The Psychology of Giving Fewer Options at Startup

There’s something strange about the Incentive Stock Option system at Startups in America. Suppose the founders want to make employees work harder. It is to his greatest advantage to give his employees as few stock options as possible. This is not to preserve his own stock options or reduce dilution, but to motivate the employees to work harder.

Because typically, bosses at work get somewhere from 100x to 1000x the stocks an employee has. So a founder who is comfortable with a $1Billion IPO means his employees will only get similar level of reward if the company IPO’s at $100Billion or even $1 trillion. So the employee has to aim much higher than the founders.

This may explain why often the executives at companies will make obviously irrational decisions. They already have $10million, why go to the extra leg of getting to $20million?

But the employee has only $100k, getting to $200k is a huge improvement on quality of life.

How Old is Your Computer

I came to an interesting measurement of age of computer today. Suppose we use something simple minded (such as throughput rate of Integer Arithmetics) as measurement of computing power. Let us further suppose that Moore’s law is really followed by the development of computers during it’s entire development since the very first transistor, then we can make a very interesting calculation.

Let T be the total computing power of all humanity today. (This should be estimable based on number of CPU’s Intel and AMD produces each year).

Let O be the origin where the very first transistor was invented, when the total semi-conductor based computing power of humanity is some small number like (1 integer add)/minute.

Fit an exponentially growing curve between the total computing power between time T and O, plot a graph of this curve with time on the X-axis and total computing power of humanity on the Y-axis.

Now, then, to determine the power of your computer (or computing cloud that you own), simply find on the Y-axis the power of your computer and drop down to X. At that point you can claim:

“My computing cloud is equal to all of human computing power as of February of 1981.”

Makes for great PR snippet.

Also, you can use it as a pitch to get more funding:

“Our computer cluster is still in the 1980’s !!”

“But Dad! My laptop is like so 1950!”


Okay, I admit it, I’ve been fooled.

So, apparently, Menlo Park, CA, even though it has a street called the “Edison Way” is not the original Menlo Park (NJ) where Edison worked.


Mamma Mia

Why is it that people think it’s gay to watch Mamma Mia the movie? I just caught it on HBO last night and man, there were some hot chicks in the movie dancing around showing off some nastily huge boobs. Man! She’s so sweet, I woke up with a tooth ache this morning. (oh, hey, AND she’s from Pennsylvania too)

I mean, sure, there’re hot guys in the movie, but it is the fact that hot guys and girls mix that makes it heterosexual, right? So, why are guys gay to want to watch insanely bueatiful girls and some suitably pleasant boys flirt, kiss, hug, and roll around in the sand in romantic prelude to their wedding?

The Assidity of a Company

Recently, I had the pleasure of realizing that a company’s current and future performance may be correlated with the Assidity of the company.

Assidity, NB not Assiduity, means the amount of Ass-hole like behavior exhibited by employees and executives of the company. The behavior does not have to be directed exclusively to internal or external persons.

I’ve worked at several fortune 500 companies in the recent decade. The assidity of the company increases when the company, either as a collective, or by executive decision, is trying to shed some employees. By increasing assidity of the company, some employees or officiers may elect to leave the company. Typically this happens only in two situations.

a.) the company is running out of money and cannot support it’s currently employeed personnel.

b.) the company is doing really well, and the departure of some personnels means more bonus/stocks for those who stay.

It is easy to distinguish the two types of assidity. Type A assidity is typically justified with a long term plan that cancels some projects. Type A assidity can be in the form of “changing directions” in the company’s business. Both of these changes may seem to make complete sense, but in reality only affect a selected, identifiable group of employees.

Type B assidity on the other hand will rarely be justified. The company is performing well, so it has the leeway to take risks that it would otherwise not afford to take. Assidity may be applied to a particular lucrative customer. To any passer-by, this type of assidity will seem completely absurd and absolutely irrationaly.

Now, the question that remains, is, as a non-insider, how do we determine the amount and type of assidity a company has. And once we can quantify this measurement, we can apply it to stock price prediction and profit from other people’s assidity.

Karate Kid!!!

Yeah!!!!! awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Obnoxious thoughts:

Once again, it takes a Chinese girl to prove that it doesn’t take D cups and large hips to be sexy and absolutely doable!!! I mean, gosh! she doesn’t even have a pretty face, and yet, man… so hot!!

Did the lead bully speak and act a lot like Jet Li? Is this like an insult from Jackie Chan? haha

Jakie says: “Everything good about me started here…”

Dre’s good. Somewhere, I read that people thought he doesn’t resemble his dad… I have to agree. But there’re a lot of mannerism that only Will Smith could pass on.

Personally, I think the movie did too much…. Introducing modern China will take like several decades of movies like this, and then it moves on to introductory Kungfu by Jackie Chan, who obviously wants to showcase the philosophy of Chinese and history and qi and iq and and and and and and…. Sigh, alas, their film skills are not up to par with Jackie Chan’s kungfu moves….

Great attempt, but I would like to see inter-cultural movies like this go back to taking the jacket off, and putting the jacket on.

Having said that. DAMN!!! I guess it takes a single black mom to goto China in series style! I feel that she must be one of the most believable character… Damn! I’ve never seen a black women in a qipao, but damn!

Man, Meiying dancing to lady-gaga is so, err,, what’s the expression, makes people randy.

But admittedly, Dre saying that “meiying should start a band/dancing group” is like him wining a Chinese Kungfu tournament. really? somehow, I don’t see him saying this earnestly and convincingly, just as much as the bullies don’t want him to win the tourney, EVEN tho that is the story.


I am trying to come to grips with the degree of mental retardation that I suffer.

