Archive for November, 2013

As of writing:

Trading at a high of $1242 in the US markets, Bitcoin is only $10 short of meeting the 1-oz gold bullion spot price.

Will this be called “Bitcoin Black Friday?”

I just finished my Atheist Xmas shopping, as far as I am willing to let it go, buying Chilean Huaso hats for my nephews. Crazy Uncle ExpatBob has to start the bribes when they are young. As the renovations on the Secret Chilean Volcano Lair are finally complete, and since there is no longer a 15mm daily accumulation of dust (due to the complete and unexplainable absence of wet-saws for tile in the Southern Hemisphere), I can deliver said nice things to the lair for storage until they need to be deployed.

On the way back to the BobMobile’s parking space, I came to an intersection where I must make a left turn. A taxi was coming from the right, and he had the right of way, so I let him through and pulled up to the intersection. Then, someone’s stray dog, dragging its leash on the ground, ran straight into the intersection and dawdled around like a complete idiot. Both myself and the taxi driver started honking to try and scare it out of the road.

Then, this lady comes into the crosswalk from my left side. “Can you pull forward so I can pass?” she asks me.

Now there is no reason why this lady could not have simply walked around my car. It’s a shitty little Suzuki, which is probably shorter front to back than I am tall. So maximum course deviation for this pedestrian is perhaps a single meter. I can’t pull forward. I can’t back up. I can’t remember how to ask, “Are you fucking kidding me?” in Spanish, so instead I point at the retarded dog doing donuts in the intersection, towards which both myself and the taxi driver are directing a considerable racket.

“Seriously? Are you not seeing this?” I ask her.

RetardLady then starts in on me why I should “Respetar los peatones,” and other such nonsense, while she stands IN THE ROAD, BLOCKING TRAFFIC, next to my car. She herself could have been run over. The time she spent, flapping her gums, could have had her across the street and well on her way, but instead she just stood there waiting for me to cross. Instead of paying attention to what she was saying, I fantasized about running over the dog, and then backing over RetardLady. Repeatedly. Spin the tires for good measure, and peel out in a steaming trail of her guts. Feel that wet thud through the chassis as the tires fling RetardDog into the wheel well and whip his flailing corpse into the air, like a pitching machine. Ohhh, yes…

Finally the dog decided to exit the Darwin zone, the taxi passed, and I had the space to turn left. So I did, abandoning RetardLady mid-sentence.

In my rearview, I saw the dog following her down the sidewalk, sticking to her heels as if it was hers.

AAAAAARGH!

 

 

EntrepreneurshipEntrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t, so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t.

As of writing, 6888 Yuan/BTC. That’s USD$1130.

We’re exploring arbitrage opportunities as other exchanges lag at 834 and 724, respectively. More than 30% return per cycle, if you can catch it before it breaks, and have a way to move your money through China.

bitcoin

Mighty Bitcoin tops $600.

Posted: November 18, 2013 in Investing, News
Tags: ,

Driven by the China market, Bitcoin topped US$600 this morning. $612 at the time of writing.

ExpatBob is pleased.

bitcoin

Bachelet wins Chilean presidency

Posted: November 18, 2013 in News
Tags: , , ,

Michelle Bachelet has won the election with 46.6% of the votes, followed by Evelyn “7-11” Mattei with 25% of the votes.

Not that it matters much; every single one of the candidates was left-center. Republicrats. Vote for anyone get the same. Sound familiar?

So now we get to see what magic hat they will pull “free” education from. Oh, it’s not a hat. It’s your own pockets! What a surprise. Sound familiar?

google-chile

The talking heads are arguing on Bloomberg about the continuing unmitigated disaster that is the US health care website. And it got me to thinking…

The US government has spent more than $500 million on the health care website, to date, which has only seen 27,000 people sign up.

So, basically, to have your information misused, in order to have your money taken from you, to pay for something you don’t want, Uncle Sam has seen fit to spend $18,518.52 per head.

Or, to have your information misused, in order to have your money taken from you, to pay for something you don’t want, hackers and identity thieves will do it for free. They stole $1.52 BILLION in 2011.

What are we paying for again? Seriously, we’re paying you clowns to fall on your face while you mug us. It’s embarrassing.

Walk away. Let it die.

And not just the election rhetoric!

Trash collectors in Chile have been on strike. It started in Valparaiso and spread to Santiago. Over the past week the trash has been piling up and getting out of hand. Ever street corner has a mini mountain like this one.

Smells just as bad as it looks.

Smells just as bad as it looks.

The same crap happens in Uruguay every year around Christmastime and the opening of high season, as the trash men there try to make it as inconvenient as they possibly can in the hopes they get a pay raise. Here, the strike comes right before the presidential elections, either in the hope that the current president gives them a generous parting gift of higher wages (not likely) or, more likely, it is all an orchestrated event banking that Michelle Bachelet, the new more left-leaning president they hope to elect, uses it as an opportunity to give lip service not only to the socialist cause but also uses it to look magnanimous and problem-solver-esque. Because she dropped the ball on all the other initiatives she did in her last term, like FUBAR’ing public transportation and FUBAR’ing the post-quake reconstruction.

ExpatBob’s infinite wisdom is as follows (and this worked in Curitiba, Brazil, by the way): Fire all the garbage collectors and post a reward per bag of trash brought to the dump. Every square inch of Santiago will be spotless within a few days, will remain so for the forseeable future, and there will never be garbage strikes ever again.

 

It was a while ago that I started playing with security cameras when my car was broken into and my toolbox stolen…

Well, I started playing with that box again, and now I have it set up to sit there and robotically monitor anything that moves. Which it did before, but now it will email me alerts when stuff moves, along with attached timelapse video files of stuff it sees. So even if some scumbag ladron comes in and nabs stuff, and disconnects the camera, or unplugs the device, it will have already mailed his photos off to me as soon as he set foot in the room. Which is pretty awesome. And it will run for like a week on battery backup if the power is out.

It only took me about 8 hours of dorking around with the Raspberry Pi, grinding through about 500 how-to tutorial pages that of course didn’t work even though they are only a couple of months old. And of course the easiest no-brainer solutions are the ones that are buried under mountains of crap. Welcome to the Pi development community.

So that 8 hours, calculated into usable time, could have bought me a dozen or more plug-and-play robot cameras which do the same thing…

But I made it myself! Look at this cool spaghetti bowl of wires! It does stuff!

Not that it’s a total waste of time. I can use this thing for a lot of things now, not just video surveillance. I’ve built, essentially, a sensor watchdog, which I could tune to look for just about any sort of input and let me know what is going on when I am not around. Which is not a bad thing to have if you’ve got an apartment that sits empty while you travel. Empty no more! RoboDog is on watch.

Now that I have it working, I want to set these up EVERYWHERE. MUAHAHAHAAAA! I shall have killer robot drones patrolling the skies in no time. My army grows…

In Chile, even the water is Late!

Posted: November 11, 2013 in Food, Humor
Tags: , , ,

Yes, it’s Late! The brand slogan is “The water that makes you good.”

Better late than never, right? Especially if it makes you good. Too bad it can’t be good now.

Optional marketing strategies for this product in Uruguay: “Never” “Mañana” “Semana que Viene” “My aunt is sick so I can’t work today” “It was raining”

2013-11-11 14.37.58

Ohhhh, and the humor doesn’t stop there!

On the back label, loosely translated, it reads, “What is Late? Late is the first commercial company that is 100% “Solidaria” (community shared). Every bit we generate from the sale of our products, is delivered to social foundations of great prestige, in order to realize concrete works in the rescue of at-risk children.”

No wonder it’s Late. It’s socialist. Que sorpresa!