2010 Nissan GT-R still a stunner, just a little less sexy….

Now you might be thinking how on earth can we possibly say that the Godzilla of Japanese automobiles be any less appealing then its predecessors. Well it comes down to the simple fact that the ridiculous supercar performance it delivered had to be taken down a notch. In the 2009 models in order to achieve 0 to 60 acceleration in 3.2 seconds you had to disengage the stability control (VDC). You would then proceed to rev the engine to 4400 RPM and with help from an automated clutch drop you would enjoy the mightiest G’s that were only usually reserved for cars costing at minimum of $150,000. Considering that the GT-R was toasting cars more than six times it’s cost was quite amazing. Well unfortunately sometimes too much of a good thing is well, dangerous. Especially if you’re a $20,000 gearbox.

Many GT-R owners were learning the hard way that accelerating off the line like you’re being filmed for the latest installment of the Fast and Furious franchise and the mechanical damages caused by such shenanigans would NOT be covered by Nissan. You break it, you buy it. No doubt a firestorm of angry owners claimed ignorance and Nissan had no choice but to introduce features that would protect the new GT-R owners from themselves.

In all new 2010 models in order to accomplish your best acceleration time (regardless of VCD being engaged or not) the engine would now rev to a max of 3000 RPM and will blast you off to 60 in 3.8 seconds. Yes that’s right you’re losing a huge 6/10th’s of a second. This is nearly analogous to dating a Victoria’s Secret super model and then down grading to a Playmate of The Year. That’s a joke, it still rocks and it’s something most of us would nearly kill someone for. Alright, maybe just a serious beating. Okay okay, a harsh verbal berating.

Sure you’re no longer 1/10th of a second faster than an Enzo. Yes the new ZR-1 now holds both Nurburgring as well as short distance dominance over your head, who cares? In the end you’re still at the wheel of one of the most respected (feared) pieces of automotive art in the world. Let’s also not forget that you’re still going to be able to spank nearly anything (stock) on the road today and you paid a hell of a lot less to do it to boot.

Prospective Nissan GT-R owners accept your fate but fear not, should you burn a $20,000 clutch Nissan will pick up the tab. (Probably)

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Tiger Woods Affair – Was He Betrayed By His Inner Circle?

We’ve never covered a celebrity involved in sex scandal but we’ve discovered something a bit more interesting. It’s being reported that Tiger Woods is linked to three different women. Rachel Uchitel, Jaimee Grubbs and Kalika Moquin. There’s speculation that Tiger has been in a “relationship” with at least one of these women for more than two years. Tiger has recently admitted that he “regrets those transgressions with all of my heart”. That’s not exactly admitting anything. No doubt over the next couple of weeks Team Tiger will be formulating a plan to attempt to keep his pristine billion dollar image from being tarnished as much as possible. What he’ll admit to remains to be seen. Gossip magazines and even more mainstream publications are already plastering this story on their covers. The three women mentioned above might certainly come forward and open up about their alleged affair with the highest earning sports athlete in history.

In doing some general research we stumbled upon something very interesting. In the last week there have been a number of domains that have been registered since the original story broke involving Rachel Uchitel (pictured below left). Many are combinations of Tiger’s name and the story. TigerWoodsScandal.com, TigerWoodsAffair.com and of course all three women involved in the stories have their name matching domains taken. Which truthfully is surprising especially in the case of Jaimee Grubbs. Ms. Grubbs seems to want some kind of career in entertainment, she’s appeared on “VH1’s Tool Academy”. It’s surprising that an aspiring entertainer/actress wouldn’t have secured her name months if not years ago.

Rachel Uchitel

Out of all of the domains that we discovered the one that was the most interesting by far is TigersGirls.com. (UPDATE: WARNING THE FOLLOWING DOMAIN IS NOW POINTING TO A PORNOGRAPHIC LANDING PAGE) Why is this domain so interesting you ask? Well it was registered nearly two years ago on January 17th, 2007. It was registered with private whois information, meaning it’s somewhat untraceable. So why and better yet who exactly would want to register that particular domain as far back as 2007?  The name itself seems to imply that Tiger had “girls”, meaning more than one with whom he might have had transgressions with back then. If I had to guess I would have to say that this seems more likely to be someone within Team Tiger. Perhaps a jealous golfing peer? I would imagine that the PGA tour is just as much a gossip filled boys club as some male dominated companies.

