Egalitarian Home Prices by State

Through a chain started at information aesthetics I happened upon a list of average and median home prices at Trulia.

First thing I wondered was, what’s the egalitarian factor?

Egalitarian factor?

Well, if the average price is way, way higher than the median price, you gotta figure that a few big numbers pull the average up, leaving the median as a better indicator of intuitive price. So, divide the median by the average and you have a number that goes up as the prices are more egalitarian. Don’t you?

Here are the results for today’s numbers:

State                Factor Average  Median

District Of Columbia   1.15  627362  720000
Iowa                   0.84  180103  150500
Nebraska               0.82  182592  150000
Wisconsin              0.82  241716  198000
Virginia               0.72  459543  329900
Washington             0.71  430707  305950
New Hampshire          0.70  371624  259500
Alaska                 0.67  315929  210700
Maryland               0.64  496329  320000
Ohio                   0.64  209321  133358
Minnesota              0.63  311943  196812
Kentucky               0.63  213286  134500
New Jersey             0.62  549482  342000
California             0.61  737454  452000
Nevada                 0.61  511755  309995
Illinois               0.59  386626  230000
Louisiana              0.59  279841  165000
Pennsylvania           0.59  305138  179900
Oregon                 0.59  416287  244900
Rhode Island           0.58  457480  265000
Delaware               0.56  426997  237000
Arkansas               0.55  222335  123000
Massachusetts          0.55  563596  310000
Texas                  0.55  265163  144900
Hawaii                 0.54  963770  522000
Arizona                0.54  459513  248229
Alabama                0.53  272234  145000
Georgia                0.53  323621  172000
New York               0.52  666838  350000
North Dakota           0.52  169117   88600
Florida                0.52  454882  236000
Oklahoma               0.51  206465  106000
Tennessee              0.51  261497  132500
Colorado               0.50  475910  240000
Michigan               0.50  246792  123192
Maine                  0.49  316602  155300
West Virginia          0.47  223331  105000
South Dakota           0.46  222642  101700
Vermont                0.42  377453  159355
North Carolina         0.41  330054  136149
Missouri               0.39  218186   84624
South Carolina         0.38  340385  129900
Connecticut            0.37  707500  260000
Mississippi            0.34  241566   82700
New Mexico             0.34  374934  127503
Montana                0.31  485158  151300
Indiana                0.31  204847   63655
Kansas                 0.30  197649   59044
Utah                   0.26  501207  129000
Wyoming                0.23  569040  130702
Idaho                  0.21  413325   85000

So, there is it, folks. DC is the most egalitarian “state”. In fact, you really must wonder about a place where the average is apparently pulled down by a few small numbers. Maybe there are a few houses in DC that people have paid a lot of money to get rid of. Not, mind you, the White House. Anyway, it’s interesting that the US government bureaucrat states of DC, Maryland, and Virgina are near the top of the list. Do such states disproportionately use apartments for low-end housing, taking the low numbers off the stats?

Some other interesting things in this list:

1) Washington state is pretty high on the list. Notice that I’ve ordered the list egalitarian-on-top.

2) The state names are colored by median price. Higher price, more red, less blue. And the reverse. I think that in a country where people are free to live where they want, it makes sense that the high end places are more “egalitarian”, even if there were not arithmetic reasons for this.

2) What’s with Kansas? Neighbors Iowa and Nebraska are similarly low priced and at the top of the list, but Kansas is at the bottom. Are a few rich people building houses in Kansas (can you say “Montana” or “Idaho”)?

10 million dollars 10 years from now

Jury duty tomorrow, so I was daydreaming about patents.

Why, yes, jury duty and patents are related.

The daydream featured a rather nice “Moore’s Law Patent.”

What’s a Moore’s Law Patent?

A Moore’s Law Patent is a sillypatent (one word, that) for a device that would not sell or be used at all, now, because, for instance, it would cost $100,000 – which is far, far too much for what it does.

Wait 10 years. Now it’s $1000, off the shelf. Another 5 years and it’s $100. And, if the device’s cost is subject to Moore’s Law, it’s likely to be dependent upon software, which will be far more powerful and cheap after that 10 years.

At that time, if the device is a good idea, someone will make a business out of it. Maybe a very large business. Which will make the patent a good thing to have. … For the patent holder.

No innovation is needed. Just extrapolate with common sense and/or look what’s being done now, “in the lab”. That’s the essence of a “Moore’s Law Patent.”

OK, here is the patent that ties together jury duty and patents:

A computer controlled system that helps lawyers vet prospective jury members. This system suggests questions to ask and listens for and understands the answers. And the system advises the lawyer/user which people to consider for the jury and which to keep off the jury. The system uses artificial intelligence logic in a novel way to arrive at its advice. And, the system pools collaborative information with all other compatible systems – one embodiment, in real time, another not – to automatically improve the logic.

The interesting questions are:

  • Can such a system be built today to run on hardware that costs from $100,000 to a million dollars?
  • Could such a system be developed today for 1 to 10 billion dollars?

If so, score!

Work the numbers.

We’re talking about a $1000 device in 10 years. Easily affordable for a lot of trial lawyers – say 100,000 of ’em in this country alone. These lawyers would have an incentive. Wouldn’t a client with a lawyer who doesn’t have the device wonder whether he, the client, is truly, fairly represented by competent counsel?

Budget to build: $10,000,000 to $100,000,000 10 years from now.

And, if there were 100,000 lawyers buying this thing every year (updates would be important), and if the device cost those lawyers each $2000, then the device’s manufacturer would be raking in $100,000,000 per year, gross. Not a bad ROI.

A business like that will not blink when you show up with your patent and ask for a measly $10 million.

Reader, take the idea and run with it. It can’t miss.