henry copeland @hc

Creating https://t.co/yaIkIOcF20, an online toolkit the average person can use for personal (n-of-1) experiments. Way back when: Y84, bond trader, journalist.

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Networks, Percolation, and Consumer Demand

In particular, we showed that small-world networks, which exhibit short path lengths and high clustering (Watts & Strogatz 1998), lead to fast but often only limited diffusion compared to fully random networks, which exhibit short path lengths and low clustering. The reason for limited diffusion in small-world networks is the redundancy in information spreading due to clustering. Accordingly, consumer welfare is much lower in small-world networks than in random networks for a wide ranges of prices.

The State of the Industry: 2022 RaceTrends Report is Here! – RunSignup Blog

Largest races were the hardest hit, with races of more than 5,000 participants averaging 19% fewer participants than in 2019 while races with fewer than 500 participants actually grew 3.4% […]20% of 2019 events did not take place in 2022, including 14% that did not take place in either 2021 or 2022 […]Just 14% of participants from 2021 repeated the same event in 2022 (down from 19% in 2018)

Steve Schallenkamp: Race entries down sharply from pre-pandemic levels – Daily Freeman

Runsignup, the largest race registration company in the United States, used data from 68,000 races to highlight running trends in 2022. Its data shows that race entries were down anywhere from 10% to 24% from the pre-pandemic year of 2019. The data also highlighted that there are now more running events than previously, but the average attendance or size of races in 2022 was smaller than in 2019.

Non-invasive Neurotechnology Reduces Symptoms of Insomnia and Improves Autonomic Nervous System Function - Neuroscience News

In this randomized and controlled study of 22 adults, researchers compared changes on the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), a self-report instrument to assess insomnia symptoms. About half of the participants received 10 sessions of CR-SOP linked to brainwaves while the control group received 10 sessions of randomly generated auditory tones. Sessions were received over a mean of 15.3 days. Researchers also recorded heart rate and blood pressure to assess autonomic cardiovascular regulation.  After completion of the sessions and at follow-up visits up to six weeks later, subjects in the CR-SOP group reported reduced insomnia symptoms. They also showed statistically and clinically significant improvements in autonomic function across multiple measures such as heart rate variability (HRV) and baroreflex sensitivity (BRS) compared to those who received random tones.

John Maynard Keynes’s Own Portfolio Not Too Dismal - The New York Times

Although he was building wealth for his own account and the institutional funds throughout the 1920s, he did not see the 1929 debacle coming and was almost cleaned out again. The 1929 crash and resulting Great Depression left Keynes intellectually shellshocked, so he changed his strategy. Professor Chambers and Professor Dimson discovered that sometime in the early 1930s he backed away from short-term trades and commodities and focused on stocks. No longer would he pay attention to overarching economic theories or short-term sentiment: The “animal spirits” of the market’s unpredictable pixies could not be trusted. He sensed that security prices were not true indicators of company values.

2022 Full Year Market Report | LUMA Partners

Both the Ad Tech index (“LUMA.A”) and the MarTech index (“LUMA.M”) were down substantially this year (59% and 52%, respectively) alongside the broader tech market, with Nasdaq-100 down 33%.

Inside CNET’s AI-powered SEO money machine - The Verge

Red Ventures’ business model is straightforward and explicit: it publishes content designed to rank highly in Google search for “high-intent” queries and then monetizes that traffic with lucrative affiliate links. Specifically, Red Ventures has found a major niche in credit cards and other finance products. In addition to CNET, Red Ventures owns The Points Guy, Bankrate, and CreditCards.com, all of which monetize through credit card affiliate fees. The CNET AI stories at the center of the controversy are straightforward examples of this strategy: “Can You Buy a Gift Card With a Credit Card?” and “What Is Zelle and How Does It Work?” are obviously designed to rank highly in searches for those topics.

US Labor Shortage Rattles Harvard Economist as 2.6 Million Workers Sit Out - Bloomberg

Even as their tracker shows metrics like job listings, consumer spending and small business revenue surging back above January 2020 levels, the US is missing about a fifth of its pre-pandemic low-income workforce. At least some of those workers moved to higher-paying jobs, but, after adjusting for wage growth, researchers found employment for the poorest quarter of the workforce was still 13.5% below pre-pandemic levels at the end of 2021.

