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Why Osana takes so long? (Programmer's point of view on current situation)

I decided to write a comment about «Why Osana takes so long?» somewhere and what can be done to shorten this time. It turned into a long essay. Here's TL;DR of it:
The cost of never paying down this technical debt is clear; eventually the cost to deliver functionality will become so slow that it is easy for a well-designed competitive software product to overtake the badly-designed software in terms of features. In my experience, badly designed software can also lead to a more stressed engineering workforce, in turn leading higher staff churn (which in turn affects costs and productivity when delivering features). Additionally, due to the complexity in a given codebase, the ability to accurately estimate work will also disappear.
Junade Ali, Mastering PHP Design Patterns (2016)
Longer version: I am not sure if people here wanted an explanation from a real developer who works with C and with relatively large projects, but I am going to do it nonetheless. I am not much interested in Yandere Simulator nor in this genre in general, but this particular development has a lot to learn from for any fellow programmers and software engineers to ensure that they'll never end up in Alex's situation, especially considering that he is definitely not the first one to got himself knee-deep in the development hell (do you remember Star Citizen?) and he is definitely not the last one.
On the one hand, people see that Alex works incredibly slowly, equivalent of, like, one hour per day, comparing it with, say, Papers, Please, the game that was developed in nine months from start to finish by one guy. On the other hand, Alex himself most likely thinks that he works until complete exhaustion each day. In fact, I highly suspect that both those sentences are correct! Because of the mistakes made during early development stages, which are highly unlikely to be fixed due to the pressure put on the developer right now and due to his overall approach to coding, cost to add any relatively large feature (e.g. Osana) can be pretty much comparable to the cost of creating a fan game from start to finish. Trust me, I've seen his leaked source code (don't tell anybody about that) and I know what I am talking about. The largest problem in Yandere Simulator right now is its super slow development. So, without further ado, let's talk about how «implementing the low hanging fruit» crippled the development and, more importantly, what would have been an ideal course of action from my point of view to get out. I'll try to explain things in the easiest terms possible.
  1. else if's and lack any sort of refactoring in general
The most «memey» one. I won't talk about the performance though (switch statement is not better in terms of performance, it is a myth. If compiler detects some code that can be turned into a jump table, for example, it will do it, no matter if it is a chain of if's or a switch statement. Compilers nowadays are way smarter than one might think). Just take a look here. I know that it's his older JavaScript code, but, believe it or not, this piece is still present in C# version relatively untouched.
I refactored this code for you using C language (mixed with C++ since there's no this pointer in pure C). Take a note that else if's are still there, else if's are not the problem by itself.
The refactored code is just objectively better for one simple reason: it is shorter, while not being obscure, and now it should be able to handle, say, Trespassing and Blood case without any input from the developer due to the usage of flags. Basically, the shorter your code, the more you can see on screen without spreading your attention too much. As a rule of thumb, the less lines there are, the easier it is for you to work with the code. Just don't overkill that, unless you are going to participate in International Obfuscated C Code Contest. Let me reiterate:
Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
This is why refactoring — activity of rewriting your old code so it does the same thing, but does it quicker, in a more generic way, in less lines or simpler — is so powerful. In my experience, you can only keep one module/class/whatever in your brain if it does not exceed ~1000 lines, maybe ~1500. Splitting 17000-line-long class into smaller classes probably won't improve performance at all, but it will make working with parts of this class way easier.
Is it too late now to start refactoring? Of course NO: better late than never.
  1. Comments
If you think that you wrote this code, so you'll always easily remember it, I have some bad news for you: you won't. In my experience, one week and that's it. That's why comments are so crucial. It is not necessary to put a ton of comments everywhere, but just a general idea will help you out in the future. Even if you think that It Just Works™ and you'll never ever need to fix it. Time spent to write and debug one line of code almost always exceeds time to write one comment in large-scale projects. Moreover, the best code is the code that is self-evident. In the example above, what the hell does (float) 6 mean? Why not wrap it around into the constant with a good, self-descriptive name? Again, it won't affect performance, since C# compiler is smart enough to silently remove this constant from the real code and place its value into the method invocation directly. Such constants are here for you.
I rewrote my code above a little bit to illustrate this. With those comments, you don't have to remember your code at all, since its functionality is outlined in two tiny lines of comments above it. Moreover, even a person with zero knowledge in programming will figure out the purpose of this code. It took me less than half a minute to write those comments, but it'll probably save me quite a lot of time of figuring out «what was I thinking back then» one day.
Is it too late now to start adding comments? Again, of course NO. Don't be lazy and redirect all your typing from «debunk» page (which pretty much does the opposite of debunking, but who am I to judge you here?) into some useful comments.
  1. Unit testing
This is often neglected, but consider the following. You wrote some code, you ran your game, you saw a new bug. Was it introduced right now? Is it a problem in your older code which has shown up just because you have never actually used it until now? Where should you search for it? You have no idea, and you have one painful debugging session ahead. Just imagine how easier it would be if you've had some routines which automatically execute after each build and check that environment is still sane and nothing broke on a fundamental level. This is called unit testing, and yes, unit tests won't be able to catch all your bugs, but even getting 20% of bugs identified at the earlier stage is a huge boon to development speed.
Is it too late now to start adding unit tests? Kinda YES and NO at the same time. Unit testing works best if it covers the majority of project's code. On the other side, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. If you decide to start refactoring your code, writing a unit test before refactoring will help you to prove to yourself that you have not broken anything without the need of running the game at all.
  1. Static code analysis
This is basically pretty self-explanatory. You set this thing once, you forget about it. Static code analyzer is another «free estate» to speed up the development process by finding tiny little errors, mostly silly typos (do you think that you are good enough in finding them? Well, good luck catching x << 4; in place of x <<= 4; buried deep in C code by eye!). Again, this is not a silver bullet, it is another tool which will help you out with debugging a little bit along with the debugger, unit tests and other things. You need every little bit of help here.
Is it too late now to hook up static code analyzer? Obviously NO.
  1. Code architecture
Say, you want to build Osana, but then you decided to implement some feature, e.g. Snap Mode. By doing this you have maybe made your game a little bit better, but what you have just essentially done is complicated your life, because now you should also write Osana code for Snap Mode. The way game architecture is done right now, easter eggs code is deeply interleaved with game logic, which leads to code «spaghettifying», which in turn slows down the addition of new features, because one has to consider how this feature would work alongside each and every old feature and easter egg. Even if it is just gazing over one line per easter egg, it adds up to the mess, slowly but surely.
A lot of people mention that developer should have been doing it in object-oritented way. However, there is no silver bullet in programming. It does not matter that much if you are doing it object-oriented way or usual procedural way; you can theoretically write, say, AI routines on functional (e.g. LISP)) or even logical language if you are brave enough (e.g. Prolog). You can even invent your own tiny programming language! The only thing that matters is code quality and avoiding the so-called shotgun surgery situation, which plagues Yandere Simulator from top to bottom right now. Is there a way of adding a new feature without interfering with your older code (e.g. by creating a child class which will encapsulate all the things you need, for example)? Go for it, this feature is basically «free» for you. Otherwise you'd better think twice before doing this, because you are going into the «technical debt» territory, borrowing your time from the future by saying «I'll maybe optimize it later» and «a thousand more lines probably won't slow me down in the future that much, right?». Technical debt will incur interest on its own that you'll have to pay. Basically, the entire situation around Osana right now is just a huge tale about how just «interest» incurred by technical debt can control the entire project, like the tail wiggling the dog.
I won't elaborate here further, since it'll take me an even larger post to fully describe what's wrong about Yandere Simulator's code architecture.
Is it too late to rebuild code architecture? Sadly, YES, although it should be possible to split Student class into descendants by using hooks for individual students. However, code architecture can be improved by a vast margin if you start removing easter eggs and features like Snap Mode that currently bloat Yandere Simulator. I know it is going to be painful, but it is the only way to improve code quality here and now. This will simplify the code, and this will make it easier for you to add the «real» features, like Osana or whatever you'd like to accomplish. If you'll ever want them back, you can track them down in Git history and re-implement them one by one, hopefully without performing the shotgun surgery this time.
  1. Loading times
Again, I won't be talking about the performance, since you can debug your game on 20 FPS as well as on 60 FPS, but this is a very different story. Yandere Simulator is huge. Once you fixed a bug, you want to test it, right? And your workflow right now probably looks like this:
  1. Fix the code (unavoidable time loss)
  2. Rebuild the project (can take a loooong time)
  3. Load your game (can take a loooong time)
  4. Test it (unavoidable time loss, unless another bug has popped up via unit testing, code analyzer etc.)
And you can fix it. For instance, I know that Yandere Simulator makes all the students' photos during loading. Why should that be done there? Why not either move it to project building stage by adding build hook so Unity does that for you during full project rebuild, or, even better, why not disable it completely or replace with «PLACEHOLDER» text for debug builds? Each second spent watching the loading screen will be rightfully interpreted as «son is not coding» by the community.
Is it too late to reduce loading times? Hell NO.
  1. Jenkins
Or any other continuous integration tool. «Rebuild a project» can take a long time too, and what can we do about that? Let me give you an idea. Buy a new PC. Get a 32-core Threadripper, 32 GB of fastest RAM you can afford and a cool motherboard which would support all of that (of course, Ryzen/i5/Celeron/i386/Raspberry Pi is fine too, but the faster, the better). The rest is not necessary, e.g. a barely functional second hand video card burned out by bitcoin mining is fine. You set up another PC in your room. You connect it to your network. You set up ramdisk to speed things up even more. You properly set up Jenkins) on this PC. From now on, Jenkins cares about the rest: tracking your Git repository, (re)building process, large and time-consuming unit tests, invoking static code analyzer, profiling, generating reports and whatever else you can and want to hook up. More importantly, you can fix another bug while Jenkins is rebuilding the project for the previous one et cetera.
In general, continuous integration is a great technology to quickly track down errors that were introduced in previous versions, attempting to avoid those kinds of bug hunting sessions. I am highly unsure if continuous integration is needed for 10000-20000 source lines long projects, but things can be different as soon as we step into the 100k+ territory, and Yandere Simulator by now has approximately 150k+ source lines of code. I think that probably continuous integration might be well worth it for Yandere Simulator.
Is it too late to add continuous integration? NO, albeit it is going to take some time and skills to set up.
  1. Stop caring about the criticism
Stop comparing Alex to Scott Cawton. IMO Alex is very similar to the person known as SgtMarkIV, the developer of Brutal Doom, who is also a notorious edgelord who, for example, also once told somebody to kill himself, just like… However, being a horrible person, SgtMarkIV does his job. He simply does not care much about public opinion. That's the difference.
  1. Go outside
Enough said. Your brain works slower if you only think about games and if you can't provide it with enough oxygen supply. I know that this one is probably the hardest to implement, but…
That's all, folks.
Bonus: Do you think how short this list would have been if someone just simply listened to Mike Zaimont instead of breaking down in tears?
submitted by Dezhitse to Osana [link] [comments]