Still if I had to put money on it, I’d say it was someone close within his personal circle. Someone who has known about Tiger and his “transgressions” for some time. Someone who knows that eventually every celebrity cheater gets caught. Someone who might be thinking about possibly publishing a book perhaps. “Tigers Girls”, what a great title! No doubt a tell all story about Tiger and the women who he’s brought back to his den (please forgive the pun) would sell millions of copies. You might even be able to speculate that Tiger’s introduction to Jaimee Grubbs might have been a well-calculated move by an insider. I’m quite sure that no one gains access to Tiger without going through some screening process. After all, of the three women who are being linked to the golf superstar she seems to be the only one who is documenting it by saving voicemails and text messages.

Well if I were Tiger I’d act quickly on trying to first find out who exactly registered this domain. Second I’d move even more quickly there after to take the domain away (via WIPO) from this possible conspirator. It’s an unfortunate situation that he has put himself and his family in. Only time will tell if his marriage can survive this scandal.

UPDATE: Since discovering that TigersGirls.com points to an advertisement for a pornographic site we’re doing our best to track down who exactly owns this domain.

TigersGirls.com

ImageShack.us shells out big for ImageShack.com

Back in January ImageShack.us paid an undisclosed sum to Steven Baxt to aquire the domain name ImageShack.com. Ownership of the domain name changed hands on the 20th of that month. ImageShack attempted to obtain the domain via WIPO in 2005 but  were denied. At the time of the transaction the domain had 35,000 unique visitors a month. We wrote an article that described an unamed start-up that was attempting to enter a market where they’re fighting multiple eight hundred pound gorillas with an obscure company name and a .us domain extension. It’s not necessary to have a category killing domain, but it certainly helps. I would say that in most cases you should secure the .com (or at least the .net) extension of your company name. 95% of the time if your company takes off you’re going to end up paying for it anyway. Most likely it will be a much higher premium.

ImageShack continues to use the .us extension as their url address.

 

 

Our 2009 MLB MVP Award Predictions

Last year we did fairly well in our predictions. We were surprised with Dustin Pedroia’s selection. He was our favorite but we thought that it might be going to Josh Hamilton. This year the MVP race in both leagues is pretty cut and dry.

Let’s start with the NL. Pujols. Really need I say more. He’s batting .331 with 124 Runs, 47 HR, 135 RBI, 185 Hits and tied a career high with 16 stolen bases. It’s like another day (season) at the office for this guy. He’s a dead lock, no question.

That being said, if Pujols ws playing in the AL well then Ryan Braun would be my pick. The kid has batted .318 with 111 Runs, 31 HR, 111 RBI, 19 Stolen Bases and he’s collected 200 hits, the only person to do so in the NL. If he wasn’t blessed with having to bat ahead of Prince Fielder he might have a few more RBI’S as well.

Honorable Mentions: Ryan Howard and Prince Fielder, they have nearly identical statistics. .295 40+ HR 140+ RBI, tons of strike outs. Also worth mentioning, Matt Kemp. Guy nearly joined the 30/30 club while leading the Dogers to the playoffs.

Our Pick: Pujols

Probable Winner: Pujols

The American League race is being more debated but in reality Joe Mauer is going to walk away with it pretty easily. The Gold Glove catcher (that’s important to note) is on his way to his third batting title in four years. He’s batting .365 with 91 Runs, 28 HR, 96 RBI and nearly 200 hits. Oh and he missed nearly 20 games with an early season injury. The guy is just clutch and he’s been the driving force on the Twins in their race for the playoffs this season. He’s making the biggest contribution both at the plate and on the field for this team, that says a whole lot about this guy.

Derek Jeter is having a career year at 35, kudos. Derek’s batting .333 with 107 runs, 18 HR, 66 RBI, 30 stolen bases and second in the league with 210 hits. He also broke Lou Gherigs record for most hits by a Yankee. All that said, he’s playing on a loaded line up and wouldn’t have had as much success without it. I think that statistically comparing like numbers, Carl Crawford is more deserving than Jeter.

