The “Modern Ruins” of Xanga

For all the former Xanga folks and “Raiders of The Lost Ark” types who like to explore past historical relics….

It occurred to me that Xanga should now qualify as one of the modern relics of the past.

It’s been six years since they “modernized” Xanga with their “2.0” version, but it’s been in a state of only partial completion since then.

It should be clear to even to most ardent remaining promoters/defenders “cough…Ed Lives…cough”, that a full working operational system looks less likely with each passing YEAR of no updates/signs of change.

My last review was in 2017 which I stopped doing since nothing was changing.

Here’s where it stands today:

  1. www.xanga.com – no updates for years.
  2. Xanga Twitter – No updates since Oct 2018. Ironically, the last post was “Bye Google+”
  3. Xanga Facebook – No updates since October 2018. More irony- the last pinned post leads off with “Xanga is not dead”.
  4. Ed Lives : The “official liaison” for Xanga – Just one post in April 2018 stating “no news from Xanga”. No more posts until May of 2019, where he states he is waiting to hear from John (Xanga CEO). Last notable Xanga related post was September 17 2019. Contains what sounds like a defense for the “pay to blog” switchover and ends with “We wait for Xanga”. Well, at least he’s no longer saying “We’re in transition…” 🙂
  5. The site has been closed to new members since “Xanga 1.0” shut down in 2013.

Here is what I don’t think Ed comprehends:

  1. After six years, the community formerly known as “Xanga” is long gone. Sure there are a remnant of few folks who may still pay to blog on the site, but the “community” is gone. It makes no more sense to say “Xanga community is still here” as it does to say Ancient Rome is still active.
  2. Member only pay blogs are DOOMED to failure. Why? Because people are drawn to “new content” written by others. A pay wall greatly limits new content since far less people participate. The next problem is lack of audience response/participation. This results in the few bloggers that are there losing interest and blogging less, resulting in even less content. This is a downward spiral of decreasing business.
  3. Combine a paywall with substandard service, and that just makes a bad situation even worse. Xanga members have no way to search for active members or latest posts. There is no way to post messages outside the paywall to other social media sites or even other WordPress sites. You are trapped in a separate world where the only people that are going to see your posts are the few folks that remain in the system that are already known to you.
  4. The final nail in the coffin is a lock out of new members which ensures an inexorable decline in participation.

At this point Xanga has more in common with a “Ruins” site:

  1. You can visit the site and it is clearly in a degraded/non updated state- check.
  2. Formerly a large community now just hosting a remnant trickle of folks- check.
  3. Can view the sites features of blogs where the vast majority are no longer active- check.
  4. To find things you really have to do some digging around- check.

Doesn’t that sound like visiting an ancient ruins site?

At this point maybe they should just market it as a historical social blogging museum…

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“Human” Powered Car is Here

Cars fueled by human power is no longer the stuff of cartoons:

There is now a real “human powered” car available to buy on the market.

As you can see, it’s a perma “top down” device and requires a “rowing” motion using the handlebars. The action charges a battery which powers the motor.

Here’s a video of it in action:

The two big problems I see are it can only be used in good weather since it’s uncovered, and it comes with a pretty hefty price tag of $15K. You can get a gym membership that has access to bikes and rowing machines for a mere fraction of the cost.

Company Website: Link

New Study on Day Traders Misses Mark on Main Conclusions but is Still Insightful

A study was recently published about the performance of new Brazil Day Traders. They looked at traders who just started trading on their first day, to those who have traded for up to two years.

Performance levels were noted based on the amount of days traded, and the concluded from the results that day trading to be “virtually impossible”.

Here is part of the data they tabulated:

Number of Days Trading: Percent Profitable:

1 day: 29.8%

2 – 50 days: 15.5%

51 – 100 days: 8.9%

101 – 200 days: 6.8%

201 – 300 days: 5.4%

Over 300 days: 3.0%

Of the persistent day traders who exceeded the 300 day mark:

1.1% earned profits exceeding Brazilian minimum wage (US $16/day)

0.5% earned profits exceeded starting salary of Bank Teller (US $54/day)

Highest earning person made US $310/day on average

From all their data they came to the conclusion that day trading is nearly impossible to learn, which contradicts the claims made by the brokerage and trading course providers.

I believe the main point the study failed to consider is day trading is not a “linear learned” skill, meaning gradual, incremental improvement over time. It requires a completely different way of thinking. One gains insights in “stair step” jumps rather than a gradual climb.

In addition, it can take several years of study and research before any true insights are achieved, so the study made wasn’t long enough to allow for an extended look over several years.

So yes, day trading can be concluded to be very hard to learn within a period of two years, but that doesn’t mean it remains that way over an extended time.

Here’s what they got right:

Brokerages, authors, and companies flood the market with ads claiming one can become wealthy through day trading in a relatively short period of time without much work involved. Pictures of tropical islands, exotic travel, and luxury cars are shown as being within ones reach with the “right” trading course or book. This study shows you what a SCAM those ads are. Day trading mastery is NOT a “get rich quick” endeavor and requires a massive amount of time and commitment.

Next, a key insight is the fact that trading success rates went DOWN over time rather than up, which is counter intuitive. How could it be that the more time one spends on trading, the worse the performance?

The answer is what I said earlier- trading success requires a different way of thinking. You have to essentially reprogram your mind to properly understand price action.

