6:01pm

Mon October 18, 2010
Evening blog round-up

Party down with tonight's debate, and women in biz

Debate tonight - time to party!

You can opt for low-key and hang out with @innovationtrail on Twitter.  Follow along as the Innovation Trail's Emma Jacobs live tweets the economy angle of the seven-way gubernatorial debate tonight.

Or you can whoop it up with various political parties and advocacy organizations.  The Vote Up blog has a good listing of where the party's at across the state.

Ladies first

McKinsey Quarterly finds that more companies are reporting that gender diversity is critical to succeeding financially:

Yet companies have not so far successfully bridged the gap between men and women in the top levels of management. This is not surprising, since the survey shows that diversity isn’t a high priority at most companies and that there’s great variability in the number of gender-diversity policies that companies have pursued. For both of these factors, the results suggest that more is better: at companies where gender diversity is higher on the strategic agenda and more related policies are implemented, executives say that company leadership is also the most diverse. Among respondents at companies that include gender diversity as a top-three agenda item and those at all companies, there is a 32 percentage-point difference between the shares who say women fill more than 15 percent of their C-level positions.

Meanwhile Small Business Rends checks in with recent Census data about black and women owned businesses and found that revenues are dropping for black-owned firms, while the number of women-owned businesses grows.

Consumer action

Consumerist passes on a chart from the Center for Responsible Lending to help you find a bank that won't screw you (their word choice, not ours).  A worksheet helps you figure out which bank will charge you the most.

Mashable tips us to a Consumer Reports app that allows you to scan a barcode and get reviews and recommendations related to the product.

Green NY

Green Innovations notes that New York is the fourth most energy efficient state in the country, according to the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy.  Other top five green states are California, Massachusetts, Oregon and Vermont.

Under water

The New York Times' Economix blog shows us where homes are "underwater" now, compared to 2000.  In the good old days, only Hawaii had more than 2 percent of properties with balances that exceeded the home's value.  At least a dozen states had fewer than 0.1 percent of homes underwater - now no state can make that claim.

Big money for sustainability

The Infrastructurist has a report on the Department of Housing and Urban Development's nearly $100 million grant program for sustainable communities. The money for New York ($3.5 million) went downstate, to the Regional Plan Association, which conducts planning in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.

Rail round-up

Just in time for the kick-off of regional high speed rail hearings in New York, Infrastructurist has a great round-up of the arguments for and against high speed rail.

"Something weird"

TechCrunch reports that Google is up to something.  The search giant appears to be using the URL demoslam.com to drum up some viral marketing for a new project related to demoing new technology. 

Bragging rights

You can now show off even more using your  LinkedIn profile.  The professional social networking site has added several new fields, reports TechCrunch:

So now, you can add new sections to the current ones on your profile (current job, past jobs, recommendations and education). Users can add published work to their profile with a link to the content; and list language proficiency, special skills (i.e. C++, Java); certifications of licenses and security clearances (i.e. CPA, SFP); and patents that they have been awarded.

Smarty-pants locator

The Atlantic has the latest from creative-class guru Richard Florida, about where the world's research lives.  Florida notes that the U.S. is still dominating in attracting the research class, but the economy could be changing that:

But what's even more striking about the map is the degree of geographic concentration on the East and West Coasts of North America, Western Europe, and just a few spots in Asia and Australia/New Zealand. The concentration of the knowledge and scientific assets in just three major mega-clusters -- the East Coast/Great Lakes, West Coast of North America, and in Europe - is astounding. And it is likely to reflect significant geographic advantages in research and knowledge-generation for them.

Twitter predicts the future

Technology Review has the details on Indiana University research that shows that "moods" - as measured by the aggregation of millions of tweets - can actually predict what the stock market will do, up to a week in advance.  Researcher Johan Bollen did the work, using the Google-Profile of Mood States, or GPOMS:

So these guys took 9.7 million tweets posted by 2.7 million tweeters between March and December 2008 and looked for correlations between the GPOMS indices and whether Dow Jones Industrial Average rose of fell each day.

Their extraordinary conclusion is that there really is a correlation between the Dow Jones Industrial Average and one of the GPOMS indices--calmness.

In fact, the calmness index appears to be a good predictor of whether the Dow Jones Industrial Average goes up or down between 2 and 6 days later. "We find an accuracy of 87.6% in predicting the daily up and down changes in the closing values of the Dow Jones Industrial Average," say Bollen and co

Monday treat

You made it through!  Let's celebrate with classic sounds of the information age, courtesy of Mashable.  You'll enjoy hits like "you've got mail" and "MacOS start-up."  

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