Archive for the ‘Monkeys’ category

On Delivering the News of Acquisition


This is how you announce your company’s acquisition.

…and notify your staff:

From: Matt Rutledge (CEO –
To: All Woot Employees
Subject: Woot and Amazon


Other than that, we plan to continue to run Woot the way we have always run Woot – with a wall of ideas and a dartboard. From a practical point of view, it will be as if we are simply adding one person to the organizational hierarchy, except that one person will just happen to be a billion-dollar company that could buy and sell each and every one of you like you were office furniture. Nevertheless, don’t worry that our culture will suddenly take a leap forward and become cutting-edge. We’re still going to be the same old bottom-feeders our customers and readers have come to know and love, and each and every one of their pre-written insult macros will still be just as valid in a week, two weeks, or even next year. For Woot, our vision remains the same: somehow earning a living on snarky commentary and junk.


Biological market theory


Discovered this branch of science today via the TIME article Do Monkeys Pay For Sex? (How can you resist a link like that?)

Biological market theory applies economic theory to studies of behavior – in this case males trading grooming for sex with female Indonesian macaques (by the male macaques, not researchers… har), and how the grooming exchange rate decreased as the number of available females increased. Supply and demand. See the original paper by Michael D. Gumert, “Payment for sex in the macaque mating market“.

Update: 2009.10.22

NPR did a story for their Planet MonkeyMoney podcast about vervet monkeys in Africa demonstrating economic market behavior with grooming and access to apples. Yet another reason to recommend the Planet Money podcasts.

[image courtesy of wwarby]

It seemed like a good idea at the time


It was reported today that the deputy mayor of New Delhi was killed while trying to fend off a horde of marauding monkeys. That alone should be novel enough to pique interest, but what’s really fascinating is that apparently one of the city’s solutions to their chronic monkey menace “has been to train bands of larger, more ferocious langur monkeys to go after the smaller groups of Rhesus macaques.”

Slate offers these tips, should you find yourself in this sort of primate peril.

See also: Prison Offers Inmates Pole Vaulting Lessons