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Ray Cromwell
Works at Google
Attended University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Lives in Santa Clara, CA
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Ray Cromwell

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Oh man, I was hoping they were real. :P

I actually have a few Japanese whiskeys in my collection now. Most of them aren't that bad at all. The Nikka Coffey stuff if you ice it is actually DELIGHTFUL.
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Ray Cromwell

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This is a pretty shitty. I feel for the people who can't find affordable housing in SF, but let's look at the situation:

1) This guy has been paying $735/mo for 34 years in SF. That's longer than a 30 year mortgage. He has also been subletting/renting half his room. (Edit: his true rent was $365/mo not $735)
2) The former landlord, apparently not making enough renting the unit, lost the property in 2008 housing crisis and the bank sold it.
3) A new family buys the house with the intent to move in, and have their extended family all live together in the property.
4) They give this guy and the former property owner (who was allowed to continue to rent) 2 years to figure something out.
5) Now the family has a new baby and they want to move in and have some privacy.
6) They're being doxed and harassed with protests, prank calls, signs at their office.
7) The owners offered this guy $80,000(!) cash to move out, which he refused.
8) They finally resort to using Ellis Act to evict him.

As I see it, this guy got a subsidized $735/mo rent for 34 years, sublet his room to other people (probably in violation of tenant laws), was offered an additional $80,000. He benefitted massively from the rent control laws, to the extent that the former owner essentially lost his house, and now SF activists are hounding a family who bought the house and want to actually live there.

Since when did a rental agreement give anyone the right to live in a house permanently? Why do activists think renters are entitled to rights that not even home owners have (generally, when you sell your house, you have to a vacate for the new owners) And the family who bought the house aren't some evil speculators who are trying to profit from high SF rents, they're trying to raise a family.

If anytime in the last 34 years, this guy had the foresight to invest in property in SF, he would have been set today. In 1982, the average home price in SF was $70,000. Even a 30-year mortgage at 7% APR would yield $466/mo payment with no downpayment. I can only conclude that access to cheap rent controlled apartments distorted this guy's incentive to invest his money over the last 34 years, as a result, he's now in trouble.

That's regrettable, by why should the new family who bought the house have to suffer for his mistakes?


http://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/nevius/article/S-F-rent-wars-When-the-tenant-is-the-bully-6582895.php

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“The fact of the matter is, when you buy a house the tenants come with it". (Quote from Brenkus from the SF Chronicle piece)

WTF? When you buy a house, it's yours and you decide who lives in it. Otherwise, just what did you buy?
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This is the kind of sponsored ad that's entirely worth watching.
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Cant Wait =3
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This weekend is the last two days that Babbage's Difference Engine #2 will be at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, after which apparently it goes into some rich douche's private collection where it can't be experienced by children.

In any case, I took my kids and recorded this video of it in action. After tomorrow, you will only be able to see one in action in the UK.

(BTW, the Computer History Museum IMHO is one of the most unique museums in the world and no where else will you see such a complete collection of the history of the computing revolution)

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You're not "on the hook" forever, that makes it sound like you have to make continual payments. I think rich people's activities should be criticized. With a disproportionate share of society's resources flowing to them, and no apparent democratic means to route those resources elsewhere, at best we have public shame to help influence them to put their money to the betterment of society.

I'm not asking Myhrvold to do anything special that Wozniak, Packard, or any of the numerous other Silicon Valley elite haven't done for ages -- charitable donations without time limited strings attached. 

BTW, the last time the Difference Engine was transported, it suffered damage due to thermal expansion/contraction, and the museum staff are really the ones who know how to take care of it after a long time of constant maintenance and use.
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Yep, that's Bill Maher.
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Dear god, I've actually seen this one. Isn't it the one where the Amazon women's "secret language" is just badly pronounced French?
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Ray Cromwell

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In my opinion this is the wrong approach to boosting morale. The employees at Yahoo know they are on a sinking ship, and have known it for a while. They are not unlike the position Apple was in, in the mid 90s, losing billions per quarter, with a dominant ascendant platform (Windows 95/NT) taking marketshare constantly.

I think the proper approach would to be frank and authentic with employees. Our business is dead, we have resources available to keep afloat, perhaps long enough to change direction. We will need to cut back significantly on expenditures, and pivot to finding a new winning product or service, much like the iMac and iPod kept Apple afloat until the iPhone. Steve Jobs killed the clones, the Newton, took money from Microsoft, and sold off Apple capital investments, in order to buffer the company while he executed a new product strategy.

I would keep whatever parts of Yahoo that are earning a profit, and dispense with those parts that are not R&D, not 'loss leaders' boosting the other profit making devisions, and sustaining heavy losses. Yahoo must then seriously focus on some new product direction.

Mayer's mistake was thinking Yahoo's existing "content destination" approach was the core valuable, and it just needed to be fixed, updated, and extended, but the deadline on that long passed before Mayer took over. (e.g. Yahoo could have been Instagram had they realized the mobile transition with Flickr. They could have transitioned Yahoo Messenger, still popular in Asia, to be a WhatsApp, etc. They had lots of opportunities for fast pivot earlier in the mobile evolution)

I feel bad for Yahoo because they were one of the early net pioneers, but the company got complacent, and did little to react to changing circumstances.

Consider what might have happened if Google had not bought Android, and iOS and Windows Phone were now the dominant platforms? Consider what may have happened if they hadn't bought AdMob, or if Facebook hadn't bought Instagram, WhatsApp, or pivoted to mobile quickly?

Yahoo needs something 'iPhone'-like disruptive. I don't mean hardware, I mean, if they're going to be an internet service, they need a new 'must have' that solves a great consumer need or want.

You have perhaps a year or two to find it. Good luck.


"You don't have the book?" joked one departed staffer to me. "You really need to see the book." I really did -- and so do you.
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I totally agree. Yahoo needs to slim down to only its profitable units and then focus on the one area in which it is the best in the World (i.e. better than Google or FB). I am not sure what that one area is.
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In China, there’s a job opening that’s bound to receive applications from basically everyone on Earth. It involves getting paid $32,000 a year to do just o
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Ray Cromwell

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I just watched the first few episodes of The Expanse. I must say, I really like the "realistic hard sf" setting of the show, with the geopolitical backdrop they've constructed. That's why it's disappointing they had to add, umm, well, let's say, X-Files elements to it.

It could have been a really good show about a class/caste based society, and the conflict between the factions, a kind of less humorous Firefly, or akin to a Bladerunner-in-space. But basically it's turning into a standard SF trope.
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Meanwhile the title of tonight's X-Files - "Mulder & Scully Meet the Were-Monster".  X-Files, The Expanse is not.  The Expanse is my favorite new show.
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Education
  • University of Maryland, Baltimore County
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Male
Story
Tagline
I invented the XOR cursor, what have you done Derek?!
Work
Occupation
Chief Javascript Shrinker, Google Web Toolkit
Employment
  • Google
    GWT Hacker, 2010 - present
  • Timefire
    Founder, 2009 - 2010
  • Oracle
    Engineer, 2001 - 2006
  • IBM
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Currently
Santa Clara, CA
Previously
Baltimore, MD - New York