Thursday, July 25, 2013

[1204.3156] Price and Quantity Trajectories: Second-order Dynamics

[1204.3156] Price and Quantity Trajectories: Second-order Dynamics:

"In two previous papers the author developed a second-order price adjustment (t\^atonnement) process. This paper extends the approach to include both quantity and price adjustments. We demonstrate three results: a analogue to physical energy, called "activity" arises naturally in the model, and is not conserved in general; price and quantity trajectories must either end at a local minimum of a scalar potential or circulate endlessly; and disturbances into a subspace of substitutable commodities decay over time. From this we argue, although we do not prove, that the model features global stability, combined with local instability, a characteristic of many real markets. Following these observations and a brief survey of empirical results for price-setting and consumption behavior in markets for "real" goods (as opposed to financial markets), we conjecture that Stigler and Becker's well-known theory of consumer preference opens the possibility of substantial degeneracy in commodity space, and therefore that price and quantity trajectories could lie on a relatively low-dimensional subspace within the full commodity space."

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A Universe Full of Planets


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The phrase “scientific revolution” tends to get overused. But there is one happening right now that could arguably alter the entire trajectory of human existence by profoundly realigning what we know of the complex, undulating road that has taken us from atoms adrift in the void to living, thinking beings in merely four billion years.

Using techniques of exquisite sensitivity and technological finesse, astronomers have spent the past two decades on an astonishing voyage of cosmic discovery. They have found that the universe is full of planets: Cold, small, and dark next to their large and glaring suns, these worlds have previously been hidden from us.
Yet they are a critical piece of a great puzzle. In many ways they represent the final order of unfinished business for the Copernican worldview. We’ve never been able to completely convince ourselves that we’re nothing special, not central to the cosmos, because our solar system has been the only planetary collective known.
Planets are tiny crumbs of matter — leftovers from epochs where gravity collapses and compresses vast interstellar nebulae into new stars. They’re fossil detritus, matter that gathers like droplets on a cooling windowpane, surviving as dust and gas around them evaporates and dissipates. To spot them represents a challenge that has been compared to looking across thousands of miles to see a firefly buzzing around a brilliant searchlight. But they can be spotted, both deliberately and serendipitously.
Like everything else, they exert a gravitational pull, tugging their parent stars into a gently wobbling motion that we can now detect, even if it’s barely more than the pace of a slow walker seen from hundreds of trillions of miles away.
Sometimes, by sheer random alignment, they appear to flit across the face of their suns. From our perspective the star’s light dims minutely, mere fractions of a percent, as the planet gets in the way. And if we patiently monitor millions of stars we will occasionally see one brighten and fade — a manifestation of Einstein’s physics as another star, and its planets, drifts between us and the stellar backdrop, serving as a gravitational lens, an interstellar magnifying glass.
The result of extraordinary efforts to watch for these subtle signatures is that we now have firm evidence for thousands of planets, around thousands of stars. We also know something about these worlds, their sizes, their orbits, often their ages. In a handful of cases, for planets of Jupiter’s or Neptune’s size, we have even measured the temperature of their upper atmospheres and sniffed at their gaseous chemistry, finding substances like sodium, methane and water.
It’s a rich bounty that has taken even scientists by surprise, but it’s only the beginning, because the numbers are pointing to something even more remarkable in our future.
No matter how conservative or optimistic we are, the statistics tell us that something like an astonishing one out of every seven stars must harbor a planet similar in size to the Earth, and at roughly the right orbital distance to allow for the possibility of a temperate surface environment. In other words, roughly 15 percent of all suns could, in principle, be hosting a place suitable for life as we know it.
Since our galaxy contains at least 200 billion stars, this implies a vast arena for the universe’s ubiquitous carbon chemistry to play in — a process that, as here on Earth, might lead to the complex machinery of life. Indeed, there is a 95-percent confidence — give or take a few percent — that one of these worlds could be within a mere 16 light years of us. That’s a stone’s throw, practically our galactic backyard.
And it’s really only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Even in our own solar system we have our suspicions that environments inside ice-rich moons around Jupiter or Saturn could also represent life-amenable zones. We know too that the conditions humans find palatable are not the same as those for countless other species. The opportunities for life seem enormous.
This incredible abundance of planets in our galaxy is a portent of what’s to come; the first shot fired; the first statement of intent in a new revolution. It doesn’t yet tell us whether or not we are alone in the universe or, as in the Copernican outlook, merely one among billions. But it is already telling us something shockingly profound.
Because the universe makes so many planets, the chances of our finding others that we can actually study in detail increases enormously. Until now there was nothing we knew about the universe that made this inevitable. Planets could have been few and far between. Even if there were billions in total, they could have been scattered thinly across the cosmos. Thus, it was still a possibility that we’d forever be like the lonely ship’s spotter, vainly looking for land from the crow’s-nest.
Instead, the age-old dream of finding other life in the cosmos, whether silent microbes or noisy technological civilizations, has just taken a very sharp turn for the positive.
It really is true therefore that we stand on the verge of learning more about the nature of life, and of our own significance, than at any other time in human history.
It was — and is — a big deal for us to peer into the microscopic to understand the atomic and subatomic. It has also been momentous to learn that the entirety of existence, our universe, originated some 13.8 billion years ago. And yes, we reached a pinnacle of self-discovery by realizing that we are merely one expression of an awesomely complex and ancient system of molecular machinery, evolving and selecting itself across the ages.
But to discover whether or not we are alone, whether or not something akin to this Earth has happened somewhere else, and perhaps, just perhaps, whether or not there are other minds, on other worlds, thinking these same kinds of thoughts? That’s big, perhaps the biggest thing that could ever happen to a species.
It could have been impossible to ever address the question, but we now know that nature has provided us with a shot at finding out, that there are billions upon billions of places to search. That really is the start of a revolution.
Caleb Scharf is director of astrobiology at Columbia University in New York and author of “Gravity’s Engines” and “The Copernicus Complex.”

