Using Google to Predict the Future

Elegantly simple proposal to measure economic confidence in The Economist’s search for other quirky indicators: searches in the U.S. on Google for “gold price” in the piece Alternative indicators: Behind the bald figures But the hottest tip came from Edward Ritchie, an investment analyst in London. He tracks Google searches for the “gold price” as an …

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2011: Year of The Media App

This is my weekly Loose Wire Service column. By Jeremy Wagstaff I predict this year that we’ll settle on a way to make people pay for stuff they so far have proven reluctant to pay for—namely information. This won’t be done by pay walls, exactly, but by what we’re now calling apps. Apps are applications …

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The Economist’s Secret: Its Limits

Interesting piece by Rafat Ali on paidContent.org quoting Michael Hirschorn of The Atlantic as to why The Economist is doing OK, while Newsweek and TIME are in free-fall: “By repositioning themselves as repositories of commentary and long-form reporting—much like this magazine, it’s worth noting, which has never delivered impressive profit margins—the American newsweeklies are going …

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The Death of DRM, the Rise of Patrons

Forget being a big old mass music consumer. Become a Patron of the Arts. The IHT’s Victoria Shannon chronicles the last few gasps of life in Digital Rights Management (DRM) for music, saying that “With the falloff in CD sales persisting and even digital revenue growth now faltering in the face of rampant music sharing …

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What Probably Won’t Happen in 2007

The BBC has asked me to make some predictions about the coming year, something I’m always loath to do because I seem to get it wrong. Anyway, here are my notes. They’re based in part on my own bath-time musings, and partly inspired by the thoughts of others. 1999 just took longer than we thought, …

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An Unlikely Blogger Expelled

Although it’s not good for Sudan, I think it’s good for blogging: CNN reports that  The government of Sudan on Sunday gave the top U.N. official in the country three days to leave, marking the latest hurdle in international efforts to bring peace to the nation torn apart by civil war. Sudan expelled Jan Pronk, …

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