Eleanor Catton Is Youngest Winner of Man Booker With ‘Luminaries’ at 28; Catton is only the second New Zealander to win the award

Catton Is Youngest Winner of Man Booker With ‘Luminaries’


Eleanor Catton won the Man Booker Prize tonight with her second novel “The Luminaries.” At 28, she is the youngest author to claim the prize, and she does so with a book whose 832 pages make it the longest winner. Set during the New Zealand gold rush, Catton’s murder mystery overcame competition from the bookies’ favorite, Jim Crace’s “Harvest,” and four other finalists to capture the U.K.’s most prestigious literary award. She accepted the prize, which comes with 50,000 pounds ($80,000), at a black-tie dinner in London’s medieval Guildhall.

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Asia’s Waning Competitiveness Seen in Trade Disconnect: Economy

Asia’s Waning Competitiveness Seen in Trade Disconnect: Economy

Asia’s exporters are failing to benefit from a recovery in advanced nations, putting the onus on policy makers to shift reliance to domestic demand as a driver of economic growth. China’s exports unexpectedly fell last month, while overseas shipments from Taiwan and South Korea also declined. Asia’s export-led growth engine is showing “signs of serious defects,” according to Frederic Neumann, Hong Kong-based co-head of Asian economics at HSBC Holdings Plc, who says the region’s trade data has disappointed over the past couple of years and may be evidence of a loss in competitiveness. The region’s export recovery is faltering even as Europe emerges from its longest recession on record and U.S. manufacturing (NAPMPMI) grows at the strongest pace in more than two years. The International Monetary Fund this month lowered its forecasts for growth in developing Asia for 2013 and 2014 while leaving projections for advanced nations unchanged. Read more of this post

IMI Sells Dispenser Arm to Berkshire Hathaway for $1.1 Billion

IMI Sells Dispenser Arm to Berkshire Hathaway for $1.1 Billion

IMI Plc (IMI) agreed to sell its beverage and snack vending machine business to Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/A)’s Marmon Group for about $1.1 billion in cash to focus on industrial valves and fluid control systems. IMI’s announcement that it would explore options for its merchandizing unit prompted Marmon to make an approach, the Birmingham, England-based company said in a statement today. Shareholders will receive 620 million pounds ($991 million) of the proceeds, with an additional 70 million-pound pension contribution, it added. The disposal is a landmark transaction for Martin Lamb as he prepares to step down as chief executive officer at the end of the year, after 13 years in the role. He’s betting that focusing on equipment for offices and control systems for chemical plants will help IMI tap demand for energy efficiency. “The disposal of Retail Dispense is a major step for IMI,” Lamb said in a statement. “It positions IMI as a highly differentiated, market leading flow-control business focused entirely on industrial-end markets.”  Read more of this post

Hong Kong Home Prices to Fall Up to 25%, Bank of America Says, bringing prices back to the level around 2011, but even at that, many people would still find it difficult to buy properties

Hong Kong Home Prices to Fall Up to 25%, Bank of America Says

Hong Kong home prices will fall as much as 25 percent from their peak as housing supply increases and the possibility of rising interest rates grows, according to Bank of America Corp.’s Merrill Lynch unit. Prices will drop 5 percent this year and another 15 percent in 2014, Raymond Ngai, a property analyst, told reporters at a briefing in the city today. He declined to give forecasts beyond 2014. UBS AG said yesterday that it expects prices to decline 5 percent in 2013 before dropping 15 percent to 20 percent next year. Read more of this post

South Korea Sees Won-to-Bond Risks as U.S. Impasse Adds Stress

South Korea Sees Won-to-Bond Risks as U.S. Impasse Adds Stress

South Korea warned of risks of volatility in the won and stresses within the nation’s bond market as the U.S. grapples with the threat of a default that could roil the global economy. Prolonged tension over U.S. fiscal policy adds to the danger of increased volatility in financial markets, the finance ministry said in a report prepared for a parliamentary audit today. Bond issuance by companies with low credit ratings may wither, the report said, amid a criminal probe and financial crisis at the Tong Yang Group. Read more of this post