I Dared My Best Friend to Ruin My Life - He's Succeeding

My name is Zander, and my best friend is trying to ruin my life. It started out very small, but has quickly grown out of control.
I'm currently sitting inside a church, using their WiFi to post this story and taking advantage of their air conditioning. I’m posting this story in case… Well in case he finds me and kills me soon. It's only a matter of time now, and I want someone to know what happened before I die.
Two years ago, my friend David and I were sitting on the couch at my house thoroughly bored. It wasn’t a temporary boredom either. It was a resounding boredom with life. We both worked full time at the local movie theater making minimum wage and cleaning up after idiots who couldn’t keep popcorn and soda in their mouths. We had graduated high school two years prior and had no plans to attend college.
Life looked bleak for us. College didn’t sound appealing, work was annoying, and the little free time we had was blown on video games and YouTube. We both still lived with our parents too, which made dating somewhat embarrassing. Looking back, I’m sure we were suffering from mild depression on top of everything else.
These life circumstances blended together to create the perfect storm for what I now have to call my reality.
As we sat on the couch at my parent’s house, channel surfing the TV, David asked me if I was bored with life. I responded in the positive, and he sighed.
“High school was so easy because we knew our purpose and our goals were set for us. Outline the english essay. Finish the math homework. Get decent grades. Pass the driving exam. Be home by curfew. Find a girlfriend. Now that we’re out of high school, there’s no structure. Our lives have become meaningless and we are just floating through space with no aim or purpose.”
“Would you go back to high school then?” I asked. He shook his head.
“In the moment, high school was annoying. It’s only after looking back that I see how much better it was than I realized.”
“What’s the solution, then?” I asked.
“Either go somewhere that has structure and can deliver what high school gave us, or create our own structure,” David replied.
“Well I don’t want to go to college or the military,” I said. “And I can’t think of anywhere else that provides the same structure. Guess I have to make my own, but I have no idea where to start.”
“The thing about high school was that it required a minimum effort. If you didn’t give that minimum effort, you would face the consequences. The consequences were bad enough that you and I would put effort into school. When high school ended, that minimum effort level decreased. Now our minimum effort is not enough to improve ourselves. Whatever structure we build has to have those consequences built in and a minimum effort that forces us to improve constantly.”
David was, and is, a very intellectual person. He thinks about everything, if you can’t already tell. I was pretty dumb compared to him, but I stuck around because he always had interesting things to say. This conversation definitely counted as interesting.
I won’t bore you with the entire conversation that we had, but it lasted an hour where we discussed how to build structure into our lives.
I want to emphasize here that boredom is dangerous. Well, it’s not dangerous by itself, but it can quickly lead to dangerous things. Boredom can lead to pain, accidental children, technology that disrupts a monopoly, and even death.
Our boredom led to a dare.
“I dare you to try and ruin my life,” David said.
“What does that mean?” I asked.
“It’s a way to build structure into my life. If I know that you are always trying to ruin my life and actively trying to make me fail, then I am driven to fight back and act on initiative.”
“But how could I ruin your life?” I asked.
“You could ruin anyone’s life if you gave it enough thought, planning, and action,” David said with a smirk. “I’m not going to give you any ideas. I just want you to try and ruin my life.”
I remember sitting back and thinking about what he meant. The first thoughts that came to mind were about tripping him occasionally, or hiding his toothbrush every time I went to his house. My young mind didn’t fully understand how serious David was being. His mind was running three tracks above mine, so I didn’t know what I was getting into when I said, “okay, I’ll try to ruin your life. But I dare you to do try and ruin my life as well.”
He smiled with a newfound enthusiasm, and I smiled back. I had hoped it would be a great way to relieve my boredom with life. David stood up and punched me in the leg as hard as he could. I shouted at him, mostly out of surprise. He just laughed.
“The dare starts now,” he said, grabbing his shoes. “We are no longer friends, we are nemeses.” He opened my front door and looked over his shoulder. “Good luck,” he said. “I hope you’ll work half as hard as I will.”
Once he left, I just sat there rubbing my sore thigh. Okay, I thought, if he wants a war, he’ll get a war.
That night, I had laid awake trying to think of ways to make his life harder for him. My ideas were all so childish and useless compared to what he would later throw at me. I’m too embarrassed to list my ideas from back then.
I wish I could say I remembered the day David turned against me for real. But it was so subtle that I didn’t notice right away. To my face, David acted completely normal.
While we were at work, I would sprinkle popcorn over a section he had just cleaned and point it out to him. He would just laugh, and say, “is that supposed to ruin my life?” Then he would clean it up. I expected him to do the same to me, but he didn't. His lack of visible retaliation made me bored again so I stopped. Looking back, I suspect that behind my back he was sabotaging my image with our other co-workers and our boss.
Out of the blue, my boss called me into his office and told me that I was fired because I wasn’t doing a good enough job. David acted sorry i was leaving and we promised to hang out again soon.
I left, thinking I could make this something good and get a real job. That dream died, and I ended up at McDonald’s instead.
After I had been at McDonald’s for a month or so, my parents confronted me. They asked me if I had been stealing cash from their wallets. I had never stolen a cent from them, and told them so. They backed off, but only for a week until my mom’s debit card went missing.
They confronted me again, this time very angry. They accused me of withdrawing several hundred dollars using my mom’s debit card. I have no siblings, so it wouldn't have been anyone else in the house. It turned into a screaming match and they demanded that I move out as quickly as possible. With my small cache of savings, I found an apartment near the local community college that housed college students. The rent was affordable enough for me, so I moved out within the month.
I moved in and became instant friends with two of my roommates, Clark and Ivan. Our other roommate, Isaac, kept to himself and stayed in his room playing video games 24/7. Life got good again because I hung out with Clark and Ivan frequently.
David and I had stopped hanging out after I was fired from the movie theater. I hadn’t forgotten about him, but I had forgotten about the dare. Every once in a while, I would message him on Facebook or shoot him a text to ask if he wanted to hang out, but my messages were always ignored. Eventually I gave up.
Within six months, I had a great life going. I was dating a girl named Katie, I had been promoted to crew trainer at McDonald’s, which paid better, and my bank account was slowly growing.
I only recognize this as David’s doing when I look back, but an obscene amount of junk mail showed up with my name on it every single day. Magazines, credit card offers, vacation ads, and even physical letters from real people who claimed to be excited to be my new penpal. I sorted through them every day trying to find some pattern. Clark and Ivan thought it was hilarious. When I came home late from work, they would sometimes toss the junk mail in the air like confetti as I walked through the door, cheering that the Mail King was home.
One day, I remember feeling sick of getting all this junk mail and deciding to sit down, call every subscription to cancel. I recruited Clark and Ivan to help me, and we sat down with snacks one afternoon and started to crank through phone calls.
In a few days, the tide of junk mail subsided and we celebrated our efforts. That only lasted a week.
The next week, it started coming back in full force. There was twice as much as before, and even some pornorgraphic magazines in the mix. Not only did my physical junk mail increase, but my email became unnavigable through all the new spam messages. Google moved a lot of it to the spam filter, but there were still hundreds of emails that made it through. My email had been subscribed to websites I’d never even heard of.
Clark and Ivan were blown away by the new tide of junk mail. The event was dubbed “Return of the Junk” and became a great ice breaker for Clark and Ivan to introduce me to other people at parties.
One day I was browsing Facebook’s “People You May Know” section when I came across someone’s profile that had my picture, but a different name. The account was open for anyone to view and had a lot of porn posts, status updates full of swearing, and praises to Hitler. I frowned when I clicked on their pictures. Most of the pictures were the same ones from my Facebook account, but there were some pictures of me that weren’t on my account or anywhere else online. Keep in mind, I didn’t remember my dare to David, so I was feeling pretty creeped out.
I hit the report button and let Facebook know that the account was a fake and went on my way.
I think three months or so later is when more stuff started to happen. Katie and I are getting very serious and discuss moving in together. The junk mail still rolls in and I’ve started to just throw it away. Ivan has moved out to go to an actual university, so a new roommate Jackson has moved in. Clark and I attempted to befriend Jackson, but he’s similar to Isaac and locked himself in his room most of the time.
A new game became available for pre-order, so I submitted my email to reserve a copy. When I tried to log into my email to make sure the reserve code was there, I couldn’t log in. I hit “Forgot Password” and it asked if I wanted to use my phone number to reset the password. I pressed yes and waited for my phone to light up. It never did. I pressed the button three more times, but no text ever came. I tried old passwords I used to use, but none of them worked. I frowned, but eventually just walked away from my computer. I’d try again a different day.
I sat down on the couch and pulled up Facebook on my phone. A popup appeared. “You’ve been signed out,” it said. Then it jumped to the login screen. I thought I’d hit the logout button on accident, so I just typed in my email and password. It didn’t work. I tried again, but it still told me the password was incorrect.
My phone buzzed in my hand. Katie was calling me. I answered it and immediately became concerned. She was sobbing.
“Katie?” I said.
“You coward,” she spat. “You don’t get to just Facebook me that shit, no you have to talk to me and tell me with your voice.”
“Katie, what are you talking about?” I asked.
“Don’t play stupid, asshole. Say it.”
“Say… what?”
“You Facebook me and say we are through, but when I call, you deny everything? What the hell are you trying to pull, Zander?” Katie hissed.
“Katie, my Facebook got hacked! I was literally just trying to log in when you called. Are you at home? I’m coming over. We are not done, we are far from done, sweetheart.”
It took me some time to convince Katie that it hadn’t been me, but she relented when I showed her that I couldn’t log in. I googled how to get my Facebook account back and contacted their helpcenter. Thankfully, they were able to get me back into my account. Lots of links to porn sites had been posted all over my page by whoever jacked my account, so I spent time deleting all of those. I also spent time answering family members who asked about the “strange content” I had been posting. Awkward.
Katie also found out through her feeds that my Twitter and Instagram had been hacked. The accounts were posting hundreds of crude messages and pictures. Those two sites took a little more effort, but eventually I regained control over those too. Fixing my email took a couple of days, but I got access again.
Not wanting to repeat the experience, I made my passwords into really long strings of numbers, letters and symbols. Each account had a different password. For anyone who has done this, you know how impossible it would be to memorize your passwords. I wrote them down on a sheet of paper and put it in my dresser drawer. I didn’t intend to get hacked again.
I'm telling you where I put the paper so you'll know how freaked out I was when Facebook signed me out again the next week. I checked my other accounts. Locked out again. I shot Katie a text to warn her and then called the Facebook help center again. They gave me access to Facebook and gave me the same warning about making a long password.
When I told them the type of precautions I had taken last time, they suggested checking my computer for viruses in case there was a keyloggers collecting all the information I typed.
I called a computer repair center and asked what I needed to do to get my computer scanned. They asked me to bring it down and they'd check it out.
I had a desktop, so ‘bringing it down’ required a lot of unplugging. When I got down behind the computer to unplug everything, I found a tiny USB stick that I'd never seen before. I frowned and tried to locate its contents on the computer. The computer said no USB was attached.
The computer repair guy confirmed that the USB drive was a keylogger. He asked if my computer had ever been anywhere that anyone could walk up and use it. I told him no and he said he had no idea how it could have gotten there.
He didn't charge me anything, just warned me to keep an eye on my computer.
I changed all my passwords again, going through the motions to get my accounts back.
A few days later, I received three, yes THREE credit card bills in the mail. I still had the habit of skimming through the junk mail in case there ever was anything super important. I'm glad I did, because I might never have found out about the credit cards that were registered in my name.
I called the credit card companies to inform them that they were mistaken. I had never signed up for a credit card. My parents had warned me about them so often that I'd been deterred from ever getting one. Before you comment and tell me I need them to build my credit, yes I know that now.
A quick google search told me what to do next. I called Equifax, which is a company that calculates your credit score and tells creditors that it's okay for you to open a credit account. I placed a 90-day fraud alert on my credit. They said they would call me if anyone tried to open a credit account in my name.
The dude at Equifax was kind enough to tell me what I needed to do next. He asked me to go online and view my credit report. If I saw any accounts I didn't recognize, I was to write them down and fill out a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) explaining the situation. Once I had that submitted, I was to file a copy of it with the police and create a police report. Then I had to take those two reports and call each of the credit companies that had issued credit to my identity and start the dispute process. I instantly felt very discouraged at the amount of effort this would require. It felt utterly insane to be required to follow all these steps just because I was the victim of identity theft. God damn.
Clark was horrified at what had happened and looked at his credit score. He was relieved when it came back clean. I made Katie check hers too just in case. Also clean.
I'll take a minute to tell everyone reading that you are entitled by law to one free credit report per year from each of the three credit score companies. That means you can and should check your credit three times a year. Clark and I set reminders on our phones to check the scores again in 4 months. I asked Katie to do the same.
When I first found out about the accounts, I had called my parents to ask if they had opened any accounts in my name. If they had, I'd at least know who the culprit was. They told me they hadn't opened any accounts, and I warned them about my problems. They promised to check their credit score.
Two weeks after I had called them, my dad called. They found fifteen fraudulent accounts between the two of them. What the hell? I told him the steps he needed to take, and he was grateful for my help and warning.
I know this is boring to read, but I want you to realize how insanely painful it was to fix all of this shit. Seriously, watch your credit reports and nip identity theft in the bud before it happens to you.
I had requested detailed bills from the credit card companies that had issued the fraudulent accounts, and they mailed them to me. The bills were full of online purchases. The accounts had been opened almost a year ago, and in that time they thief had spent $62,000 between all the fraudulent accounts. I was pretty upset that in a full year, I had only just found any credit card bills in the mail. I must have been tossing them with the mountains of junk mail. Now I know that the masses of junk mail were deliberate and calculated so the bills would blend in and hopefully get thrown away
The first few transactions were from stores like Target, Walmart, etc. But the further down I went, the less I recognized. One word stuck out to me: bitcoin. I had learned a little about it from my Facebook feed as I had some friends from high school who touted it as the next real currency. According to the credit card statements, several thousand dollars had been exchanged into bitcoin.
I started really researching bitcoin and trying to figure out what it was and why an identity thief would want it. To make the explanation short, bitcoin allowed my thief to make completely anonymous purchases online. It was as if he'd gone to an ATM and drained all the credit cards into cash. I didn't foresee the credit card companies ever getting their money back.
David now had a hell of alot of cash he could use to ruin my life. I didn't know it was him at the time, obviously, but now I do.
Guys, identity theft is a serious crime and is very damaging to everyone in the economy. And while the theft had been bad, my life was about to get a whole lot worse.
That’s all I have time to write for now. I have to go and get some serious shit taken care of. I'll write again as soon as I can.
My name is Zander, and my best friend is trying to ruin my life.
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
 
Series 2
submitted by Zandsand90 to nosleep [link] [comments]

All-in-One Utilities Version 55 is out!

All-in-One Utilities Version 55 is out!

All-in-One Utilities
All-in-One Utilities is an "all-in-one" shortcut that combines many essential (and sometimes pointless) shortcuts into a single shortcut. All-in-One Utilities currently has over 20 utilities bundled, with some of them even coming from other shortcut creators! (e.g. iTweak from u/jonathansetzer, Control Center 2 from @SwaggyIOSRam (RoutineHub), Bitcoin Value, Spam your Friends and Quick Appointment from u/zm4t5z)

Today, Version 55 of All-in-One Utilities have been released, and it brings many new features to All-in-One Utilities, like File Vault, Favorite Utility and more. Please install it if you have All-in-One Utilities installed!

While I understand that this shortcut is not exactly "revolutionary" or bringing anything new to the table, it has recently received a new update that I still want you guys to check out. And I do know that some of you guys really like this shortcut as well.

This might also be more of an update post for people who aren't (understandably) following the shortcut's development, or people who don't really know about newer features in the shortcut.

Here's the link to an old post that might explain this shortcut better

Download link to All-in-One Utilities

Scenarios

Scenarios is an extremely powerful utility that allows you to change multiple system settings at once. For example: You can make a scenario that turns on Wi-Fi and turns off Low Power Mode when you get home, or a scenario that enables Do Not Disturb for when you are at an meeting.

Best thing is, this utility works wonderfully with the next feature.

Utility Request

Utilities in All-in-One Utilities can now be called (or "requested") and ran by other shortcuts using a dictionary! For example, a shortcut can call the "Text to ASCII" utility to get the ASCII for something! Or the shortcut can call "File Vault"'s Encryption Module (Powered by u/schl3ck's CryptoKit) to encrypt data using a passcode!

While these are all cool things that shortcut creators can take advantage of, one cool thing that Utility Request can do is allow you to create your own main menu. Don't like the main menu bundled in the shortcut? Create your own one! Make it as aesthetically pleasing as currently possible in Shortcuts, or make a menu that only contains what you need for your own needs! it doesn't even need to be a menu, you can make it voice-activated, or integrate an utility into your routine shortcut! Best thing is, all of these only require 2 actions and All-in-One Utilities installed!

Utility Request
P.S. Documentation for Utility Request is currently in the making! Until it releases, you can always PM me for how to use Utility Request.

File Vault

Everyone has secrets they want to hide from everyone, maybe it's the awful selfies you took last summer that you enjoy for some reason, or it's an strangely sexual essay you wrote about butterflies. Well, now you can store all of those and more in File Vault!

File Vault
Unlike most other file-storing shortcuts that encrypts your data using obfuscation by Base64, File Vault uses CryptoKit by u/schl3ck to encrypt your data. CryptoKit uses the Stanford Javascript Crypto Library, which uses AES-CBC-256 as it's encryption method (That's like almost military-grade encryption!). It gives up some speed, but the security is worth it!

File Vault is easy to use too! With extremely straightforward instructions and simplicity, even a child can use it! (Note: Child implying someone that can remember their password and can read english)

Chinese Support

All-in-One Utilities supports Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese, meaning that even Chinese people can use the shortcut. As an Chinese myself, I understand the struggles of finding a great shortcut, only to find out that you have no idea on how to use it because of an invisible language barrier. That's why I have decided to add Chinese support, to give more people access.
Chinese support

Updates

Each version of All-in-One Utilities always tries to bring you something new, like faster load times, more support for more updaters, lesser and lesser bugs and better utilities. Even though All-in-One Utilities is definitely not the most optimized shortcut ever with 1000+ actions, at least it attempts to be one.

Update System
Currently, updates can be installed using UpdateKit, Shortcut Updater, Check for Updates and UpdateHub. These shortcuts are not necessary for the shortcut to operate though, as the shortcut itself has an updater, as well as an non-intrusive update checker.

Note

All-in-One Utilities is still currently very buggy, and I really want to push this update out ASAP. That's why features like a new menu system is getting pushed to Version 56, and some utilities still have a few issues. I have also been really busy with school lately, and some changes in my life made updating this shortcut nearly impossible. Still, I really hope you guys will enjoy this new update, and I hope you guys will like it.

The shortcut pages on RoutineHub and ShareShortcuts will eventually be updated with better graphics, cleaner formatting and more documentation, and Version 56 will bring more features and improvements. Stay tuned for them!
submitted by XPGamingYT to shortcuts [link] [comments]

What I'd tell myself about startups if I could go back 5 years.

