Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: How I Trade for a Living (Wiley Online Trading for a Living)
Authors: Gary Smith
I was intrigued by this book's title. I am not a day trader, and have no plans to become one; however, I still gained some insights into Gary Smith's success by reading this volume:
1) Self-knowledge. Mr. Smith did not enter day trading for the glamour. He treats it strictly like a business. He comes across as a person with a solid inner core, perhaps gained by many years of contemplation during his early, lean years. His reading list appears to have something to do with this; he remarks [p. 231] "Looking at my massive collection of trading books, my friend commented about all the money and time I had wasted accumulating this stash of books since, obviously, they had done me no good. Fast forward 21 years, and my friend is still searching for his opportunity to get rich, while my trading account is closing in on $700,000...I believe reading as much as you can about trading and the stock market is part of the process of becoming a successful trader yourself."
2) Persistence. Mr. Smith endured many years of treading water before he began to consistently make money - the first 19 years of his 36-year career so far. This of course was initially fueled by passion, following his reading of Nicolas Darvas's "How I Made Two Million Dollars in the Stock Market" at age 14. Smith's initial passion had many years of follow up, such as [p. 197] "[During the 1960s], while most of my fellow students spent their free time partying or debating and protesting the Vietnam War...I could be found at the local stock brokerage office. There, sitting next to veteran traders in their seventies and eighties, I watched excitedly as the stock quotations rolled across the large ticker tape..."Smith even persisted during heartbreaking periods in the 70s when his first marriage apparently broke up (details obscure) and he spent time "working at menial and low-paying jobs, such as being a security guard".
3) Prudence. Despite many years of not being a whopping success, Smith was careful enough not to wipe out totally for a number of years, unlike Matthew Katzman of "A Sucker's Diary". Risk control takes many forms so I advise you to read the book to understand the full spectrum of what he was doing. However, I think the most important underlying risk control he undertook was not overspending in his personal life. Even in his later, flush years he describes himself as "frugal", having "perfected the art of living below my means." Leaving the West coast and moving to "cave-and-cow country of south central Kentucky" probably helped this.
4) Learning A Trade. After initial false starts Smith hit upon a second career as an insurance investigator. Up until quite recently his living expenses were completely paid by his investigative work, leaving his trading capital untouched.
5) Rigor. Smith's methods are too complex to describe here in any detail. After many years of losses, he forced himself to look at all of his prior trades and discover the reason for each loss, and formulate ways not to lose money the next time. Smith also read Rick Pitino's "Success is a Choice" and became very disciplined about how he spends his time, cutting out self-sabotaging behavior like "never roll[ing] out of bed for the early morning West Coast openings." He systematically developed trading methods that are so robust that they (surprise!) do not require the use of a computer or internet access. His methods also appear to be adaptable, judging by the nuanced language he uses for many of his "rules" and when to break them.
I have no idea how Gary Smith has been doing since he completed this book around August 1999 (I am curious), but I was so impressed by his overall attitude towards his profession that I wouldn't be shocked if he was doing just fine.
Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Core Servlets and JavaServer Pages, Vol. 1: Core Technologies, Second Edition
Publisher: Prentice Hall PTR
Authors: Marty Hall, Larry Brown
I have read many books on servlets and JSP, but this is the one I will be sure to keep. I used it to learn when I first started, and I continue to use it as a reference as a Java programmer now. Thanks Marty!
Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Mastering Windows 2000 Server
Publisher: Sybex Inc
Authors: Brian M. Smith, Doug Toombs, Mark Minasi
This book is great! There are plenty of other books that might have more technical information, or perhaps cover specific subjects in greater detail. However when it comes to overall, general books about the major topics one needs to master in order to administer a Windows 2000 Server, well this book is simply the best. It is written in an easy to read manner while not compromising the wealth of information presented.
If you're into reading nothing but technical details, or are interested in a few specific topics, then this book might not be for you. However if you're like the rest of us and need a book that is both fun to read and provides all the major necessary information you'll need to help you run your W2K server, then this is the one.
Product: Book - Paperback
Title: 5S for Operators: 5 Pillars of the Visual Workplace (For Your Organization!)
Publisher: Productivity Press Inc
Authors: Hiroyuki Hirano
This book is layed out in a basic, easy to use format that makes it effective for shop use. I found it more appropriate than several other publications for use with my mixed management/hourly implementation team.