Billionaire Masayoshi Son on Buying Spree as SoftBank Chases Growth

Billionaire Son on Buying Spree as SoftBank Chases Growth

A day after SoftBank Corp. (9984) said it was buying a majority stake in gamemaker Supercell Oy, billionaire Chairman Masayoshi Son is at it again. Japan’s third-largest wireless carrier is in talks to buy a stake in Brightstar Corp., a U.S.-based mobile-phone distributor, the company said in a filing to the Tokyo Stock Exchange. The Nikkei newspaper earlier reported the deal could be worth more than 100 billion yen ($1 billion). Read more of this post

Japan politics looms over ANA’s choice between Airbus, Boeing

Japan politics looms over ANA’s choice between Airbus, Boeing

12:56am EDT

By Tim KellyWilliam Mallard and Tim Hepher

TOKYO/PARIS (Reuters) – When Japan Airlines Co broke with decades of tradition by buying long-haul jets from Europe’s Airbus rather than U.S. rival Boeing Co, it informed the Japanese government by email without any prior warning. The deal, worth $9.5 billion at list prices, was a major blow for Boeing, which holds more than 80 percent of Japan’s commercial-aviation market and has been intertwined with U.S-Japan diplomatic relations since shortly after World War Two. Read more of this post

E-Cigarette Marketing Seen Threatened by FDA Scrutiny

E-Cigarette Marketing Seen Threatened by FDA Scrutiny

The $1.5 billion U.S. electronic-cigarette industry has tripled sales this year with the help of TV ads, Nascar sponsorships and product giveaways. Government regulation may now threaten those marketing tactics. The Food and Drug Administration is set to decide this month whether to lump e-cigarettes in with conventional smokes as part of its oversight of the $90 billion U.S. tobacco market. Such a step would set the stage for greater restrictions on production, advertising, flavorings and online sales. Read more of this post

Forcing Yourself To Think Positively Can Actually Hurt Productivity

Forcing Yourself To Think Positively Can Actually Hurt Productivity

VIVIAN GIANG OCT. 15, 2013, 7:01 PM 1,104

If you’re naturally a pessimist, thinking positively will only hurt you professionally. In general, most people assume that happier people work better, outperforming their unhappier colleagues, writes Wharton professor Adam Grant in his LinkedIn post. “We think it’s a good idea to encourage people, but not so fast,” he writes.  Surprisingly, both pessimists and optimists perform at the same rate, but their strategies for attaining success are different. Optimistic people set high expectations and benefit from confidence, whereas pessimistic people set lower expectations but their anxiety and negative thinking push them to try harder, according to a series of studies published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. The study says that “positive mood impairs the performance of defensive pessimists.” “The encouragement boosted their confidence, quelling their anxiety and interfering with their efforts to set low expectations,” Grant says. “When they’re in a good mood, they become complacent; they no longer have the anxiety that typically mobilizes their effort. If you want to sabotage defensive pessimists, just make them happy.”

Adam Grant

Wharton professor and author of GIVE AND TAKE

The Positive Power of Negative Thinking

If you want to achieve a major goal, conventional wisdom says to think positive. Picture yourself delivering the perfect presentation, and absorb the energy of the audience. Envision the ideal job interview, and imagine yourself on cloud nine when you get the offer. Although these strategies sound compelling, it turns out that they often backfire. Many of us are more successful when we focus on the reasons that we’re likely to fail. Read more of this post

Prince Frog Falls by Most on Record After Short Seller Glaucus Report

Prince Frog Falls by Most on Record After Short Seller Report

By Vinicy Chan  Oct 15, 2013

Prince Frog International Holdings Ltd. (1259) plunged by the most on record after short-seller Glaucus Research Group questioned the company’s sales and branded the baby-care products maker a “strong sell.” Prince Frog shares were halted in Hong Kong trading today after dropping as much as 26 percent to HK$4.66, headed for the biggest decline since its July 2011 listing. The Chinese government’s tax records indicate Prince Frog’s net income is “a fraction of reported figures,” Glaucus said while initiating coverage of the shares at “strong sell.” Queenie Hung from Wonderful Sky Financial Group, Prince Frog’s public relations company, declined to immediately comment. The company, based in southern China’s Fujian province, will issue a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange later today, she said. China Minzhong Food Corp. (MINZ), China Metal Recycling Holdings Ltd. and China Medical Technologies Inc. have each separately been the focus of reports by Glaucus. Liquidators were appointed to China Metal in July and China Medical filed for Chapter 15 foreign-firm bankruptcy protection in New York last year. Ten of the 11 analysts covering Prince Frog recommend investors buy the stock, while one rates the stock a hold, Bloomberg data show. The stock is still up 43 percent so far this year, compared with a 2.6 percent gain for the Hang Seng Index.