(I'm not the author)
This is, in no particular order, what I'd tell myself about startups if I could go back in time to when I first got involved. Which is probably the same as what I've learned. This is most definitely not advice, the "you" here is directed at me. So is "I". Grammar is hard.
  1. You're definitely going to end up building too much and shipping too late. Be obsessive about avoiding this
  2. Someone's always already working on the same idea and that's not a bad thing
  3. Always refuse if someone asks you to sign an NDA before hearing their idea
  4. Like it or not, most networking in London is focused around drinking. Find a way to deal with that without having a constant hangover
  5. The people who are really getting somewhere aren't the people who are always out for drinks
  6. Linear growth can be worse than no growth
  7. Most people who talk about failing fast, aren't actually practicing this
  8. It's really easy to kid yourself that you're "doing customer development" when actually you're finding ways to make what your customers are saying fit with what you want to build
  9. Everyone has a hidden stash of domains they've never used
  10. It's really easy to become hyper-critical and respond to every idea with "yeah but that won't work because of x". This is lazy, don't do it.
  11. Be especially careful to avoid the above when talking to people who are new to the scene. Call out other people who do it
  12. It's really hard to listen to someone pitching an idea you've seen fail several times already and focus on working out if there's something slightly different and interesting there
  13. Someone being a technically competent developer does not mean they know how to ship things. I'd always rather work with someone who ships over someone who's technically brilliant
  14. The programming language/ framework wars are great fun in the pub, but of limited value in real life
  15. A good developer can pick up any language or platform in a few weeks
  16. I still don't know any real investors
  17. Constantly exaggerating how well you're doing can be very tiring. It makes it harder to publicly celebrate the real victories
  18. It's really hard to build a product if you don't have a big personal investment in the problem it solves
  19. Falling in love with a product (rather than the problem) is really dangerous
  20. You can get away without knowing how a hash table works, but it's really satisfying when you eventually learn it
  21. Same goes for Big O notation
  22. Overnight success isn't a thing. The Social Network is still a great movie
  23. I still don't understand PR
  24. Most technical solutions are trivial compared to how you get the product into peoples hands
  25. Make something people want is probably a less useful heuristic than make something you want
  26. But you wanting it doesn't mean enough people want it for it to be a business
  27. If you don't have first hand experience of an industry, you're probably wrong about how it works, what problems they have and so how they should be solved. Talk to people
  28. "Ads" are where business models go to die
  29. "We'll monetize the data" is the new "Ads"
  30. The people you end up wanting to work with (and help) are the ones who always try and work out how they can help you. Be more like them
  31. But get really good at asking for things. Most people will give you a discount for no reason other than you asked. If you see someone important and influential, introduce yourself
  32. Get good at saying no to things, from people asking you for discounts to interesting projects you really don't have enough time for
  33. Think hard about a pivot which makes good business sense but leads to a product you no longer care about
  34. Writing (blogging, books, journaling) is a really positive experience
  35. Don't pay too much attention to internet comments about something you've written, there's always someone who didn't like one particular sentence (see point about trolls below)
  36. One troll can wipe out a hundred positive interactions, be ruthless in keeping them out of your communities
  37. If you end up pitching to someone over coffee, ask to hear their pitch afterwards
  38. Only say you're going to introduce someone or send them something if you're actually going to do it. People quickly get a reputation for never following through
  39. Show don't tell. "I'm going to build this amazing thing" is a LOT less interesting than "I've built this slightly crappy thing that actually does something". EVERYONE is GOING to build something, most people never do
  40. Building things is awesome, don't get too caught up with the whole "Lean Startup Landing Page" mindset
  41. Lean Startup is awesome, but it's a pamphlet not a book, read the first few chapters and you'll get the idea. Four steps to the epiphany is more technical and probably a better book
  42. Most startup advice is terrible and the good advice is usually obvious. Everyone will give different advice, trust your gut
  43. Except when it comes to what your customers want, then ignore your gut and trust them
  44. No-one has ever used a Bitcoin ATM for practical reasons
  45. Do back of napkin financial forecasts for every potential business model you come up with, just to see if it's in the right ballpark to a couple of orders of magnitude
  46. It's really easy to automatically dismiss everyone who starts a conversation with "I'm looking for a technical co-founder". Doing this means you miss talking to some interesting people. But be upfront that you're not that co-founder so no-one feels like their time is wasted
  47. Trying to raise money and apply to accelerators is a full time job. You're probably either building or fund raising. Not both. If in doubt, choose building
  48. The solution to many, many problems, is not technical. That won't stop people trying solve them with apps
  49. Facebook is the Facebook for X
  50. The idea you laughed at when you saw them pitch at a hackathon may well be the one that's still alive and kicking long after whatever you pitched fails
  51. If there are people who genuinely like failing, I've never met them
  52. That was not "your idea" unless you shipped something, otherwise I invented Facebook, Nest and Oculus Rift
  53. People don't steal ideas. Tell as many people as possible. Never ask someone to sign an NDA before hearing your idea, you'll instantly lose all credibility
  54. Being friends with somebody is not the same as being able to work well with them
  55. Small teams can move VERY fast, be really careful getting extra people involved in any project where agility is important
  56. Multi-tasking isn't a thing, switching costs are huge, do one thing at a time and do it really well. Find a way to block out interruptions
  57. Read every essay Paul Graham has written
  58. Tech news (and news is general) has a very low return on time invested. Prefer books and conversations
  59. Read Founders Stories, Fooled By Randomness and The Four Steps to the Ephiphany
  60. The logo doesn't matter at the start, find a simple text based logo you can re-use for different projects
  61. If you possibly can, open source and write up any side project. Every now and then you'll meet somebody really interesting as a result
  62. Regularly working 12 hour days is probably never a good idea. If this is happening a lot, find a way to optimise
  63. Talk to everybody
Source
submitted by wdpttt to Entrepreneur [link] [comments]

Is anyone else freaked out by this whole blocksize debate? Does anyone else find themself often agreeing with *both* sides - depending on whichever argument you happen to be reading at the moment? And do we need some better algorithms and data structures?

