November 6, 2013
The interesting thing about bitcoins is that for them to succeed as a currency the value isn’t important, what’s important is stability.
If I exchange $10,000 USD for 1 bitcoin then that’s OK as long as it maintains its purchasing power. Bitcoins are fractional so you don’t need to hold a whole bitcoin, you could exchange $1,000 USD for one tenth of a coin.
The problem with a currency that keeps increasing in value is that people can’t borrow it; imagine taking out a mortgage in bitcoin and then a year later, the value of the bitcoin mortgage you owe is 50% more than your house is worth. Although house values can and do drop, there’s only so far they can drop ($0). Theoretically your bitcoin loan could go up to almost anything – a $200,000 loan could become equal to a $2 billion loan.
So if bitcoin replaced the USD in America, no-one would be able to buy houses – even if you got paid in bitcoins you would see your salary decreasing regularly. You are probably used to salary gradually increasing each year, this is due to inflation but with deflation you would need to get used to your salary decreasing over time. Store prices would also decrease so you would have the same purchasing power but your home mortgage and any other debt would bankrupt you eventually.
For people to hold substantial amounts of bitcoin for everyday transactions they need to know that the value wont suddenly drop. It doesn’t matter much where the price stabilizes as long as it does. Until then it will continue to be a speculative item.
As this is a new item that hasn’t really been traded for very long there are many more buyers than sellers so the price is going up, this will eventually change.
Bitcoin will never succeed as a currency, there is no real need for it. People cite the ability to send money anywhere in the world with virtually no fees as being a benefit but the fact is that the fees you pay for sending USD to other countries are simply price gouging – it doesn’t actually cost the banks the amount they charge and if they see real competition from bitcoin they will simply reduce their fees.
Other comments are that no government can stop bitcoin – don’t be so naive. Maybe they couldn’t kill it completely but they could make it so difficult that its value would plummet.
So, should you buy bitcoins and how much are they worth?
They are worth nothing + however much someone is willing to pay
And if you like a gamble then go for it – buy as many as you like however the price will crash so get ready to get out quickly.
June 11, 2013
It took a long time and a lot of digging but I finally found the answer to why a communications tax would be charged on top of an early termination fee.
The answer is yes, it is a charge levied by the Department of Revenue. I personally don’t agree with it but the fact is that it is legitimate.
For Florida, the relevant tax law is s.202.11(13)(a)(1) F.S. (see http://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2012/Chapter202/All)
Apparently the “sales price” includes “1. The connection, movement, change, or termination of communications services.” and the sales price is also subject to the communications tax (s.202.12(1)(a)).
It would be nice if Sprint would actually state this up front and be able to provide this information on demand instead it took multiple emails and phone calls and I finally got the answer directly from the Florida D.O.R.
I’m now with t-mobile
Monthly cost with Sprint for 2 phones: $150 (plus whatever the phones cost, ~$100 each)
Monthly cost with t-mobile for 2 phones: $60 (plus $700 for the 2 Google Nexus 4 phones)
Savings over typical 2 year contract period: $1660
Get on over to t-mobile , do a search for “prepaid”, click plans and then click “Which plan is right for you?” to see the available plans.
The plan I got was a prepaid plan for “$30 per month – Unlimited web and text with 100 minutes talk”. If you need more minutes then there are other plans at a bit more but still way cheaper than Sprint, AT&T and Verizon.
Buy the top up pin numbers from http://www.callingmart.com and you pay no sales tax and all government fees are included so you really do just pay $30 per month, per line.
April 5, 2013
As of this morning, sitemeter’s whois information is back to what it should be. So it looks like they were lucky and got their domain name back quickly.
If you’re still being redirected to the SmartName site then it’s likely just a DNS Time To Live issue and you just have to wait a while for it to update (or run ipconfig /flushdns or reboot)
Welcome back Sitemeter
April 4, 2013
Just went to sitemeter.com and it’s not Site Meter
Whois info shows the domain name sitemeter.com was due to expire 03-April-2013, looks like someone else registered it.
Could be time to change all my counters since this kind of thing can take years to sort out if ever.
Normally when domains expire they go into a holding pattern for a while before they’re finally released and available to be registered again however it looks like someone swooped in and snapped it up straight away. This could get messy.
April 3, 2013
Guaranteed to be just as effective as any other Balance Bracelet or Power Band available. Provides just as much extra balance, power and energy as any other bracelet on the market.
Save money, make your own balance bracelet
Simply print out the image below, cut out and attach to your wrist using an appropriate method (Stapling to body and MIG welding are not considered appropriate in this instance)
For anyone not aware, all these power bands have been proven not to work; the tests the sellers use to demonstrate their power are old carnival tricks.
March 8, 2013
There’s only so much money in the world and investors move it around between a number of investment options including stocks and shares, property and gold or other precious metals.
With the stock market and housing market taking a big hit the price of gold rocketed as investors rushed to put their money somewhere it could make a profit. Now, with the stock market recovered and prices rising the price of gold is dropping.
Down from a high of over $1900 per ounce to under $1600, a drop of around 16%, it seems likely that as stock prices continue to rise the price of gold will keep going down.
Please remind me the next time the stock market crashes to quickly buy some gold – thanks!
“Pegasus Global Holdings” – not to be confused with “Pegasus – Global Holdings” (note the hypen) have proposed the building of the “Center for Innovation, Testing and Evaluation”; a people-less town with complete infrastructure to test such high tech devices as “… automated washing machines and self-flushing toilets”
The company barely seems to exist, the executive bios make great claims that simply don’t seem to stand up – googling the executives finds virtually nothing.
Their head office is at “1875 ”I” Street, NW, Suite 500 Washington, DC 20006″ which isn’t e real office, it’s a fully serviced virtual office provided by Regus (http://www.regus.com/virtualoffices/us/Herndon.html), designed to make it look impressive. Their Virginia address is also a Regus managed virtual office (http://www.regus.com/locations/US/VA/Reston/VirginiaRestonRestonTownCenterI.htm) and their London office is also a managed office owned by a company named “Executive Offices Group” (http://www.executiveoffices.co.uk/west-end-mayfair-belgravia-serviced-offices/st-jamess-square-sw1/)
So this apparently huge global company doesn’t have a single real office and their executives are virtually untraceable – they don’t even have a Wikipedia page for the company. They do exist and have a real product for countering IED threats called the Jukebox Alpha but according to released military documents “As a result of market research and testing of Pegasus’s device in December 2008, the Army found that Pegasus did not have a device that would satisfy the agency’s technical requirements. In fact, the Army found that Pegasus’s Jukebox Alpha Upgrade device could not counter most of the threat bands that the Army required” – http://www.gao.gov/decisions/bidpro/4004223.pdf
The whole concept for the project is flawed – by removing people from the equation you’ve removed the most important component of the test – the human factor.