- Peter Thiel’s Class 4 Notes — in perfect competition, marginal revenues equal marginal costs. So high margins for big companies suggest that two or more businesses might be combined: a core monopoly business (search, for Google), and then a bunch of other various efforts (robotic cars, TV, etc.). Cash builds up because it turns out that it doesn’t cost all that much to run the monopoly piece, and it doesn’t make sense to pump it into all the side projects. In a competitive world, you would have to be funding a lot more side projects to stay even. In a monopoly world, you should pour less into side projects, unless politics demand that the cash be spread around. Amazon currently needs to reinvest just 3% of its profits. It has to keep running to stay ahead, but it’s more easy jog than intense sprint. I liked the whole lecture, but this bit really stood out for me.
- Kickstarter Disrupting Consumer Electronics (Amanda Peyton) — good point that most people wouldn’t have thought that consumer electronics would lend itself to the same funding system as CDs of a one-act play about artisanal beadwork comic characters. Consumer electronics as a market has been ripe for disruption all along. That said, it’s ridiculously not obvious that disruption would come from the same place that allows an artist with a sharpie, a hotel room and a webcam a way to make the art she wants.
- OmniOS — OmniTI’s JEOS. Their team are engineers par excellence, so this promises to be good.
- Understanding Amazon’s Ebook Strategy (Charlie Stross) — By foolishly insisting on DRM, and then selling to Amazon on a wholesale basis, the publishers handed Amazon a monopoly on their customers—and thereby empowered a predatory monopsony. So very accurate.
ENTRIES TAGGED "amazon"
MIT's Technology Review ditch apps for HTML5, B&N needs to balance sales, and Sara Nelson heads to Amazon.
The publisher of MIT's Technology Review talks apps and HTML5, RWW's Antone Gonsalves reviews B&N's chances of survival, and Amazon hires Sara Nelson.
Microsoft invests in B&N, Target evicts Amazon, and ebooks teeter on the brink of extinction (perhaps).
B&N’s Nook gets Microsoft’s bankroll and will soon incorporate NFC, Amazon loses its shelf space at Target, and a publishing platform architect makes a strong argument for the end of ebooks.
Thoughts on how Microsoft could play a role in Barnes & Noble's stores.
Joe Wikert: Microsoft should use its investment in B&N's digital business to create an end-to-end consumer experience that rivals Apple's.
Don Linn on the DOJ's lawsuit and the shifting ebook landscape.
Don Linn, president at Firebrand Associates, shares insights into the DOJ lawsuit and offers his take on what lies ahead for publishers and readers.
The DoJ sues Apple and five major publishers, Yahoo files patents to put ads in ebooks, and B&N one-ups Amazon.
Amazon does a happy dance as five of the Big Six publishers and Apple are sued by the DoJ. Elsewhere, Yahoo looks to increase revenues with ebook ads, and B&N lights up its Nook.
Wind Viz, CS For Fun, Software Defined Radio, and Copyright's Collateral Damage
- Wind Map — beautiful visualization of the winds across America.
- Computer Science for Fun — magazine for beginning students of computing.
- Cheap SDR — software defined radio for as little as $11. (via Slashdot)
- The Missing 20th Century (The Atlantic) — check out those graphs for a glaring hole caused by an overdose of copyright.
Compete on Convenience, Minimal Viable Operating System, Awesome Font, Collaboration Integration
- Add Torrent Links to IMDB (Userscripts) — a glimpse at what the Internet could look like: from the site you research movies on, with one click you could then launch the download. If only the company that ran the movie research site had rights to the OneClick patent and the ability to offer movies for download. Oh wait, those aren’t the barriers. If only the movie companies would cease being nutjobs insisting on flogging their DRM-hobbled nags when the black market has x264 racehorses for less. They’re not competing on price, they’re not competing on convenience, they’re competing on the expected value of litigation. Now *that’s* a business model!
- JeOS — I hadn’t heard this term before: Just Enough Operating System. Take a standard distro, and strip it down to the bare essentials that you actually need.
- Font Awesome — a font with a zillion pictograms and icons. “An iconic font designed for use with Twitter Bootstrap”.
- Collabograte — a collection of integration recipes for collaboration tools so you aren’t broken on the “how do I get this thing set up with LDAP auth?” wheel which others have reinvented with their nose to the mixed metaphor grindstone. (via Kartik Subbarao)
A warning about the ebook landscape, and another publisher stands against Amazon.
A dark cloud hangs over the ebook landscape. Elsewhere, another publisher stands up to Amazon and a new report says power readers are pointing the way toward a digital tipping point.
IPG doesn't renew with Amazon, B&N launches 8GB Nook, and Ann Patchett banters bookstores with Stephen Colbert.
Amazon changes its terms and IPG says, “no, thank you” to an agreement renewal. Elsewhere, B&N ups the ereader ante, and brick-and-mortar bookstores cycle back to indies.