Why do both sides of the debate seem “right” to me?
I know, I know, a healthy debate is healthy and all - and maybe I'm just not used to the tumult and jostling which would be inevitable in a real live open major debate about something as vital as Bitcoin.
And I really do agree with the starry-eyed idealists who say Bitcoin is vital. Imperfect as it may be, it certainly does seem to represent the first real chance we've had in the past few hundred years to try to steer our civilization and our planet away from the dead-ends and disasters which our government-issued debt-based currencies keep dragging us into.
But this particular debate, about the blocksize, doesn't seem to be getting resolved at all.
Pretty much every time I read one of the long-form major arguments contributed by Bitcoin "thinkers" who I've come to respect over the past few years, this weird thing happens: I usually end up finding myself nodding my head and agreeing with whatever particular piece I'm reading!
But that should be impossible - because a lot of these people vehemently disagree!
So how can both sides sound so convincing to me, simply depending on whichever piece I currently happen to be reading?
Does anyone else feel this way? Or am I just a gullible idiot?
Just Do It?
When you first look at it or hear about it, increasing the size seems almost like a no-brainer: The "big-block" supporters say just increase the blocksize to 20 MB or 8 MB, or do some kind of scheduled or calculated regular increment which tries to take into account the capabilities of the infrastructure and the needs of the users. We do have the bandwidth and the memory to at least increase the blocksize now, they say - and we're probably gonna continue to have more bandwidth and memory in order to be able to keep increasing the blocksize for another couple decades - pretty much like everything else computer-based we've seen over the years (some of this stuff is called by names such as "Moore's Law").
On the other hand, whenever the "small-block" supporters warn about the utter catastrophe that a failed hard-fork would mean, I get totally freaked by their possible doomsday scenarios, which seem totally plausible and terrifying - so I end up feeling that the only way I'd want to go with a hard-fork would be if there was some pre-agreed "triggering" mechanism where the fork itself would only actually "switch on" and take effect provided that some "supermajority" of the network (of who? the miners? the full nodes?) had signaled (presumably via some kind of totally reliable p2p trustless software-based voting system?) that they do indeed "pre-agree" to actually adopt the pre-scheduled fork (and thereby avoid any possibility whatsoever of the precious blockchain somehow tragically splitting into two and pretty much killing this cryptocurrency off in its infancy).
So in this "conservative" scenario, I'm talking about wanting at least 95% pre-adoption agreement - not the mere 75% which I recall some proposals call for, which seems like it could easily lead to a 75/25 blockchain split.
But this time, with this long drawn-out blocksize debate, the core devs, and several other important voices who have become prominent opinion shapers over the past few years, can't seem to come to any real agreement on this.
Weird split among the devs
As far as I can see, there's this weird split: Gavin and Mike seem to be the only people among the devs who really want a major blocksize increase - and all the other devs seem to be vehemently against them.
But then on the other hand, the users seem to be overwhelmingly in favor of a major increase.
And there are meta-questions about governance, about about why this didn't come out as a BIP, and what the availability of Bitcoin XT means.
And today or yesterday there was this really cool big-blockian exponential graph based on doubling the blocksize every two years for twenty years, reminding us of the pure mathematical fact that 210 is indeed about 1000 - but not really addressing any of the game-theoretic points raised by the small-blockians. So a lot of the users seem to like it, but when so few devs say anything positive about it, I worry: is this just yet more exponential chart porn?
On the one hand, Gavin's and Mike's blocksize increase proposal initially seemed like a no-brainer to me.
And on the other hand, all the other devs seem to be against them. Which is weird - not what I'd initially expected at all (but maybe I'm just a fool who's seduced by exponential chart porn?).
Look, I don't mean to be rude to any of the core devs, and I don't want to come off like someone wearing a tinfoil hat - but it has to cross people's minds that the powers that be (the Fed and the other central banks and the governments that use their debt-issued money to run this world into a ditch) could very well be much more scared shitless than they're letting on. If we assume that the powers that be are using their usual playbook and tactics, then it could be worth looking at the book "Confessions of an Economic Hitman" by John Perkins, to get an idea of how they might try to attack Bitcoin. So, what I'm saying is, they do have a track record of sending in "experts" to try to derail projects and keep everyone enslaved to the Creature from Jekyll Island. I'm just saying. So, without getting ad hominem - let's just make sure that our ideas can really stand scrutiny on their own - as Nick Szabo says, we need to make sure there is "more computer science, less noise" in this debate.
When Gavin Andresen first came out with the 20 MB thing - I sat back and tried to imagine if I could download 20 MB in 10 minutes (which seems to be one of the basic mathematical and technological constraints here - right?)
I figured, "Yeah, I could download that" - even with my crappy internet connection.
And I guess the telecoms might be nice enough to continue to double our bandwidth every two years for the next couple decades – if we ask them politely?
On the other hand - I think we should be careful about entrusting the financial freedom of the world into the greedy hands of the telecoms companies - given all their shady shenanigans over the past few years in many countries. After decades of the MPAA and the FBI trying to chip away at BitTorrent, lately PirateBay has been hard to access. I would say it's quite likely that certain persons at institutions like JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs and the Fed might be very, very motivated to see Bitcoin fail - so we shouldn't be too sure about scaling plans which depend on the willingness of companies Verizon and AT&T to double our bandwith every two years.
Maybe the real important hardware buildout challenge for a company like 21 (and its allies such as Qualcomm) to take on now would not be "a miner in every toaster" but rather "Google Fiber Download and Upload Speeds in every Country, including China".
I think I've read all the major stuff on the blocksize debate from Gavin Andresen, Mike Hearn, Greg Maxwell, Peter Todd, Adam Back, and Jeff Garzick and several other major contributors - and, oddly enough, all their arguments seem reasonable - heck even Luke-Jr seems reasonable to me on the blocksize debate, and I always thought he was a whackjob overly influenced by superstition and numerology - and now today I'm reading the article by Bram Cohen - the inventor of BitTorrent - and I find myself agreeing with him too!
I say to myself: What's going on with me? How can I possibly agree with all of these guys, if they all have such vehemently opposing viewpoints?
I mean, think back to the glory days of a couple of years ago, when all we were hearing was how this amazing unprecedented grassroots innovation called Bitcoin was going to benefit everyone from all walks of life, all around the world:
...basically the entire human race transacting everything into the blockchain.
(Although let me say that I think that people's focus on ideas like driverless cabs creating realtime fare markets based on supply and demand seems to be setting our sights a bit low as far as Bitcoin's abilities to correct the financial world's capital-misallocation problems which seem to have been made possible by infinite debt-based fiat. I would have hoped that a Bitcoin-based economy would solve much more noble, much more urgent capital-allocation problems than driverless taxicabs creating fare markets or refrigerators ordering milk on the internet of things. I was thinking more along the lines that Bitcoin would finally strangle dead-end debt-based deadly-toxic energy industries like fossil fuels and let profitable clean energy industries like Thorium LFTRs take over - but that's another topic. :=)
Paradoxes in the blocksize debate
Let me summarize the major paradoxes I see here:
(1) Regarding the people (the majority of the core devs) who are against a blocksize increase: Well, the small-blocks arguments do seem kinda weird, and certainly not very "populist", in the sense that: When on earth have end-users ever heard of a computer technology whose capacity didn't grow pretty much exponentially year-on-year? All the cool new technology we've had - from hard drives to RAM to bandwidth - started out pathetically tiny and grew to unimaginably huge over the past few decades - and all our software has in turn gotten massively powerful and big and complex (sometimes bloated) to take advantage of the enormous new capacity available.
But now suddenly, for the first time in the history of technology, we seem to have a majority of the devs, on a major p2p project - saying: "Let's not scale the system up. It could be dangerous. It might break the whole system (if the hard-fork fails)."
I don't know, maybe I'm missing something here, maybe someone else could enlighten me, but I don't think I've ever seen this sort of thing happen in the last few decades of the history of technology - devs arguing against scaling up p2p technology to take advantage of expected growth in infrastructure capacity.
(2) But... on the other hand... the dire warnings of the small-blockians about what could happen if a hard-fork were to fail - wow, they do seem really dire! And these guys are pretty much all heavyweight, experienced programmers and/or game theorists and/or p2p open-source project managers.
I must say, that nearly all of the long-form arguments I've read - as well as many, many of the shorter comments I've read from many users in the threads, whose names I at least have come to more-or-less recognize over the past few months and years on reddit and bitcointalk - have been amazingly impressive in their ability to analyze all aspects of the lifecycle and management of open-source software projects, bringing up lots of serious points which I could never have come up with, and which seem to come from long experience with programming and project management - as well as dealing with economics and human nature (eg, greed - the game-theory stuff).
So a lot of really smart and experienced people with major expertise in various areas ranging from programming to management to game theory to politics to economics have been making some serious, mature, compelling arguments.
But, as I've been saying, the only problem to me is: in many of these cases, these arguments are vehemently in opposition to each other! So I find myself agreeing with pretty much all of them, one by one - which means the end result is just a giant contradiction.
I mean, today we have Bram Cohen, the inventor of BitTorrent, arguing (quite cogently and convincingly to me), that it would be dangerous to increase the blocksize. And this seems to be a guy who would know a few things about scaling out a massive global p2p network - since the protocol which he invented, BitTorrent, is now apparently responsible for like a third of the traffic on the internet (and this despite the long-term concerted efforts of major evil players such as the MPAA and the FBI to shut the whole thing down).
Was the BitTorrent analogy too "glib"?
By the way - I would like to go on a slight tangent here and say that one of the main reasons why I felt so "comfortable" jumping on the Bitcoin train back a few years ago, when I first heard about it and got into it, was the whole rough analogy I saw with BitTorrent.
I remembered the perhaps paradoxical fact that when a torrent is more popular (eg, a major movie release that just came out last week), then it actually becomes faster to download. More people want it, so more people have a few pieces of it, so more people are able to get it from each other. A kind of self-correcting economic feedback loop, where more demand directly leads to more supply.
(BitTorrent manages to pull this off by essentially adding a certain structure to the file being shared, so that it's not simply like an append-only list of 1 MB blocks, but rather more like an random-access or indexed array of 1 MB chunks. Say you're downloading a film which is 700 MB. As soon as your "client" program has downloaded a single 1-MB chunk - say chunk #99 - your "client" program instantly turns into a "server" program as well - offering that chunk #99 to other clients. From my simplistic understanding, I believe the Bitcoin protocol does something similar, to provide a p2p architecture. Hence my - perhaps naïve - assumption that Bitcoin already had the right algorithms / architecture / data structure to scale.)
The efficiency of the BitTorrent network seemed to jive with that "network law" (Metcalfe's Law?) about fax machines. This law states that the more fax machines there are, the more valuable the network of fax machines becomes. Or the value of the network grows on the order of the square of the number of nodes.
This is in contrast with other technology like cars, where the more you have, the worse things get. The more cars there are, the more traffic jams you have, so things start going downhill. I guess this is because highway space is limited - after all, we can't pave over the entire countryside, and we never did get those flying cars we were promised, as David Graeber laments in a recent essay in The Baffler magazine :-)
And regarding the "stress test" supposedly happening right now in the middle of this ongoing blocksize debate, I don't know what worries me more: the fact that it apparently is taking only $5,000 to do a simple kind of DoS on the blockchain - or the fact that there are a few rumors swirling around saying that the unknown company doing the stress test shares the same physical mailing address with a "scam" company?
Or maybe we should just be worried that so much of this debate is happening on a handful of forums which are controlled by some guy named theymos who's already engaged in some pretty "contentious" or "controversial" behavior like blowing a million dollars on writing forum software (I guess he never heard that reddit.com software is open-source)?
So I worry that the great promise of "decentralization" might be more fragile than we originally thought.
Scaling
Anyways, back to Metcalfe's Law: with virtual stuff, like torrents and fax machines, the more the merrier. The more people downloading a given movie, the faster it arrives - and the more people own fax machines, the more valuable the overall fax network.
So I kindof (naïvely?) assumed that Bitcoin, being "virtual" and p2p, would somehow scale up the same magical way BitTorrrent did. I just figured that more people using it would somehow automatically make it stronger and faster.
But now a lot of devs have started talking in terms of the old "scarcity" paradigm, talking about blockspace being a "scarce resource" and talking about "fee markets" - which seems kinda scary, and antithetical to much of the earlier rhetoric we heard about Bitcoin (the stuff about supporting our favorite creators with micropayments, and the stuff about Africans using SMS to send around payments).
Look, when some asshole is in line in front of you at the cash register and he's holding up the line so they can run his credit card to buy a bag of Cheeto's, we tend to get pissed off at the guy - clogging up our expensive global electronic payment infrastructure to make a two-dollar purchase. And that's on a fairly efficient centralized system - and presumably after a year or so, VISA and the guy's bank can delete or compress the transaction in their SQL databases.
Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but if some guy buys a coffee on the blockchain, or if somebody pays an online artist $1.99 for their work - then that transaction, a few bytes or so, has to live on the blockchain forever?
Or is there some "pruning" thing that gets rid of it after a while?
And this could lead to another question: Viewed from the perspective of double-entry bookkeeping, is the blockchain "world-wide ledger" more like the "balance sheet" part of accounting, i.e. a snapshot showing current assets and liabilities? Or is it more like the "cash flow" part of accounting, i.e. a journal showing historical revenues and expenses?
When I think of thousands of machines around the globe having to lug around multiple identical copies of a multi-gigabyte file containing some asshole's coffee purchase forever and ever... I feel like I'm ideologically drifting in one direction (where I'd end up also being against really cool stuff like online micropayments and Africans banking via SMS)... so I don't want to go there.
But on the other hand, when really experienced and battle-tested veterans with major experience in the world of open-souce programming and project management (the "small-blockians") warn of the catastrophic consequences of a possible failed hard-fork, I get freaked out and I wonder if Bitcoin really was destined to be a settlement layer for big transactions.
Could the original programmer(s) possibly weigh in?
And I don't mean to appeal to authority - but heck, where the hell is Satoshi Nakamoto in all this? I do understand that he/she/they would want to maintain absolute anonymity - but on the other hand, I assume SN wants Bitcoin to succeed (both for the future of humanity - or at least for all the bitcoins SN allegedly holds :-) - and I understand there is a way that SN can cryptographically sign a message - and I understand that as the original developer of Bitcoin, SN had some very specific opinions about the blocksize... So I'm kinda wondering of Satoshi could weigh in from time to time. Just to help out a bit. I'm not saying "Show us a sign" like a deity or something - but damn it sure would be fascinating and possibly very helpful if Satoshi gave us his/hetheir 2 satoshis worth at this really confusing juncture.
Are we using our capacity wisely?
I'm not a programming or game-theory whiz, I'm just a casual user who has tried to keep up with technology over the years.
It just seems weird to me that here we have this massive supercomputer (500 times more powerful than the all the supercomputers in the world combined) doing fairly straightforward "embarassingly parallel" number-crunching operations to secure a p2p world-wide ledger called the blockchain to keep track of a measly 2.1 quadrillion tokens spread out among a few billion addresses - and a couple of years ago you had people like Rick Falkvinge saying the blockchain would someday be supporting multi-million-dollar letters of credit for international trade and you had people like Andreas Antonopoulos saying the blockchain would someday allow billions of "unbanked" people to send remittances around the village or around the world dirt-cheap - and now suddenly in June 2015 we're talking about blockspace as a "scarce resource" and talking about "fee markets" and partially centralized, corporate-sponsored "Level 2" vaporware like Lightning Network and some mysterious company is "stess testing" or "DoS-ing" the system by throwing away a measly $5,000 and suddenly it sounds like the whole system could eventually head right back into PayPal and Western Union territory again, in terms of expensive fees.
When I got into Bitcoin, I really was heavily influenced by vague analogies with BitTorrent: I figured everyone would just have tiny little like utorrent-type program running on their machine (ie, Bitcoin-QT or Armory or Mycelium etc.).
I figured that just like anyone can host a their own blog or webserver, anyone would be able to host their own bank.
Yeah, Google and and Mozilla and Twitter and Facebook and WhatsApp did come along and build stuff on top of TCP/IP, so I did expect a bunch of companies to build layers on top of the Bitcoin protocol as well. But I still figured the basic unit of bitcoin client software powering the overall system would be small and personal and affordable and p2p - like a bittorrent client - or at the most, like a cheap server hosting a blog or email server.
And I figured there would be a way at the software level, at the architecture level, at the algorithmic level, at the data structure level - to let the thing scale - if not infinitely, at least fairly massively and gracefully - the same way the BitTorrent network has.
Of course, I do also understand that with BitTorrent, you're sharing a read-only object (eg, a movie) - whereas with Bitcoin, you're achieving distributed trustless consensus and appending it to a write-only (or append-only) database.
So I do understand that the problem which BitTorrent solves is much simpler than the problem which Bitcoin sets out to solve.
But still, it seems that there's got to be a way to make this thing scale. It's p2p and it's got 500 times more computing power than all the supercomputers in the world combined - and so many brilliant and motivated and inspired people want this thing to succeed! And Bitcoin could be our civilization's last chance to steer away from the oncoming debt-based ditch of disaster we seem to be driving into!
It just seems that Bitcoin has got to be able to scale somehow - and all these smart people working together should be able to come up with a solution which pretty much everyone can agree - in advance - will work.
Right? Right?
A (probably irrelevant) tangent on algorithms and architecture and data structures
I'll finally weigh with my personal perspective - although I might be biased due to my background (which is more on the theoretical side of computer science).
My own modest - or perhaps radical - suggestion would be to ask whether we're really looking at all the best possible algorithms and architectures and data structures out there.
From this perspective, I sometimes worry that the overwhelming majority of the great minds working on the programming and game-theory stuff might come from a rather specific, shall we say "von Neumann" or "procedural" or "imperative" school of programming (ie, C and Python and Java programmers).
It seems strange to me that such a cutting-edge and important computer project would have so little participation from the great minds at the other end of the spectrum of programming paradigms - namely, the "functional" and "declarative" and "algebraic" (and co-algebraic!) worlds.
For example, I was struck in particular by statements I've seen here and there (which seemed rather hubristic or lackadaisical to me - for something as important as Bitcoin), that the specification of Bitcoin and the blockchain doesn't really exist in any form other than the reference implementation(s) (in procedural languages such as C or Python?).
Curry-Howard anyone?
I mean, many computer scientists are aware of the Curry-Howard isomorophism, which basically says that the relationship between a theorem and its proof is equivalent to the relationship between a specification and its implementation. In other words, there is a long tradition in mathematics (and in computer programming) of:
And it's not exactly "turtles all the way down" either: a specification is generally simple and compact enough that a good programmer can usually simply visually inspect it to determine if it is indeed "correct" - something which is very difficult, if not impossible, to do with a program written in a procedural, implementation-oriented language such as C or Python or Java.
So I worry that we've got this tradition, from the open-source github C/Java programming tradition, of never actually writing our "specification", and only writing the "implementation". In mission-critical military-grade programming projects (which often use languages like Ada or Maude) this is simply not allowed. It would seem that a project as mission-critical as Bitcoin - which could literally be crucial for humanity's continued survival - should also use this kind of military-grade software development approach.
And I'm not saying rewrite the implementations in these kind of theoretical languages. But it might be helpful if the C/Python/Java programmers in the Bitcoin imperative programming world could build some bridges to the Maude/Haskell/ML programmers of the functional and algebraic programming worlds to see if any kind of useful cross-pollination might take place - between specifications and implementations.
For example, the JavaFAN formal analyzer for multi-threaded Java programs (developed using tools based on the Maude language) was applied to the Remote Agent AI program aboard NASA's Deep Space 1 shuttle, written in Java - and it took only a few minutes using formal mathematical reasoning to detect a potential deadlock which would have occurred years later during the space mission when the damn spacecraft was already way out around Pluto.
And "the Maude-NRL (Naval Research Laboratory) Protocol Analyzer (Maude-NPA) is a tool used to provide security proofs of cryptographic protocols and to search for protocol flaws and cryptosystem attacks."
These are open-source formal reasoning tools developed by DARPA and used by NASA and the US Navy to ensure that program implementations satisfy their specifications. It would be great if some of the people involved in these kinds of projects could contribute to help ensure the security and scalability of Bitcoin.
But there is a wide abyss between the kinds of programmers who use languages like Maude and the kinds of programmers who use languages like C/Python/Java - and it can be really hard to get the two worlds to meet. There is a bit of rapprochement between these language communities in languages which might be considered as being somewhere in the middle, such as Haskell and ML. I just worry that Bitcoin might be turning into being an exclusively C/Python/Java project (with the algorithms and practitioners traditionally of that community), when it could be more advantageous if it also had some people from the functional and algebraic-specification and program-verification community involved as well. The thing is, though: the theoretical practitioners are big on "semantics" - I've heard them say stuff like "Yes but a C / C++ program has no easily identifiable semantics". So to get them involved, you really have to first be able to talk about what your program does (specification) - before proceeding to describe how it does it (implementation). And writing high-level specifications is typically very hard using the syntax and semantics of languages like C and Java and Python - whereas specs are fairly easy to write in Maude - and not only that, they're executable, and you state and verify properties about them - which provides for the kind of debate Nick Szabo was advocating ("more computer science, less noise").
Imagine if we had an executable algebraic specification of Bitcoin in Maude, where we could formally reason about and verify certain crucial game-theoretical properties - rather than merely hand-waving and arguing and deploying and praying.
And so in the theoretical programming community you've got major research on various logics such as Girard's Linear Logic (which is resource-conscious) and Bruni and Montanari's Tile Logic (which enables "pasting" bigger systems together from smaller ones in space and time), and executable algebraic specification languages such as Meseguer's Maude (which would be perfect for game theory modeling, with its functional modules for specifying the deterministic parts of systems and its system modules for specifiying non-deterministic parts of systems, and its parameterized skeletons for sketching out the typical architectures of mobile systems, and its formal reasoning and verification tools and libraries which have been specifically applied to testing and breaking - and fixing - cryptographic protocols).
And somewhat closer to the practical hands-on world, you've got stuff like Google's MapReduce and lots of Big Data database languages developed by Google as well. And yet here we are with a mempool growing dangerously big for RAM on a single machine, and a 20-GB append-only list as our database - and not much debate on practical results from Google's Big Data databases.
(And by the way: maybe I'm totally ignorant for asking this, but I'll ask anyways: why the hell does the mempool have to stay in RAM? Couldn't it work just as well if it were stored temporarily on the hard drive?)
And you've got CalvinDB out of Yale which apparently provides an ACID layer on top of a massively distributed database.
Look, I'm just an armchair follower cheering on these projects. I can barely manage to write a query in SQL, or read through a C or Python or Java program. But I would argue two points here: (1) these languages may be too low-level and "non-formal" for writing and modeling and formally reasoning about and proving properties of mission-critical specifications - and (2) there seem to be some Big Data tools already deployed by institutions such as Google and Yale which support global petabyte-size databases on commodity boxes with nice properties such as near-real-time and ACID - and I sometimes worry that the "core devs" might be failing to review the literature (and reach out to fellow programmers) out there to see if there might be some formal program-verification and practical Big Data tools out there which could be applied to coming up with rock-solid, 100% consensus proposals to handle an issue such as blocksize scaling, which seems to have become much more intractable than many people might have expected.
I mean, the protocol solved the hard stuff: the elliptical-curve stuff and the Byzantine General stuff. How the heck can we be falling down on the comparatively "easier" stuff - like scaling the blocksize?
It just seems like defeatism to say "Well, the blockchain is already 20-30 GB and it's gonna be 20-30 TB ten years from now - and we need 10 Mbs bandwidth now and 10,000 Mbs bandwidth 20 years from - assuming the evil Verizon and AT&T actually give us that - so let's just become a settlement platform and give up on buying coffee or banking the unbanked or doing micropayments, and let's push all that stuff into some corporate-controlled vaporware without even a whitepaper yet."
So you've got Peter Todd doing some possibly brilliant theorizing and extrapolating on the idea of "treechains" - there is a Let's Talk Bitcoin podcast from about a year ago where he sketches the rough outlines of this idea out in a very inspiring, high-level way - although the specifics have yet to be hammered out. And we've got Blockstream also doing some hopeful hand-waving about the Lightning Network.
Things like Peter Todd's treechains - which may be similar to the spark in some devs' eyes called Lightning Network - are examples of the kind of algorithm or architecture which might manage to harness the massive computing power of miners and nodes in such a way that certain kinds of massive and graceful scaling become possible.
It just seems like a kindof tiny dev community working on this stuff.
Being a C or Python or Java programmer should not be a pre-req to being able to help contribute to the specification (and formal reasoning and program verification) for Bitcoin and the blockchain.
XML and UML are crap modeling and specification languages, and C and Java and Python are even worse (as specification languages - although as implementation languages, they are of course fine).
But there are serious modeling and specification languages out there, and they could be very helpful at times like this - where what we're dealing with is questions of modeling and specification (ie, "needs and requirements").
One just doesn't often see the practical, hands-on world of open-source github implementation-level programmers and the academic, theoretical world of specification-level programmers meeting very often. I wish there were some way to get these two worlds to collaborate on Bitcoin.
Maybe a good first step to reach out to the theoretical people would be to provide a modular executable algebraic specification of the Bitcoin protocol in a recognized, military/NASA-grade specification language such as Maude - because that's something the theoretical community can actually wrap their heads around, whereas it's very hard to get them to pay attention to something written only as a C / Python / Java implementation (without an accompanying specification in a formal language).
They can't check whether the program does what it's supposed to do - if you don't provide a formal mathematical definition of what the program is supposed to do.
Specification : Implementation :: Theorem : Proof
You have to remember: the theoretical community is very aware of the Curry-Howard isomorphism. Just like it would be hard to get a mathematician's attention by merely showing them a proof without telling also telling them what theorem the proof is proving - by the same token, it's hard to get the attention of a theoretical computer scientist by merely showing them an implementation without showing them the specification that it implements.
Bitcoin is currently confronted with a mathematical or "computer science" problem: how to secure the network while getting high enough transactional throughput, while staying within the limited RAM, bandwidth and hard drive space limitations of current and future infrastructure.
The problem only becomes a political and economic problem if we give up on trying to solve it as a mathematical and "theoretical computer science" problem.
There should be a plethora of whitepapers out now proposing algorithmic solutions to these scaling issues. Remember, all we have to do is apply the Byzantine General consensus-reaching procedure to a worldwide database which shuffles 2.1 quadrillion tokens among a few billion addresses. The 21 company has emphatically pointed out that racing to compute a hash to add a block is an "embarrassingly parallel" problem - very easy to decompose among cheap, fault-prone, commodity boxes, and recompose into an overall solution - along the lines of Google's highly successful MapReduce.
I guess what I'm really saying is (and I don't mean to be rude here), is that C and Python and Java programmers might not be the best qualified people to develop and formally prove the correctness of (note I do not say: "test", I say "formally prove the correctness of") these kinds of algorithms.
I really believe in the importance of getting the algorithms and architectures right - look at Google Search itself, it uses some pretty brilliant algorithms and architectures (eg, MapReduce, Paxos) which enable it to achieve amazing performance - on pretty crappy commodity hardware. And look at BitTorrent, which is truly p2p, where more demand leads to more supply.
So, in this vein, I will close this lengthy rant with an oddly specific link - which may or may not be able to make some interesting contributions to finding suitable algorithms, architectures and data structures which might help Bitcoin scale massively. I have no idea if this link could be helpful - but given the near-total lack of people from the Haskell and ML and functional worlds in these Bitcoin specification debates, I thought I'd be remiss if I didn't throw this out - just in case there might be something here which could help us channel the massive computing power of the Bitcoin network in such a way as to enable us simply sidestep this kind of desperate debate where both sides seem right because the other side seems wrong.
https://personal.cis.strath.ac.uk/neil.ghani/papers/ghani-calco07
The above paper is about "higher dimensional trees". It uses a bit of category theory (not a whole lot) and a bit of Haskell (again not a lot - just a simple data structure called a Rose tree, which has a wikipedia page) to develop a very expressive and efficient data structure which generalizes from lists to trees to higher dimensions.
I have no idea if this kind of data structure could be applicable to the current scaling mess we apparently are getting bogged down in - I don't have the game-theory skills to figure it out.
I just thought that since the blockchain is like a list, and since there are some tree-like structures which have been grafted on for efficiency (eg Merkle trees) and since many of the futuristic scaling proposals seem to also involve generalizing from list-like structures (eg, the blockchain) to tree-like structures (eg, side-chains and tree-chains)... well, who knows, there might be some nugget of algorithmic or architectural or data-structure inspiration there.
So... TL;DR:
(1) I'm freaked out that this blocksize debate has splintered the community so badly and dragged on so long, with no resolution in sight, and both sides seeming so right (because the other side seems so wrong).
(2) I think Bitcoin could gain immensely by using high-level formal, algebraic and co-algebraic program specification and verification languages (such as Maude including Maude-NPA, Mobile Maude parameterized skeletons, etc.) to specify (and possibly also, to some degree, verify) what Bitcoin does - before translating to low-level implementation languages such as C and Python and Java saying how Bitcoin does it. This would help to communicate and reason about programs with much more mathematical certitude - and possibly obviate the need for many political and economic tradeoffs which currently seem dismally inevitable - and possibly widen the collaboration on this project.
(3) I wonder if there are some Big Data approaches out there (eg, along the lines of Google's MapReduce and BigTable, or Yale's CalvinDB), which could be implemented to allow Bitcoin to scale massively and painlessly - and to satisfy all stakeholders, ranging from millionaires to micropayments, coffee drinkers to the great "unbanked".
submitted by BeYourOwnBank to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

