Archives: September 2005
Sun 25 Sep 2005
23 by 5
Because she asked:
"Then there was a hit from verton.capfed1.sinectis.com.ar."
1. Go into your archive.
2. Find your 23rd post (or closest to).
3. Find the fifth sentence (or closest to).
4. Post the text of the sentence in your blog along with these instructions.
I have no idea why.
Um... what the hell was that? What an odd movie. It came from Brandy's Netflix list. We'd actually ahd it for months, but hadn't gotten around to watching it. Well, we watched the first 30 minutes right after we got it, but then it was months until we tried again. Then Amy unexpectedly joined us, even though it was a rated R. I was trying to concentrate and all, but had gotten into an all flustercated mood. So I left in the middle to walk the dog, and then went to bed while Amy and Brandy finished the movie. A few days later, while on the plane home from a trip for work, I watched the whole movie straight though.
And yes, my only thought on finishing it was "What the hell did I just watch?". Very bizzare little movie. Pretty much only one set, just different colors... And some people talking... and the occational booby trap.
Very odd. But in a good sort of way. There are apperantly two sequels, although I'm not sure quite what they will do with them. The enxt one was next on Brandy's list. So we have it now. Not sure how many months until we actually watch it.
Oh yeah, and Amy really liked it. Despite the occational blood and gore. Um, actually, probably BECAUSE of the occational blood and gore. She laughs at that stuff. :-)
Sun 18 Sep 2005
I check every couple of weeks, and my goodness, now, for the first time since I've been checking, someone else, in this case, some guy Bill D, has used my word. (Do a find on the page for it.) That means there are now 13 google results for this word. 12 of them are me. Before I posted about it last October, there were none.
Thank you Bill D. Now I know I did not just imagine the word!
So, over the last few months, I once again started tracking a "stock scheme" that I have played with once every couple of years all the way back to college. This time I did it for a longer time period than any of the other times. The above is how it did. This covers 60 trading days, although there are a couple gaps when I was out of town or whatever and didn't track it. I just assumed that I didn't apply the scheme those days.
It started out really well, but then langished, and in the last few days lost all the gains it had made. Kinda dissapointing. The first chart is how $100,000 invested in this scheme would have done over time, using a $7 per trade fee structure. As you can see, in the first few days I would have gotten lucky and made about 25%. Then it just bounced up and down (mostly down) from then on. At the end of the 60 days, I still was up from the starting point, but trailed where I would have been just buying an S&P index (that's the other line... SPY). Of course, given the way this particular thing works, with actual fees, it would indeed take pretty much $100K to still be above water. Oh well.
The second chart shows a histogram of each days performance (with no fees). As I started, the histogram had a bulge on the negative side, but a longer tail on the positive, thus making the overall average just positive enough to make money. But as more and more data got collected, it looked more and more like a standard bell curve centered on zero.
I'd like to play with more of these models, but automation is in order. I did this by trying to remember every afternoon in the hour before the market closed to check the prices of a set of stocks under consideration. (The link goes to a sample.) The based on those prices and the changes from the previous day, I pick one for the next day. Of course, in real life, I check at slightly different times each day and as mentioned, there were a few gaps where I did not check at all.
Anybody got a good tool or could script one that at a specific time of day would go to the page I linked to, grab all the stock symbols and associated prices and dump them to a common file format that I could go back and analyse after having just let the thing run and collect data for a few months. Try different scheme variations on it and such.
Not that I really expect to find something that will make real cash if used (although if I did that would be cool). But just cause I like playing with this sort of stuff and like making graphs and stuff.
Sat 17 Sep 2005
I apperantly have a new nickname: Cupcake.
