading three exporters accounted for 26.7% of total world exports in 2009 down from a third of the total in 2008. The WTO expects trade to rebound by nearly 10% this year.
at 5:15 PM
Monday, March 29, 2010
Sunday, March 28, 2010
A Look at America’s Billionaires(HT Chartporn)...(Go to source HERE for a better look)
""America’s billionaires are an elite and diverse group of people who either through luck or hard work and strategy have managed to build fortunes that most of us will only ever dream of having. Have a look at how these individuals propelled themselves into the world of the ultra-wealthy and fantasize about what you’d do if you had billions to play with.""
at 11:34 AM
at 11:11 AM
At least they are applying bascis economic principles. Perhaps it is the ONLY class in college, except for maybe botany, they paid attention to ...:) I am not sure what bothers me more: The issue of legalizing marijuana itself OR the fact that "local officials and civic leaders" meet in a public meeting hall to discuss the issue (see bold section)...
From Washington Examiner: Up in smoke: Outlaw pot farmers in Calif. fear legalization could actually hurt their business
From Washington Examiner: Up in smoke: Outlaw pot farmers in Calif. fear legalization could actually hurt their business
""The smell of pot hung heavy in the air as men with dreadlocks and gray beards contemplated a nightmarish possibility in this legendary region of outlaw marijuana growers: legal weed. If California legalizes marijuana, they say, it will drive down the price of their crop and damage not just their livelihoods but the entire economy along the state's rugged northern coast. "The legalization of marijuana will be the single most devastating economic event in the long boom-and-bust history of Northern California," said Anna Hamilton, 62, a Humboldt County radio host and musician who said her involvement with marijuana has mostly been limited to smoking it for the past 40 years. Local residents are so worried that pot farmers came together with officials in Humboldt County for a standing-room-only meeting Tuesday night where civic leaders, activists and growers brainstormed ideas for dealing with the threat. Among the ideas: turning the vast pot gardens of Humboldt County into a destination for marijuana aficionados, with tours and tastings — a sort of Napa Valley of pot. Many were also enthusiastic about promoting the Humboldt brand of pot. Some discussed forming a cooperative that would enforce high standards for marijuana and stamp the county's finest weed with an official Humboldt seal of approval. Pot growers are nervous because a measure that could make California the first state to legalize marijuana for recreational use will appear on the ballot in November. State officials certified Wednesday that the initiative got enough signatures.""
at 8:30 AM
Police: Drunk Pa. Man Tried To 'Revive' Opossum (HT: D of L)
""State police have charged a central Pennsylvania man with public drunkenness after he was seen giving mouth-to-mouth "resuscitation" to a long-dead opossum along a highway. Trooper Jamie Levier says several witnesses saw 55-year-old Donald Wolfe, of Brookville, near the animal along Route 36 in Oliver Township Thursday about 3 p.m. The trooper says one person saw Wolfe kneeling before the animal and gesturing as though he were conducting a seance, while another saw the mouth-to-mouth attempt. Levier says Wolfe was "extremely intoxicated" and "did have his mouth in the area of the animal's mouth, I guess." Oliver Township is about 65 miles northeast of Pittsburgh.""
at 8:13 AM