What I'd tell myself about startups if I could go back 5 years.

From /entrepreneur
(I'm not the author)
This is, in no particular order, what I'd tell myself about startups if I could go back in time to when I first got involved. Which is probably the same as what I've learned. This is most definitely not advice, the "you" here is directed at me. So is "I". Grammar is hard.
  1. You're definitely going to end up building too much and shipping too late. Be obsessive about avoiding this
  2. Someone's always already working on the same idea and that's not a bad thing
  3. Always refuse if someone asks you to sign an NDA before hearing their idea
  4. Like it or not, most networking in London is focused around drinking. Find a way to deal with that without having a constant hangover
  5. The people who are really getting somewhere aren't the people who are always out for drinks
  6. Linear growth can be worse than no growth
  7. Most people who talk about failing fast, aren't actually practicing this
  8. It's really easy to kid yourself that you're "doing customer development" when actually you're finding ways to make what your customers are saying fit with what you want to build
  9. Everyone has a hidden stash of domains they've never used
  10. It's really easy to become hyper-critical and respond to every idea with "yeah but that won't work because of x". This is lazy, don't do it.
  11. Be especially careful to avoid the above when talking to people who are new to the scene. Call out other people who do it
  12. It's really hard to listen to someone pitching an idea you've seen fail several times already and focus on working out if there's something slightly different and interesting there
  13. Someone being a technically competent developer does not mean they know how to ship things. I'd always rather work with someone who ships over someone who's technically brilliant
  14. The programming language/ framework wars are great fun in the pub, but of limited value in real life
  15. A good developer can pick up any language or platform in a few weeks
  16. I still don't know any real investors
  17. Constantly exaggerating how well you're doing can be very tiring. It makes it harder to publicly celebrate the real victories
  18. It's really hard to build a product if you don't have a big personal investment in the problem it solves
  19. Falling in love with a product (rather than the problem) is really dangerous
  20. You can get away without knowing how a hash table works, but it's really satisfying when you eventually learn it
  21. Same goes for Big O notation
  22. Overnight success isn't a thing. The Social Network is still a great movie
  23. I still don't understand PR
  24. Most technical solutions are trivial compared to how you get the product into peoples hands
  25. Make something people want is probably a less useful heuristic than make something you want
  26. But you wanting it doesn't mean enough people want it for it to be a business
  27. If you don't have first hand experience of an industry, you're probably wrong about how it works, what problems they have and so how they should be solved. Talk to people
  28. "Ads" are where business models go to die
  29. "We'll monetize the data" is the new "Ads"
  30. The people you end up wanting to work with (and help) are the ones who always try and work out how they can help you. Be more like them
  31. But get really good at asking for things. Most people will give you a discount for no reason other than you asked. If you see someone important and influential, introduce yourself
  32. Get good at saying no to things, from people asking you for discounts to interesting projects you really don't have enough time for
  33. Think hard about a pivot which makes good business sense but leads to a product you no longer care about
  34. Writing (blogging, books, journaling) is a really positive experience
  35. Don't pay too much attention to internet comments about something you've written, there's always someone who didn't like one particular sentence (see point about trolls below)
  36. One troll can wipe out a hundred positive interactions, be ruthless in keeping them out of your communities
  37. If you end up pitching to someone over coffee, ask to hear their pitch afterwards
  38. Only say you're going to introduce someone or send them something if you're actually going to do it. People quickly get a reputation for never following through
  39. Show don't tell. "I'm going to build this amazing thing" is a LOT less interesting than "I've built this slightly crappy thing that actually does something". EVERYONE is GOING to build something, most people never do
  40. Building things is awesome, don't get too caught up with the whole "Lean Startup Landing Page" mindset
  41. Lean Startup is awesome, but it's a pamphlet not a book, read the first few chapters and you'll get the idea. Four steps to the epiphany is more technical and probably a better book
  42. Most startup advice is terrible and the good advice is usually obvious. Everyone will give different advice, trust your gut
  43. Except when it comes to what your customers want, then ignore your gut and trust them
  44. No-one has ever used a Bitcoin ATM for practical reasons
  45. Do back of napkin financial forecasts for every potential business model you come up with, just to see if it's in the right ballpark to a couple of orders of magnitude
  46. It's really easy to automatically dismiss everyone who starts a conversation with "I'm looking for a technical co-founder". Doing this means you miss talking to some interesting people. But be upfront that you're not that co-founder so no-one feels like their time is wasted
  47. Trying to raise money and apply to accelerators is a full time job. You're probably either building or fund raising. Not both. If in doubt, choose building
  48. The solution to many, many problems, is not technical. That won't stop people trying solve them with apps
  49. Facebook is the Facebook for X
  50. The idea you laughed at when you saw them pitch at a hackathon may well be the one that's still alive and kicking long after whatever you pitched fails
  51. If there are people who genuinely like failing, I've never met them
  52. That was not "your idea" unless you shipped something, otherwise I invented Facebook, Nest and Oculus Rift
  53. People don't steal ideas. Tell as many people as possible. Never ask someone to sign an NDA before hearing your idea, you'll instantly lose all credibility
  54. Being friends with somebody is not the same as being able to work well with them
  55. Small teams can move VERY fast, be really careful getting extra people involved in any project where agility is important
  56. Multi-tasking isn't a thing, switching costs are huge, do one thing at a time and do it really well. Find a way to block out interruptions
  57. Read every essay Paul Graham has written
  58. Tech news (and news is general) has a very low return on time invested. Prefer books and conversations
  59. Read Founders Stories, Fooled By Randomness and The Four Steps to the Ephiphany
  60. The logo doesn't matter at the start, find a simple text based logo you can re-use for different projects
  61. If you possibly can, open source and write up any side project. Every now and then you'll meet somebody really interesting as a result
  62. Regularly working 12 hour days is probably never a good idea. If this is happening a lot, find a way to optimise
  63. Talk to everybody
Source
submitted by wdpttt to startups [link] [comments]

