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A Random Wolf On Wall Street Could Calm Stock Markets

STOCK market investors who buy and sell on the flip of a coin might sound irresponsible, but a handful of random traders could be just what markets need to avoid bubbles and subsequent crashes.

Financial booms and busts occur when traders all rush to purchase or sell stock just because others around them are. “I see someone investing, I suppose that they probably have more information than me,” says Alessandro Pluchino of the University of Catania, Italy.

Pluchino and his colleagues wondered whether it was possible to stop this cascade of copycat behaviour by introducing a random element – traders who ignore all available information and instead buy or sell with equal probability.


More at New Scientist

Fraud On Film: Why The Wolf of Wall Street Is A Hollywood Con Job

I had been planning to write a piece on that thieving prick Jordan Balfour since he is so archetypal of what is wrong with the finance industry. But every now and again someone comes along and does a much better job than you could and saves you the trouble.

Sure, it has a big star and a bigger director and has won and been nominated for numerous awards, but The Wolf of Wall Street is a lousy movie.

It doesn’t deserve an Oscar for anything – unless there’s a category for multi-faceted indulgence.

There is only one small saving grace in the three hours it took Martin Scorsese to remake Ben Younger’s 2000 Boiler Room (by adding more money, more sex, more drugs and vast wads of Leonardo DiCaprio to no better effect).

More here by Michael Pascoe at the Age

Jaguar SuperBowl Spot


What If Natural Products Came With A List Of Ingredients?

Local chemistry teacher James Kennedy has done something very clever – he has given a breakdown of all the chemicals that occur naturally in food. This seems to be somewhat of a pushback to the knee jerk reaction people have when they see lists of ingredients in food and then freak out that it is not natural. Magic thinking 101 seems to kick into gear and they assume that foods that are natural have no chemicals in them at all. WTF they are supposed to be made up of is beyond me.

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Ten Minutes With Tate – Should We Panic Now?


Brian Eno, Danny Hillis: The Long Now, now

The Long Now Foundation’s monthly Seminars About Long-term Thinking were started in 2003 to build a compelling body of ideas about long-term thinking; to help nudge civilization toward our goal of making long-term thinking automatic and common instead of difficult and rare.

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I Am Worth $5.17 Million

If I converted to gold according to Wolfram Alpha.

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