Tag Archive | "Facebook"

A Facebook update in real life

For everyone driven to distraction by Facebook constantly re-arranging everything. A friend says, how would Mark Zuckerberg like it if I went to his house and rearranged all his furniture?

Be careful what you ask for. It could happen to you.

Posted in News

Barrons says Facebook is worth $15 a share

I completely agree. Based on earnings, or even realistic projected earnings, Facebook was worth nowhere near the $32 IPO price. Facebook is worth $15 a share. The stock trades at $22 now so it’s still overvalued.

“Anyone who owns Facebook should be exceptionally troubled that they’re still trying to ‘figure out’ mobile monetization and had to lay out $1 billion for Instagram because some start-up had figured out mobile pictures better than Facebook,” says one institutional investor.

Ritholtz also agrees with a $15 valuation. Apple and Google have massive earnings. Amazon still has very high P/E.  However, their Web Services, Kindle, and Amazon Prime are driving real business and income. In five years they could be ginormous. Facebook is a great social media service and they made $1 billion last year.  But they need to figure out how generate more income. Meanwhile lock up restrictions on 933 million shares of Facebook expire before the end of the year, something which certainly will drive the price lower.

Posted in News

Facebook and its stock price

Facebook stock is now worth about half its IPO price, less than the price many employees were vested at.

Henry Blodget details what holders of the stock can expect, which is a long wait, among other things. Just be thankful you weren’t one of the poor schlubs who bought Facebook at 38 when it IPO’ed. Or should that be greedy schlubs? Facebook just wasn’t worth anywhere close to 38.

However, the stock is not the company. Facebook made a billion last year in profits. It will be a major force for years to come. What a stock does is often contradictory or completely nonlinear to what the company is.

Having said that, my estimate is Facebook will drop to 14 or so, and which point it will be fairly valued and thus a buy.

Posted in News

Snark of the Day. The Facebook IPO

“Great news for the world’s poor, Bono is about to become a billionaire, I’m sure he’s going to practice what he preaches,” says Andy Carling on Facebook

A commenter notes “The difference between God and Bono is that God doesn’t think he’s Bono…”

Posted in News

Facebook IPO won’t help California budget problems

It’s happening again. Hugely optimistic expectations of revenue for California didn’t materialize so Sacramento is scrambling to find some way, any possible way, to balance the budget. The state needs to find $3.3 billion by March to meet obligations. Lawmakers and the governor, as always, over-estimated revenue and under-estimated expenses. But now the bills must be paid. California doesn’t have the money so instead it will delay making payments to state and municipal entities and also borrow nearly a billion.

This of course means California will fall even further behind in its attempts to balance the budget. The deferred payments will have to be made eventually and interest on the borrowing adds more to the state’s debt load. And no one as yet knows how the budget will be balanced this year.

Ah but wait, on the horizon, could it be? Why yes, it’s a hitherto unexpected source of revenue. Facebook is going public and will IPO soon. Surely this must mean billions will be flooding into California coffers when all those dot com zillionaires cash out, right?

Pardon my skepticism, but I agree with Joel Fox of Fox and Hounds.

There is no certainty when or how much the IPO will bring in. Building budgets around an anticipated flood of revenue could put the state in the same fix as the current budget that was balanced on a supposedly miraculous new $4 billion in revenue that did not appear.

Those who work at Facebook and live in California may decide to hold onto their stock considering Gov. Brown wants to pass a temporary tax increase. Also, those privileged folks who receive shares at the IPO are often prohibited from selling them for several months. Many of the current owners of Facebook stock are hedge funds and the like, as well as the band U2 through their private equity firm. While I’m not a tax attorney, it seems doubtful that financial entities in other states or countries would have to pay California income tax on Facebook stock sales.

But that doesn’t stop state officials from cheerily saying the Facebook IPO could bring in a billion dollars. Maybe over a period of years it could. But even that is questionable. It’s also irrelevant because California needs the money now, not later, and is so underwater financially that even a billion dollars won’t help much.

That probably won’t stop perky estimates of this additional revenue being used to lower the budget deficit during the coming negotiations in Sacramento. The problem is, just like last year, the numbers are illusions. The money doesn’t actually exist and pretending it does just makes things worse. This refusal to accept reality is what is most troubling about California’s budget crisis.

I used to call this the Magic Revenue Fairy approach to solving the budget dilemma. When all seems lost, the fairy suddenly zooms in and sprinkles billions upon the state. All is well until next year’s budget crisis when it is discovered she was actually a cruel trickster who was sprinkling debt not money. But maybe a better name would be the Three Stooges Method of Governance. Desperate and clueless attempts to solve problems lead to even more unmanageable problems later on.

