Who Are Bankers Anonymous Readers? July 2013 Edition

hFB76FDE1Here I continue my ongoing analysis of Big Data to determine profiles of Bankers Anonymous readers, which I previously did based on May and June statistics from Amazon.com.

Readers of Bankers Anonymous in July 2013 mostly stuck to personal finance and Wall Street finance books, which makes perfect sense to me.  I’ve been focusing on these myself.

One reader bought a copy of 25 Myths You’ve Got to Avoid – If You Want to Manage Your Money Right, by Jonathan Clements, which I heartily endorse, and another reader (possibly the same one?) bought The Only Investment Guide You’ll Ever Need, by Andrew Tobias, which I also recommend highly.

The other books purchased include ones I’ve not yet read, so I’m pleased to see what else I might like to try next.

One clearly superior reader purchased Voltaire’s Micromegas, which is described as:

[A] short story by the French philosopher and satirist Voltaire. It is a significant development in the history of literature because, along with Voltaire’s story “Plato’s Dream”, it is a seminal work in the genre of science fiction.

The tale recounts the visit to Earth of a being from a planet circling the star Sirius, and of his companion from the planet Saturn.

In short, it looks awesome.

I’m sorry to say nobody purchased any Zubaz pants this month, but I do recommend them highly at least based on the product reviews to go with them.

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Who are Bankers Anonymous Readers? June 2013 Edition

Stinky is the new bald

Last month I introduced my secret use of Big Data to describe Bankers Anonymous readers.  If readers click on a link to Amazon through my book reviews, any purchases they make get tracked by Amazon – and I get credited with an ‘advertising fee.’ [1]

This past June 2013, based on the purchase of an additional 30 items, I can now describe the evolving readership on this site: Definitely still nerdy, but odiferous has replaced bald as the personal hygiene problem du jour.

The most popular purchase on Amazon last month was 25 Myths You’ve Got to Avoid – If You Want To Manage Your Money Right, which I reviewed and quite liked.  Although written in the late 1990s, Jonathan Clements’ advice proves correctly evergreen as well as pleasingly contrarian.

I was frankly disappointed to see a reader order the video edition of Cloud Atlas.  First of all, just to briefly and obnoxiously be that guy, the book is always better than the movie.  Second, Cloud Atlas the book is one of the coolest books I’ve read in the last ten years, while the movie prompted the author David Mitchell to try, at least twice in the New York Times, to tactfully distance himself as much as possible from the movie without completely alienating his movie makers, the Wachowski siblings.  So, even though I didn’t see the movie, I have a hunch it was bad.  Also, while David Mitchell book reviews fall outside the scope of Bankers Anonymous, his Black Swan Green and The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet will mesmerize you.

Bankers Anonymous readers continue to care overwhelmingly about finance and spreadsheets, which I appreciate, as they bought 3 copies of Master Math, that I reviewed earlier, one copy of Simple Wealth, Invitable Wealth (my favorite personal finance book so far!) as well as an online course on Excel spreadsheets.

Further locking down the nerdy demographic, one reader bought a favorite board game The Settlers of Catan.  In a related news item, in my neighborhood, most people just refer to me as “The Lord of All Catan.”

I am pleased to report that safety matters for my readers, as one purchased a Master Lock 3 Digit Combination Gun Lock.  The good news is that this lock “fits many handguns, rifles, and shotguns.”  Other good news includes the fact that my home address is nowhere listed on this website.

I have a sense, however, that personal hygiene will remain the most important insight gained from my Big Data review of Amazon purchases by readers.

This past month one reader purchased Essential Lemon Oil, Therapeutic Grade.  This sounds relaxing.

A reader, or a pair of readers, purchased two bottles of Lysol Neutra Air, Fresh Scent, which is how I know that stinky has become a problem, in June 2013, among Bankers Anonymous readers.

Purchases you should make

Still, nobody has clicked through Bankers Anonymous to Amazon to purchase the Hutzler 571 Banana Slicer.  What are you waiting for?  Your banana slices are all totally uneven.

Finally, nobody has yet purchased the Mizuno Women’s Wave Rider 16 Running Shoe, made famous last week by Wendy Davis’ filibuster in the Texas Senate.  Read the comments and be inspired to run for 13 hours straight.