To contact the reporter on this story: Vinicy Chan in Hong Kong at vchan91@bloomberg.net

Concern grows at Chinese companies’ bad debts

October 15, 2013 5:39 pm

Concern grows at Chinese companies’ bad debts

By Henny Sender

Offering credit appears seductive, but the reality for investors is grim

Concern about Chinese companies’ bad debts is mounting. But, at the same time as these worries surface, a group of US, Hong Kong and Chinese investment concerns has decided that lending money to them is still an attractive business. Although China has just agreed to let UK-based institutions invest up to Rmb80bn (£8.2bn) in Chinese securities, opportunities to provide equity capital to Chinese companies remain scarce. Read more of this post

How Silicon Valley limits your thinking

How Silicon Valley limits your thinking

ON OCTOBER 15, 2013

People often point out the “anything is possible” spirit of Silicon Valley, but there’s a downside to the constant talk. For those still searching for their true calling, or even just an opportunity that resonates with them, the entrepreneurial buzz is both distracting and surprisingly narrow. I saw this firsthand when my intern recently asked me, “How does a person find their professional path? Silicon Valley is a very confusing place to do that I’ve come to notice. I’m realizing how much more confusing Silicon Valley makes it with all the ‘do what you love’ …and incredible speed at which everything goes.” Read more of this post

King of the lock-up garage: Rodger Dudding has built an empire from unglamorous property

October 15, 2013 4:59 pm

King of the lock-up garage

By James Pickford


Rodger Dudding and his classic car collection, which was largely financed by his lucrative lock-up business

Rodger Dudding is pulling back from his business. “I’m winding down – I’m only working seven days a week,” he says. The hyperactive 75-year-old, dressed in a black pinstripe shirt with monogrammed cuffs, would have every justification to shift down a gear. Over a long career he has accumulated personal assets of £150m by building an empire in an unglamorous but increasingly valuable corner of the property market: lock-up garages. Read more of this post

John Casella, the man behind Australia’s second biggest wine exporter, has urged the wine industry to focus on innovation as he slammed critics who blame his winery’s Yellow Tail label for undermining premium wine sales abroad. Casella toasts billionth Yellow Tail

John Casella slams critics of his cheap Yellow Tail wine

PUBLISHED: 15 OCT 2013 19:48:00 | UPDATED: 16 OCT 2013 08:29:32



John Casella, the man behind Australia’s second biggest wine exporter, has urged the wine industry to focus on innovation as he slammed critics who blame his winery’s Yellow Tail label for undermining premium wine sales abroad. Casella Wines, founded by Mr Casella’s parents Filippo and Maria in 1969, has bottled its one billionth bottle of Yellow Tail and is embarking on a fresh shake-up of the wine market to tap new profit streams through the release of products such as a pre-mixed Sangria and sparkling sauvginon blanc. It is also preparing to enter the fast growing cider market with its beer joint venture partner Coca-Cola Amatil, through a new cider called Pressman.

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Fast 100 lesson: Tyro has always been ‘culturally strong’, now it’s also profitable – it’s not a coincidence; “We have professionals here who are very talented and the worst thing you can do is deprive them of trust, autonomy and creativity”

Leo D’Angelo Fisher Columnist

Fast 100 lesson: Tyro has always been ‘culturally strong’, now it’s also profitable – it’s not a coincidence

Published 16 October 2013 11:55, Updated 16 October 2013 14:54



Jost Stollmann of Tyro. Photo: Steven Siewert

For years Jost Stollmann, the chief executive of eftpos services start-up Tyro Payments, considered success to be survival. A good year was breaking even. Amidst the intense pressure of taking on the major banks in their own back yard, Stollmann was determined to build a culture at Tyro that would ensure the company’s long-term success. “This is a culturally strong company,” he says. His proudest boast is that Tyro is a “very hierarchy-averse” business that “fosters enduring creativity and productivity”. “Where does hierarchy help you? It doesn’t. The opposite is true. Hierarchy is a system based on distrust, it is averse to learning,” Stollmann tells BRW. “Peer culture is conducive to learning; hierarchy is not.” Read more of this post