Taking a Disciplined Look at Irrational Investors | Yale Insights

The idea that might be most important about how we form beliefs is overextrapolation. It’s just saying that when we form beliefs about the future, we put too much weight on the recent past. If the recent returns on an asset have been good, we’re too quick to think that the future returns will be good. If they’ve been bad, we’re too quick to think they will continue to be bad.[…] this simple idea can shed light on a lot of key puzzles. One of them is excess volatility—the finding that, historically, the stock market has moved around more than can be explained by simple, rational models of investor behavior.[…]Overextrapolation may also explain bubbles. I’ve also done work trying to understand where overextrapolation comes from. I argued, in one of my first papers, that an idea of Kahneman and Tversky’s called representativeness may be an important driver of overextrapolation. When we see a good economic data point, we leap to the conclusion that it represents a positive trend. Representativeness is a possible source of this overreaction in financial markets.

FDA vaccine advisers 'disappointed' and 'angry' that early data about new Covid-19 booster shot wasn't presented for review last year | CNN

It found that 1.9% of the study participants who received the original booster became infected. Among those who got the updated bivalent vaccine – the one that scientists hoped would work better – a higher percentage, 3.2%, became infected. Both versions of the shot were found to be safe. This infection data was far from complete. The number of study subjects who became infected was very small, and both the patients and the researchers were aware of who was getting the original shot and who was getting the new booster. Despite these imperfections, the data was included in a preprint study that was posted online in June, again in September in an FDA document and then later that month in a top medical journal – and advisers to the FDA and the CDC said the data should have been shared with them, too.

FDA vaccine advisers 'disappointed' and 'angry' that early data about new Covid-19 booster shot wasn't presented for review last year | CNN

“I was angry to find out that there was data that was relevant to our decision that we didn’t get to see,” said Dr. Paul Offit, a member of the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee, a group of external advisers that helps the FDA make vaccine decisions. “Decisions that are made for the public have to be made based on all available information – not just some information, but all information.”

In Remembrance of a Beloved and Very Online Journalist - POLITICO

Hounshell succeeded in feeding his voluminous intellectual appetite in part by being brutally efficient in his emails — he and Kenner reached a point where Hounshell would reply to the writer’s long pitches just with a “Y” or an “N.” As Kenner recalls, “He was incredible — this multi-tasker who could answer all these questions and keep all these plates spinning.”

Why eggs cost more in California than anywhere else - Los Angeles Times

“Luckily, our California egg industry has avoided any bird flu in commercial flocks,” California Poultry Federation President Bill Mattos wrote in an email. “Their biosecurity is outstanding and companies here are working very hard to keep wild birds out of facilities and farms across the state.” But demand has grown much faster than cage-free flocks. Since Proposition 12 passed, at least six other states have voted to prohibit the sale of conventional eggs. Three of those bans are now in effect, including in Colorado and Washington, where conventional eggs were outlawed Jan. 1.

Can the US Dodge a Recession? This Economist Thinks So - Bloomberg

“In science we use models all the time, and they’re simplifications of reality,” he said. “And part of the skill of the scientist is to know when to deploy the model and when not to or, in other words, to know the limitations of the model. And maybe I’m in a good position of knowing the limitations, given that it’s my model.”

Hungary: How Liberty Can Be Lost - Public Seminar

Brainwashing has also been going on since the beginning by means of so-called “national consultation” questionnaires distributed by the government to all Hungarians. These questionnaires ask a few questions to which only one answer can be given, questions I would not dare ask a four-year-old child. The obvious agenda behind the practice of “national consultation” is to demonstrate popular support for the government (since no other answer can be given than the one required by it); the less obvious agenda is brainwashing to create obedient subjects.

Hungary: How Liberty Can Be Lost - Public Seminar

First of all, liberation came to Hungary as a gift. Other than a few thousand intellectuals, no one fought for it or did anything to make it happen. Representatives of the old communist party and of the new parties sat at a round table and decided the future of the country, the character of its institutions, and how its “peaceful transition” would take place. The general population was excluded from the hard work of the transition (far more than in Romania or Czechoslovakia, for example) and consequently did not receive the education that inclusion in the process would have provided. In essence, Hungarians received liberty for free, but nothing is ever truly for free. Sooner or later one must pay, and that time has come for Hungary.

Hungary: How Liberty Can Be Lost - Public Seminar

Instead, Hungarians seem to have relied on a longstanding tradition of following a leader, expecting everything from above, believing, or pretending to believe, everything they are told, mixed with a kind of fatalistic cynicism of the impossibility of things being otherwise.

A Protective Probiotic for ALS Found - Neuroscience News

To study the neuroprotective effects of a probiotic-based dietary supplement on this animal model, Labarre tested a total of 13 different bacterial strains and three strain combinations. HA-114 stood out from the pack. The action of the probiotic helped reduce motor disorders in models with ALS and also Huntington’s disease, another neurodegenerative disease.

