I’m really pretty sure this is a scam:

“xxx said:

Hello this is host from uk in regards 29/3 booking.

the house you booked address: (xxxxxx) this house i got a some work need to be done that week.

I want a request you if you accept my offer that i can orrange you aultranative house in SAME area, SAME location. BIGGER size, and SAME price.

ill send you all nessessery details. If you dont like it also let me know then i can cencel your booking.

Please let me know soon as you can.

If possible please contact me through whatsaap massenger. My no xxxx

many thx”

Scam to collect cancellation fees it looks like to me.

Anyone got any bright ideas about

Am I making it yet?

From George Will:

She leavens her sentimentality with nostalgia: “When I was a kid, a minimum-wage job in America would support a family of three. It would pay a mortgage, keep the utilities on and put food on the table.” Well. The Adam Smith Institute’s Tim Worstall suggests some pertinent arithmetic: When Warren was 10 in 1959, the federal hourly minimum wage ($1, which would be $8.55 in 2018 dollars) for 2,000 hours (40 hours a week for 50 weeks) would provide $2,000 a year, below the poverty threshold ($2,324) for a family of three.

Yes, I know, I’ve been doing this a long time and I should be blase. There’s still a certain perking up at seeing a point being picked up and broadcast in this manner.

Thin is though Warren’s been repeatedly claiming this. And I seem to be the only person who went do the sums. Why?

I know I’ve asked this before but internet advertising revenues

I did ask this months back and the answer I got was $5 per 000. Or even £5 per 000.

That is, how much revenue should you expect to get from a certain amount of traffic being shown ads?

The answer back was that $5 per thousand, or even £5 per thousand, was about right.

This is obviously of importance to me as Cont Tel is intended to make a contribution to living costs. And at current pageview levels it would at that sort of rate. A contribution that is, not cover them entirely.

But the rate appears to be very much lower. More like 0.50 per 000.

So, what’s wrong here?

One option is that I’ve misunderstood. That it’s not per 000 pageviews, but per 000 visitors. We do tend to get multiple pageviews per visitor.

Another is that the readership tends to be an extension of you tech savvy people and thus we’re facing a higher than average incidence of ad blockers.

A third that we’re getting the advertising wrong – not sure how, as we’re using Google’s services just like everyone else.

A fourth is that ad rates rise as volumes do. It requiring, say, 2 or 3 million pageviews a month before reaching those giddy heights of $5 per 000?

So, anyone actually know here? Any readers who work with this sort of stuff?

My thanks to you all

Some months back I asked about online and other resources to help with GCSE maths. Many suggestions were made and rather than try to write individually to those who helped a more general knuckle to forelock here.

Not quite sure what modern class marks mean but the grandkiddy’s maths one has gone from minus two to plus three as a result of your suggestions and a couple of hours spent over the summer going through them.

The most helpful seeming to be the BBC’s bitesize site. The advantage of which really seems to be that it’s all small enough – in the right sort of volumes – that there’s a willingness to actually do the work. 10, 15 minutes of homework time each day nibbles another bit of the subject.

There were a couple of things I was able to point out. When trying to o linear equations it aids in writing them out properly.

x + 2 = -7

Imagine, just as an example, now solve for x.

Rewrite out as + x + 2 = -7 aids in tracking negatives and positives.

The other I recall was that if you understand fractions – which grandkiddy did – then you understand ratios – which gkiddy didn’t. Because they’re just different ways of looking at the very same thing. 2/7 and 5/7 are the same as a 2:5 ratio.


But that really helpful thing was the guidance to that place where maths will actually be done. Actually doing a subject being a very good start to getting to grips with it of course.

So, we thank you, both.

Pleasuring the Google News Algo

So, tech gurus out there. Anyone got any guides to pleasuring the Google News algo?

Story selection by them. A year back I had a pretty good idea of what interested them, got them to pick up a story. Now, not so sure. But now I nee to know again.

so, any guides out there? Any thoughts on what they do like to showcase, put on the front page?

I do actually know two people at Google but neither work on News…..

An email

Sorry Tim, I don’t wish to be offensive but I’ve looked at your web-site and given the conceptual resources you use (or lack of) there’s nothing you can say that would be of interest to me,

Note that he wrote to me.

