I was surprised that someone sent me PM asking me how I am doing in trading after a few years since I posted quite a lot of daily trades a few years ago in a series of experiments of trading ideas. Well, to be honest, I see trading is very hard. I still not yet make it. It is hard to beat my regular income as an engineer. But I found it is extremely fun to do TA(Technical Analysis) and built a whole TA tool set of my own. I learnt a lot of lessens. One of the biggest lessens is "Do not trust data", such as those you get from Yahoo Financial, and even NYSE directly for TA testing, is very deceiptive to use in backtesting, because there are many traps such as bogus day high and low and "out-of-band" trading, to betray your rosy strategy systems based on back-testing. So, you need to get "reliable" data (I did myself by using of a few of filtering processes). Too many lessens to list here. Good news is I started seeing a bright light in the tunnel. If this is a business to do, I believe I am at the turning point some where between phase 3 and 4 as shown in the Hype Cycle (see wiki for detail. enjoy ) ==================== A hype cycle is a graphic representation of the maturity, adoption and social application of specific technologies. The term was coined by Gartner, Inc. Rationale Since 1995, Gartner has used hype cycles to characterize the over-enthusiasm or "hype" and subsequent disappointment that typically happens with the introduction of new technologies. Hype cycles also show how and when technologies move beyond the hype, offer practical benefits and become widely accepted. According to Gartner, hype cycles aim to separate the hype from the reality, and enable CIOs and CEOs to decide whether or not a particular technology is ready for adoption. A longer-term historical perspective on such cycles can be found in the research of the economist Carlota Perez. Five phases Hype cycle for emerging technologies as of July, 2009 A hype cycle in Gartner's interpretation comprises five phases: 1. "Technology Trigger" Â¡Âª The first phase of a hype cycle is the "technology trigger" or breakthrough, product launch or other event that generates significant press and interest. 2. "Peak of Inflated Expectations" Â¡Âª In the next phase, a frenzy of publicity typically generates over-enthusiasm and unrealistic expectations. There may be some successful applications of a technology, but there are typically more failures. 3. "Trough of Disillusionment" Â¡Âª Technologies enter the "trough of disillusionment" because they fail to meet expectations and quickly become unfashionable. Consequently, the press usually abandons the topic and the technology. 4. "Slope of Enlightenment" Â¡Âª Although the press may have stopped covering the technology, some businesses continue through the "slope of enlightenment" and experiment to understand the benefits and practical application of the technology.