A Universe Full of Planets - NYTimes.com

A Universe Full of Planets - NYTimes.com:

"The phrase “scientific revolution” tends to get overused. But there is one happening right now that could arguably alter the entire trajectory of human existence by profoundly realigning what we know of the complex, undulating road that has taken us from atoms adrift in the void to living, thinking beings in merely four billion years."

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Econophysics & Economics of Games, Social Choices and Quantitative Techniques (New Economic Windows): Banasri Basu, Bikas K. Chakrabarti, Satya R. Chakravarty, Kausik Gangopadhyay: 9788847015005: Amazon.com: Books

Econophysics & Economics of Games, Social Choices and Quantitative Techniques (New Economic Windows): Banasri Basu, Bikas K. Chakrabarti, Satya R. Chakravarty, Kausik Gangopadhyay: 9788847015005: Amazon.com: Books:

 "The combined efforts of the Physicists and the Economists in recent years in analyzing and modelling various dynamic phenomena in monetary and social systems have led to encouraging developments, generally classified under the title of Econophysics. These developments share a common ambition with the already established field of Quantitative Economics. This volume intends to offer the reader a glimpse of these two parallel initiatives by collecting review papers written by well-known experts in the respective research frontiers in one cover."

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Sunday, July 21, 2013

H. Eugene Stanley - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

H. Eugene Stanley - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

 "Harry Eugene Stanley (born March 28, 1941) is an American physicist and University Professor at Boston University. He has made seminal contributions to statistical physics and is one of the pioneers of interdisciplinary science. His current research focuses on understanding the anomalous behavior of liquid water, but he had made fundamental contributions to complex systems, such as quantifying correlations among the constituents of the Alzheimer brain, and quantifying fluctuations in noncoding and coding DNA sequences, interbeat intervals of the healthy and diseased heart. He is one of the founding fathers of econophysics."

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The Laws of Information

Claude Shannon at Bell Labs solved the problem of communication: to efficiently send and receive information. Sadi Carnot in France solved the problem of steam engines: to efficiently convert heat into useful motion. Now we have to solve the problem of information management: to separate the wheat from the chaff. There are two engines which do just that, the telephone exchange, and the trade exchange. Two instances of these exchanges are the Alcatel-Lucent  5ESS and CME Group Falcon.

One simple instance of an electronic trade exchange is EMTE, Exchange Matching and Trading Agent.

I am involved in abstracting the laws of information management.

Henry Schultz - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Henry Schultz - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

"Henry Schultz (September 4, 1893 – November 26, 1938) was an American economist and statistician, one of the founders of econometrics."