Nyancoins Megapost - Central Link Collection

Edit: Going to finally start an overhaul on this (April 23rd, 2016); it's been six months since the last edit. I'm going to go from current back, so there's going to be a gap between this top, new stuff and what's below until I finish the update.
I'm just going to have the last six months all shoved together into one large update here. There's weak categorization, but basically just think of it as a huge list. In general, the newer items will be higher within a given category than the older items. I apologize if I left anything out which people would like to see included. Some things I considered more of a temporary update than something relevant months later, but just PM me and I'll add anything requested!
We're currently in a quiet low point. Nothing catastrophic is happening, but we are relatively weak. I call it "the best nadir" because if this is as bad as it gets, we're doing alright. The price is down to 4 satoshi now, which is the lowest sustained price since the beginning of the revival. I'm going on a year behind my original goal for releasing NYAN2, still stuck on a new build computer (alternately time and energy to cripple together a build system out of what I have available).
One major new element: I've set a goal for us to have a mission to visit the site of Apollo 17 in twenty years. This is basically a new dimension. For the first ten years, I envision this as a purely "paper program", doing research on past space programs, in particular Mercury through Apollo, but any and all launch platforms and spacecraft which have been done. We may additionally seek to gain additional education (for instance, I would like aerospace engineering and material science undergraduate degrees at a minimum; we also are going to need experienced test pilots).
Space Program Initial Vision: [NYAN 2035] We must send a mission to visit the site of the Apollo 17 plaque on the Moon
Also, I've replaced the previous "Nekonauts of the Month" competition with a "Who Wants to be a Nillionaire?". The major difference is that rather than relying upon me to track everything, the expectation is that Nekonauts will sign up and self-report accomplishments.
Nyan Projects
[Hype] Browser based MMORPG accepting Nyancoins for member items: KojoSlayer's latest foray into nyan video game development! I've seen an early preview and it reminds me of a primitive Runescape (meant as a compliment)
Fun Posts
Insert NyanDisk 1 into Drive A:: NyanDOS!
Nyan like it's 1999 ....: telnet into nyan!
[breaking news] Nyancoins will be bought out by Garza in a last-ditch attempt to save Paycoin - April fool's post
Trumpchain on Twitter: "It can happen. Our blockchain has tremendous potential. We have tremendous people. #MakeTheBlockchainGreatAgain" - Terrific shitpost; really fantastic!
Join the Nekonauts today! - Cool nyan poster
"I really hope Satoshi is finally dumping and declaring that, like, Nyancoin is the true bearer of his vision." - CountOneInterrupt - My favorite idea ever
Nyancoin Zen - So cute. This may be my favorite nyan image ever for its understatement and beauty.
High Definition Nyan up close - Amusing
Making PC more Nyan-Friendly! - cute; amusing. Such nyan!
Typical Nyancoiner breakfast. - DobbsCoin is great with this stuff!
[meta] [misadventures of coinaday] [Pizza Boy Adventures] Late Night Pizza - Just a little choose-your-own-delivery I wrote during my stint as a pizza delivery boy.
I don't know how I wasn't aware of this site before - I still can't believe there's an entire site for this!
Get NYAN
Want more NYAN? Faucet Mrai and trade to me for NYAN (and then hodl!): What is says on the tin. The faucet is down temporarily at time of this writing, but it'll be back up before I update this section likely. The price offered there is low (mailing list mentioning 200-300 satoshi currently; my offer is worth about 2 satoshi currently); I would consider higher, but probably wouldn't pay those apparent market rates (no actual exchange yet).
Force Multipliers
Content about the difference a determined person can make. Intended as inspiration.
[Force Multiplier] [Original Content] [pdf; 23 pages] Archimedes and the Siege of Syracuse - Previously unpublished paper I wrote for a history course in college.
[Force Multipliers] [Military History] Julius Caesar's Greatest Military Victory (Video; 10 minutes) - An explanation of achieving victory in an apparently unwinnable situation.
[Force Multipliers] [Naval History] Korea: Admiral Yi - I: Keep Beating the Drum - Extra History - Incredible loyalty and dedication from this greatest Admiral saved his country
Philosophy
Content which fits the themes of fun, self-improvement, and service to others.
Wikipedia essay: WikiLove - I think Wikipedia's policies are in a lot of ways something to look up to. It's true that they're stuck in bureaucracy now, and have driven away many experts, but they function and their policies have helped to give some structure to the anarchy.
[US history and macroeconomics] [59 minute video] Thom Hartmann, "The Crash of 2016" - Interesting video. I think the predicted outcome is something of a longshot, but it's interesting to me that he called Sanders as a major factor in the election years ago.
Taylor Mali, "Words and Their Consequences" (68 min video) - Poetry and philosophy
We Are One - Didn't get any attention at the time, but this is a general statement about the power of people working together.
A Message of Hope for the World - What's the point of Nyancoins? To inspire people.
A brief word on censorship - tl;dr: Censorship is bad, m'kay?
Who Owns Nyancoins? - Hodlers.
To The Moon is Not Enough: 100 Year Planning - About the importance of an unlimited time horizon. We build to last.
General
Catch-all category. Okay, this category got out of hand. I should do a second round later and break this out into a few different ones.
The best argument I've heard so far for keeping the 1MB cap in Bitcoin - I still think it would have been better for Bitcoin to grow, but this is the strongest argument for its stagnation in capacity that I've seen.
[conceptual design] How we should expect 100,000 transactions in a minute (or second?) to be handled - This is about the idea that we should expect to be able to handle large loads without crashing. Pretty basic. Related to an /cryptocurrency post I'd made: 100,000 Transactions Per Second: How Do We Get There?, which gives a very high-level overview of one way to reach high throughput capacity using blockchains.
Interesting cryptocurrency to try: raiblocks, protocol without transaction fees or block rewards - I think Raiblocks will be a valuable "companion coin" to Nyancoins ultimately. I don't know how exactly that'll work, but I believe that good cryptocurrency communities should make alliances. If nothing else, we can be valuable to each other as the "loyal opposition", critics who want to see success.
Coin-a-Year: Nyancoin : link to /CryptoCurrency post - Summary of the first year or so of NYAN revival
[far future concept] Nyanshares, Nythereumbits, and all-in on 37 rainbow - A double post: first part describes a possible spin-off, hybrid, 'companion coin' we could make in future years. The second part talks about what a gamble NYAN is.
NyanCoin compilation guide and downsizing nyan.space / NyanChain [semi-meta] - Has a link to a guide for compiling nyancoind on servers.
[meta] [misadventures of coinaday] Stuck in the Dihydrogen Monoxide - Another in a series of coinaday posts proving "play stupid games; win stupid prizes"
[Data] Faucet Stats - KojoSlayer's faucet stats
Thing to do a thing that can't do that thing.... - Bit of code for pulling BTC/NYAN feed from Cryptopia.
Fresh builds, coming up! - initial report from vmp32k on attempting to modernize the codebase
DigiShield - suggestion for different difficulty algorithm
BIP101 implementation to be made available for altcoins - prohashing announcing that they will have a Scrypt BIP101 implementation; this is planned to be our base for NYAN3
Year 1: Acquisition and Triage ; Year 2: Acquisition and Build - Optimistic; in reality, year two of the revival has largely been me just trying to survive. Hopefully more acquisition and build as the year goes on.
[technical] [financial] Price Stability and Consistent Hashing - Basic theory. If we have consistent prices, we'll have more consistent hashing.
[technical] [forking] [NYAN3] Should running old defaults be considered a vote against a hard fork or should the veto need to be explicit? / General voting discussion - What it says on the tin. I haven't gotten feedback on this yet. It's far in the future, but I think it's a critical question. I'm not sure which way is correct.
2015 in review: overview - Initial summary of the previous year; written before the Coin-a-Year post which did similar
[meta] [finance] [misadventures of coinaday] Paying Debts - Since writing this, I've gone further into debt. I need to get my personal finances together this year, for my own sake, for the sake of those I owe, and for the sake of Nyancoins.
Countdown to the Second Halving - The current block is 1168851 as I write this; we've got less than 350,000 more blocks until the third halving!
I updated the major risks page for Nyancoins to include mention of the fork bug and 'time warp'. Please review and comment. - bolded for visibility; I consider the risks document and making sure that we inform potential buyers as much as possible to be a critical requirement for us
[technical] [security] Time warp, fork bug, disclosure policies, and practical results: a working system despite flaws - Discussion of the success of Nyancoins as a working system despite its technical vulnerabilities.
Zero Fees (*) - Discussion of the role of zero fee transactions and why I consider them important
[finance] [meta] [Misadventures of coinaday] overdrafts and consequences / Cryptopia 1sat Dump - Discussion of my stupidity and its consequences on Nyancoins' financial health
[technical] NIP 1: Base NYAN3 on XT - I consider this critical. We will make a statement about not following the path Bitcoin is currently going down. This is not urgent for us because our activity is so low, but it will be part of building a strong foundation for the future.
Hodling Update: 30% - I haven't done the math recently. I'm probably within 5% of this, but I don't know if I've gone up or down. I haven't given away a whole lot, but I have put no new money into Nyancoins for months from being so broke. I've still gained some millions more from when my 5 satoshi bids got hit though.
[finance] Up? Down? Horizontal? - Considering 30 - It's pretty sad how far we are from 30 satoshi now (4 satoshi at the moment). I believe we'll get it back ultimately, but the revival certainly hasn't had the financial success I'd hoped.
Dice soft launch - Not sure of the current state here. Check with KojoSlayer.
State of the NYAN October 2015: An interlude for gratitude and yearning for more - I should get back to doing these monthly eventually. Right now it's quiet enough that there doesn't seem to be a real need.
[financial] NYAN vs DOGE as a long-term store of value - What it says. I believe that the lower supply inflation and smaller supply of NYAN will ultimately lead to NYAN trading above DOGE (currently trading at less than 10:1).
[finance] [stats] [gaming] Breaking the Bank: Risk-of-Ruin, Dice Games, and Basic Logic - I'm pretty proud of this one. By having more money than god, and a screwed up default max bet rule, I was able to beat the house. 8-)
100M - Talking about the remaining supply and the implications.
I think I'm done with this update (at least getting the new content in; I have not changed the old text and content, which is everything below).
Since I can only have one thing stickied at a time, but there are a lot of different things going on, I've switched over to having one main link collection post. And this is it.
I'll update this periodically (I'll try to do a major update once a month) and might replace it at some point. It'll have general discussion of the context behind why these various threads are significant.
I'm doing August and September together for Nekonaut awards and updates here since I got a bit busy at work. NYAN2 is released as a first-draft, but I haven't built it yet (nor done final changes and fixes). I need a computer with more RAM than what I have available to me now. However, I'm quite satisfied with the performance of NYAN1.2, ancient though it may be, so I'm not treating it as an emergency.
The biggest news is that we are now listed on cryptopia.co.nz ! They are a great community and provide better ecosystem support than most exchanges: they include a pool and explorer along with the exchange. And their exchange has a lot of basepairs, with NYAN/BTC, NYAN/UNO, NYAN/DOGE, and NYAN/DOT being relatively active, NYAN/LTC being quiet, and the other two (popularcoin and feathercoin) being unfamiliar to me and generally unused.
Oh, also, when I've taken a look at it, the Nyanchain seems to be running smoothly. I haven't been watching too closely, but the status page is usually showing all green. I especially like seeing the high number of connections (generally close to 30). [Comment from July version; still accurate. I should get automated metrics on the Nyanchain someday, but in the meantime, it seems to be moving pretty smoothly anecdotally.]
Top stories from August and Septemberish
Nekonauts of the Months, August and September 2015 - Combined awards, three awards for 1M as a result, and such. Just check it out. :-)
New IRC channel and tipbot - This came about during the listing process; we are now at #nyan2
WE ARE LIVE! Cryptopia added us just now!! - Culmination of the process of getting listed on Cryptopia. After leading in user votes and DOT votes after the first couple days, the admins decided to add us. So as I count it, we won three votes. :-)
Looking good on Cryptopia so far - My early reaction to the exchange.
The past few days. - Repost of a classic, which is always a good idea in NYAN, given our rich archives.
Miners We Need YOU! - Brief discussion by KojoSlayer about the importance of miners to the Nyancoin ecosystem.
Nyancoind Dockerfile (for the tech-nyans) - Cool demo by vmp32k
Nyancat all up on your Vim command line. - Cool xpost from /vim.
[financial] I hit a positive balance on Cryptsy-NYAN again - I started buying on Cryptsy. I've since withdrawn from Cryptsy and am working on eliminating my balances there, but I've got a lot of altcoins to consolidate yet.
100M - A discussion of the remaining supply to be generated (now under 100 million more coins)
Top stories from July
Gitian Build Instructions - !!! This is exactly what I was trying to figure out. With this roadmap, we should be able to help others build *coins with gitian as well as provide a solid introduction to our own community members. This should be linked and submitted for feedback elsewhere; I should report back to the Litecoin thread with a link to this for discussion. I cannot overstate how important I find this contribution.
Nekonauts of the Month, July 2015 - Still going with this. I may not always get this perfect, but I hope that it will help add some motivation and recognition to the community who is building the next generation of Nyancoins.
Ɲyancoins for Nekonauts! [designs] - Some logos and concept art; a start by W7phone; we hope to see more of this type of thing!
[hypothetical] What would it take for us to be able to start our own Nyan exchanges? - tl;dr: Let's get setup on some decentralized exchanges!
Linux Nekonauts: Building nyancoind - I should get this in the sidebar somewhere. An excellent first post by gentlenyan !
Top stories from June
Nekonauts of the Month, June 2015 - Latest round of awards; I plan to keep doing this each month for as long as I can
[community] You are a leader of Nyancoins / Herding Cats: Leading Leaders; Leadership in a Decentralized Community - A discussion of the importance of you to the success of Nyancoins
vmp32k launches a beta of a faucet - When is this going live?
kojoslayer launches a faucet
Various post on mining being stuck - we are still a bit spotty, but it seems like it might be a bit better. We could use something more than just an instantaneous status page; if someone wants to make something which does statistical analysis of the performance of the nyanchain, that would be awesome.
Broke through the 40 satoshi ceiling, and Plagiarizing great speeches in history and claiming to have a community mandate: Coin-a-Day writes inspirational pap as we stand on the verge of breaking through the 50 satoshi ceiling and envisions the glorious future ahead - and rather more. The price dipped back down on Cryptsy since, but we had a nice rise for a while. I'm hoping that when we get an exchange we have confidence in, we'll see more buying again.
Warning: Cryptsy does not process large NYAN withdrawals - This is why I recommend not using Cryptsy; plus this
Top stories from May
First off: Ɲyancoins needs YOU! - This is a discussion of how all of us have something we can do for Nyancoins, and how improving your own life is absolutely one of those things.
Nekonauts of the Month, May 2015 - This is my first month running this competition. I'm looking to recognize people who are active and contributing to the community and to give them NYAN to help further whatever they'd like to do next.
The network is stable! - Thanks to a new miner, spydud22, we are showing all green on status!
Wow, very large chunk of NYAN at 40 satoshi (6 million) - The title is outdated; there's about double this volume now. [Edit: And now the title is accurate again.]
Initial notes and thoughts on the Nyancoins client update - I've identified the approximate version of Litecoin that Nyancoins is based on and looked at a diff. It looks reasonable and do-able. I haven't yet looked at the latest branch on which I'll apply these changes.
Nyancoins 2.0
https://github.com/mathwizard1232/nyancoins/tree/nyancoins2 - first draft of NYAN2
(intentional duplication from top stories for July; I consider it that important): Gitian Build Instructions - !!! This is exactly what I was trying to figure out. With this roadmap, we should be able to help others build *coins with gitian as well as provide a solid introduction to our own community members. This should be linked and submitted for feedback elsewhere; I should report back to the Litecoin thread with a link to this for discussion. I cannot overstate how important I find this contribution.- earlier working notes
Cross-platform Gitian builds - Discussion about getting Gitian builds to work for Mac without access to a Mac.
Initial notes and thoughts on the Nyancoins client update - Right now I haven't had time to do much more on this, but I need to work on doing the Litecoin gitian build yet.
Gitian Build - jwflame's initial notes on trying the gitian build
DLC
Distributed Library Coin; stealing^Wrepurposing the ideas of others - Introducing the concept; basically a virtual lending library for the community; Learned Optimism is offered.
[DLC] Siege of Earth - Second post, offering Siege of Earth, a classic sci fi tale
Minecraft
[Idea] Minecraft NyanCoins - KojoSlayer is making a cool Minecraft Nyancoins faucet sort of thing (get Nyancoins for playing Minecraft).
[Sneak Peak] Nyancoin Minecraft Server - This project is moving forward quite quickly! See also /NyanCoinsMC for more information.
[Beta] Launch Nyancoins Minecraft Server : NyanCoinsMC - BOOM! I'm amazed at how quickly this has gotten setup. Go check it out!
Background / theory
Overview of major risks of buying Nyancoins - I've tried to collect every risk I could think of in this one place. This is important reading before investing.
Nyan's core principles and why they matter
draft one of Cold Storage 101: How to secure your coins for long-term hodling - I need to incorporate the suggestions still, but between the article and the comments, this is decent.
I will work harder: in which Coinaday reports for duty - My statement that this is going to a new level for me: I'm considering this my dream job now, rather than just my hobby. I'm dedicating myself to serving this community as best I can.
[community] You are a leader of Nyancoins / Herding Cats: Leading Leaders; Leadership in a Decentralized Community - This is a discussion of the importance of each individual, in particular you, to this revival.
A really good read about fiduciary duties in running an exchange - discussion of the responsibility one takes on in managing money for others
[rant] In response to "there is only BTC [and maybe LTC [and maybe DOGE]] AND DEFINITELY NOTHING ELSE MATTERS" - Possibly amusing rant.
My most worthless and most valuable coins: Comparing DIME and 42 - A discussion about interpreting spot price in context
[theory] Bitcoin discussion of hard forks - Talking about the risks involved with a hard fork
Rooting for LTC's Rally to Hold: Nyancoins and the Cryptocurrency Market - Nyancoins do not stand alone. Although it's easy to see the rise of another cryptocurrency as weakening us, because we might trade lower against them temporarily, I believe that a stronger CryptoCurrency market as a whole will be important for our long-term health.
[financial] Cryptocurrency valuation models: Considering Nyancoins as a zero-coupon bond against the community
Classic Posts
Why Nyancoin will hit $1/NYAN (and much more). We're going to space, and you're invited! - This is an infamous post by americanpegasus. I believe it was actually someone mocking him in /bitcoin by linking to this which first made me aware that Nyancoins existed, and got the idea in my head that it was a deadcoin (from seeing a post/comments on the sub at the time which claimed that). So the dream of this post was actually so bold that it brought it back from the grave, because it was bold enough to be mocked, and that mockery eventually led me to investigate it, and that investigation led me to fall in love.
1Ɲ >= 1Đ - This is a vision I have, that we shall rise above DOGE. This is not a dig against DOGE but merely a statement about the growth I expect to see us have. There are about 500x as many Dogecoins as there are Nyancoins, so even if we remain significantly smaller we can easily pass their unit price. We've done so briefly previously but are currently below this mark.
We choose to go to the Moon - This is my manifesto about why I am doing this. Cribbed from JFK's moon speech, it is meant to express that it is because of, not in spite of, the challenges that we face that I am here. This started out as a personal challenge. While I certainly would like to get rich off of this, the reason I chose to pursue this is because if we do then, then we're awesome badasses that people can be impressed by.
The original Nyancoins intro video - wasn't really sure where to categorize this
Older stories
I'll move stories down here as they get older. For now it's the block stoppage stuff as that seems to have stabilized.
Holy shit, 22 hours since the last block. At this rate, I'm going to have to start solving hashes by hand... - This was my post about the block stoppage.
Difficulty has spiked again; if we hit another stall I'll try the transaction fee trick again - Another block stoppage, and a record of my attempt to use the same trick to break it loose again (transaction fee incentive).
I'm ready to give up on life; in which coinaday finally has his full-blown mental breakdown. So long, and thanks for all the rainbows! - My personal mental breakdown. Just listed here because it made an impact. Also, it was an amazing response from the community which meant a lot to me.
Fuck it; encore une fois - My reaction afterward, saying that I'll give things another shot.
GFS
Disregard the below: GFS has been down for a few months and probably won't be back. At one point, this project had been offered to me, and perhaps I should have taken it, but I felt like I was already heavily committed here and couldn't take that on as well. It's a shame that no one managed to keep it running though. I really liked the idea.
Disregard the below: it's back down again, last I checked. Not sure what to link on that. The new bot got mildly political again / referenced being a shadowbanned user, and bam. I'm not sure where this is going to go now, if anywhere. Although I suppose the on-blockchain stuff isn't affected, and I'd wager go1dfish will do something again.
/GetFairShare will be attempting another distribution today; go try it out! - GetFairShare is back! Go get free money!
I don't really understand what's going on, but apparently the bot used for /GetFairShare got banned - Some background on GFS having gone down
I think that this will continue to be useful as we gain a larger and larger volume of posts and help me not have to worry about burying something significant posted a couple weeks back or something.
Also, right now I'm just gleaning from the frontpage, but I'll add in some great classic posts too.
Let me know in the comments if there are other posts you'd like to see added here.
submitted by coinaday to nyancoins [link] [comments]

We need to break up the unholy alliance between the Chinese miners and Core / Blockstream.