Regrets, they’ve had a few: what the Fast 100 would have done differently

Ben Hurley Reporter

Regrets, they’ve had a few: what the Fast 100 would have done differently

Published 16 October 2013 11:31, Updated 16 October 2013 12:28

Every entrepreneur has regrets. And, like failure on the course to success, regrets should be celebrated as wisdom is gained. So here are some gems from this year’s BRW list of Fast 100 companies, which will be announced in full at an event in Melbourne this evening. Common themes are that companies wish they had been more strategic from the start rather than bogged down in the minutiae of running the business, invested more of their scarce funds in marketing and hiring great staff, outsourced more functions to allow them to focus on their core skills, and taken more external money and advice. Easily said of course, but food for thought. This last theme of taking more money early is pertinent, because 60 per cent of the Fast 100 say they were founded with less than $50,000, most of it from savings. And three-quarters have not raised additional rounds of capital. Would they be bigger today if they had?

Read more of this post

How An 11-Year-Old Convinced Abraham Lincoln To Grow A Beard; There are more portraits of Lincoln’s face in existence than any other face in the world

How An 11-Year-Old Convinced Abraham Lincoln To Grow A Beard

PAMELA ENGEL OCT. 15, 2013, 9:47 AM 1,466 1

On Oct. 15, 1860 — 153 years ago today — 11-year-old Grace Bedell wrote a letter to Abraham Lincoln suggesting he grow a beard for the presidential election. Bedell said in her letter that Lincoln may be more attractive to ladies if he had a beard: “I have got 4 brothers and part of them will vote for you any way and if you let your whiskers grow I will try and get the rest of them to vote for you. you would look a great deal better for your face is so thin. All the ladies like whiskers and they would tease their husbands to vote for you and then you would be President.” Lincoln wrote her back, and days after the election, he decided to grow a beard, according to The New York Times. His response, according to records in the Library of Congress: “As to the whiskers, having never worn any, do you not think people would call it a piece of silly affectation if I were to begin it now?” Although Lincoln seemed unsure of Bedell’s advice initially, he eventually orchestrated a meeting with her after he was elected and told her he had taken her advice. There are more portraits of Lincoln’s face in existence than any other face in the world, according to the Times.

screen shot 2013-09-16 at 9.23.38 am abraham lincoln no beard

LeBron’s Brilliant Response To The Idea That He Doesn’t Have A ‘Killer Instinct’ Like Michael Jordan

LeBron’s Brilliant Response To The Idea That He Doesn’t Have A ‘Killer Instinct’ Like Michael Jordan

TONY MANFRED OCT. 15, 2013, 3:43 PM 9,341 3

There’s a great interview with LeBron James in the newest ESPN The Magazine. He talks a lot about Michael Jordan. At one point, ESPN’s Chris Broussard asks him about the popular notion that he doesn’t have a Jordan-like “killer instinct.” The consensus among some NBA fans is that MJ was one of the most maniacally competitive people ever, whereas LeBron is a weaker personality. LeBron’s response to that is absolutely brilliant and self-aware. He makes an analogy to wild predatory animals — saying there’s more than one way to kill. Here’s what he told ESPN: Read more of this post

What makes a perfect employee

Updated: Tuesday October 15, 2013 MYT 12:44:50 PM

What makes a perfect employee


Branson: ‘The idea perceived as most profitable should be given an opportunity to be seeded, watered and grown!’

I HAVE a group of friends who often joke about what makes the perfect “employee” – the yes-man; the one who doesn’t fight very hard for promotions or remunerations, takes on extra work based on empty promises and is afraid to venture out of the company in fear that no one would “appreciate” them as much elsewhere. These remarks were, of course, made with the underlying message that our perfect employee friends should be more courageous to venture into something on their own. Needless to say, these jokes are made by the entrepreneurs in our midst who have it set in their minds that they would not work for another entrepreneur again. These courageous friends of ours have definitely braved the seemingly scary world of not having a constant stream of income, having an endless stream of profitable ideas, and absolutely enjoy not having any anxiety about year-end appraisals! Read more of this post

