Bengt Richter bokr at
Fri Sep 12 19:57:46 CEST 2003

On Thu, 11 Sep 2003 13:58:53 -0400, mertz at (David Mertz) wrote:

>jjl at (John J. Lee) wrote previously:
>|Pearson and O'Reilly owned by a single company, or something?  I have
>|a vague recollection that Pearson owns some other companies...
>There's been a huge amount of consolidation in publishing.  Pearson is
>not the parent of Addison-Wesley, Longman, Benjamin Cumming, New Riders,
 ^^^-- assume you mean "now"

>Peachpit, Cisco Press, Prentice Hall, SAMS, Que, and several more
>imprints.  It's really a rather bad thing, although they do not seem to
>use the degree of ideological acid-test that, say, MediaCorp
>acquisitions do.
>I started writing my book for AW, only to find it a Prentice book when
>it was published (it still has the AW imprint, but the meaning seems
>That said, I'm pretty sure that O'Reilly remains one of the few
>independent publishers of technical books.  I think Manning is also.
[OT] So instead of a distributed implementation of business, with no
individual way of making billion dollar mistakes, the consolidation
centralizes control and makes billion dollar mistakes both possible
and survivable, and therefore more probable. And if one of these
titanic dinosaurs starts faltering, it is so socially disruptive that
tax payers have to provide survival insurance one way or another.
Evolution at work ;-/

[really OT]
Factoids: Iraq 2002 per capita GDP: ~$2,400. Iraq population: ~24.7 million.
$87bn if distributed to all Iraquis: ~$3,500. per capita. And that's just
the new increment. Sorry. Just trying to get a concept of what these numbers
mean. Or could have meant. (E.g., if you wanted to put 100 tourists on each and
every square mile of Iraq at the same time, with $87bn you could give every tourist
a ~$5,000. travel budget to do it). (87e9/168e3)/100 => 5178.5714285714284)
It would be interesting to compare the effects of the expenditure alternatives
if it were possible. IMO tourism would have been a lot more fun (and good for
airlines too). I suspect peaceful expenditures have more business multipliers
in them, not to mention what happens in people's minds if they can enjoyably meet
as humans rather than agents of some extraneous worry ;-) (Ok, let's not get into
the logistics of sending 16.8 million tourists with $5k each at the same time
to one country ;-) Besides that's only $84bn. We have $3bn in roundoff to spare ;-)

Bengt Richter

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