We signed up for a grand experiment that would be controlled by math and not by men.
Now we've had a year where the community is coming apart at the seams and today top dev Mike Hearn is selling his coins and abandoning the project.
Are we going to let Bitcoin be killed by 10 miners with cheap electricity & cooling behind the Great Firewall of China and a private company which wants to cripple our code by limiting space on the blockchain and adding double-spends and high fees?
I'm really trying seriously here to put my finger on the main problems that are causing this whole Bitcoin thing to spin out of control.
I think the two biggest problems are:
(1) the concentration of most hashpower behind the Great Firewall of China,
(2) allowing Blockstream to hijack Satoshi's codebase, so that they could:
...both of which are essential for their flagship vaporware product Lightning Network.
Analyzing these two problems in more detail:
(1) Most hashpower is behind the Great Firewall of China
Most hashpower is concentrated in China, behind what is essentially a network partition (or at least a major speed bump) on the global network topology: the Great Firewall of China.
So if blocks got really big, the miners outside of China might actually suffer more, not the miners inside China (who have pretty decent bandwidth amongst themselves).
(If you've already heard a million times about US jobs being exported to China, you can skip down to the next section - the short section starting with a sentence in bold saying "Wouldn't it be ironic...").
Now for a bit of economic background that most people know but I wanted to just review it here.
As we know, countries such as the USA used to have a solid domestic manufacturing base. But then the power elite in the USA discovered that it was easier to fire more-expensive US workers and let underpaid Chinese workers breathing smog produce cheaper (ie, lower-price and often lower-quality) versions of those same goods - and then the Fed could just print up unlimited little pieces of paper (fiat US Dollars) to import all that stuff to the USA.
Paying workers decent wages and keeping the air breathable would have been expensive, but the Chinese have evidently shown they're fine with sacrificing those things.
So now:
Anyways, most people know about this outsourcing and money-printing situation I've just described, but I mentioned it here as a lead-in to suggest a weird ironic point about mining in China (in bold at the start of the next, short section below).
As we also know, the world finally has real money now: Bitcoin.
It's "real" because it's not infinitely printable by private central bankers who inject it into the economy as usurious debt, and because, like gold, its value doesn't depend on any "counterparty": you simply hold your value yourself, and verify it yourself - assuming you have enough bandwidth to run a full a/k/a verifying node.
So, I'll finally give the weird ironic point I've been building up to:
Wouldn't it be ironic if - now that we finally have "real", quality money - we let its "manufacturing" (issuance, mining) be outsourced to China?
Because that looks like what we've actually been doing here.
Plus, maybe in some un-apparent, heretofore un-considered sense, the Great Firewall of China really might be the ultimate form of "capital control".
Forget all those articles you read on ZeroHedge about billions about dollars being smuggled out of China via Macau, with people strapping little bundles of cash to their bodies under their clothes:
http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-03-15/how-smuggle-money-out-china
What if the real massive hemorrhaging of capital which the Chinese authorities are worried about is Bitcoin itself - and what if that's the main reason why they're gonna make sure they keep the Great Firewall of China in place - to keep billions (and maybe someday trillions?) of dollars in Bitcoins inside China?
I don't think Satoshi took the Great Firewall of China into account in his planning. I think he just assumed there would be one globally connected internet, with no top-level partitions.
So here's some things to think about:
  • From what I'm told, the Chinese work hard and they're wild about saving money - they have trillions of dollars in T-Bills, and a lot of them are into gold. In the aggregate, the country is swimming in various forms of wealth.
  • Also: their government has strict capital controls in place to try to prevent people from expatriating vast sums of wealth out of China.
  • And finally: many Chinese want real money. They know the dollar or the yuan could crash, so they want something which has no counterparty risk (like gold or bitcoin).
So I'd be curious to know who the buyers really are for all the bitcoins currently being "cheaply" manufactured in China.
Do bitcoins mined in China stay in China - or do they get sold to the rest of the world?
I would guess that most early Bitcoin adopters with large hodlings who got in when it was really cheap were probably Westerners (assuming that early news about Bitcoin was more available in the West).
But now, while Bitcoin is "still" in the USD 400s (which could be cheap, if it survives long-term) - I wonder who the main buyers are these days?
Is it people like Blythe Masters and other bankers who are sitting on billions of USD - or is it the Chinese who are also sitting on billions of USD as well? (Or: Why not both?)
One group I'm pretty sure isn't buying up lots of bitcoins: "average Americans".
Why? Because they're too broke.
Since Nixon unlinked the USDollar from gold im 1971, Americans have been getting screwed by insidious inflation and all the debt bubbles which formed around all the essentials in life (the housing debt bubble, the student loan debt bubble, the healthcare and pharma debt bubble, and the credit bubble which fuels all the others). Most Americans don't have enough cash to survive for more than a few weeks, and most can't even afford to take sick days or parental leave from work. The only people who have money are the ones near the printing presses: the bankers and their buddies.
There's certainly massive volume on several of the Chinese exchanges - although most people over on /BitcoinMarkets claim that it's all "faked" (mainly because there's no fees on those exchanges, so a lot of those trades could be "wash trades").
So, maybe the Chinese themselves are actually buying up a lot of those freshly-mined bitcoins, in China, using the trillions of dollars of T-Bills sloshing around in their system over there?
(And remember where those T-Bills ultimately came from: US Dollars which the USA printed up to buy cheap goods produced by Chinese slaves breathing smog.)
So - and here's my point again:
Wouldn't it be ironic - now that the world finally has real, quality money - if we were actually currently outsourcing all of its production to China - and they (plus a handful of scattered bankers) are the ones who all buying up the first real asset the world has ever known, during its current "mid-priced" phase?
(2) Core / Blockstream / Peter Todd / Theymos / max blocksize / RBF / LN
Where to begin? I'm sure you all know the story. Just a few reminders about RBF terminology:
(a) There are two orthogonal "axes" or "dimensions" to the whole RBF terminology (but some people get this wrong - I have no idea if it's intentionally or accidentally):
  • "Opt-In" vs "On-By-Default": This means what it says: for each transaction, you either enable RBF, or you don't:
    • "Opt-In" means the sender has to enable RBF for a particular transaction (ie: it's off-by-default)
    • "On-By-Default" would mean that RBF is "always on" but the sender could disable it for a particular transaction.
  • "Full" vs "FSS":
    • "Full" means the sender can change everything about the transaction: not only the fee but also the amount and the recipient.
    • "FSS" stands for "First Seen Safe" (by the way, where do the pinheads over at Core even get this retarded non-descriptive terminology anyways: FSS, RBF??). FSS means that the sender can alter only the fee - the amount and the recipient cannot be changed.
So, which combo of the above is Peter Todd / Core currently trying to force on users?
Opt-In Full RBF
I reviewed the terminology here to pre-emptively shut up the liars who often pop into these threads spreading FUD like "But it's only Opt-In so it's not really Full".
That is simply wrong and I'm tired of them conflating those two orthogonal (ie independent) dimensions of the terminology.
And oh yeah, another thing: I have heard plenty of rumors that the long-term plan (from the traitors at Core / Blockstream) is to eventually (stealthily) force the worst form of RBF on everyone:
On-By-Default Full RBF
But that will come later - once the frogs being slowly boiled (us, the victims of Blockstream's hijacking of Satoshi's code) have gradually gotten acclimated to "Opt-In Full RBF".
Anyways, now that that's out of the way, let's talk about some other things regarding RBF:
Yes we know, we know: Peter is "merely" adding something which any hacker or malicious user could have added anyways (if they modded the code, or if they tried really hard to misuse it).
But there's plenty of stuff which anybody do by modding the code.
For example - anyone could change the code so that it accepts a different block size. (In fact, BU is mainly about making this easy for users - instead of making double-spending easy for users like RBF does.)
So the "convenience barrier" is an important factor helping shape what most users do with the code. If a feature isn't already in the code, most users don't bother modding the C/C++ code and recompiling it and adding it. (Which is one reason why zero-conf has worked pretty well for so long - another reason being that in face-to-face retail, the retailer kinda does KYC already - ie, they literally "know their customer" to a certain degree - so certain social pressures and norms such as reputation do come into play - but Peter Todd doesn't really believe in those things, as we know.)
Now, Theymos / Core / Blockstream keep screaming that it would be taboo to mod the code so that it would accept bigger blocks.
But when Blockstream wants mod the code so that it allows double-spending unconfirmed transactions - well, in it goes.
That's because the real reason they're so gung-ho to get Full RBF added is because LN needs Full RBF in order to be able to work.
So... when certain people say "we need to allow confused users to be able to unstuck their transactions", they're lying.
The liars at Blockstream don't care about users, and they don't care about miners. They want to rip off users (making them pay massive fees for space on an artificially tiny blockchain) and then in a double-whammy they want to rip off miners as well (stealing fees from those miners, via LN).
Attention Bitcoin users and miners: Core / Blockstream don't care about you, and they're willing to lie to you in order to rip you off.
As Mike Hearn mentioned in his farewell essay today, Blockstream CTO Gregory Maxwell once "mathematically proved" that Bitcoin could not exist.
And Blockstream founder Adam Back missed the boat on being an early adopter of Bitcoin, because when he first heard about it years ago, he also didn't think it would work.
And the gullible Chinese miners are running software from these liars at Blockstream who don't believe in Bitcoin who are sabotaging Satoshi's code to decrease user adoption (and price)) and eventually steal miners' fees. If miners continue to blindly follow Core / Blockstream, it's going to hurt the miners themselves.
The Nine Miners of China: "Core is a red herring. Miners have alternative code they can run today that will solve the problem. Choosing not to run it is their fault, and could leave them with warehouses full of expensive heating units and income paid in worthless coins." – tsontar
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/3xhejm/the_nine_miners_of_china_core_is_a_red_herring/
And users who are still gullible enough to adopt a decentralized currency and then read about it on centralized censored forums controlled by some dweeb named Theymos are also going along with this.
Anyways, that's my rant for today.
Summary / Conclusions - plus a possible "nuclear" option (see the bold part below!)
The main obstacles which Bitcoin needs to get around now are:
  • the concentration of hashpower behind the Great Firewall in China
  • the adoption of Peter Todd's RBF which would provide a GUI telling users they can and should double-spend or reverse transactions which haven't been confirmed on the blockchain yet
  • allowing Core / Blockstream to artificially limit space on the blockchain - which drives up user fees, clogs the network, and supports their LN vaporware (which would also steal fees from miners)
  • if you signed up for a decentralized permissionless currency and you're happy to read about it on a centralized censored website owned by Theymos (/bitcoin, bitcointalk.org), then you're doing it wrong.
These things were not what Satoshi envisioned, and I suggest we focus on trying to figure out how to get around them.
Solutions which de-emphasize the importance of Chinese miners might be important. If their blind obedience to Core / Blockstream is one of the main factors killing Bitcoin, then why should we protect them?
Maybe if we're going to hard-fork, we shouldn't just bump up the max blocksize - maybe we should also invoke the nuclear option and change the PoW algorithm to bump the Chinese miners off the network.
Because, the whole story about needing small blocks "so that Luke-Jr with his shitty internet can stay on the network" is another lie being peddled by Blockstream.
The real reason was identified by Gavin:
"The physical bottleneck on the network today is not bandwidth to people's homes, it is the Great Firewall of China."
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/40kmny/bitpays_adaptive_block_size_limit_is_my_favorite/
So, if the Chinese are willing to throw Bitcoin under the bus for their short-term profits (and Core / Blockstream currently helping them).. then maybe we should be willing to throw the Chinese miners under the bus now for the long-term success of Bitcoin.
And, regarding Core / Blockstream, I we're actually making good progress towards routing around their damage - because if coders don't give users the code they want, those coders eventually get left by the wayside - and this is starting to happen now.
We already have several repos, (Classic, BU, XT) all of which will add some form of "max blocksize" increase. I wouldn't be surprised if some of those repos might also decide to omit RBF.
The new Bitcoin repos can easily cherry-pick features from "Core" which they did and didn't like - and they're going to have to compete to gain users.
So "max blocksize" is definitely going to increase.
And RBF could be abandoned in the garbage heap of history, another curious bit of vandalism which gave Peter Todd another 15 minutes of fame and drama, and then the rest of the world moved on and got back to business.
And finally, regarding Theymos: he's gonna lose his power eventually. He's already lost a lot. Plus he's sloppy and careless and one of his screw-ups will eventually be his undoing.
In the meantime, remember that it's easy to route around him on Reddit, by using a multi:
https://np.reddit.com/Bitcoin+bitcoinxt+bitcoin_uncensored+btc/
submitted by ydtm to btc [link] [comments]

[Table] IAmA: I Am Professor William Kuskin teaching an open class titled "Comic Books and Graphic Novels" for 28,000+ students starting Monday. Let's talk comic books and the possible collapse of higher education. AMA!

