Friday, September 30, 2011

Identifying the Authenticity of Statistics

This is an interesting article about the science of identifying inauthentic statistics.

From Enron to the government of Greece, people with something to hide give themselves away with recurring number patterns that might be detectable. Interesting stuff.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Book Review: Moneyball

Coming soon to a theater near you. Starring Brad Pitt.

Moneyball is about an unlikely success: how the cash strapped Oakland A's baseball team found ways to win without the ability to afford highly priced skills. One simply must find players with unusual and overlooked talents. One does this by identifying talents that no-one else can see - a tough business in a 100-year old game that few thought held any more secrets.

Those people were wrong. Baseball did have secrets. And these were ferreted out by Bill James, an eccentric and charming former night watchman from Kansas. Famed business writer Michael Lewis (Liar's Poker) tackles the subject of how the Oakland A's turned baseball shibboleths on their head by using these unconventional insights gleaned from reams of statistical data.

For Moneyball is a story about how insight into statistics can uncover hidden patterns and exploit the holes in conventional wisdom. The A's used new data that redefined critical aspects of the game and what made a good player effective. And then they found these stealth players whose contributions to the game had been hidden in history.

Even if you're not a baseball fan, it's very important to realize that things are not always what they seem. It's also a great way for people to learn to think about the behavior of numbers and stats - even if they're not about baseball.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Business Information Security

Just a reminder that you're not paranoid if they really are out to get you.

Many a business has given away its trade secrets, strategic plans, and sensitive numbers by not understanding the reality of industrial espionage.

And they're not just huge corporations. This can happen to small local businesses as well.

Business professional risk book or general introduction to computer security to remind yourself of the dangers of e-mail, wireless devices, and using the internet.

Plus, some links to some really great books (getting past the typically strange subject headings)

industrial espionage.

trade secrets

commercial crimes

computer crimes

Monday, September 12, 2011

Debt Load for College Students

The Atlantic writes about the huge problem of debt for today's college students.

National investment and savings are getting hurt from people having to pay down debt.

College is overpriced, but far from worthless. But since the elite are now financiers (who derive their fortunes from debt), don't look for any change soon.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Books on Pricing

What should you charge? What is the most you can charge for your product? Are you charging enough?

Also: innovative ways to come up with pricing packages that move customers and maximize your profits.

Here are some cool books on pricing.