The Facebook IPO will not help balance the California in any meaningful way or even soon. That’s the reality.

Posted in News

Facebook’s new energy efficient datacenter

Robert Scoble tours the datacenter, which was built using Open Compute Project standards and best practices for energy efficiency.

One of the most significant features of the facility was that Facebook eliminated the centralized UPS system found in most data centers. “In a typical data center, you’re taking utility voltage, you’re transforming it, you’re bringing it into the data center and you’re distributing it to your servers,” explains Tom Furlong, Director of Site Operations at Facebook. “There are some intermediary steps there with a UPS system and with energy transformations that occur that cost you money and energy—between about 11% and 17%. In our case, you do the same thing from the utility, but you distribute it straight to the rack, and you do not have that energy transformation at a UPS or at a PDU level. You get very efficient energy to the actual server. The server itself is then taking that energy and making useful work out of it.”

To regulate temperature in the facility, Facebook utilizes an evaporative cooling system. Outside air comes into the facility through a set of dampers and proceeds into a succession of stages where the air is mixed, filtered and cooled before being sent down into the data center itself.

Saving 11-17% on power by redesigning how the UPS works is huge, as datacenters use enormous amounts of power. This not only green, it saves money too.

“The system is always looking at [the conditions] coming in”, says Furlong, “and then it’s trying to decide, ‘what is it that I want to present to the servers? Do I need to add moisture to [the air]? How much of the warm air do I add back into it?'” The upper temperature threshold for the center is set for 80.6 degrees Fahrenheit, but it will likely be raised to 85 degrees, as the servers have proven capable of tolerating higher temperatures than had originally been thought.

They also use large external fans for coolng rather than relying solely on fans inside the servers because external fans are more efficient.

The servers used in the data center are unique as well. They are “vanity free”—no extra plastic and significantly fewer parts than traditional servers. And, by thoughtful placing of the memory, CPU and other parts, they are engineered to be easier to cool.

This also makes the servers far easier to service, as parts are more out in the open.

Posted in Energy conservation

Facebook buys Drop.io, kills it

No word yet on whether drop.io technology will make it into Facebook, which may have wanted the developers not the software.

Posted in News

How Facebook works

Pingdom has a fascinating, detailed article on the software Facebook uses to run what is now the world’s largest website, much of which is open source.

How big is Facebook? They have half a billion active users, serve 570 billion page views a month, and over 1.2 million images a second.

Posted in News

Sea change. Facebook more popular than Google in US


Facebook reached an important milestone for the week ending March 13, 2010 and surpassed Google in the US to become the most visited website for the week.

Posted in News

Automate putting blog content onto social networking sites


How to get your blog content onto Twitter, Facebook, and Friendfeed using free services.

I had been using the excellent and free Twitterfeed to autopost to Twitter but just switched to WP to Twitter, a WordPress plugin. Here’s why. Twitterfeed reads the Polizeros RSS feed and takes about first 120 characters of new posts, adds a tiny URL, then posts it on Twitter. This often results in truncated posts that break in the middle of a sentence because everything has to fit into 140 characters. Sometimes the meaning isn’t clear, and plus it looks autoposted. With WP to Twitter, when I create the post for Polizeros, I tell it exactly what to post to Twitter. While this may take a little extra time, the result is that Twitter posts now are full sentences with no truncation and thus are much more understandable. I can also tell it not to post to Twitter, which can be handy.

Once a post is on a social networking site, you can configure other such sites to autopost from it. For example, I have Friendfeed configured to autopost from Twitter. (In fact, they both autopost from each other, and don’t duplicate content either.) One important thing. If I post to Friendfeed first, the link that the autpost to Twitter has will be the Friendfeed link, not original link to here. However, if I post to Twitter first, the Friendfeed autopost link will be Polizeros link. This is what you want. So post to Twitter first.

I also have Facebook configured so status messages (and nothing else) get posted to Friendfeed, then Twitter.

You can also use Posterous to post wherever you want via email. If I take a photo on my iPhone, then email it to facebook@posterous.com, it gets posted onto Posterous and also Facebook. It will repost to multitude of services.

TweetLater allows you to publish to Twitter in the future, say one post a day for two weeks, that sort of thing.

BTW, Google Profile is a great place to list all your sites as a reference for others. Here’s mine.

Posted in Blogging


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