· Naughties
· · 2006
· · · October
· · · · 04 (3 entries)

Practical Transparency · A few days ago, our CEO Jonathan Schwartz sent a let­ter to SEC Chair­man Christo­pher Cox call­ing for SEC financial-disclosure reg­u­la­tions to al­low for pub­lish­ing ma­te­ri­al fi­nan­cials on the We­b. It’s ob­vi­ous­ly a good idea, but there are some im­ple­men­ta­tion is­sues. (Hey, I’m an en­gi­neer, I can’t help it.) ...
Transparent Business · I spent a cou­ple of fas­ci­nat­ing hours Tues­day at a round ta­ble host­ed by the Unit­ed States Se­cu­ri­ties and Ex­change Com­mis­sion. The sub­ject was In­ter­ac­tive Da­ta, a term which is hard­ly self-explanatory but re­al­ly means “Business Transparency”. This in the same week that Jonathan sent a let­ter on the same sub­ject to SEC Chair­man Christo­pher Cox, who was al­so around the table. Mr. Cox and the SEC are def­i­nite­ly on the right track; I ex­pect bumps in the road, but there’s a chance that Ac­count­ing As We Know It could be blown up. Which would be a good thing; and not just be­cause Open Source is creep­ing in ...
Web Hacking With Real Money · Look­ing for some new da­ta for your next mash-up? How about play­ing with re­al mon­ey? The U.S. Se­cu­ri­ties and Ex­change Commission’s In­ter­ac­tive Da­ta Ini­tia­tive has an RSS feed of com­pa­ny fi­nan­cial fil­ings; not just the tex­t, but in a highly-structured XML for­mat called XBRL. I glance at the feed this morn­ing and see da­ta from ADP, Dow Chem­i­cal, Moli­na Health­care, Xerox, GE, In­fos­ys, 3M, Bris­tol My­ers Squib­b, and lots more. XBRL isn’t the world’s eas­i­est for­mat to grok; that’s part­ly be­cause the for­malisms that gov­ern ac­count­ing are non-trivial in the ex­treme. But I’m quite sure there are for­tunes to be made by peo­ple who com­bine hack­ing chops with fi­nan­cial savvy, and fig­ure out how to au­to­mate dig­ging in­sight out of this data. Of course, in most gold rush­es, the best busi­ness an­gle is sell­ing tools and en­ter­tain­ment to the min­er­s; so there is ob­vi­ous­ly more than one way to work this ter­ri­to­ry. And a great big tip of the hat to the SEC for get­ting this stuff on the air.
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