If you know students with science backgrounds and computer skills looking for additional funding in the Research Triangle Park area, then there are several twelve month contracts available for work at the National Center for Computational Toxicology. The contracts can potentially be extended up to a total of two and a half years and pay a bit over $21 an hour. Read the rest of this entry »
For nearly 10 years, I’ve been playing the Hollywood Stock Exchange. Basically it’s a prediction market based on the box office returns of movies. It’s been a pretty good indicator over the years, but the income model was based nearly totally on ad revenue. A few months ago, they announced a complete site overhaul, ostensibly to “update” to the Web 2.0 model. It must not have been very successful, given its short life and eventual reversion to the “old” site.
Anyway, the 2.0 idea has been abandoned in favor of an even more major step forward: the Cantor Exchange. Named after HSX’s parent company Cantor Fitzgerald, it will be similar to the game format except you’ll be able to invest with real money. Details are sketchy as to the actual implementation, but I expect I’ll be playing around with it a little.
Hi everyone. I’m still alive and life has been interesting. Ann and I bought a house that we’ll move into in August, but in the mean time we’re packing up and heading to an apartment in Chapel Hill. The lease on our rental house is up at the end of the month and the crummy owners wanted to get it on the market so as not to miss out on those oh-so-common July renters rather than give us an extension of less than a year.
In addition to that fun, I’ve been to both Huntsville and Jacksonville briefly and watched one of my EPA mentors head off for industry.
Finally, on Sunday night, as we were driving into RTP to get some paperwork for the next morning’s mortgage signing, we got caught in a freak rain storm that caused puddles to form on Martin Luther King Parkway (a newly built, divided four lane road). The first puddle was fine (I was going less than 20 MPH so we didn’t even hydroplane) but the second one was two to three feet deep and as we plunged in my engine cut out and still hasn’t restarted. The water was most of the way up the passenger door and we were stuck for a good fifteen minutes or so before the water drained and we could push the car off the road (with the welcome help of some samaritans).
Fortunately, Andy’s googling and Mary’s dashing rescue allowed us to get out of the lightning and retrieve the needed papers in time for the morning. Unfortunately, I may have totaled my relatively new, unpaid-off car. Oh, why couldn’t we have hydroplaned over that puddle? (Feel free to discuss the physics of that, or lack thereof, in the comments section.) In the meantime I am driving a rental pick-up truck — you should have seen the rental agent’s draw drop when I asked for one — in order to help with moving. For some reason everyone wants a compact right now. All I know is I’ve already ordered my “W – The President” bumper sticker.
In the meantime, I have a great story on how two ball boys saved Michigan’s undefeated season in 1997 as well as a nominee for the blog roll:
It’s like crack for anyone who likes graphs, statistics or politics (a triple-whammy for me). Also in the intersection of cool graphs and politics is Presidential Watch 08, which has great tools for plotting the political blogosphere as well as trends. Without these very impressive analyses, would we have ever been able to tell that Fox news leans Republican?
No, not that economy. Instead it is the the prostitution industry which, at least in Denver — site of the Democratic nominating convention — is expecting a lot of bangs for their bucks August 25-28. According to San Francisco based postitute Carol Leigh, however, “It would be a lot better for the sex workers if it was the Republican convention… We get a lot more business. I don’t know if they’re just frustrated because of the family values agenda.”
Republicans, it seems, are not the optimal convention-goer either. Said Leigh: “Computer conventions can be lucrative. There’s a lot of nerds that don’t get out much.”