Your stock market idea is interesting, however it wouldn't work well at all and would destroy the entire pro scene. If you check http://dotabuff.com/heroes/played you'll see the list of most played heroes and their win rates. The heroes who most likely need buffs will be at the bottom of that list. In a stock market simulation you would have people bidding on their favorite (popular) hero or against their most hated (popular) hero. Heroes like Invoker who have a 40% pub win rate are actually balanced for pro players with a 50% win rate. Given the popularity of invoker and the low win rate, we could expect a good amount of buffs causing the pro-metagame to shift to invoker being #1 pick.
It's not exactly pure PR/propaganda, but it's definitely the most consumer-oriented of IEEE's publications. I'd place it somewhere between mags like Popular Mechanics and full-on topic-specific engineering journals. I actually find it quite good in general, though I don't like reading about war tech; I'm sure the U.S. military pushes hard to get stories in it. And most people don't realize that most technology follows a military->big business->everyday consumer path.
Which is why anyone who is not completely narcotized realizes self-driving cars won't be hitting the suburbs until they're thoroughly deployed in the military and internal to big business. So we are being duped in the way that our daydreams are supporting research that we'll be the last ones to enjoy... just look at the internet and cellphones. The military and big business had them for decades before "us".
One of my issues is that this article discusses the Zumwalt's main failures as being too 'avant-garde' where it was a classic example of a jack of all trades, master of none. The whole ship was supposed to have swappable 'mission packs' that would let it do anything while being stealthy, fast, cheap, modern etc... The article has a very pro-Zumwalt / Bath Iron works (mentioned several times) spin to it. The EM Briefcase was written by the president of the company cited in the article (Metatech). It sounds a lot like PG's suits essay.
Most of the comments against it here are in this same line. If the concept of NoScript even vaguely makes sense to you, or you've even heard the words "window manager" together, you're probably not the target audience.
I'll admit that most of these things (especially no settings) would make it a no-go for me, but I can definitely think of some relatives that I would love to stick on it and then not have to worry about them again.
It seems like DDG is positioning itself to become WolframAlpha for tech. Hopefully, this will allow it to better catch the exact market segment that would be wary of search engine tracking (educated tech-savvy people).
While it may be too expensive to have it made entirely by a craftsman the US, if you're up to the challenge you can join a woodworking shop and learn how to build it. It will certainly take more time but you will get a more complete experience than simply designing it.
It can be run lazily in two ways: first, you can lazily add detail (ie, render down to a specific level of detail and postpone the rest); second, you can lazily build grid blocks out to the horizon (eg, for walking around a terrain first-person). So detail vs size laziness.