Tom Keene: What is the direct evidence you have that this gentleman changed the technology world with this cryptocurrency?

Leah Goodman: I connected all these dots through. Through forensic research. And forensic research isn’t about supporting what you think is true. It’s about eliminating what you think a candidate may or may not represent. All you’re doing — I want to make this really clear right now — you’re eliminating candidates. We cannot eliminate this man at all. And in my confrontation with him, he confirmed his involvement. End of story.

Tom Keene: Is that journalism? Where you’re working on a Type 2 construct, where you’re pulling away, to “we’ve eliminated these other people”? But, there could be other people out there that you could do the same action with, right?

Leah Goodman: You could go off on the other way, and say “let’s find reasons to support a person”. But the best way to do forensic research is to eliminate people, not the other way around. You don’t say “I have a conjecture, let me find every way to support it”. No.

2 suggestions for Nest

The Nest thermostat is a great product. But there are two software updates it could really do with.

  1. One of the best features of Nest is “auto-away”: when you’re not at home, it turns the energy down. (Which, in the winter, means your house gets colder.) And the best feature of Nest is that it can be controlled remotely: when you’re on your way home, you can turn the energy back up, so you arrive to a nice warm house.

    The problem is that the two features end up working against each other. If you’re not at home, you can set the thermostat to “Home” remotely, and it will spring to life — briefly, before it realizes that you’re not actually at home after all, at which point the auto-away kicks in. The result is that when you arrive, your home is not warm, and you have to wait a couple of hours (if you have a slow radiator system, like I do) before it becomes comfortable.

    The solution here is easy: when a user switches the Nest from “Away” to “Home” remotely, then allow the home to warm up without  the auto-away kicking in. How hard can that be?
  2. Heating devices (boilers, etc) normally work — but, sometimes, they don’t. When they stop working, that’s bad news. Everybody wants to be alerted as quickly as possible when the boiler isn’t working.

    Nest could do this quite easily. Sometimes, it will be trying to heat the house, but the house won’t be getting any warmer. Or sometimes the thermometer in the Nest will show that the temperature in the house has dropped below the minimum setting. In those cases, Nest should send out a simple email alert, saying “hey, there might be something wrong with your heater”. This would be very useful!
This picture has been doing the rounds, and it’s certainly an interesting explanation of the Economist’s house style. I particularly like the idea of a red rectangle as a way of keeping the chart identified as coming from the Economist, even when it moves onto Twitter, Tumblr, etc. But, why on earth would you want to “move the chart as far into the background as possible”? There’s an inferiority complex, here, with respect to “the surrounding article”, which is unhealthy.
Most interesting, however, is the squib at the bottom, saying that the chart “has been created for educational purposes only” and “has not been created by The Economist”. Which means that this chart shows what a *designer* thinks an Economist chart should look like. As opposed to a data visualization professional, who understands numbers and how to convey information using charts. I’ll give you a second, here: what’s the big screaming error in this chart, which the designer of this infographic has completely missed?
…
That’s right, it’s charting share price, rather than market cap or enterprise value. In other words, the chart is conveying no useful information at all, since the relative share prices of the two companies tell you nothing about their relative value. Bad chartist!

This picture has been doing the rounds, and it’s certainly an interesting explanation of the Economist’s house style. I particularly like the idea of a red rectangle as a way of keeping the chart identified as coming from the Economist, even when it moves onto Twitter, Tumblr, etc. But, why on earth would you want to “move the chart as far into the background as possible”? There’s an inferiority complex, here, with respect to “the surrounding article”, which is unhealthy.

Most interesting, however, is the squib at the bottom, saying that the chart “has been created for educational purposes only” and “has not been created by The Economist”. Which means that this chart shows what a *designer* thinks an Economist chart should look like. As opposed to a data visualization professional, who understands numbers and how to convey information using charts. I’ll give you a second, here: what’s the big screaming error in this chart, which the designer of this infographic has completely missed?

That’s right, it’s charting share price, rather than market cap or enterprise value. In other words, the chart is conveying no useful information at all, since the relative share prices of the two companies tell you nothing about their relative value. Bad chartist!

I think for a number of decades, there was this very odd recruiting climate where Wall Street and consulting firms became the default option for students at good schools who didn’t know what they wanted to do after graduation. If you knew you were going to be a doctor, but you didn’t feel sure about your options, Wall Street was an incredibly enticing option. It created a generation of accidental bankers, and some of them did the wrong thing. I think now what you’re seeing with the competitiveness is the people who became bankers, they really want to be bankers. And I think that’s a good thing because it’s better for the banks and the rest of the economy to have people who are talented.

I think Kevin Roose is exactly wrong here. Maybe The Epicurean Dealmaker can explain why?

A Conversation About Young Wall Streeters - NYTimes.com

Davos gossip

  • What do you need to do to get banned from the World Economic Forum? Massacre protestors in the street, just 974 miles from Davos? That’ll do it. But so, it seems, will phone hacking: Rupert Murdoch, along with all other News Corp executives, is persona non grata this year. While the Forum does provide credentials to journalists from the WSJ and Dow Jones, no News Corp executives are here. It’s far from clear when or whether they might be invited back.
  • In terms of technology use, “I treat a trip to Davos like a trip to China”, says one veteran delegate, adding that every time he returns from Davos, he finds that his computer has been hacked. This is probably no surprise. Everybody uses the same unencrypted wifi system, the delegates constantly type email passwords into open computers, flash drives are everywhere, and the Forum even explicitly discourages media organizations from setting up their own internet connections, on the grounds that they “interfere” with the WEF’s own IT. Given the power and influence of the people who attend, it would be surprising if everybody from the NSA to China weren’t engaging in massive cyber-spycraft this week.

Found Davos poetry

The Reshaping of the World

Consequences for Society,
Politics and Business
Profound
political, economic, social and,
above all,
technological forces are transforming
our lives, communities and institutions. Rapidly
crossing geographic,
gender and generational boundaries,
they are shifting power
from traditional hierarchies to networked heterarchies. Yet
the international community remains
focused on crisis
rather than strategically driven in the face of the trends,
drivers and opportunities
pushing global,
regional and industry
transformation.

“The Reshaping of the World:
Consequences for Society,
Politics and Business” is therefore
the thematic focus of the World
Economic Forum Annual
Meeting 2014. Our aim
is to develop the insights,
initiatives and actions necessary to
respond to current
and emerging challenges.