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Monday, June 26, 2006

Do you Ebay snipe?

"Sniping" on ebay is to bid during the closing seconds of an auction in an attempt to win the auction by denying others time to out bid you. This method is extremely popular and I personally see it happen with most of my auctions. In fact, there are many programs that will even do the last minute bidding for you.

But just how effective is this method? USAToday has an article that shows, mathematically, that "it pays to snipe." Apparently a bunch of South Korean physicists did some research on this matter and concluded that:
...the probability of submitting a winning bid on an item indeed drops with each bid. "Our analysis explicitly shows that the winning strategy is to bid at the last moment as the first attempt rather than incremental bidding from the start."
So, the question is, do you ebay snipe to win auctions? I personally don't. If I see an item I want, I just bid the price I'm willing to pay and see what happens. However, since I hardly win any auctions, maybe my bidding strategy is severly flawed.

I'm curious, do any of you guys have a particular ebay bidding strategy you use? AND on the flip side, what about any particular selling strategies to counter ebay sniping?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Stuck at work and want updates on the World Cup?

I've been pleasantly surprised by how well the underdog teams have played so far. Trinidad and Tobago held out for an emotional undermanned draw. Togo (the lowest FIFA ranked team) managed to score, something France couldn't do in THREE games four years ago. Overall, it's been fun to watch.

However, since most of us are going to be at work while the World Cup matches are being played, watching the games on tv live will be tough. Instead I'll share some of the sites that I use to follow along with the live matches.

FIFA World Cup site
Duh.

New York Times World Cup Blog
A live blog as the matches are being played. Well written with fast and frequent updates. Interesting comments also.

BigBadBobby writes that you can get text message updates from this site:
"Check out 4INFO's World Cup Text Alerts. Send "world cup" or "usa" to 44636, or visit their World Cup page. At least you can get a text message after every goal."

Soccernet, espn, sportsline, etc, also have their own match commentaries.

One more thing, Fanuch shares a site with great downloadable spreadsheets and charts to keep track of all the results.

The two remaining games this afternoon are going to be interesting. I want to see if France can break free from their poor performance of last World Cup and if Brazil is as good as everyone thinks they are.

Friday, June 09, 2006

World Cup time!

Now that my CFA tests are done with (for now at least), I can focus my time and energy on important things like the World Cup. I'm very excited about this upcoming month of football and I think you should be too.

I spent my lunch break watching the second half of the Germany and Costa Rica game, and it was certainly time well spent. There were six goals scored, and Costa Rica managed to keep the game close.

I'll post again with some interesting articles I had saved about the World Cup. In case you were wondering, I'm cheering for England and Portugal!