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Archive for October, 2007

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Why We Thank Soldiers

Monday, October 29th, 2007

Living in a state with a large agricultural community, I often see bumper stickers with slogans such as, “If You Ate Today, Thank a Farmer.” John Palmer over at EclectEcon captures why the economist in me is so repulsed by these messages. He eloquently writes: “Why should I thank people who, acting to maximize their […]

Hotel Booking Tips to Avoid a Travel Nightmare

Friday, October 26th, 2007

If you have an extra half hour to spare, check out Megan McArdle’s lengthy rant about having the hotel room she booked on Expedia sold to another guest. Hotels, like airlines, frequently overbook rooms under the assumption that some guests will cancel. Moreover, reservations without a valid credit card will almost always be canceled. I […]

Why eBay is Doomed

Thursday, October 25th, 2007

I have heard a number of complaints about eBay over the last few months: the site is being overrun by shady commercial listings, it’s more difficult to find relevant listings, and design changes are confusing. The company definitely is embracing change. In 2005, CEO Meg Whitman spearheaded the hasty and expensive acquisition of Skype. The […]

Studying Computational Microeconomics?

Wednesday, October 24th, 2007

If you are in at least the second year of a PhD program and are doing research in the area of online markets, prediction markets, sponsored search auctions, or query incentive networks, consider applying for a fellowship from Yahoo! Fellowship winners are awarded tuition and fees for 2 years and 1,000 dollars for their respective […]

Why Your Meteorologist has a Shot at the Nobel in Economics

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2007

That might be a bit of a stretch, but meteorology and economics have a lot more in common then you might think. Both the youngest and oldest winners of the Nobel Prize in Economics were meteorologists before they were professional economists. Kenneth Arrow, the youngest to win, was a weather forecaster during his military service […]

Inviting Ridicule

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

Children in England and Wales have been routinely weighed at school for the last two years. Now, parents of children as young as 5 will receive notification if their child is obese, reports the Times. When I was 6 years old, a routine eye screening caught my lazy eye while there was still time to […]

The College Experience

Sunday, October 21st, 2007

Michael Wesch, a cultural anthropologist at Kansas State University, asks 200 students their thoughts on a Vision of Students Today. The video is available on YouTube. Having attended Kansas State University, the University of Minnesota, and the University of Idaho I can say that this video does a decent job of capturing the culture in […]

Huckabee is Mistaken

Sunday, October 21st, 2007

Recent comments by Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee via Krugman’s blog: “Sometimes we talk about why we’re importing so many people in our workforce,” the former Arkansas governor said. “It might be for the last 35 years, we have aborted more than a million people who would have been in our workforce had we not […]

Nobel Theory, File Sharing and Social Networking

Sunday, October 21st, 2007

TorrentFreak reports that researchers at Harvard are using mechanism design theory to create an improved BitTorent file-sharing client. BitTorent is a peer-to-peer file sharing protocol that breaks files into little bits, which are then shared based on reciprocity with other users. For a succinct and clear explanation, check this link out. The current BitTorent protocol […]

Tv-links.co.uk shut down

Saturday, October 20th, 2007

A popular British website that linked to streaming videos of television shows and movies was shut down on Friday. I was introduced to the site as an undergraduate while working as a night auditor at a hotel in my college town. My coworkers would use the site to catch the latest episode of “House” when […]

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