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Messages - littleman

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Water Cooler / Sears in an alternative universe
« on: October 16, 2018, 02:34:25 AM »
I remember thinking in 1993 that it was a mistake for Sears to discontinue its catalog.  In 1995 eBay and Amazon both launched.  I remember thinking around that time that they should bring their catalog back and put it on the web.  Sears really could have been a (maybe THE) dominant player if they just had more persistence and vision.

From back in 2012:
Sears, which opened for business in the late 19th century, called itself “The Cheapest Supply House on Earth,” and, in its heyday, dominated home delivery with 75 million catalogs distributed each year[!], bringing goods to far flung farms, towns and other locations. But today’s customer, who can browse the Sears website but not order from its catalog service, which was dropped in the early 1990s, is likely to be ordering from Amazon’s marketplace instead.

“Amazon is the new Sears,” says Robert Spector, a retail historian who wrote Get Big Fast, and other books on retailers. “It’s also the new Walmart, the new Barnes & Noble and the new Best Buy.”

Sears (shld, -17.69%) has not retooled its venerable brand for the technology age, which was underscored this past holiday season when retail sales rose, and Internet sales soared, but the venerable store racked up such poor sales that it announced that it will close 120 stores, and projected that its earnings are likely to sink more than 50% for the most recent three months — usually the time of the year that retailers rake in their biggest revenues.

Sears, says Spector, “tried to hold onto what they were rather than trying to invent themselves. Like Kodak, Sears did not leap forward when it needed to do so.”

Water Cooler / Re: Core continuing commitment to health and fitness
« on: October 15, 2018, 08:31:29 PM »
I went to the gym four times last week, skateboarded probably about five hours.

How do you win this war?  Or Iraq?

There is no realistic acceptable outcome.  Eventually we will just decide to stop spending money and lives to sustain the occupations.

Economics & Investing / Re: What can a financial crisis lead to
« on: October 10, 2018, 08:30:57 PM »
I don't think a hot war is very likely with China over trade -- way to many billionaires on both sides would lose there lunch if that would happen.

Water, on the other hand is a ticking time bomb with global warming.  Almost every major river in Asia is fed by water from the Himalayas.

Finger, or prehensile phone penis?

Water Cooler / Core continuing commitment to health and fitness
« on: October 08, 2018, 03:11:16 AM »
Just check in once a week to let us know what you are doing, even if that isn't much.

This week I went to the gym 4 times.  I've also been getting a little cardio teaching my 6 y.o. to learn a bike.  I've spent about an hour a day chasing after her and making sure she doesn't take a spill.  As of yesterday she's fine on her own, so I've just been playing roller tag (not literally) with her on he bike and me on a skateboard.

Edit: fixed some really bad structure issues.

Last weekend I was stuck in traffic on the freeway on Sunday, there was a $130K car to the left of me and a $200k car a few paces up; we were all inching along.  At the same time I was listening to some blip on NPR about how the US soybean ban in China is causing a new round of deforestation in Brazil.  Seems we've collectively lost perspective.

I agree that the time lengths are ridiculously long.  What I do like about it is that (at least in the US) a work has copyright protection the moment it is created and that registering ones copyright is very affordable.  In that sense, the copyright law is much more egalitarian than say patent law.

As it stands right now I am most happy with copyright law, less happy about trademark enforcement and I think the patent system needs drastic reform -- particularly when it comes to software.

Water Cooler / Re: Yosemite Great Grey Owl
« on: October 02, 2018, 05:32:17 PM »
That's really cool!

>It stopped at a tree 20 feet away and just stared at me as I walked by, following me every step.

Caution, but he was probably also pissed that he lost that meal.

Economics & Investing / Re: #CHINA
« on: October 02, 2018, 05:03:44 PM »
A lot of the buildings in those ghost cities are very poorly constructed too, so I doubt the buyers will ever be able to get their money back.

These guys did some up close filming at one of those places recently.

If China tanks I think it will hit the West.

Traffic / Re: DuckDuckGo Reaches New Record Of 14M Searches In A Day
« on: September 29, 2018, 05:03:17 PM »

Some serious growth.

And good luck with an old news story when there is a newer story on a related topic.

I was a bit surprised that when I was poking around yesterday on advanced search that you can actually search within a date range.  I was searching for a phrase in the news right now and seeing if there were any historic references for it being used in the way described.  I went ten years back until last month and the results were quite a bit different than a regular search.

Too bad Google doesn't make more people aware of these features.

>getting old

Maybe.  I'm thinking I'm going to have to modify my workout routine.  I've been getting injured a lot in the last few years.   My muscles are too strong for my ligaments and joints.

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