The data shows that a trader at their most “ignorant” level (one day experience) is much more likely to succeed than their more experienced counterparts over time. In the beginning one knows little and acts more by natural instinct to price action. Then “thinking” starts kicking in and one tries to “out analyze” the market and loses those initial natural instincts. The mind needs to be reprogrammed to allow those natural instinctive solutions to guide your way. The natural mind can’t do this which is why performance grows worse over time.

This is the main reason why mastering trading is so difficult, it requires a new way of thinking as opposed to just standard rote learning attempts over time.

Study Link: Link

Former Waitress & School Drop Out Says Making £100K/yr Trading: Legit or Scam?

I just read an article about a woman who changed her career from being a waitress to successful trader and according to the article, is on track to make £100K pounds this year, and all this from taking a Forex trading class.

If true, this is a stupendous achievement and she deserves all the high praise and credit. However, I noticed several red flags when reading the article that make me think all is not as it seems and it may be an elaborate advertisement to pay $$$ for a trading class.

First off, learning how to successfully trade is an endeavor that many try, but only a choice few succeed. The odds against reaching the point of being able to trade for a living have been reported as low as 3% and that even the best odds are at ~20%, as in out of 100 people who attempt trading, only 20 will succeed in not losing money and even fewer will be able to achieve high returns on a consistent basis. So the odds of someone just casually walking in and trying and succeeding at trading are very slim.

Next, while many trading courses are offered for sale for prices that range from a few hundred to tens of thousands of dollars, the internet is full of sorrowful tales of those who spent big bucks on these classes, only to not gain any new skills and still not be able to successfully trade. Personally speaking, I have yet to meet anyone successful at trading that got their skills from a class rather than being self taught or having been lucky enough to have a friend/relative as a mentor.

The vast bulk of trading classes are mostly set to lure in the “get rich quick” type of folks who are looking for shortcuts to success. As we know in life – there are very few if any shortcuts in achieving highly sought after goals/rewards. So I have a high amount of skepticism that a school drop out can take a trading class on a whim and instantly find such huge success.

The pictures included in the article also stand out as red flags in that they mostly show conspicuous lavish spending- as if to set the mood that she is now living a life of luxury and easy living.

The typical tell-tale sign of “potential scam” is when trading “guru’s” show pictures of ostentatious wealth, suggesting that “you too can have this lifestyle if you pay for their course/training”. In reality, successful traders and those from other professions don’t go around showing off their wealth.

Like I said earlier, if the story is legit, then congratulations are in order, but I get more of a vibe that this is really a commercial for paying $$$ for a Forex class rather than a genuine financial success story.

Article: Link

Injured Hiker Gets Airlift, but Things take a Surprising “NASA- Like” Turn

A woman in Arizona injured her ankle while hiking and needed to be airlifted out.

The rescue helicopter came and hooked her pallet up to a cable be lifted into the helicopter which was unable to land due to the terrain.

Things went awry when the pallet the woman was on began to spin as it was raised towards the helicopter. There is a special cable attached that is supposed to prevent this from happening but it wasn’t working and the woman continued to spin faster and faster, now resembling something you would see at a NASA astronaut testing site. 😲

The good news is despite the intensity and speed at which she was spinning, it was reported that she suffered no harm from that except feelings of some dizziness and nausea. 🥴🤢

I would think if she stayed conscious during that ordeal, she should qualify to be admitted to NASA’s program! 👩‍🚀🚀

Western States Finally Get Seasonal Temps 😎

Hard to believe but the last week in May had temps in California and the west coast feeling more like early spring rather than knocking on the door to summer.

Last Week Day Time Temps (F):

Day Time Temps (C):

Night Temps (F):

Night Temps (C):

Look at that big “cold blue” temp range incursion that was happening at night. 🥶

The jet stream was doing weird things with bringing cold air in deep into the US on the west and them climb back up towards the east. You can see the path by tracing out the yellow line as you go from west to east. On one side was very cold air and the other side hot air and that causes very unstable weather when they mix. This is also why the US has experienced a record number of storms and tornadoes this year.

Automation Nation: The Self-Driving Robot Trucks Have Arrived!

In 2017, I wrote a blog about the coming wave of automation that most will not be ready for.

Here it is in 2019 and we see more and more evidence of the impending automation wave.

The United States Postal Service is now using self driving trucks to test delivery of mail between Phoenix, Arizona, and Dallas, Texas.

If the test proves successful, you can be sure they will be ramping up to more cities and it won’t be long before other shipping companies follow suit.

Clearly this isn’t good news for human truck drivers, who will have to compete with a robot that doesn’t need sleep.

The new world of AI/Robotics is arriving fast and furious and all areas will be impacted, affecting human jobs across all fields.

Article: Link

Broken World: Healthy Dog Put Down so it Could be Buried with Owner

Despite the deluge of bad news that circulates in modern society on a daily basis, certain news items still shock enough to make you question the sanity of those making laws/policies.

I knew pets were considered in many states to be just property when it came to ownership claims, but I had NO idea that an individual had the right to terminate a pets life at will, regardless of their health status. 😲

This recently happened when a person died and left in their will that their HEALTHY pet be euthanized and buried with them.

The animal shelter where the pet was residing tried to get the executor of the estate to change the plan since they knew it would be easy to find a home for the dog, but the it was a no go and the dog was put to sleep. 😢

How on Earth can this be legal and allowed in 1st world developed countries? A person can be criminally charged with pet abuse but it’s okay to order the termination of a perfectly healthy animal?

I don’t understand this at all. How can an animals life be so disposable and left to the whim of their owner??? Shouldn’t euthanasia be done as only a last resort if no better options are available?

Article: Link