Sydney Convicts Rugby Club
Name: Sam Minter
Birthday: 6 December
Position I would never play: Winger
Joined Convicts: October '03
Other teams: Woollahra Colleagues
Tours: Bingham Cup '04, Purchas Cup '04, '05
Favourite saying: "Hit first, hit hard"
Favourite rugby team: Wallabies (Don't ask why)
Favourite board game: Scrabble
Favourite drink: Elephant Beer
Favourite pastime: Beating up on punching bags
Favourite "Camp Classic" Song: I don't do camp.
Most important thing I've learnt in Rugby: Whoever said "The bigger they are, the harder they fall" never tried to tackle a prop running at speed.
The dumbest thing I've ever done in public: In alphabetical, or chronological order?
Easiest way to get into your pants: If you're me? Through the big opening in the top. If you're not me, try the zipper at the front.
One thing you'd like to say to our opponents for Bingham Cup 2006: Good luck
Fri 16 Sep 2005
I was actually asleep when it happened (I think) but about 10 hours ago at 02:36:03 UTC it was exactly 34 years (at 365.242199 days each) since I was born. Woo! Go me. I am tired.
I'm at work right now, and am trying to be all 100% focused at work and not do things like post while I am here, so I'll keep it to that. Short post. Want to go home and back to bed.
But instead, I'll drink my coffee and get to work. There is a lot to do.
Hmm, just for fun, I'll set this post to be published exactly 10 hours after the moment, rather than approximately. Woo!
Thu 08 Sep 2005
Ophelia, You're Breaking My Heart
Ophelia, first a tropical storm, and now a hurricane, has been sitting just off shore from where we live. Sometimes wobbling a bit north, sometimes a bit east, sometimes a bit south... this radar image is as of about an hour before this post. (Follow the link to current radar.) We've been right on the edges of the outer bands of the system for days now. It was a little closer yesterday, but not as strong. We've been getting lots of nice rain. No really high winds though. But the silly thing is just sitting there, right off shore, practically within sight... teasing us with its presence.
The forecasts have it basically staying stationary right there off shore, slowly gaining strength, for the next few days. Then early next week it will do something. Exactly what, nobody really knows. The hurricane center's best guess as of the last advisory was that it would slowly move east, then loop back around clockwise and head back in our general direction... or maybe somewhere else entirely. There will be a new advisory in a few minutes, and of course another every 6 hours after that. We'll be paying attention.
At the very least, we're getting several more days of lots of rain as outer bands occationally cross over our heads. At most, sometime in the next week we get a hurricane banging at our door.
Guess we'll be watching it.
But the strangest thing has been just watching the radar, and seeing it just sit there. Right off shore. Moving slightly every once in a while, but basically just sitting there. Eye and everything. Within sight. But not coming toward us. Not going away. Just sitting there watching us as it spins. Shaking my confidence daily. Well, not really, just had to get a plug in for the next line of the song. I'm not going to be on my knees begging her to come home though.
Anyway, for the moment, the weather is fine, but...
Tue 06 Sep 2005
Snowball is Safe
I'd been waiting to hear if anybody had any news on Snowball... for those that didn't catch the stories on it... When they were loading people at the SuperBowl into busses to evacuate, one of the people being loaded was a little boy... who was clutching his dog snowball, who he'd managed to keep with him through everything. Well, no pets were allowed on the busses. So one of the National Gaurd troops stationed there took Snowball away from the boy. The boy was apperantly screaming and crying "Snowball! Snowball!!!" and was an absolute mess as he was pulled onto the bus, and ended up throwing up because he was crying so hard... Anyway... an update:
Sad Story of Boy and His Dog Grips Nation
(Paul Webber and Brian Skoloff [AP] on Yahoo! Asia News)
Late Monday, there was a ray of hope. The United Animal Nations said Snowball was safe, citing news from the state veterinarian's office. However, the information could not be immediately verified. To complicate matters further, the group called Snowball a terrier mix, while others consider the dog a bichon frise.
If the boy and his dog are indeed safe, they have beaten long odds.
Many of the animals _ dogs, cats, ferrets and birds _ that police collected at the Superdome were herded into a stairwell until the human evacuation was complete. Of the 50 animals rescued from the Superdome on Sunday, not all of them survived.
