Sunday, December 17, 2006

Where I've Been

I know I've dissappeared recently, at least as far as this blog is concerned. I've been reflecting. I've also been making plans. But first, I think you should know on what I've been reflecting. As a few estitute readers have mentioned, I can be a little hard on myself from time to time. I have quite a lot of drive and desire to be the best, yet I know I'm new to trading and therefore am the worst I will ever be. That's the good news. The bad part is that it can be a bit frustrating & discouraging.

I have not been placing trades (not even virtual) for the past couple weeks. Why not? Good question. It's not that I'm that discouraged, it's just a matter of me wanting a better trade journaling platform in order to get quantifyable, objective results. I was using Trade Tracker Online ( to journal my trades, but the free 30 day period expired. I was introduced to TTO by Jordan Stokes. It's a decent trade journaling/tracking program and I was excited to use it because I haven't found any other worthwhile pieces of software or services out there for trade journaling.

As you know from reading my previous posts, keeping a trade journal is an essential habbit of a professional trader. I started with free-form text & chart captures (in Microsoft Word) but now find it too limiting because it lacks an easy way to quantify the trades. I can also maintain a spreadsheet with my entry & exit numbers and get some basic metrics of my success rate. Unfortunately that means entering the data twice. I don't know about you, but I hate double data entry, not to mention the fact that this still only offers a very broad indication of the results of your trades. Trade Tracker Online does a much better job by offering a platform which helps you evaluate a trade and record entry, stop adjustments, profit taking & exit. This avoids double data entry, and gives you the benefit of looking through your journal for you best & worst trades helping you to fine-tune your trading rules and trading style.

As you may recall, I'm a computer programmer and naturally I'd already been mentally designing a trade journal database. Initially when I saw Trade Tracker Online I thought: Cool! A solution that I can put to use today, rather than having to spend the time to develop my own. After all, my goal is to be a professional trader, not a computer programmer or database designer. I've been programming professionally since the turn of the century and I'm a little bored of it. Trading is more interesting to me, not to mention that the income from trading is scalable based on the amount of money you have in your trading account, not on the amount of hours you can sell of yourself in a given day (assuming you're an employee or contractor, of course).

As nice as Trade Tracker Online is, it doesn't offer the level of insight that I'd like to see. I have some very specific ideas of how to create a better trade journaling platform and have assembled a team of programmers to help me create my vision. I don't want to give away too much about what we're developing before it's ready for public release, but it will provide a trader with far more insight than anything else out there that I've seen. I'm very excited to be creating this solution and can't wait to tell you more about it. Until it's finished with the phase 1 release I won't have time to be trading. It is a related discipline though, and I won't be far from the markets.


Anonymous said...

Did you ever look into optionsxpress's virtual trade?

Anonymous said...

Mark, find a better group to teach you to trade. PLEASE.

CAPE CORAL, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 21, 2006--Whitney Information Network, Inc. (OTCBB:RUSS) announced today the resignation of Richard O'Dor, Director, Corporate Communications for the Company. Mr. O'Dor resigned after Management of the Company learned that Mr. O'Dor had made a misstatement to the press without the knowledge of, or authorization by, the Company, regarding the reason for the termination of Rance Masheck, Vice President, Sales and Marketing of EduTrades, Inc. (a subsidiary of the Company), which was announced on December 19, 2006. Mr. Masheck was terminated due to the fact that his trading records do not substantiate claims which he made, and which the Company broadcasted publicly, regarding his trading success. The Company discovered this fact during its internal investigation related to both the grand jury investigation by the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia, which was announced by the Company on December 15, 2006, and the investigation and subpoena by the Securities and Exchange Commission, which was announced by the Company on November 20, 2006.

Anonymous said...

I'm a subscriber at, and I really enjoy it. It makes the sucky task of journal much easier, and they regularly post new features. I am interested in having more reporting capability, though.

How much time will your solution take to develop? I know you're trying to keep things under wraps, but why would I want to switch? Theirs is up and running, and they add new stuff all the time. What if their programmers come up with the same stuff first?

Anonymous said...

IB has its own simulated trading platform and it's great, so there's no compelling reason to use optionsxpress.

I've been talking to traders who have used Tradestation for program trading and that looks like something that will help confidence and help gain some statistical knowledge/edge. Good luck with that!

Anonymous said...

Hi Mark, I was/am grateful to you for taking the time to chronicle your experiences. I'm just getting started with TMTT myself, and am very exited and confident about the whole thing.

I haven't got the habit yet of keeping a journal, so for now I will check out Trade Tracker, but I will keep checking back to see what you are up to.

Anyway, I hope things are going well for you, and keep a positive outlook. If you believe it will work, it will. If you don't... ;)

Take care