Fooled by the Black Swan

Is your organisation one black swan away from disaster? Are you taking hidden risks in the quest for success, and using hope as your only risk management tool? Nassim Taleb’s books should be required reading for life Nassim Taleb is one of my new favourite authors. I’m actually a little slow on the uptake here […]

SA inflation breaches inflation target in March ’07

March 07 inflation in South Africa: CPIX 6.3% year-on-year Measuring inflation Measuring inflation is never easy, and while we have had a few high-profile errors by Stats SA in the last few years, the inflation numbers are probably not that bad. I mentioned some of these difficulties in relation to GDP before. Inflation and Sean […]

Useful commentary on a useful tool – MySQL

I mostly use MySQL for ad hoc analytical work for specific projects – the sort of work where Microsoft’s Access product just doesn’t cut it because of the size of the data-sets involved. However, this is really just the tip of the ice-berg for MySQL, which powers a large proportion (I don’t really have any […]

The place of analysis for entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs are hailed as saviours of modern society. The current international paradigm (and one which is growing ever stronger in South Africa) is biased towards the idea that career success requires one to create something new and build up something from scratch – head out on one’s own and conquer the earth. OK, this doesn’t […]

A bit of the science behind Google and PageRank

I’ve said before that I’m not an expert on Search Engine Optimisation, but it certainly is an interesting area where businesses of all sizes can reap definite benefits from applying a little analysis, maths and science to the problem. Have a look at this article explaining, in reasonably simple terms, some of the background behind […]

This economy of ours!

Economic data out for South Africa is painting a good, if slghtly confusing picture. The good news is that the economy is still growing healthily (not compared with China’s official growth though) and inflation has dipped down very slightly. Neither of these are truly unexpected though. Exchange rate appreciation and a relaxation in the dollar […]

Urban legends and cocktail conversation

I’ve had an idea to analyse some of the many topics that come up in conversation time and time again. Chances of winning the lotto, FNB’s Million a Month account, randomness of the iPod shuffle to name a few. I’ll try to get hold of some interesting datasets and perform some basic analysis. My aim? […]

Additional Analysis of SEOmoz web popularity data provide some great resources on search engine optimisation (“SEO”). Recently, they performed a really interesting analysis comparing actual site traffic for 25 sites that volunteered their data against indicators from a range of competitive intelligence metrics from sources such as Google PageRank, Technorati Rank, Alexa Rank and’s very own Page Strength Tool. The […]