Glimpses of Shiller, Through the Years

OCTOBER 15, 2013, 6:00 AM

Glimpses of Shiller, Through the Years


Robert Shiller struggled mightily to choose a major when he was a college student at the University of Michigan in the 1960s. He took so many long walks around Ann Arbor trying to decide among the academic fields that intrigued him – economics, journalism, law and others – that he eventually injured his foot and had to see a doctor. Almost 50 years later, with Mr. Shiller among the three Nobel laureates in economics announced Monday, his wandering academic eye helps to explain his success. Far more than most economists, he has borrowed from other fields, especially history and psychology, to do research with obvious relevance for everyday life. Read more of this post

The Nobel committee is muddled on the nature of economics; The term ‘rationality’ lacks relevance in a world characterised by imperfect information

October 15, 2013 1:40 pm

The Nobel committee is muddled on the nature of economics

By John Kay

The term ‘rationality’ lacks relevance in a world characterised by imperfect information

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences continues to astonish the public when awarding the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics. In 2011 it celebrated the success of recent research in promoting macroeconomic stability. This year it pays tribute to the capacity of economists to predict the long-run movement of asset prices. Read more of this post

Raise your glasses to the craft brewers; Thousands of young breweries – as well as established family concerns – are fighting back

October 15, 2013 5:05 pm

Raise your glasses to the craft brewers

By Luke Johnson

Thousands of young breweries – as well as established family concerns – are fighting back

Ifrequently meet worried participants in the media industry, and thank my lucky stars I mostly make my living from food and drink. The stability of the sector – compared with the turmoil in newspapers, thanks to digital upheaval – is a great comfort. Indeed certain industries, such as the brewing trade, appear to be coming full circle and reverting to a structure that prevailed at the start of industrial capitalism. For this, entrepreneurs must be grateful: it enables us to compete against the multinationals, and resist the relentless trend towards consolidation and oligopolies. Read more of this post

Indonesia businessmen of troubled London-listed miner Bumi links buy 70% stake in Inter Milan for €300m

October 15, 2013 4:54 pm

Indonesia businessmen buy 70% stake in Inter Milan

By Rachel Sanderson in Milan and John Aglionby in London

A majority stake in Italian football club Inter Milan has been sold to a trio of Indonesian businessmen led by media tycoon Erick Thohir, becoming the latest well-known Italian brand to cede to foreign control. The long-trailed deal sees Mr Thohir and Indonesian businessman Rosan Roeslani and Handy Soetedjo take a 70 per cent stake in Inter Milan through a capital increase of an undisclosed amount. Read more of this post

These are not the customers you are looking for, Herbalife edition

These are not the customers you are looking for, Herbalife edition

Dan McCrum

Oct 15 12:20 | 7 comments | Share



There is something weird about the way that Herbalife has been responding to questions about its customer base. Faced with a barrage of scrutiny over the claims from Bill Ackman that it is a pyramid scheme, and as Herbalife has insisted that it is legitimate, it has turned to market research companies to show that it has plenty of real customers. That seems strange when you consider what each salesperson is required to do in terms of record keeping. Here is the 2011 version of the form that a distributor (direct selling jargon for a salesperson) has to fill in and sign every single month that he or she wants to receive commissions and sales bonuses from Herbalife (click to enlarge). Read more of this post

New York Times: The Opulence of Singapore

December 16, 1984


Barbara Crossette is chief of The New York Times’s bureau in Bangkok. By Barbara Crossette YOU KNOW,” SAYS FRAN cis Siah Ooi Choe, smiling, ”we still get Americans over here thinking we live under mosquito nets and ill-treat the workers.” At his new plant in Singapore’s Kallang Bahru industrial complex, Mr. Siah controls what has become a multimillion-dollar empire built on plastic bags. On the rooftop of the plant are a swimming pool, squash courts, sauna, massage rooms, game rooms, bar and cafeteria – all at the disposal of Mr. Siah’s factory workers. Read more of this post

The Fallacy of Success

The Fallacy of Success  OCT 10 2013


In a book called All Things Considered published in 1915, G.K. Chesterton deftly skewers the glut of books by gurus, articles linked to from Hacker News, and conference talks by entrepreneurs about how to be successful.

