Google


UpDown.com Virtual Investing

Recently I stumbled upon a virtual investing site called UpDown.com which provides you with a fictional $1 million to start investing. You can compete it real contests which can earn you real money depending on which place you finish – some even provide prizes for the top 50 investors. Also, every month you are eligible to earn some cash if your portfolio for the entire month out performs S&P 500.

I take a little pride in investing (virtually) and ever since winning $800 prize way back in high school I have joined contests to see how well I can do. I think it’s fair to say I end up in the positive more than I end up in the red so that’s a good sign. Think you are good? Why not give this a shot just to see. You can always just buy a couple of stocks and let it sit long term or do daily trading… whatever suits you.

Here is a brief summary of my portfolio so far:


I’ll give a little detailed description of my portfolio right now where in about less than a week I am up 2%. I have a couple of big technology stocks in Apple and Google which do bad when the market goes out but definitely out perform the market on the good days. I shorted on a couple (which are currently paying off but I would never short in real life). Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and BlackRock are the ones I shorted on and all three have declined this week. It’s a careful balance on when to cover those shortrs and not get too greedy. Also, I am hoping for Sirius Radio to shoot through the roof soon as it is awaiting a merger in the upcoming weeks or months so I will be holding on to that.

The one stock that has just exploded these past few days is little known Pyramid Oil Company (PDO) which I had bought at a measly $12 per share and it has jumped $2 already. I had thought about Exxon Mobil (XOM) but the price on that is a little steeper than I want to invest in an oil stock. I stuck to the smaller alternative and so far so good.

I’ll keep updating every now and then to see how my portfolio is doing against the S&P and I already know that people like Mike, Justin and my sister have joined in on this. I have a mini group just to compare how everyone does against each other so if you decide to join, let me know. It’s a fun little thing that you can check in on every now and then or heavily follow if that’s the type of investor you are.

Once again, the site is called UpDown.com and it’s free to join. What can beat that?


Google Health: A Data Collecting Tool?

Google, which offers services for everything from email to blogging, from maps to finance, recently released a service called Google Health. At first I thought this was yet another remarkable and innovative tool offered by Google to organize one’s life and consolidate everything into one place. I was ready to jump all over it and quickly hand them over all my personal health data and see what it offered. Then my brother stepped in and said one statement on it that has made me reluctant to touch this for the past two months.

“So Google will have every little detail about your life on you now”

I try not to be skeptic about things before trying them out but in today’s age when courts are forcing companies to hand over user data and anything else they may have logged about their activity, who is to say that some day in the not too distant future Google is made to hand over medicial data as well?

Fortunately, I have been quite healthy recently and have not require much medical assistance than some others I know but I am still not certain this is something I would recommend to them. Leaving aside the privacy issues, this could falsely power the patients into making decisions that they are not properly educated about or might make a decision based on misunderstanding some facts.

Look at some of the features that Google Health offers. With it, you can do the following:

image Build online health profiles
You can enter your health conditions, medications, allergies, and lab results into your Google Health profile and you can name the profile anything you want. You can even create multiple profiles for family members or others you care for.
Import medical records from hospitals and pharmacies
Choose from a list of Google Health partners to see if your hospital or pharmacy can send copies of your medical records or prescriptions to your Google Health profile. This way, you can save an accurate history of your medical conditions, medications, and test results all in one place.
image Learn about health issues and find helpful resources
Review trusted information on diseases and conditions and learn about possible medication interactions and other topics to talk your doctors about.
image Search for doctors and hospitals
You can search for a doctor’s name or location, find a doctor’s website, get directions to a doctor’s office, and save a doctor’s information to your medical contacts list.
image Connect to online health services
Browse the online health services directory to find services that are integrated with Google Health that can help you better manage your health needs.

(more…)


Interesting Google Queries

I have attached below a recent Google Analysis on the terms searched on Google and if my blogs are in the top 20 (as in appear on the first page), these are the top search queries from that.

It is a little disturbing to see all those Tom Brady references to see whether he was actually on The Brady Bunch. I remember talking about it a couple of friends a day or two after I had posted the ESPN clip about him and the mock Brady Bunch references. Apparently, several people took that very seriously and did not get the joke. Among the top disturbing queries would be “Angry Tom Brady” and “Brady ‘Bunch Tom’ Brady” searches. I do not know what these people were thinking when they searched for it but certainly my blog appears #3 when you search for either of those two terms and there you have it. However, as of today if you search “Brady ‘Bunch Tom’ Brady“, I do appear #1 on the search result… go figure.

Outside of the title of the blog, I was impressed to see that I appear #1 when you search for “Super Tuesday Results” on Google.

Chris Berman going “Boinkers” now has me third overall.