I’ve looked at and pondered the reason for “timed transfer” on Cal-train schedules for the past week as I ride the train to work.

But I just couldn’t figure out why it is arranged the way it is. Below is a picture of the timed transfer between 207 and 211

Basically, it is a slow ride that stops at every station on the 207 to the transfer stations, after which you can transfer to the other train (the 211) and it stops every station from there onward.

So if you had to get from a non-major station in the upper segment, to a non-major station in the lower segment, you have to ride slow all the way.

Would we not accomplish the same with two trains? a slow train that stops every stop, and a faster train that met it half way? that way, if I travel to a minor station in the lower half, I take the faster train to the middle point and then transfer to slower train. If I travel from a minor station in the top half to a major station below, then, I get on the slow train, and meet the fast train half way and ride that to my destination that is a major train in the lower half?

So, to draw it out, make 207′ stop every where, and let’s say it still arrived in the green transfer stations at 6:39. Let’s make the baby bullet 309′ a limited express that stopped at all stations 309 and 211 stops at in the upper half, and arrive at green transfer station at 6:39. In the lower half, 207′ still makes every stop, and 309′ makes all stops that 309 and 207 makes in the lower half.

Then, every one in the minor station above can get to the transfer point, and arrive at at least one of the major stations below. Every one at a major station above, can still get to a minor lower station.

This way, what Cal-train can do is run longer trains (8 instead of 4 or 5) and save some diesel. Surely, two trains 8 sections each uses less diesel than 3 trains 5 each.

I even searched google for the answer, but I just don’t understand it. If we insist on two green transfer stations, it could provide shuttle service…. (since in our scheme we only have one transfer station where as in previous scheme there were two)

Protection against root level discrimination

In Corporate America, bosses are given special powers so that they can govern their employees. These powers start with the ability to hire and fire employees, as well as to set corporate guidelines for rewarding team and individual performances. In addition, the company has access to personal information about individuals that other individuals do not have access to.

In order to become employed in America, I must give the company my address, my phone number, my Social Security number, my age, my past work experience, what other people thought of me at my last job, etc.

Now, the law specifically prohibits discriminatory usage of this information.

The subject of my blog entry concerns the expanded roll of the company, the executives, and the management. These entities (let’s call them the boss collectively), the bosses has extra abilities over the employees of the company. These abilities include not only the power (not by might, but by right) to control the employees, but also they are given personal information about the employees. The employees cannot take a vacation without justifying it to the Boss. (try it, you will be looked at with different eyes afterwards)

In the internet age and the computer industry, the bosses are especially given the additional power of being able to monitor all electronic communication travelling over the company’s computer equipment. In fact, on the computers, the bosses have, by nature of computer design, administrative superpowers. He can alter bodies of emails or Instant Messages, he can delay the sending and receiving of emails, he can alter your text documents or spreadsheets, and he can change the speed of your computer so that it crashes or pauses at opportune times.

These powers exist. You know it, I know it, and we all know it.

But, what of corporate governance? Has it ever crossed anyone’s mind that this absolute power over employees in the electronic domain is wrong?

And, today, I finally found the problem with the typical reservation: “The company reserves the right to monitor all data travelling over it’s network equipment and to alter these data as it wishes. Bosses have the right to do this because the hardware belongs to the company.”

The problem is that this is not regulated so that the bosses may not comply with discrimination and harassment laws.

For an example, the bosses cannot harass it’s employees by making him “accidentally click” on pornography or any otherwise offensive material just as much as they cannot put up offensive posters that pop up (physically) from the toaster when I go to toast some bread.

Furthermore, the bosses should not be able to impersonate a person’s writing or mistakes. For instance, they cannot alter my emails by introducing typos. The bosses should not be allowed to change the content of my outgoing email in ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM.

If it sees the need to filter out-going email, then it can do so. And it may choose to inform its employees that this has happened. But the bosses should not be able to change some part of my communication.

Granted, the email box is not a federally installed, government owned piece of equipment. But in general, if I am sending an email, it is generally believed that it is my own person who is thinking and typing the message.

If I make a phone call from work phone, it is believed that I am the one speaking. The bosses cannot introduce sound-bites of swearwords into my phone conversation (and sometimes to the other party only, without me hearing it). Because when I email, and when I call from company, I am not doing so anonymously as “some employee of such and such company”. The person receiving the call and email sees my name, and associates what is said or typed with my  identity. The bosses, by altering my communication violates me, impersonates  me and defames me surreptitiously.

I cannot stress this enough. The bosses cannot make it appear to my friends, co-workers, and my past and future employers that I constantly make typographical errors in every email, should they be allowed to make them hear swear words on the phone when I converse with them, with or without my knowledge. Even if it is on the company’s equipment!!

The reason why the bosses cannot use this power is because they are not able to use it indiscriminatingly. Because the bosses have, and the bosses will continue to let their centuries of hatred based on religion, language, country of origin, sex and hereditary lineage, passed to them from their ancestors run wild in this absolutely unmonitored and unregulated medium for identity and work.

Furthermore, the bosses should not be able to use information gathered from employees’ electronic communication in a discriminatory way. That is to say, it cannot use an Asian person’s email to his wife about vacation plans to make his vacation impossible but schedule it so that white people can go on their vacation. Doing so would be equivalent of establishing an official holiday on all Indian holidays but scheduling mandatory all day long meetings on Chinese holidays.

My blog is but a firefly near a fly trap. It might be hacked… it might be defaced, and it will receive typos…By the time you read this, the sentences may not be sentences any more.

But some where and some time, out there and in the future, on my beloved Internet, I believe that the evil-doers on the grand scale or on the personal level, will be punished, and that truth, justice, and the American way will prevail !!