Gongol.com Archives: March 2014

Brian Gongol

March 14, 2014

Computers and the Internet Amazon delivers a big test in demand elasticity
By hiking the price of Amazon Prime from $79 a year to $99 a year -- and doing it with a week's notice -- they're really going to test whether consumers care a lot about that $20. Bold move. But Amazon isn't a very profitable company -- they lost money in 2012, and shares currently sell for more than 600 times last year's profits per share. Remember: A sky-high stock price can be totally disconnected from profits. Perhaps this is an effort to jolt some profit-making into the bottom line.

Weather and Disasters We've been underestimating the risk of a giant earthquake in northern California

Business and Finance Business planning for the long term
A BBC report observes that the lack of quarterly reporting by Chinese companies may free their managers to concentrate on the long term. But the decision whether to build ultra-long-term business plans isn't really shackled by whether the SEC requires the filing of paperwork on a regular basis.

News Violent flare-up in Venezuela is a reminder we've ignored Latin America for too long

Northwestern seeks to raise $3.75 billion
In part for a lakefront football practice facility "likely to exceed $220 million"

Computers and the Internet Is online education actually still being stigmatized?
If so, then we're idiots. Obsessing over how an education is physically delivered is like caring whether your milk comes in a carton or a jug. It simply doesn't matter.

Science and Technology The world's power companies are considering 1200 new coal-fired electric plants

Threats and Hazards China crackdown on social messaging
A government big enough to give you everything you want is big enough to take away everything you have

Science and Technology California starts work on driverless-car regulations
Smart move; they're coming soon, and governments rarely act quickly

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