Is Zwift racing 'cleaner' than pro road racing? Dissecting the furore around cheating in virtual cycling | road.cc

Is it fair and justified? Not exactly, according to Snook, talking about the recently banned Eddy Hoole who was caught hacking data during a UCI eSports World Championships qualifier, putting in a seemingly other-worldly peformance last month: "He would have eventually been caught, but this instance was so far in the extreme that the question wasn’t if he was cheating," says Snook.  "All we needed to do at that point was figure out how."  The incident and its repercussions were covered extensively in cycling media, as is the case whenever there's virtual cycling fruit to pick. DC Rainmaker was the first to press with a detailed account (link is external) and hack theory earlier in December, deftly outlining the banned rider's offence. It attributed it to a well-known hack vector revealed in 2019, stating: "Now, not only are people using it, but someone that had won an automatic ticket to the UCI World Championships used it."

Statin related muscle symptoms: is it time to move on | The BMJ

Myalgia was common among participants, regardless of statin use.7 The proportion of patients reporting muscle pain or weakness was 27.1% in the statin arm and 26.6% in the placebo arm. These event rates remained consistent across subgroups stratified by age, sex, ethnicity, history of vascular disease, diabetes, body mass index, LDL cholesterol concentration, and estimated glomerular filtration rate. The authors calculated that only 1 in 15 reports of muscle symptoms in statin groups were attributable to statins.7 Furthermore, the additional absolute risk of such events remained low across different intensities of therapy.7 Creatinine kinase activity, a more objective outcome than patient reported symptoms, was increased only minimally with statin therapy.

The Marginalian – Marginalia on our search for meaning.

When we speak of falling in love, we might find that a slight restatement of the experience would help clarify our direction. For when you say “I fell in love” with him or her you are saying that he or she was the key that unlocked your heart — the place within yourself where you are love. When the experience is mutual, you can see that the psychic chemistry of the situation allows both partners to “fall in love” or to “awake into love” or to “come into the Spirit.” Since love is a state of being — and the Divine state at that — the state to which we all yearn to return, we wish to possess love. At best we can try to possess the key to our hearts — our beloved — but sooner or later we find that even that is impossible. To possess the key is to lose it.

Investors Are Losing a Recession Shootout Against the Fed - Bloomberg

Now, is there anything we can learn from the shootout? As it turns out, there is. It concerns what experts in behavioral finance call “activity bias” and I wrote about it many years ago here. The notion is that in sports, but also in investing, there is an ingrained human sense that we ought to be seen to be doing something. Thus, fund managers buy and sell and churn their portfolio, rather than buying and holding and minimizing trading costs. In sports, baseball players find it far less embarrassing to strike out having taken a swing at the ball than to strike out with the bat still on their shoulder. And in the drama of the penalty shootout, goalies feel obliged to do something — take a guess and dive one way or the other. So likely are goalies to dive that strikers can generally assume they won’t stay in place, and therefore they can occasionally try hitting the ball straight in front of them. By doing so, they're taking advantage of the goalkeeper’s activity bias. Goalies should consider just standing there.

Adderall Risks: Much More Than You Wanted To Know | Slate Star Codex

I didn’t realize how much of a psychiatrist’s time was spent gatekeeping Adderall.

RealPage Accused of Colluding With Landlords to Increase Rents — ProPublica

One suit filed Friday on behalf of two Seattle renters alleges a broad pattern of collusive behavior by RealPage and a group of 10 large property managers. It says that in addition to using RealPage software to inflate rents in downtown Seattle, property managers had employees call competitors regularly seeking detailed nonpublic information on what they were charging — which the employees would change their prices to match. The lawsuit quoted what it said was a former employee of Greystar, the country’s largest property management firm. “You’d call up the competition in the area,” the former employee said, according to the lawsuit. “Sometimes there’d be a list of 10 people to call. Sometimes just one. You’d ask what they are charging for their apartments. Then you’d literally change the prices right there on RealPage. Manually bump it up.

Read Musk's 2:30 a.m. Email to Twitter Staff About End of Remote Work

Frankly, the economic picture ahead is dire, especially for a company like ours that is so dependent on advertising in a challenging economic climate. Moreover, 70% of our advertising is brand, rather than specific performance, which makes us doubly vulnerable!

Describing the product, not the company

In the end, what finally worked was when simply I gave up trying to describe “what Mentava is” and instead described “what Mentava is doing”: