Thursday, May 31, 2007

Start Thinking Macro!

Well, after delaying it again and again, i finally decided to move to WordPress as my blogging platform and to use this opportunity to change the name of my blog. I got critique of both the name of the current blog, lack of good RSS feeds and i myself felt that WordPress has more features.

So, please update your bookmarks to "Think Macro"! And bear with me until I fine tune the new gadget. There will be an updated website as well, but that may take some time.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

The world we "live" in...

This time it is more optimistic and less realistic:

Thanks to Erik for the link. The original is at

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The world we live in...

I am currently reading a chapter by Lynette Kvasny and Duane Truex about discourse surrounding the digital divide. Setting the context, they explain a shift in world's balance of power. Here is a quote:

Elston (2000) goes even further in stating that the balance of global economic power has shifted from governments to corporate boardrooms. She cites a study by the Institute for Policy Studies that compared corporate sales and gross domestic products, and concluded that 51 of the largest 100 economies in the world are corporations, not countries. This means that General Motors is now bigger than Denmark, IBM is bigger than Singapore, and Sony is bigger than Pakistan. (p. 403)

I find it fascinating and also helping me to build an argument for looking at the role of corporate world in policy making in my research. Any thoughts? Suggestions for additional references?

In case you are interested, the full citation of the article is:
vasny, L., & Truex, D. (2001). Defining away the digital divide: A content analysis of institutional influences on popular representations of technology. In N. Russo, B. Fitzgerald, & J. DeGross (Eds.), Realigning Research and Practice in Information Systems Development: The Social and Organizational Perspective (pp. 399-414). Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

And the Elston article is:
Elston, S. Global Economy: Shifting the Balance of Power, Environmental News Network, January 31, 2001 (available from

Monday, April 16, 2007


"Sprinter" is a word coined yesterday by Gina. It stands for a sudden visit of winter right when everybody started thinking that spring is already here. Yes, it is April 16 and i woke up to discover an absolutely white street and while i was going to the library i became white as well.

The winter came back for a short but powerful visit. It is massively snowing now, but since it is not as cold as it was a couple of months ago, the snow is really heavy and sticky. So, all the trees are covered with snow now and are bending under the heavy burden. It is so beautiful!!!

Sprinter (April 16, 2007)

I definitely like winter!

Thursday, April 12, 2007


Got this link from Veronica. Who could believe that religious emancipation will come from Barbie?

Monday, April 09, 2007

Troubles in the virtual world

There is an article telling a story of FBI going into SecondLife to investigate gambling taking place inthe virtual world. While it may be entertaining to imagine FBI agents walking around as animated creatures of opposite sex and with wings, I think it rises an interesting question about the relationship between the virtual and and the physical.

As far as i understand this, US is trying to regulate online gambling through controlling financial transactions with online casinos. But things are different for SecondLife because people there are gambling with Lindens (L$), which is the virtual money used in this world. But the issue is getting more complex since there is an entire economy associated with SeconLife and L$ are actually having a market based exchange rate with real money (L$266 = US$1 as of yesterday). So the virtual is actually real, or the other way around.

I am not sure i have enough knowledge about the phenomenon, but i think this is really fascinating. How exactly and are we going to apply regulation from the physical world to the virtual one? Not only we had to deal with concepts of identities, nationalities and geographical boundaries in virtual reality, but now we also have to address the virtual economy and its relation to the real world... Just writing this post and picking at all the statistics of economic activity there amazed me a lot. And there is much more going on there in other virtual worlds, such as WoW and other. This is simply very interesting and even fascinating.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

We are on the map!!!

Did you ever hear about the Nigerian fraud? So, here is an Israeli version of it. I think it is rather funny:

Private Ward 6,
Rambam Medical Center,
P O Box 151, Beer Sheba 84101
Tel Aviv.

I am very sorry to embarrass you with this email as I did not mean to intrude in your privacy if not for the peculiar situation I have found myself. As you read this, don't feel sorry for me, because it is the destiny of everyman to die someday. I am Jaron Abbas an Israeli by birth and a business merchant based in Tel Aviv. I have been diagnosed with esophageal cancer.
It has defiled all forms of medical treatment, and right now I have only about a few months to live, according to medical experts. I regret that I have not particularly lived my life so well, as I never really cared for anyone (not even myself), but my trade. Though I am very well to do, I was never open handed; I was always hostile to people and regarded them like they never had hopes of becoming as successful as myself. Now I know that there is a lot more to life than just prosperity.
I believe that when I am given a second chance to come to this world, I would live my life a different way from how I have lived it. Now that death is imminent, I have willed and given most of my belongings to immediate and extended family members, as well as a few close friends. I want Allah to be merciful to me and accept my soul. Hence I have decided to support charity work; this is what I want to be remembered for. So far, I have been able to reach out to a few charity organizations in the Singapore, Algeria and Malaysia. Now that my health has deteriorated so badly, I cannot do this myself anymore.
I once asked members of my family to aid me in giving of alms to those organizations catering for the less privileged in Bulgaria and Pakistan; they refused and kept the resources to themselves. Hence, I do not trust them anymore, as they seem not to be contempt with what I have left for them.
The last of my belonging which no one knows of, is the huge deposit of $2.5 Million US dollars that I have in a safe keeping company abroad, which I will want you to secure and bestow to charity organizations.
I have set aside a tenth of this for you.
If interested to help me use this funds to charity organizations please contact me on: for more details.
Allah is with you.
Jaron Abbas

We are on the map!