That a thing is successful merely means that it is; a millionaire is successful in being a millionaire and a donkey in being a donkey. Any live man has succeeded in living; any dead man may have succeeded in committing suicide. But, passing over the bad logic and bad philosophy in the phrase, we may take it, as these writers do, in the ordinary sense of success in obtaining money or worldly position. These writers profess to tell the ordinary man how he may succeed in his trade or speculation-how, if he is a builder, he may succeed as a builder; how, if he is a stockbroker, he may succeed as a stockbroker. They profess to show him how, if he is a grocer, he may become a sporting yachtsman; how, if he is a tenth-rate journalist, he may become a peer; and how, if he is a German Jew, he may become an Anglo-Saxon. This is a definite and business-like proposal, and I really think that the people who buy these books (if any people do buy them) have a moral, if not a legal, right to ask for their money back. Nobody would dare to publish a book about electricity which literally told one nothing about electricity; no one would dare publish an article on botany which showed that the writer did not know which end of a plant grew in the earth. Yet our modern world is full of books about Success and successful people which literally contain no kind of idea, and scarcely any kind of verbal sense. Read more of this post

What Supercell’s $1.5B deal means for mobile, global gaming, and Finland

What Supercell’s $1.5B deal means for mobile, global gaming, and Finland

ON OCTOBER 15, 2013

Finnish mobile gaming company Supercell, maker of “Clash of Clans” and “Hay Day,” has just announced that it has sold 51 percent of itself to Japan’s SoftBank and GungHo, a fellow game maestro, for $1.5 billion. The deal values Supercell, a 130-person company (last time we checked) that is headquartered on a single floor of a Helsinki skyscraper formerly occupied by Nokia, at more than $3 billion. Here are the basics, before we get into some analysis:

Softbank and GungHo, maker of “Puzzles & Dragons,” have set up a company in Finland that will own the 51 percent stake.

Co-founder Ilkka Paananen will remain CEO, and the company will continue to operate independently.

Every Supercell employee is getting a share of the cash. Read more of this post

Technopreneurship and the Early Stage Ecosystem in China in 2013

An overview of China’s tech and startup ecosystem in 20 slides

October 16, 2013

by Paul Bischoff

We came across this slideshow put together by Beijing-based Innovation Works partner Chris Evdemon yesterday. It’s one of the best summaries of China’s early stage tech landscape I’ve ever seen.  Evdemon covers where China is in 2013, where it’s going, and what it needs in 20 slides. If you want to educate yourself or someone else in less than half an hour, then take a look. It has pictures! Here’s a few major points:

Mobile is huge in China with Android as its central play. Chris believes that the next few billion dollar companies will probably be Android-focused.
Web and mobile penetration is growing ridiculously fast along with the upper-middle class. Chinese internet culture must be understood to capitalize on it.

Freemium is very China and the world has a lot to learn from her. Chris drafted up an interesting  ”hierarchy of needs” for Chinese gamers, claiming that Chinese game industry could pull in four times more ARPU than the US.

Despite having lots of venture capital money in China ($7 billion as Chris wrote), there are very few angels in China. China needs more early-stage investment and startup-friendly services.

Why we invested in LinkedIn nine years ago; An early LinkedIn investor looks back at his firm’s original decision

Why we invested in LinkedIn nine years ago

October 15, 2013: 12:50 PM ET

An early LinkedIn investor looks back at his firm’s original decision.

By David Sze

FORTUNE — The best early-stage venture capital investments appear obvious in retrospect, however very few of them are actually obvious when you make them. In fact, we reviewed our process at Greylock and discovered that the best investments are non-obvious enough that they result in a mixed vote by our partnership. Such was the case with LinkedIn (LNKD) nine years ago. Read more of this post

How Google Figured Out How To Make Money

How Google Figured Out How To Make Money

OCT. 15, 2013, 2:56 PM 3,511 3

The idea that made Google the world’s greatest search engine was all Larry Page and Sergey Brin.  But the idea that set it on the path to becoming the world’s greatest company wasn’t theirs originally. It was borrowed, with some key modifications, from their biggest early rival. In September 1998, Page and Brin founded Google based on an algorithm called PageRank that they had developed as Stanford Ph.D. students.  Other search engines ranked pages based on the relevance of the text they contained, which allowed spammers to game the system by filling their pages with commonly searched keywords.  Read more of this post

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