23 January 2011

How to validate a credit card number with your head using a checksum as presented on mint.com's blog. Take the above number (or any credit card number). And double every other digit from the right. Add these new digits to undoubled ones. All double digit numbers are added as a sum of their digits, so 14 becomes 1+4. If the final sum is divisible by 10, the number is invalid or fake. Try it and see.

How to validate a credit card number (click for full pic)

[via:Viralliset Linkit]

5 February 2010

US public relations corporation to run for congress

“With more than a twinge of irony, Murray Hill Incorporated, a liberal public relations firm, recently announced that it planned to run in the Republican primary in Maryland’s 8th Congressional District.”

Campaign ad on Youtube.


7 January 2010

UK pensioners burning books to keep warm

[via:William Gibson]

18 December 2009

Content farming: conquering the web by producing cheap content based on search stats

“Most media companies are trying hard to increase those numbers, to boost the value of their online content until it matches the amount of money it costs to produce. But […] instead of trying to raise the market value of online content to match the cost of producing it — perhaps an impossible proposition — the secret is to cut costs until they match the market value.”

You might have noticed how Sturgeon’s Law (“Ninety percent of everything is crud”) lives its own rampant life on the Internet in the form of these ad filled sites with unbelievably shitty how-tos and fake advice. But wait a year or two until clustered ponds of shit like eHow, Cracked and Livestrong might begin to mimic journalism. Quality media has only started its long, stinky journey down the rabit hole/drain pipe of the Intertube

An interview with Demand Media CEO Richard Rosenblatt

[via:Olli Sulopuisto]

15 December 2009

Rolling Stone/Matt Taibbi: Obama sold out to Wall Street

“There’s no other way to say it: Barack Obama, a once-in-a-generation political talent whose graceful conquest of America’s racial dragons en route to the White House inspired the entire world, has for some reason allowed his presidency to be hijacked by sniveling, low-rent shitheads.”

After being elected, Obama basically gave everyone from his “change” campaign dead end jobs. All the important posts went to insiders from the same financial giants, that through “bailout” laws now have been granted free money every time and no matter how badly they fuck up themselves and the system.

If you’re not easily tricked into reading longer articles, have a look at the video summary. Taibbi‘s recent writing is highly recommended reading, his style is very readable and entertaining but maintains a striking contrast to the usual correct, bullshit-plagued financial and political reporting.

[via:No Agenda]

27 October 2009

Wall Street on the Tundra

The author explores the nature of Iceland and its financial crisis through the nation’s alpha male fisher attitudes, dangerous optimism, over-educated arrogance and… belief in elves. I laughed repeatedly.

18 October 2009

Wall Street’s Naked Swindle

“We’re in a place we haven’t been since the Depression: Our economy is so completely fucked, the rich are running out of things to steal.”

In his article, Matt Taibbi explains, in great detail, how naked short selling has been used to manipulate the markets into killing investment banks. Unless you’re already an expert on how the stock market works, start by watching this accompanying short explanation of short selling.

Based on a pattern of linkage deserving articles in Rolling Stone, I’ll try to follow Taibbi‘s writings carefully in the future.

[via:Thomas N.]

4 October 2009

UK Treasury about to force banks to lend in poorer communities?

“Bankers in visible pain” sounds like a nice concept, but this seems an awful lot like a socialized version of the lunacy that caused the subprime mortgage crisis (do watch the video)…

[via:Tommy Rosenqvist]

28 September 2009

Fortune interviews Mark Whitacre, ADM price-fixing whistleblower and compulsive liar

Whitacre discusses bipolar disorder, prison, his marriage, lying to Fortune in an earlier interview and Steven Soderbergh’s new film, “The Informant!” where his person is presented by Matt Damon. The book on which “The Informant!” is based comes highly recommended.


30 August 2009

The Iraqi who saved Norway from oil

Financial Times explains how Farouk al-Kasim helped create government regulation that saved Norway from wasteful oil extraction and political corruption by foreign industry interests. Shock and horror: Unlike many other oil nations, Norway has actually saved money rather than fallen into debt.


27 August 2009

Details on the arrest of Sergey Aleynikov, former developer of Goldman Sachs’ high speed trading software

[via:No Agenda]

26 August 2009

Nokia plans to launch mobile “banking”, “paypal”

“The “Nokia Money” service will make it possible “to send money to another person just by using the person’s mobile phone number, as well as to pay merchants for goods and services, pay their utility bills, or recharge their pre-paid SIM cards,” […] Nokia said it was building up a large network of Nokia Money agents where consumers can deposit money or withdraw cash from their mobile accounts. […] “In many countries, mobile phone ownership significantly exceeds bank account usage””


21 August 2009

Movie trailer: Michael Moore’s “Capitalism: A Love Story” (720p)

According to Wikipedia, the film centers on the financial crisis of 2007-2009, the transition from the Bush administration to the Obama administration, and the stimulus and bailout package. IMDb link, official site, Apple trailers. The US theater release date is set to October 2.


14 August 2009

SAS to use glide landing to cut CO2 emissions

Being mostly ignorant about even basic physics, I’m not really keen to admit how insane of an idea this seems.

[via:No Agenda]

10 August 2009

Global market to be increasingly automated by computers trading against one another for millisecond profits

“Yay, let’s build a big ass hall of servers to help us play Economy”


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