Fancy that, I’m more notable than a Nobel Prize winner

Or rather, I’m more notable than a Nobel Prize winner before she gains her Nobel:

When the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm announced the Nobel prize for physics this week, anyone wanting to find out more about one of the three winners would have drawn a blank on Wikipedia.

Until around an hour and a half after the award was announced on Tuesday, the Canadian physicist Donna Strickland was not deemed significant enough to merit her own page on the user-edited encyclopedia.

The oversight has once again highlighted the marginalization of women in science and gender bias at Wikipedia.

Strickland is an associate professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Waterloo and former president of the Optical Society, but when a Wikipedia user attempted to create a profile for her in March, the page was denied by a moderator.

“This submission’s references do not show that the subject qualifies for a Wikipedia article,” said the moderator.

Soon after Tuesday’s announcement, however, the Wikipedia community scrambled to build up a profile, completing sections on her research, biography and – most critically – her awards.

But the belated recognition contrasted with that afforded to Strickland’s colleague Gérard Mourou – with whom she shared the award – who had a Wikipedia page in 2005.

As to why, no, I don’t think this is gender bias although it quite obviously is bias. It isn’t – objectively – true that some blogger and writer upon the internets is more important than an associate professor, male or female. But among those who inhabit the internets that inhabitant of the same milieu is perhaps more visible, possibly even better known in that particular community. While everyone in optics would be “Who the fuck is that Worstall bloke*?”

Bias, yes, but not gender such.

*Except the couple who work with scandium oxide thin film coatings but that’s another matter.

We have?

Millions of dollars has been raised from anonymous US donors to support British rightwing thinktanks that are among the most prominent in the Brexit debate.

American donors are giving money to US fundraising bodies that pass the donations to four thinktanks in Britain. A Guardian analysis has established that $5.6m (£4.3m) has been donated to these US entities since 2008.

The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), the Adam Smith Institute, Policy Exchange and the Legatum Institute have all received financial support from US backers via this route.

The disclosure leaves the thinktanks facing questions as to whether wealthy Americans have undue influence in British politics, particularly over the form Brexit takes.

It would be difficult for there to be all that much influence. To give an example, I’m a Senior Fellow at the ASI. I also do a lot of writing for them. And I’ve no idea who funds – nor how much- the Institute. Not through any lassitude, it’s simply something that isn’t revealed to anyone.

And if I don’t know who funds – and I don’t get given instructions on what to think or write about, which I’m not – then whatever that funding is cannot influence, can it?

The UK thinktanks are some of strongest proponents of radical free trade deals with reduced regulation – positions likely to benefit big American businesses, which have opposed Europe’s tighter regulations since the 2008 financial crash.

Given that I’ve argued for unilateral free trade since whenever that would be a considerable watering down of my views rather than a strengthening of them.

They have a policy of not disclosing their donors, arguing they respect their backers’ right to privacy unless the backers wish otherwise. Critics say the lack of transparency allows unseen donors to influence political debate.

But if I, at the coal face, don’t know, how can it influence?

This is a little oddity

So, someone in Ghana likes Nkrumah. An odd thing but still. Then they use an old piece of mine to bolster their argument.

Which is a bit odd.

Chad has tried – or claimed perhaps – to get $74 billion in damages out of Exxon for underpaid oil royalties. I point out this is an absurd number. It’s he value of all oil exported over the period around and about. It cannot be true that this is he amount of royalties in dispute.

So, the bloke uses my article insisting it’s an absurd number to argue that Ghana should do the same.


So, who knows about expired and expiring domain names?

Looking for someone who really knows this subject.

Domain names. They expire. People don’t renew, whatever. OK

Some of these domains have “presence.” OK

Specifically, I’m interested in finding out more about such domains which are in the Google News index. With a view, obviously enough, to purchasing such an expired/expiring domain name which is listed in hte Google News index.

Obviously this is possible – I’ve seen a story about someone who did precisely this. Ah, but, then how?

And that’s the bit I’m hoping one of you can steer me to. Sure, I can google and find any number of sites telling me about domain names that can be bought. But I’d much prefer to find someone who actually knew what they were doing here and then talk to them/employ them on the point.

So, anyone any ideas or contacts?

The specific thing being looked for is not pagerank, authority, backlinks. It’s G News index.