Archive for April, 2006

Google Finance II: rereview

April 25, 2006

After having used Google Finance (GF) for over a month, it’s time to share my opinions briefly.

Pro: Easy portfolio, Highly interactive graph, Integrated articles, Holistic company profile

Contra: Bad support for european markets, Beta status, Simple portfolio


1. Easy portfolio
I like its simplicity. This view enables seeing the portfolio status at a glance.

Google Finance
google finance portfolio ahold

Yahoo! Finance
yahoo finance portfolio ahold

People claim correctly that GF is lacking many features compared to Yahoo! Finance (YF). Personally, I don’t miss them yet. But I’m not an experienced YF user.

2. Highly interactive chart
The chart makes zooming in on past stock values really easy. A bit to my surprise, GF uses Flash for the graph.
(See the Con’s section for some critical remarks)

3. Integrated articles
google finance graph emagin

4. Holistic company profile
The company view shows stock quotes, company and management info, related companies, news, blog and forum articles and links to more resources all very accissible on one page.

yahoo finance company view emagin
Heavily clipped and cropped company view (click for complete image)


1. Bad support for european markets
Although the faq states that GF supports “international markets such as Amsterdam“, try searching for AEX.

For example, information on Royal Ahold, a large multinational listed at Euronext is outdated and inconsistent.

google finance ahold chart
Clipped and cropped chart for AMS:AHLN, screenshot d.d. 2006-04-24.

2. Beta status
Beta seems to be an excuse for some small flaws. Charts sometimes have a Y-axis starting with negative values. Possibly resulting from using a linear scale.
google finance chart negative axis
Negative value in Y-axis

3. Simple portfolio
Every disadvantage has its advantage. Simplicity has its values. But with a larger portfolio, it would be nice to be able to sort and group the contents into multiple portfolios.

The developers clearly left out functionality one would normally expect in a stock portfolio: no dates associated with the aqcuisition of your stock, your gains and losses are not tracked.

GF is still young, at this moment, a more demanding user will miss features at GF.

Please notify me of incorrect spelling and points I missed, it’s after midnight, too late to be bright minded.


The hardest way to make an easy living

April 18, 2006

Warning: links to two flash sites.

You can listen to Mike Skinner’s (The Streets) newest album The hardest way to make an easy living at A great service by VPRO, a Dutch public broadcasting organization.

the streets vpro luisterpaal

And if you’re into a ‘click here’ flash site, visit

Simple Artificial Intelligence project

April 15, 2006

Since today, I have my first Open Source project listed at Source Forge: simple-ai

The project gives you a simple 2D world for playing with Artificial Intelligent actors. It contains of a world with objects. And a simple game, pyRugby, demonstrating the use of this world. All built in Python, using pygame for visualization.

Suggestions are more than welcome!

Thanks to Richard for the UML assistance.

simple ai pyrugby rugby python