Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Facebook, again

Moral: Wherein we let Jamie be for a bit and re-look at Facebook.

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In another context, we started to consider Facebook's potential for showing us the future. Well, the context changed of late. Notwithstanding all of the hype and criticism, there are realities to consider. It looks as if FB might be a better poster boy (yes, Zuck) than is that old thing run by Jamie (but, maybe not, if we keep seeing things like this blog post -- 31 billion?).

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All along, we've pointed to articles in posts. Many of these, as we all know by now, can become stale, disappear, or turn out to be bogus and much more. So, we'll take a different tack from now on. The image shows headlines, today, on the Yahoo Finance page. Notice that it talks about other-than-clear activities. Yes, FB might want our information; how much is there that we ought to see beneath its opaque 'face' (pun intended to mean that we are all  much more than our faces -- FB's basic shortcoming)?

Well, given the IPO, we'll have to watch how these things unfold. The young guy ought not to have followed that ca-pital-sino route. Oh well.

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One cartoon this weekend shows Zuck and his father gleefully filling a large bag of money. Didn't read the caption. Just thought about how so many (and, folks, these people have been arguing this idiocy for a couple of centuries now) see capitalism (and this type of thing as its greatest form) as the epitome. Of course, who says such nonsense (yes, Wall Street -- what you and your ilk propound) is 'capitalism' as it ought to be for a sustainable economy?

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With FB as a focal point, we'll have a whole bunch of things to talk about.

  • infrastructure - people, if you look around, you'll see that the physical infrastructure has decayed. It's frightening, from several angles. Now, FB (Zuck's little thing) is part of a new type of infrastructural entity. Look, its role is really very similar to what we expect from banks. They handle our beans and pennies. The computational thingees will handle our information, communication, and much more. So, Zuck, you believe that your thing provides more than sur-face value to our needs?
  • IPO - or, milking the system. For any of these, those who are part of the system reap big rewards, usually (ought we hope that Morgan Stanley (yes, Peabody is on the ancestor list here, too) eats a little here?). Then, the hapless see the (legal, do I really need to explain this?) milking as justification for their type of mischief.   
  • so what?  - FB comes from a mind not far out of high school. What is that thing we've read? Cognitive holes don't fill in until later, and with experience (actually, some never seem to fill in). I can only wonder how little Zuck's mindset has been influenced by his first big project's dynamics. You see, Google was more an exercise of a graduate-school level mind. And, it does operate some fairly sophisticated algorithms. FB? Perhaps, with added visibility provided by the 'public' ownership, we'll see more. However, look for this theme being explored further.  
  • fictional money - nod here to an old guy from the 1800s who is vilified. But, Zuck's riches are paper, unless he can sell all of his holdings at his price to the lackless (hey, wait! -- didn't banks just do that to us the taxpayers?) who will then be left holding the bag. Think of the above-mentioned bag. First of all, the money is Ben's little faux set of beans. Secondly, even if it's removed by several degrees from reality, the 'money' represents some value that has 'reality' behind it. Just what is it about FB that draws so much of these bucks? That idiots and their money soon part, or such? 
  • computability - and, I might add, issues of the singularity. From a proper view, FB is only a little step in a very long trek. Of course, a survey of all of the capable thingees that are out and about nowadays makes one marvel (look at ieee.org and the contributors, please). Yet, a whole lot of promise has not been fulfilled. Can it without some type of architectural viewpoint (to be discussed) coming into focus?
  • yes, no - The USA Today editorial, and the opposing view, offer a nice look. Some things that FB provides: soapbox (love this), interaction (rather than passive consumption), representation (personal or even for an organization), ... We'll look at these things further.  
  • ...
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These thoughts are offered within a framework of looking at how we can sustain ourselves while at the same time leaving a manageable world for our offspring, more than one generation out (okay?).

Remarks:

04/09/2015 -- We need to get back to the metaphor issue.

10/08/2014 -- Many, many metaphors.

11/15/2012 -- SumZero, and more.

10/13/2012 -- The FB experience is some analog of spectral (of the spectrum) experience that is beyond the visible. FB (and the delivering technology) handle the non-visible element. Or, do they?

10/04/2012 -- 1B users, give or take.

08/04/2012 -- So, the market pushers say that they need things like program trading, and whole bunch of other stuff that we'll get to. So, the idea is that we need computer-based 'gaming' in order to discover 'price' and to provide liquidity. Liquidity? Yes, like that put into the pockets of Zuck (see 7 points on FB) and his ilk after the IPO. You see, those who made money bailed when the price was high. It is estimated that if they sold now, the take would be 1/2. Notice that I didn't say return (for what? -- 'gains' obtained this way are near-zero). Whose to cheer that a few make some massive amount of bucks (well, beyond those personally involved -- even the bankers who put deals together)? This type of thing is capitalism? If so, do we really need this, folks?

05/27/2012 -- Cuban's take and $13.80 as the price

Modified: 04/09/2015


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