Honorable Mentions: Carl Crawford, batted .300 with 15+ HR, 97 Runs, 70 RBI, 185+ Hits and 60+ stolen bases.  Miguel Cabrera, another natural. .325 Avg, 100 Runs, 30+ HR, 100+ RBI. Oh and let’s no forget the two surprises from Toronto. Adam Lind and Aaron Hill. Both put up similar numbers, roughly .300 average 35+ HR, 100 Runs and 100+ RBI neither one steals any bases and that’s for the Blue Jays! Get those guys on the Red Sox, whoa then you’ll really see some production.

Our Pick: Mauer

Probable Winner: Mauer

BusinessWeek sold off @ Fire Sale Price!

Bloomberg L.P. said Tuesday that it will acquire BusinessWeek magazine from McGraw-Hill  for an amount rumored to be in the neighborhood of $2 to $5 million. Recently there had been speculation that it might be sold off for $1 (yes, one dollar) in a deal that would be similar to the one that was negotiated between Macrovision and Open Gate Capital for TVGuide. We’re going to investigate to try to find specifics on the liabilities that Bloomberg might be taking on with this deal. Interestingly the online unit is most likely the real asset in the deal. BusinessWeek.com has more than five million unique visitors each month according to Compete.com

For any media publisher the website has great value. If an investment firm had bought out the publication there’s a very good chance that 80% of the staff would be let go. You could simply outsource your online ad sales to a broker and then keep some of the exsisting sales staff on board for the print sales.

Sadly this is where all print publication is heading. This is purely speculative but I might consider reducing news stand distrubution down to 20% and cut subscription prices by 80% and focus on online ad revenue. Reward loyal readers, try to gain new direct subscribers from the website and stop the bleeding. Otherwise there’s only so many companies that will be able to be rolled up and hope to survive.

Obama Wins Nobel Peace Prize!

President Barack Obama has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. More news on this to come. Fox News should be all abuzz for the next week or so…

The Nobel Committee has awarded it to President Obama for “his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and co-operation between peoples”.

There were a record 205 nominations for this year’s prize.

The honor was voted on by a five member panel, awards a gold medal, diploma and 10m Swedish kronor ($1.4 million dollars)

“Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world’s attention and given its people hope for a better future,” the Norwegian committee said as the prize was announced.

“His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world’s population.”

Mike Arrington of Techcrunch Is Afraid Of The Truth.

Mike Arrington recently posted a glowing testimate to Cash 4 Gold. It seemed as if he did little to no actual investigation into their business practices or the investigation by Consumer Reports. He got a lot of criticism in the comments so many in fact that he felt it was necessary to write a follow up explaining why he’s right and that after researching Cash 4 Gold he finds nothing wrong with their business practices. In fact he thinks that most of the negative comments were from haters essentially jealous of such a wildly profitable business.

Uh huh. Well we tried posting a follow up comment. In it we basically pointed out that according to the report from Consumer Reports C4G doesn’t pay anywhere close to the 50% of spot price that they like to claim. Like in this recent press release. In fact they only offered Consumer Reports 10 to 15% of the spot price for the gold that they sent in. Mike didn’t like that.

Mike claims that he digs deep when preparing a post about a business. We simply pointed out that it didn’t seem like he did. We also pointed out that we morally object to a business claiming to offer top dollar for a persons valuables and then not delivering on that promise.

We also pointed out that Techcrunch seems to be the only (non paid) publication (online or print) that has done a profile of Cash 4 Gold that hasn’t mentioned some of the controversy around them. We like reading TC, we just feel that Mike rushed this article out without any real objectivity and obviously doesn’t like it being pointed out in his publication.We also said that his financial data seemed incorrect based on figures released by C4G and that overall his article seemed to be nothing more than a puffed up PR piece handed over to him by his “inside source” at C4G. Our post was quickly deleted. Well he’s got the right to censor comments that he doesn’t like.

Only time will tell if the other posts will stay put.

Mike Arrington

mike4