Archive Page 2

24
Apr
10

Teaser rates

ICICI Bank cut home loan rates by bringing back its old teaser home loan rate product till the end of the month (read news).

Wanted to find out what teaser rates mean.

Investopedia says:

“An initial rate on an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM). This rate will typically be below the going market rate, and is used by lenders to entice borrowers to choose ARMs over traditional mortgages. The teaser rate will be in effect for only a few months, at which point the rate will gradually climb until it reaches the full indexed rate, which will be a static margin rate plus the floating rate index to which the mortgage is tied.”

In most cases, a teaser rate will be quite attractive to the prospective customer. The rate is usually less than the current market rate for comparable services, which helps to grab the attention of consumers. Along with the introductory rate, the provider also quotes the rate structure that will be in place once the short-term teaser rate expires. Unfortunately, many consumers tend to overlook this data until the expiration takes place, and find themselves saddled with a rate that is above current market standards.

23
Apr
10

New Coke

New Coke” is the unofficial name of the reformulation introduced in 1985 by The Coca-Cola Company to replace the original formula of its flagship soft drink, Coca-Cola (a.k.a. Coke). Properly speaking, New Coke had no separate name of its own, but was simply known as “the new taste of Coca-Cola” until 1992 when it was renamed Coca-Cola II.

The American public’s reaction to the change was poor, and the new cola was a major marketing failure. The subsequent reintroduction of Coke’s original formula, re-branded as “Coca-Cola Classic”, resulted in a significant gain in sales, leading to speculation that the introduction of the New Coke formula was just a marketing ploy.

The Coca Cola Company claims it was “arguably the biggest risk in consumer goods history”. Read more about “Coke Lore” here.

22
Apr
10

Pale Blue Dot

“Pale Blue Dot” is the name given to this 1990 photo of Earth taken from Voyager 1 when its vantage point reached the edge of the Solar System, a distance of roughly 3.7 billion miles (6 billion kilometres).

The late astronomer Carl Sagan eloquently tried to express how he felt about this photo in his book Pale Blue Dot:

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every ‘superstar,’ every ‘supreme leader,’ every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there — on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.”

More stories about the discovery can be found here.

A video from the same book is below.

21
Apr
10

Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot

Kenya’s Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot won the 114th edition of the Boston Marathon in record time on the 19th of April (read news article).

How Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot is different from other athletes is that he is considered to be a true marathoner” who rarely races other distances. Also, he has finished fifth or better in all four marathons he has entered.

Aged 21, Cheruiyot’s international debut was at the 2008 Frankfurt Marathon. Since he was not experienced, he had to purchase his own way and turn in a time under 2:14:00 to be reimbursed. He proceeded to surprise everyone, including himself, winning in the race with a course record 2:07:21!

20
Apr
10

The Paradox of Choice

Had seen this TED video last weekend. Was something that convinced me to not have too many choices. We are exposed to just too many choices and which probably makes us unhappy too. The video gave some striking examples. The basic fundamental behind the theory is that eliminating consumer choices can greatly reduce anxiety for shoppers.

Schwartz describes that a consumer’s strategy for most good decisions will involve these steps:

  • Figure out your goal or goals
  • Evaluate the importance of each goal
  • Array the options
  • Evaluate how likely each of the options is to meet your goals
  • Pick the winning option
  • Modify goals

Schwartz finds that when people are faced with having to choose one option out of many desirable choices, they will begin to consider hypothetical trade-offs. Their options are evaluated in terms of missed opportunities instead of the opportunity’s potential. Schwartz maintains that one of the downsides of making trade-offs is it alters how we feel about the decisions we face; afterwards, it affects the level of satisfaction we experience from our decision.

19
Apr
10

sweat equity

It featured in the news that Sunanda Pushkar had on her own surrendered the sweat equity offered to her by Rendezvous Sports World, a member of the consortium that won the Kochi Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise.

So, what is sweat equity? Here is what Wiki has to say:

Sweat equity is a term used to describe the contribution made to a project by people who contribute their time and effort. It can be contrasted with financial equity which is the money contributed towards the project. It is used to refer to a form of compensation by businesses to their owners or employees. The term is sometimes used in partnership agreements where one or more of the partners contributes no financial capital. In the case of a business startup, employees might, upon incorporation, receive stock or stock options in return for working for below-market salaries (or in some cases no salary at all).

18
Apr
10

cryogenic engine

ISRO is reviewing the reasons for the failure of the GSLV-D3 mission on April 15, which was primarily meant to test the indigenously developed cryogenic upper stage of the rocket. In a recent statement, they have concluded that contrary to the earlier belief, the malfunctioning of another part and not the cryogenic engine, led to the failure.

Was curious to find out what is a cryogenic engine. So, here goes:

A cryogenic rocket engine is a rocket engine that uses a cryogenic fuel or oxidizer, that is, its fuel or oxidizers (or both) are gasses liquefied and stored at very low temperatures. Notably, these engines were one of the main factors of the ultimate success in reaching the Moon by the Saturn V rocket.

Various cryogenic fuel-oxidizer combinations have been tried, but the combination of liquid hydrogen (LH2) fuel and the liquid oxygen (LOX) oxidizer is one of the most widely used. Both components are easily and cheaply available, and when burned have one of the highest entropy releases by combustion, producing specific impulse up to 450 s (effective exhaust velocity 4.4 km/s).

Read more here.




So what’s this blog about?

Another attempt? Well yes. Attempting to figure out another sustainable model (there are some other attempts going on parallel-ly). Well, we have a lot of questions in mind. we read up stuff, we do some research to find answers to these questions. This is an attempt to publish that little 15-20 minute research.
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