Chris Matyszczyk gives us an article about nothing…

… and not in the fun, Seinfeld kind of way.

His article for CNET about the psychology of the Facebook IPO is just one big mess. The rider:

What bliss. There is a psychological explanation for why Facebook investors chose to ignore the realities of the investment. It’s called “Availability bias.”

The final paragraph:

Might it be that the Facebook IPO disappointment wasn’t down to Availability Bias, but Sure Thing Syndrome?

Not only do the beginning and end of the post contradict each other, but the entire middle is just a stream of consciousness about businesses trying to copy the iPad. Or is it about investors thinking that by investing in Facebook, they’re somehow participating in it as a global phenomenon? Or that they thought that investing in it would automatically make them rich? 

I’m so confused.


Harry Marks on minimalist blogs

The entire thing is worth reading. My favorite quote:

As part of my new minimal philosophy I discovered on the Internet only hours ago, I’ve shunned spending money on frivolous things, so instead of a typical domain name, you’ll be able to find “M” at The URL is all about minimalism, so you won’t forget it.

Seriously, how do these people get anything done if they’re always blogging about how little they do?

A $12 million payout for two terrible RIM jobs

John Paczkowski, for AllThingsD:

According to RIM’s latest 6-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Balsillie was given a payout of $7.93 million for the current fiscal year, which includes salary, bonus and a severance package valued at about $4.8 million. Lazaridis received $3.96 million in salary and awards, as well as a 10-year extension on health coverage for himself and his family, and a company car and driver.

The impressive part of all of this is that, given control of a major technology company, I don’t think I could find a better way to run it into the ground than these two did.

Apple in the enterprise: a personal anecdote

This week I began an eight-week long internship at Caruso Affiliated, the preeminent real estate development company in Southern California. While it’s certainly not a job I saw myself having the summer after my freshman year in college (what with it being completely unrelated to my major), I’m finding the experience to be educational and enlightening. Seriously, you wouldn’t believe the work that goes into making that little shopping center down the street, or the amounts of money involved, if you live near a major city.

With that said, I do have a few anecdotes that Apple fans will find interesting:

  • Every executive at the company uses an iPhone. I spent two hours in a board room where the heads of every department came and went for various meetings, and not one of them was using a BlackBerry or Android phone. The only one who didn’t have an iPhone 4 or 4S on the table in front of him was still using a 3GS.

  • The iPad is used at every level in the company. One of the executives used one to take notes and send emails while in the meetings, and “mobile concierge” workers at The Grove and at The Americana at Brand use them to  provide various services for the guests and residents at those locations. 

  • The iPad also impacts Caruso Affiliated’s online strategy. The company creates videos of 3D renderings of properties that are currently in development in order to get approval from local governments and to sell condominiums to potential future residents. After a demo of one of these videos, and executive asked: “And will these videos be posted in something other than Flash? We want customers on tablets to be able to watch them.” I had to restrain myself from pointing out that ‘iPads’ would be more accurate than simply saying tablets, but you get my point. 

While a few observations at one company are certainly not a reliable way to gauge the success of Apple products in the business world, I do think that my experience shows that one can’t count Apple out when it comes to enterprise customers. On the flip side of that, I think it also shows that RIM and Microsoft should be even less confident about their former domain.

My next iPhone will be prepaid and unsubsidized

As you may have heard, it’s been announced that Virgin Mobile will be offering the iPhone 4S as a prepaid phone with plans starting as low as $30 per month that include unlimited data. This is following a similar announcement several days ago that Cricket will be offering the iPhone with plans starting at $55 per month. The only downside to either of these options is that the phones are sold unsubsidized (in the case of Virgin) or only slightly subsidized (in the case of Cricket).

This means that instead of only paying $200 up front for the iPhone, you’re paying upwards of $500 for the device itself. While this might be a tough pill for some to swallow, the fact of the matter is that either of these options are steals compared to the offerings from the major carriers. To demonstrate, let me do some basic math.

On my plan at Verizon, I pay roughly $100 a month for 2 GBs of data, unlimited texting, and 450 minutes. Combined with the $200 phone itself, this results in a total cost of about $2600 for the entirerty of my 2-year contract. Compare this to a comparable plan on Virgin Mobile: $30 a month plus the $650 for phone results in a two year cost of only $1370.

That’s an insane bargain. Honestly, if Sprint starts rolling out their LTE network by the time Virgin Mobile gets the new iPhone (which I assume will be some time after the major carriers), I see no reason for me not to break my contract with Verizon to jump on the Virgin train.