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Quantifying Trading Behavior in Financial Markets Using Google Trends

Crises in financial markets affect humans worldwide. Detailed market data on trading decisions reflect some of the complex human behavior that has led to these crises. We suggest that massive new data sources resulting from human interaction with the Internet may offer a new perspective on the behavior of market participants in periods of large market movements. By analyzing changes in Google query volumes for search terms related to finance, we find patterns that may be interpreted as ‘‘early warning signs’’ of stock market moves. Our results illustrate the potential that combining extensive behavioral data sets offers for a better understanding of collective human behavior.

Tobias et al.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

How Intellectual Property Reinforces Inequality - NYTimes.com

How Intellectual Property Reinforces Inequality - NYTimes.com:

 "In the war against inequality, we’ve become so used to bad news that we’re almost taken aback when something positive happens. And with the Supreme Court having affirmed that wealthy people and corporations have a constitutional right to buy American elections, who would have expected it to bring good news? But a decision in the term that just ended gave ordinary Americans something that is more precious than money alone — the right to live."

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HowStuffWorks "Quote Services, Interfaces and Matching Engines"

HowStuffWorks "Quote Services, Interfaces and Matching Engines":

 "Of quote services, interfaces and matching engines, quote services are perhaps the easiest to understand. Every second of every day, the prices of stocks are fluctuating. And people around the world want to see those prices in real time: Broker dealers want to provide quotes to their customers, and news organizations want quotes to display in their shows. To meet this need, NASDAQ provides up-to-the-minute price quotes through its computers, which can see what's happening inside the matching engine and then send that data out to the rest of the world."

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emte-trading - Exchange Matching and Trading Engine - Google Project Hosting

emte-trading - Exchange Matching and Trading Engine - Google Project Hosting:

"This is a Exchange Matching and Trading Engine (think of NYSE and Nasdaq) and a Trading Platform that connects to it. Is build in Python with web2py and Tornado and it uses html5 websockets for asynchronous information delivery. The web interface uses jQuery and processing.js"

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Google Search - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Google Search - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

 "Google Search (or Google Web Search) is a web search engine owned by Google Inc. Google Search is the most-used search engine on the World Wide Web,[4] receiving several hundred million queries each day through its various services.[5]"

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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Management Team - CME Investor Relations

Management Team - CME Investor Relations:

Mr. Gill has served as our Chief Executive Officer since 2012. Previously he served as President of CME Group since 2007 and as President and Chief Operating Officer of CME Holdings and of CME since January 1, 2004. In addition to running the firm's day-to-day operations, he is responsible for implementing strategic initiatives to expand CME Group's core business and pursue new global growth opportunities in over-the-counter and emerging markets. From 2000 to 2003, Mr. Gill served as Managing Director and President of CME Clearing, the largest derivatives clearing house in the United States, which includes the Clearing, Risk Management and Audit Departments. In 2003, he led the implementation of the company's historic clearing agreement with the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), under which CME provided clearing (back-office processing) for all CBOT products. This agreement helped pave the way for the 2007 merger of the two institutions. Mr. Gill joined the company in February 1988 and held positions of increasing responsibility within CME Clearing before joining the Office of the CEO in 2004. Mr. Gill serves on the Board of Directors of the World Federation of Exchanges. He also serves on the Board of Directors of First Midwest Bancorp Inc. and on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission's Global Markets Advisory Committee. He is a member of CME Group's Competitive Markets Advisory Council and sits on the boards of The Alexander Maxwell Grant Foundation, Teach for America-Chicago, CME Group Foundation and CME Group Community Foundation.

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Amazon.com: Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think (9781451614213): Peter H. Diamandis, Steven Kotler: Books

Amazon.com: Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think (9781451614213): Peter H. Diamandis, Steven Kotler: Books:

We will soon be able to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man, woman and child on the planet. Abundance for all is within our grasp. This bold, contrarian view, backed up by exhaustive research, introduces our near-term future, where exponentially growing technologies and three other powerful forces are conspiring to better the lives of billions. An antidote to pessimism by tech entrepreneur turned philanthropist, Peter H. Diamandis and award-winning science writer Steven Kotler. 

Since the dawn of humanity, a privileged few have lived in stark contrast to the hardscrabble majority. Conventional wisdom says this gap cannot be closed. But it is closing—fast. The authors document how four forces—exponential technologies, the DIY innovator, the Technophilanthropist, and the Rising Billion—are conspiring to solve our biggest problems. Abundance establishes hard targets for change and lays out a strategic roadmap for governments, industry and entrepreneurs, giving us plenty of reason for optimism.