(via Drudge Report
Unconfirmed of course, but hey, it is something.
And yes, in the grand scheme of things, this matters absolutely nothing. I know that. But it is one of many stories that just get at you when you hear them.
And of course, even if they do know where Snowball is, they haven't yet located the boy.
Mon 05 Sep 2005
DVD: Doctor Who: The Seeds of Death
We actually watched this almost two weeks ago, but Brandy fell asleep during the last of the six episodes, and so we didn't put the DVD in the mail to return until yesterday when Brandy finally got around to watching the last episode again. :-)
This story did very little for me. I just wasn't into it. It has the Ice Warriors. Yawn. It did have an amusing trip in a rocket and the doctor running around defending himself with trashcan lids with light bulbs stuck to them. So you have that I guess. But that's about it. Oh! And wait, the Doctor running in terror from soap suds! I didn't even notice that the Doctor wasn't in the 4th episode at all until I read the summary online. Well, OK. I kinda did. He had been knocked out and spent the time unconcious.
I find myself hankering to move along and get to the 4th Doctor episodes. Or at least the third. And color. Color would be nice at this point.
The one we just watched was going to be the last 2nd Doctor episode in our sequence as we went through the stories available on DVD... but just last week they released another one. We'll be watching out of sequence because this one aired before the one we just watched, but that is OK.
Under and Over
I've been meaning to post about this since about Tuesday, and it isn't really timely any more, but oh well, I'm going to post it anyway. In the couple days immediately following Katrina's second landfall I was hearing two distinct sets of comments that annoyed me. (And I know I'm not the only one, but hey, I'll throw in my comments.) The comments from a variety of sources, fell into two categories:
The underestimators: These were the people saying "This is so much worse than we ever imagined!!". And I'm not talking about your average person on the street, I'm talking about people in positions of authority. People who had no excuse whatsoever. This was not worse than could be imagined. This was in fact MUCH BETTER than the worst case scenerio, which had been discussed and analysed in detail for literally decades. There had been articles and papers and documentaries. Some recent, some going back years. And it wasn't as if people weren't talking about it... incessantly... from almost the moment Katrina left Florida and entered the gulf... about just how bad it would be if it hit New Orleans... and then the track maintained a bullseye on the city for a decent amount of time. Anybody paying attention knew it would be very very bad absent a huge amount of good luck. And as it happens, that good luck came. Less than 12 hours before landfall, Katrina sucked up some dry air on the Northwest side that destabilized a lot of the flow, weakened the hurricane significantly, and cause a wobble to the east... this was bad. Really really bad. But it is not "worse than we all imagined" it is actually considerably BETTER than anyone who was paying attention and actually believed the warnings thought. Brendan Loy, a great source through this whole thing, lays out the whole thing in more detail in terms of what could have happened and why everyone should have known.
The overestimators: Then there are the overestimators. This seems to have died down a lot since the beginning of the week, but there were a flurry of people comparing Katrina to the Asian Tsunami. I know there seemed to be some superficial similarities, and yeah, I saw them too. But as bad as this has been... it is a tiny, miniscule, insignificant event when compared to December's Tsunami. OK, "insignificant" is not the right word. Any loss of life or property is significant. Especially to those involved. But these two events are simply an order of magnatude different. Take everything you know about what has happened in New Orleans this week. Multiply by 10. Maybe 20. Then you are getting closer to what happened in December. This seems bigger because it is HERE and NOW, and the other was THERE and MONTHS AGO. Looking at this hints at just how bad the earlier situation was.
Anyway... like I said, probably should have posted Tuesday, but I've been busy. By now lots of people have said both things. :-)
Now (hopefully) the worst is over. There will be much work to do and much hand wringing and blame throwing. In the end, New Orleans and the whole coast of all the affected states will probably be better than it was before. Just might take a few years.