Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Can there be a version of the Airbus A320 aircraft called the R320 - powered by engines from Russia's Aviadvigatel?

I've always advocated that, as far as possible, Russia, Iran, China, etc., shouldn't purchase Western [especially American] passenger planes, so as to not send billions of dollars of their money to the West. But this isn't always possible - at least not until Russia's own Irkut MC-21 and CRAIC CR929 airliners are ready for prime time. Till then, Russian airlines like Aeroflot, S7, and Rossiya are forced to buy Western equipment.

Fine. But two steps should be taken to partially reduce the negative impact of this compulsory purchase of Western airplanes:
  1. Buy/prefer Europe's Airbus over America's Boeing. Better to buy A320s rather than Boeing's 737s. Why send billions to the most evil nation in mankind's history?
    1. Where possible, buy/prefer Bombardier or Embraer instead of A/B.
  2. Try to "Russify" the A320 by partnering with Airbus to produce a version of the A320 with Russian powerplants from Aviadvigatel [PS-90A2 and later PD-14]. To clearly distinguish it from the regular A320, call this one R320.
Why would Airbus agree to such a variant? The answer is orders and money. If Airbus can be convinced that by providing the R320, it can effectively shut out its main competitor Boeing from the Russian civil aviation market, there'll be ample financial and strategic incentive to make such a move. The A320 brand would remain untouched because the name R320 is sufficiently different. Further, if the Russian government or a Russian lessor asks Airbus for a few hundred R320s, Airbus probably won't be able to refuse such a large order for which relatively little customization might be needed [such a large single order will effectively be a pooling of smaller orders from various Russian airlines, collected into a single order placed by a single dominant entity, in order to increase the bargaining power of the buyer].

Update [28-Oct-19]: Something similar can be seen in this recent news story:

"The CJ-1000 is designed for the C919, but is expected to power the Boeing 737 or Airbus 320 or a similar newly built aircraft in the world market by 2025."

Is China thinking of eventually forcing Airbus and/or Boeing to exclusively use Chinese-made engines for the A320s and/or the 737s that are sold in China? This is within the realm of possibility, considering the size of the Chinese market. If China forces Airbus/Boeing to use a Chinese/Russian engine if A/B want orders from China, it'll dramatically reduce the stronghold that the West has on commercial aviation, by removing GE/Pratt/Rolls/Safran from the equation.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Given enough time, all videos on YouTube can get large-looking number of views, thus signaling quality to a user without actually having quality

Since YouTube shows aggregate number of views for every video, the total number of views can go in only one direction - upwards. After "enough" time [without defining the term], even mediocre videos can collect thousands or tens of thousands of aggregate views [the headline number that is shown in search results], thus falsely implying to a user [in many cases] that the video is of good "quality" [where quality refers to the video's pixel resolution in only a small part]. The screenshot below is from such a video - an overall useless video that makes you click it because it has several thousand views and you feel that it should be at least decent.

A possible solution to this problem is to be able to specify to YouTube that "Show me number of views for each video from the last two years only.", or something along these lines. Or you could ask YouTube to also show the "per day views" ratio for each video, so that normalization is possible [one video might be 10 years old, while the other could be only 10 months old].

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Under India's GST tax system, filing multiple returns monthly is too time-consuming - it's an unnecessary burden [COMPACTIDEA]

It would've been better if the government had kept tax returns to quarterly intervals - as before - rather than monthly. No real useful purpose is served by making returns monthly [will the government tomorrow ask us to file returns weekly?]. Workload has increased considerably. It's almost like the government disallowing a cheque of INR 10 lakh, and asking us to instead issue 10 separate cheques of 1 lakh each. What could've been filed once every quarter has to be filed three times each quarter. What's the point?

Instead of focusing on production, procurement, quality, sales, marketing, new product development, and infrastructure, businessmen are having to waste their precious time and energy on bureaucratic hassles introduced by the Indian government [the latest being E-Way Bill]. These ministers and politicians sitting in legislative buildings have zero idea of how a business or a factory is run, and yet they get to decide how everyone in India does business. Couldn't be sadder.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Chinese smartphone makers are co-branding their flagship devices with design houses such as Porsche Design or Lamborghini to compensate for low reputation of their own brands

Of course, BlackBerry did this much before [and BlackBerry already was and remains a high-reputation brand].

OPPO wants to sell high-priced and high-specifications phones [because that's where the margins are], but a rich man doesn't want to carry a device branded OPPO. Unless this OPPO also has the Lamborghini branding, to compensate for the "cheap" OPPO branding. Ditto with Huawei trying to sell high-priced flagship devices to the wealthy guys using Porsche Design branding.

Wednesday, August 01, 2018

Trade between US and Europe based on the theory of comparative advantage could be the reason why America is applying tariffs on imports from China

  • America desperately wants to "contain" China, just like it wanted to contain the Soviet Union, and just like it keeps trying to contain Russia, Iran and others.
  • Containing China isn't easy at all, primarily due to China's vast size and fast growth.
  • America knows that it needs Europe's help to contain China.
  • What if US and Europe joined forces in this pursuit, freely trading with each other [add America's vassal states, or so-called "allies" to the mix - Australia, New Zealand, Canada, UK, Japan, South Korea, and others], but excluding their adversaries/rivals [China, Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Russia, Sudan, Syria, Venezuela] from this free trade, thus creating huge mutual benefits for the gang as predicted by the comparative advantage theory [naturally at the cost of China and others]. America tells Europe - let us both drop all sorts of tariffs on each other's products and buy from and sell to each other and only each other [especially the buy from part, naturally]. Let us both impose tariffs on imports from China, so that China's exports are severely curtailed [by the way, these so-called tariffs are nothing but a form of sanctions cloaked under a different term that doesn't sound like "sanctions"]. What's more, not only are China's exports going to get hurt, foreign companies manufacturing goods in China both for the local market as well as for global export might want to shift elsewhere, thus hurting China even more.
  • Comparative advantage states that even if an absolute advantage exists for a particular country, the overall benefit and prosperity for everyone increases if this superior country focuses on producing only certain goods and lets the other(s) produce the other goods [and free trade takes place]. So, to stop China's exports/trade - which produces wealth and prosperity for China - it appears that America and Europe are banding together.
  • It's possible that imposing tariffs on both European and Chinese goods was just a calculated stunt by America. Maybe this was discussed with the Europeans. The Americans wanted to make it look like Donald "Madman" Trump is imposing tariffs on every country, but in reality, they were always going to remove tariffs on Europe, thus leaving the tariffs on only China, without giving the appearance ["optics"] that the tariffs were always only for China.