Examining human need by category—water, food, energy, healthcare, education, freedom—Diamandis and Kotler introduce dozens of innovators making great strides in each area: Larry Page, Steven Hawking, Dean Kamen, Daniel Kahneman, Elon Musk, Bill Joy, Stewart Brand, Jeff Skoll, Ray Kurzweil, Ratan Tata, Craig Venter, among many, many others. 

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Spitzer Dark Cloud 335

ALMA Spots a Nascent Stellar Monster

ALMA Spots a Nascent Stellar Monster:

"Even though it comprises over 99% of the mass of the Solar System (with Jupiter taking up most of the rest) our Sun is, in terms of the entire Milky Way, a fairly average star. There are lots of less massive stars than the Sun out there in the galaxy, as well as some real stellar monsters… and based on new observations from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, there’s about to be one more."

The formation of massive stars remains, in many ways, a mystery (Beuther et al. 2007; Zinnecker & Yorke 2007). More specifically, the key question of what physical processes determine their mass accretion history is yet to be answered. On one hand, some theories predict that primordial fragmentation of globally stable molecular clouds may form compact reservoirs of gas, called cores (with sizes up to 0.1pc), from which a forming star subsequently accumulates its mass (McKee & Tan 2003; Beuther & Schilke 2004). In an alternative scenario, molecular clouds undergo global collapse (Peretto et al. 2006, 2007), gathering matter from large scales to the centre of their gravitational potential well, where cores, and protostars in them, are simultaneously growing in mass (Bonnell et al. 2004; Smith et al. 2009). Only detailed observations of individual massive star forming cloud can provide hints on which of these scenarios, if any, is most relevant.

Even though it still remains to be demonstrated that global collapse is the main process through which massive star progenitors accumulate mass, the case of SDC335 sets strong constraints on any theory of massive star formation.

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Sunday, July 07, 2013

Letting Go of Our Nukes - NYTimes.com

Letting Go of Our Nukes - NYTimes.com:

"TEMPE, Ariz. — PRESIDENT OBAMA recently called on Russia to join with the United States in negotiating a mutual reduction in strategic nuclear warheads that would leave each country with slightly more than 1,000. The number would be up to one-third less than what both countries agreed to deploy in the New Start treaty, reached in the president’s first term."

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Getting an Edge on Wildfires - NYTimes.com

Getting an Edge on Wildfires - NYTimes.com:

 "When the winds change, a ferocious forest inferno can make a sharp turn, and the fire crews battling it may need to depend on their eyes and instincts to tell them whether they are in danger."

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A Painful Mix of Fire, Wind and Questions - NYTimes.com

A Painful Mix of Fire, Wind and Questions - NYTimes.com:

 "PRESCOTT, Ariz. — They trained their eyes on the mountain that smoldered in the distance as they carved a path through a forest choked by fire and drought. The ground crackled underfoot. Packs sagged from their backs, heavy with the gear frontline firefighters must carry: pickaxes, temperature gauges, spades, radios, plenty of water."

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Saturday, July 06, 2013

[1307.0152] Kenneth Geddes Wilson, 1936-2013, An Appreciation

[1307.0152] Kenneth Geddes Wilson, 1936-2013, An Appreciation:

 "Kenneth G. Wilson made deep and insightful contributions to statistical physics, particle physics, and related fields. He was also a helpful and thoughtful human being."

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Homes Keep Rising in West Despite Growing Wildfire Threat - NYTimes.com

Homes Keep Rising in West Despite Growing Wildfire Threat - NYTimes.com:

"The death of 19 firefighters in Arizona this week highlights what has become a fact of life in the West: Every summer, smoke fills the big skies yet people continue to build in the places that burn most. More people live in these areas, and many balk at controls on how and where to build."

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Friday, July 05, 2013

U.S. Airlines Delay Flights to Mexico City as Volcano Spews Ash: Scientific American

U.S. Airlines Delay Flights to Mexico City as Volcano Spews Ash: Scientific American:

"Four U.S. airlines temporarily suspended flights to and from Mexico City on Thursday after a volcano 50 miles from the capital spewed ash, a spokesman for the city's international airport said."

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Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Timeless Questions About the Universe - NYTimes.com

Timeless Questions About the Universe - NYTimes.com:

 "Niels Bohr, the Danish physicist and philosopher-king of quantum theory, once said that great truth is a statement whose opposite is also a great truth. This pretty much captured the spirit of those elusive rules that govern the subatomic world, where light can be a wave — no, a particle — well, actually, whatever you need it to be for your particular experiment."

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