||[10 May 2005|10:54am]
I'm a sucker for this kind of thing --- the statistics of the everyday. I'll probably have to pick up this book eventually. This interview wasn't as good as I would have hoped, but here are some interesting tidbits.
Notes from NPR, Motley Fool, Talking
'Freakonomics' with Steven Levitt
Author of Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores The Hidden Side of
- Freakonomics takes the tools of economics and applies them in places
where people don't look.
- Realtors, when they sell their own houses, get about 2-3% more for them,
and take longer to do it.
- When realtors say things like "spacious" or "great neighborhood", those
are empty words that don't mean anything. When they actually describe things
about the house, that's a good sign. "well-maintained" is code word for
- A lot of drug dealers live with their parents. Much like a modern
corporation, the guys at the top are making big salaries, but the guys at the
bottom are living with their parents.
- When a day care in Israel instituted fines for late pickups, the number
of late pickups went up! Because it turned showing up late into something
that was somewhat acceptable --- the fine was low --- where previously it was
an informal/moral wrong.
- Paul Feldman's (sp?) bagels --- put a lock box with a box of bagels near
offices, and asked people to put money in the box on the honor system. People
by and large are pretty honest. About 90% of the money he expects to get
shows up in the lockbox. After 9/11, people became much more honest. The big
offices tend to steal more. Bad weather is bad for payment. Stressful
holidays are bad for payment.
- If you're going to bet on horses, do it in Hong Kong.
- The markets are 99.9% efficient, but that 0.1% that is inefficient might
allow you to make some money. But, overall, it's hard to beat the
market and is best thought of as an enjoyable pastime.
|We have a word for this?
||[10 May 2005|10:56am]
Courtesy of Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day list. Ice Cube and Dr. Dre should get together and redo a certain song using this word. Or, maybe not.
The Word of the Day for May 10 is:
campanologist \kam-puh-NAH-luh-jist\ noun
: one that practices or is skilled in the art of bell ringing