[1] I made $18.97 in June, 2013.  Nope sorry, ladies, see this ring?  Still happily married.

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Data Analysis: Understanding Bankers Anonymous Readers

Data, Data, Everywhere, but Not a Thought to Think.

We live in a data-rich, analysis-poor world.

What do I mean by that?

TEDtalk-type folks tell us we create more data every moment than we know what to do with, that the data created in just the last 10 years overwhelms the data generated in the previous millennia of human existence.

The goal of thinking people, therefore, is not data-creation or even data-collection, but rather data-analysis.  How do we separate the signal from the noise?  How do we discover and connect disparate pieces of data to form a coherent narrative?  We have all this information, but what does it all mean?


Information, and revenue, collected by Bankers-Anonymous.com

You probably don’t know this already, so let me blow the lid off of a rich vein of data currently being collected by Bankers Anonymous, largely under the radar.

For your convenience, I’ve linked all my book reviews – positive and negative – to pages where you can buy those books on Amazon.com.

At the same time, when you do buy something from Amazon.com after clicking through Bankers-Anonymous, I receive a small percentage of the sales revenue as an advertising affiliate of Amazon.com.

In the past year Bankers Anonymous readers have purchased 160 items with a total retail value of $2,403.72.  As a result, in the past year of running Bankers Anonymous, I have earned $145.28 from referral fees.[1]

This information is not meant as disclosure – although you might as well know – and not even to encourage you to buy things on Amazon.com via Bankers Anonymous as a way of showing your appreciation for my attempts to amuse and inform – although you might as well do that too.

Instead, this means that after a year of tracking Bankers Anonymous readers’ purchases online, I can now definitively describe the profile of a B$A reader.

The Bankers Anonymous reader profile, based on your purchases

Based on my analysis of the rich vein of Amazon data, I’ll tell you what kind of person you are: Bald and nerdy.

Only one reader made a beauty product purchase in the past year.  That beauty need?  Baldness.

Amazon data shows a B$A reader purchased a 3-month supply of easy-to-use foam Rogaine for Men, Hair Regrowth Treatment, 5% Minoxidil Topical Aerosol.

So with that one purchase – 100% of the beauty purchases over the past year – I can definitively say that baldness is the silent aesthetic tragedy that stalks Bankers-Anonymous readers.

How do I deduce the nerdy part?

By far the biggest set of purchases made by readers are finance books, including a book on math for science and business that I reviewed last month.

The nerdiness doesn’t end there but is amplified by other purchases, such as one for doing magic tricks with math, interpreting financial statements, and how to do Jiu-Jitsu.  Seriously, a book on Jiu-Jitsu?
[2]  Are you getting the picture here?[3]

But that’s not the final set of data; the sartorial choices of Bankers Anonymous readers seals the deal.

One reader bought a pair of men’s Dockers, flat front pant.  Another reader (maybe the same one?) purchased Calvin Klein 3-Pack Boxer Briefs.  Most importantly, I’ve collected referral fees for three separate purchases of Gold Toe Men’s Canterbury Over the Calf Dress Sock, Navy, 3-Pack, Sock size 10-13.

It turns out my Bankers Anonymous readers are exactly like me, but somehow out there in the world.  I can’t express how comforting this is.

Anyway, here’s my promise to you, the Amazon.com-purchasing readers of Bankers Anonymous.  If you keep clicking through and buying stuff to generate the data, I will continue to analyze the data and reflect back who you are, exactly, in the months and years to come.[4]

 Banana Slicer

[1] Yeah, that’s right ladies, $145.28 – but sorry, I’m married.  And fellas, don’t hate on me because I stack mad chips.  You don’t think this Hyundai pays for itself do you?


[2] I don’t know where to begin.  But first of all, in The Matrix, Neo learns Kung Fu, first.

[3] Upon seeing that particular data point I couldn’t shake the image of John Cusack in Better Off Dead, meeting his in-laws.  “Kick-boxing?  It’s a new sport, but it’s got a great future.”

[4] I was slightly disappointed to find no purchases of the Hutzler 571 Banana Slicer.  Can some reader please pick that thing up?

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