Category Archives: Anecdotes

Only in the Silicon Valley

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Yesterday, I went to my daughter’s school to pick her up. She was doing some Broadway songs0918-beam with friends (thus, no need for a paternity test……), so I just stood at a distance to not interrupt them. I was startled when a robot rolled up next to me and, from the face projected on the video monitor, asked me if I knew where the back-to-school night meeting was. I told the person on the screen that it was on the second floor (and, since we were near the top of the stairs, I had an image of this thing tumbling down the stairway, in a willy-nilly robot way).

The robot-man told me thank you, he would meet them down there – – then he rolled back to his charging station, and I noticed an identical robot on the lower floor start up and roll toward the gathering of people.

When the video-face was talking to me, I noticed at the bottom of the screen were the words “Scott Hassan - Founder Suitable Technologies.” I was vaguely familiar with Suitable, since they are here in town, but not with Scott. So I Googled him and found out, appropriately enough, he was one of Google’s first programmers (and, do the math, therefore a billionaire). His new gig is the aforementioned robot company which, frankly, I think is pretty cool. (more…)

Java Genius Wanted (Again)

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0915-coderI have been blessed with some amazing engineers in my professional life. I’ve mentioned one genius engineer I had at Prophet many times (Alex Dobrovolskiy), and here at Slope we’ve collectively been very lucky that I found an amazing engineer who created SocialTrade, the comments system, and many other bells and whistles on the site.

Regrettably, his availability is severely hampered due to educational commitments, so I’m seeking someone for a totally new project. This project has nothing – absolutely nothing – to do with charts, trading, or anything else like that. I just need a Java wizard who wants to work closely with me on an experiment. I don’t really care where on Earth you are located; I just want someone creative, smart, and honest. Drop me an email if you are this person (or know of someone who is).

Tesla Begins to Irk

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I was toying with the rather hazardous idea of suggesting shorting Tesla (which is up nearly 1,000% from its lowest levels). I see it’s getting zapped this morning, so it’s probably too late for me to say anything, but I will make this one remark, which was the basis of my pessimism: they are starting to piss off their biggest fans (like me) with their delays.

The Model X has been “sort of” a product for years. There are over 20,000 paid reservations (mine is one of them) for the product, but it still isn’t announced. Hell, I can’t even find out the width of the vehicle to make sure it’ll fit in my garage! So month after month, they just keep stalling (and the folks waiting for the “economy” Tesla should probably look for 2018 as a delivery date). The grumblings and rumblings are increasing, and I’m starting to think other manufacturers are going to close Tesla’s lead. If the BMW i8 were entirely electric, I’d have cancelled my “X” order ages ago.


From My Perspective: 9/11 Life and Death

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In remembrance of Peter Hashem, Flight 11, Seat 20A
Struck the North Tower at 8:46:40 am EST.

I am once again bewildered on this day of remembrance as I listen to so many people across the media, as well as people I come in contact with, who once again, are talking in tone and tenor that this new adversary that means us great harm is some how not as great of a threat because “they are over there and don’t have the means to get over here.” I must ask: Is this all we’ve learned? i.e., Nothing.

I would like to remind whomever might take the time to read this of a few thoughts and facts.
First: The group that successfully launched and executed the horrific on U.S. soil that we are remembering today were not an army over there. Most were here on visas in one form or another. In other words: legally. (more…)


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Here’s another fine example of your tax dollars at work (or at least the tax dollars of those here in the Bay Area):


So what they’re doing is requiring medical marijuana dispensaries……… set aside a portion of their cannabis…………to give away free…………to poor people. Boy, there’s nothing that’s going to get the impoverished on their feet and back into the workforce like a good toke, is there? Incidentally, it wasn’t a close vote by the Berkeley Council: it was unanimous.

I read this within an hour of reading this article stating, in part, “Teenagers who smoke marijuana daily are over 60 percent less likely to complete high school than those who never use. They’re also 60 percent less likely to graduate college and seven times more likely to attempt suicide.”

It’s almost enough to make you think the powers that be want the poor to stay poor. Nahhhhh.