Saturday, July 28, 2007

Posts I'd like to write...

here's what I'd write about if i wanted to spend more time inside today:

A recent article in Communication of the ACM that recognizes computation as a natural process. More along the lines of a natural science approach rather than an engineering approach. My simple observation is that none of this is 'truth'. In the beginning of the industrial revolution, the world was clearly a machine to the intellectuals of their time. When timepieces were born, the universe was clearly a set of gears. When computation engines (CPUs and other realizations of Turing Machines) being our primary productivity drivers and most 'like a thinking device' we see the world as...sure enough, a computing device!

A few movies I've seen recently that I think are worth mentioning: The Last Mimzy was worth watching. Its kid friendly with some peculiar drug references and secretly a big ad for a large semiconducter company. Black Snake Moan fits some kinda weird southern culture love story that was really good, but you either get it or you don't and I am probably too poor at articulating myself to explain. Transformers was actually really fun and worth paying to see. Spiderman 3 was not as good. Haven't seen Fantastic Four yet.

LBOs are drying up. The cause is the credit markets drying up (saying 'we won't contiue to fund anymore debt at these crazy low interest rates'). The effect is that they do things like look for smaller investors to unload at the top of the LBO market. Now that they've spent time soaking up all the easy money with 20%+ returns they'll try now try to sell them to you and me (individual investors). We have no hope of seeing those returns and should avoid them. When money is cheap these deals make sense. As interest rates have risen the returns must decrease. Blackrock Group investors have experienced this and they are now having trouble finding money for Chrysler and Cadbury Schwepps. LBOs are yesterday's cash cow.

Portland real estate market. I think its unethical for journalists to stay so quiet with the current real estate market and the 6,000 (not accurate) condo units going up in the Pearl and NW Portland that seemed to have actively slowed their work in hopes of a turnaround. I want data on the current market and nobody is writing about how bad it is. I've seen a few signs that people are finally deciding to lower prices by a bit in the neighborhood. I'm not claiming some kinda huge crash or anything in Portland, but I am suprised at the lack of information regarding units on the market, etc. and the story of how these new condo buildings are doing.
RMLS only reports the first 200 units in the 97209 zip code. There is a story there to be written for a journalist with the guts to take it on.

People are so confused about games and education. Play is ABOUT learning. We could do so much with games to teach students. I learned so little in my public school education relative to my education playing games. I think experiential learning and putting people in scenarios where games could be used could be revolutionary. Let the capital markets figure this out, there will be billions made in teaching people through play. Don't forget, the best teachers fooled you into thinking you were playing when you were actually learning. Education should look so different than it does today and I don't have time or space here to begin to communicate my ideas.


Anonymous said...

FYI... there are 294 condos on the market in 97209. Priced from $124K up to $1.8M

adam lake said...

I'm not sure that number is correct. It may be the number in RMLS, but what about the new units coming online in the next 6-24 months? There are at least a half dozen cranes on buildings I imagine are 6-12 stories in height. The number 294 doesn't seem to be in the right order of magnitude to correctly represent the current market. Could be wrong, perhaps you can provide source?