Verified? (This bot cannot verify AMAs just yet)
Date: 2013-09-20
Link to submission (Has self-text)
Questions Answers
Hi Prof. Kuskin. I'm enrolled in the course and I'm really looking forward for it to begin. Question: will you put some material in advance (some coursera courses do) so that we can take advantage of the weekend? Hi, rdentato! Thanks for writing. I've been looking forward to this course for a while. That's a good idea. We're going to do a bit more proofing today. If it looks sharp, I'll open it up and let people look around!
Please please do... several course put materials in advance or one or two weeks and this makes a big difference. For example, I travel a lot and my work schedule is irregular, so having the chance of having the lecture before helps me when I have a busy week! I see this is getting a lot of points. Will definitely get with my tech staff to open the course ASAP. When we do, I will send out an email.
Why do you think comic books and graphic novels are such a successful storytelling medium? Great question, tyesterday. You know, my own feeling is that comics are like medieval manuscripts from the fifteenth century. They are best, best, best artform for the book. They are something to have and collect and sort of worship.
As the internet has made books only one medium of many for communication, the comic book has seized the format and exploded.
That said, a lot of the energy has to do with community. People need a community of the imagination. Comics provide the platform for that community.
I love this Medieval aspect and perspective...it ties to the one-page assignment you have stated. Like the old monks illustrating the letters of their manuscripts with story-driven art-work!!! Yes!
Professor, in your study of comic book history, do you think that comics in general have been ahead of the curve when it comes to social, race, and gender issues? Or have they mostly lagged behind the times? Has comics really been a force for good or just entertainment for the masses? Excellent, Jlgill. Complex question. I think, like all art, comics tend to throw a lot out there, so it's hard to generalize. Certainly race and gender have lagged, and continue to lag. There is a lot of racism and sexism in comics, no doubt.
But, one of the first comics, the first of the species, is William Hogarth's Four Stages of Cruelty (ca. 1750 or so, so pretty early in the scheme of things), and he's drawing and writing about animal rights, and gender abuse. So there it is—can't generalize.
What Comic Book/Graphic Novel would you recommend to someone who's looking to start reading them? Two writing assignments, two multiple choice tests (easy), and making your own comic book!
How big will the comic book have to be? I have some ideas of varying lengths, but would need to work out some details ahead of time. So, four pages + cover is the basic assignment. More pages will be rewarded with extra credit.
Hey Prof. Kuskin! My brother and I are both taking your course and we're really looking forward to it. 28,000+ people is an incredible number. How do you feel about having an audience that large? Do you anticipate that students will suffer to some degree from the lack of intimacy you might expect from a classroom or lecture hall? Hi, Joompah. Thanks for writing in. Yes, I agree, it's got to suffer that, a loss of intimacy. I signed on to this for two reasons: first, I think comics are anti-authoritarian and MOOCs are anti-authoritarian. It's a match I like, and I am so proud and humbled that the University of Colorado Boulder got behind this project.
Second, I really believe in the Humanities. I feel that even with the loss of intimacy, if some people can be exposed to thinking about BIG IDEAS AND BIG QUESTIONS through comics, they will have a better life. I believe that.
So, the cost is the intimacy. I like to learn all my studnets' names, and sweat their writing out with them. Obviously, I can't quite do that here.
Hear, Hear! to getting the word out to the masses. I am a 50 yr old optometrist and do not have time to return to college. Ive taken an astronomy course from Duke, a micro-economics course from U of Illinois and now will start a Humanities course from U of Boulder. Go Go MOOCs!!! Bravo!
, there will be quite a few people whose names you'll learn, Professor. The active ones on the forums, the ones that will submit good comics of their own. Intimacy doesn't always require diminutive scale.
Hi Prof. Kuskin, what is your favorite comic book series of all time? Dark Knight Returns.
It's maybe not the best comic book, and I disagree with almost everything Frank Miller has said of late, but boy, what a comic! I remember my first time reading it. It blew me away, and still does. (that said, I do have an enormous batman tattoo, so maybe I'm biased.)
Have you ever thought about monetizing this course? Would the bitcoin revolution be a solution to this problem? You know, though I like the idea of virtual currency funding my comics library as much as the next nerdy guy, I think it's just fantastic that the course is free. It's renewed me in some ways, and I hope to share that energy.
So let,s talk. How will the writing assignment look like? Hey, Posnikr! The writing assignments are very focused. They concentrate on one page from a comic, which you will be supplied with. The whole assignment is to focus in on that page and read it like a brilliant visual-textual poem.
To be honest with you (and whoever else is out there!), I developed the assignment--stole part of it--from my Chaucer mentor. It's my first attempt at making it work in a massive format.
We shall see!
Would the page in question be from a work that we would, at that point, have been expected to have read, or will it be taken out of the context of the comic itself? I think both assignments would be interesting, but am curious about what you have in mind. Hey, Kanta7.
So, I assign two essays in the course. The first one pulls some pages from comics I have discussed in my lectures. The second one, later in the semester, adds a few we don't discuss.
BUT...
The point of the assignment is entirely to focus on the page. Each page is a little beautiful poem for you to tease apart. (I learned this from my doctoral director on Chaucer, back in the 1890s). So, really you don't need any more than a page.
It's hard to focus. I'll teach to you to focus.
Wm.
So You can not give wilder approach to the topic just the materials which will be provided ? Hi, posnikr. See above. It is a very narrow focus. But I promise, it will teach you to read depth in every page.
I really want you to stick to the materials. My goal is to teach depth, focus, and clarity in structure.
What got you into comics? Hey, easterislandstatue (great username, by the way): my mom read them to me in Central Park in NYC as a kid. Then I would go home and cut them into little playsets at home... thousands of silver age playsets.
I stopped reading when I was in grad school. Became a bit of snob.
Then, about ten years ago, I went through a rough patch, and wandered into a comic shop in New Orleans. Couldn't believe how it all developed.
From there, I was hooked again.
And you?
Hello Prof. Kuskin. Do you often read comics? Which comics recently published you would recommend for somebody? I do read comics a lot.
I am really grooving on the work of Matt Kindt, Paul Pope, and Jeff Lemire. I stayed up and read all of Lemire's Sweet Tooth in trade paperback in one night recently.
I would recommend his Underwater Welder.
But you can't go wrong with Paul Pope's One Trick Rip Off. Really can't.
What program/tool will we use to make our own comic? Will we need special software or computer platform? No, you will not. You'll need to figure out how to scan your documents and upload them. That's it. In fact, there is nothing better than a comic made with pencil, ink, and paper, and then scanned in.
Hello, Professor Kuskin! I'm very excited for this course. Two questions: 1) How exactly did you come to decide on what materials to use for the class? 2) What comic books/graphic novels didn't make the cut for the course that you would suggest people read? Whew! There are a lot of questions here, and I read yours and meant to answer it earlier because it is a very good one.
So, here is what I think, and I have to say this with some humility because the comics world is a huge one with a great knowledge base.
I believe there has emerged over the past ten years a clear literary history and canon of American comics. I think my syllabus reflects this canon, and I think it is fair to say that it would be a shame for a student of comics not to know the comics I list off.
That said, nobody--NOBODY--is going to be happy with my selections because comics are very emotional and because, well, any list is going to be partial.
I am sad that I've left out Persepolis--it didn't make my final cut--I am sad too that Grant Morrison's work is not really going to be represented. I would have liked to spend even more time on the underground scene, and on alternative comics, particularly Los Bros Hernandez (wikipedia them if you are not familiar). You will see that that lecture is a long one.
Ultimately, I think you can see from all the enthusiasm on this reddit that there is much passionate in comics.
No one will be particularly happy with my list, but I hope everybody is generally happy that the course is being taught!
Sort of a rewording of hegglehog's question about the Hawkeye Initiative. Do you see a future in comics/graphic novels, especially the superhero genre, where women are portrayed more realistically (i.e., less as idealized sexual objects, and more as normal people)? So, The Hawkeye initiative is interesting. Ultimately, superhero comics are going to have a lot of trouble getting over physical stereotypes. That's the genre. Crime, sci-fi, and even fantasy are moving ahead in this direction.
Hi Prof!! In Spain, education needs comics, superheros and all you could imagine :D Any idea???. Hi, Okenda. Thanks so much for writing in. So, Sandman gets some attention, and I go with Watchmen over From Hell, though, I really do think From Hell is a masterpiece. Watchmen fits with the structure of the course a bit better, though From Hell may be the more significant comic.
Are we going to have a deep talk about Neil Gaiman master piece, The Sandman books, and Moore's From Hell??. Do you know any Spanish comic artist like Paco Roca?. So many comics, so few days in the course...
Thaaank you very much for this course!!!. Wm.
Since you are located in Boulder, Colorado how have the floods effected you? I know CU was closed for a while. Well, Boulder did take a hit. The surrounding towns as well--Lyons, Longmont, Estes Park, Nederland, and so forth. Very, very sad.
The university reacted tremendously. We were closed for two days, but got back going quickly, and are running like a top now. It was a very impressive reaction.
I was fine. A bit wet, but fine. Thank you for asking.
Professor, I enjoyed and was very much in agreement with your assessment of sequential arts and its place in literature/culture. Would you suggest your course to any prospective graphic novel creators? Yes, actually. My course is chiefly analytic and historical, but my main contention is that no one writes (or draws) alone—that is, no one can drop into a living artform without recognizing the history of that artform, it's experience through time.
So, I can only hope that my lectures expand that history a little bit. I know that I have learned a lot putting them together.
Do you think text — dialogues, captions etc. — are mandatory for comics to qualify as comics? People have argued that storyboards or wordless novels, picture books, or even, back in time, scrolls, are all forms of comics. Would you agree to that, will your course propose a definition for comics; or do you think that definitions are beside the point? Thank you. So, there are many wordless books that qualify as comics and are wonderful stories. You know, HoaSi, I really do think definitions are besides the point. Arguing about definitions is a lot of fun, but ultimately it slows down the imaginative investigation. Comics are part of a larger combination of literature and artwork, of storytelling through books--and I mean books here really broadly, for an ipad is a book—that has been going on for thousands of years.
Where is the medium going? what is your prediction for the next big thing in comics? Very good question, Bambi_stars. What does Adama say in Battlestar Glactica? "I don't do hypotheticals?" It's a wise statement.
I've been mulling over where I think the energy is, though, and I think that there is a lot of energy in creators, like Pope, Lemire, and Kindt, who are moving in and out of the superhero and "alternative comics" genre. What I mean to say is that I think so-called mainstream superhero comics have tremendous force and importance to the comics community, but it's not necessarily where the best or most adventurous work is being done. So I look to people who did not start that way bringing a new perspective in.
How will this class prepare students for their future careers and lives? This is a brilliant, question, Salacious!
I have a lot to say on this topic. And first, I'll say this: a few of my students have gone on to try to make comics their careers, so that's a direct application. But! I really want to say this: the study of art--and I mean comics as art--is critical, and I mean critical to a good life. Comics are great this way, because they are an easily accessible art form. Why? Because art gives us life to study. Each comic book page is a problem set, and writing about the page is way of analyzing a problem set.
Why are american comics serialized such that what you buy at the store is just a single series? why are american comics not sold in anthologies, as japanese comics are? were american comics once sold in anthologies, and if so, what happened to them? Hi, Choubugioxkel. This is a fascinating question, that I think comes down to the way comics have always been distributed. American comics began as a throw-away literature reprinting newspaper "funnies" and so they have always been seen as ephemeral.
My sense is that the so-called Graphic Novel revolution has made a lot of change here, and that a lot of readers now wait for the anthologies. I know I do.
How on earth will you be able to respond to 28,000 students. Do you have powers you've not yet revealed? Galactus is my TA.
Why do comics gravitate towards "capes?" What, you don't wear one when you're relaxing...
Oops...
Hi, Prof. Kuskin. I'm a huge graphic novel fan (especially Alan Moore's work). I already have a good background in graphic novels and I'm very excited about your course. I just wish to know the level of detail we will adopt to read texts like Maus and Watchmen - will it be a basic analysis or in-depth, taking into account historical events (Maus) or other pop-culture and historical references (as in Watchmen)? Hey, Oneiros. (gulp).
Okay, in this course, I try to split the difference. Set up the text with one large scale question, and then really focus on as tightly as I can on a single page.
I ask the same of you in the papers (which I describe in one of the threads below).
I much favor in-depth close reading of the page. That's my into each comic.
Hey Doc. Brave of you. Retired teacher here. Looking for the fun. I am beyond erudite and sophmoric. Glad to be part of this. Dislike testing. Too close to testosteroning. So no Perespolis on this list but Building Stories is ! Curious. Muiti cultural choices ? American Born Chinese ! Looking forward to Monday. Hey how about Crumb's Genesis ? Thimble Theater ? Excellent list of texts, jmusich. So, I too dislike testing, and I don't know how the "assessements" will go. For me, it is part of the experience in this new frontier.
I actually finished recording the Crumb lectures last week. I focus on ZAP and BIG ASS, but one of the things that this course has already taught me is that his shadow is long.
Yes, you are free to disagree, but I find Building Stories very important.
Hi, how deep are we going to study the semiotic level in comic. i mean, the simbolism under the narrative, the semantics of their meanings, the formal structures of signs and it´s agents? THX! Okay, this is an interesting question. In my view--and here it comes--much comics criticism, indeed, much humanities criticism has a very semiotic turn to it, and is very, very concerned with a technical language for representation. Now, it is my view, that over the past thirty years this has alienated much of the audience for the Humanities, narrowing the academy so that it is talking to itself. (Boy this is from a guy who started out by reading Louis Althusser).
One major goal for this course is to show that the supposedly simplistic comic book can hit at major intellectual questions. Now, to get at those questions, you certainly have to close read those books carefully, but you don't have to bury them in a difficult language.
Comics are for everyone. Literature is for everyone. Art is for everyone. We need a semiotic language that recognizes this truth.
Hope that makes a little bit of sense.
How does the industry feel about the current trend in Hollywood movies based on comics? Hey, dontjudgemefood. I think the industry--the mainstream industry--owned as they are by movie companies, and plenty happy. Mainstream comics are always tilting to bankruptcy. Ouch.
Prof Kuskin, I already enrolled. What do you think about the so-called GNs but actually TPBs that collected ongoing issues? Also, since the course starts in 3 days, shouldn't the course forums be opened so people who enrolled can discuss there? Hi, Multjiang. After I wrap up this reddit, I have a few images to map and a little proofreading, and then we will go live, a bit early, so people can jump in.
In one of the first videos I discuss the difference between GNs and TPBs. To me, they are all comics. I don't think we should get too hung up on these definitions.
Have you thought of mentioning independent lengthy comics in the course such as Jeff Smith's Bone and Dave Sim's Cerebus? Just mentioned Cerebus in recording my lectures last sunday. It's a brief mention, but the independent comics movement is powerful.
Hi Professor, how do you feel about Comic Books and Graphic Novels as an introduction to reading? I'm asking this because my gateway to reading narratives was Calvin and Hobbes, but only now I'm getting into comics with Allan Moore. I said in one of the earlier posts that I started reading comics with my mom during dog walks in Central Park in NYC. It was during those walks, back in the late 60s that I learned to read. I guess Stan Lee was my first author, and in that he taught me to read. So, I think comics are great to learn to read, although maybe Alan Moore would be a tough start...
Though even as I type that, I realize that one of my firmest beliefs about reading is that it should be self-motivating. It is a challenge for each parent to decide what is appropriate--on the one hand, some images in comics do seem inappropriate but on the other hand, I am not to judge what fires off a child's imagination and gets them reading.
I digress.
Yes! A great introduction to reading!
Will you be touching on any non-capes-&-cowls graphic novels, such as Essex County by Jeff Lemire? Boy, Dollinha, I haven't read "Essex County." I just read my way through Sweet Tooth, and you can bet that I'll be buying this soon!
Thanks for the tip. (and there, just for the record, I sure haven't read everything).
But, looking over the reading list, superheroes only get part time in this course. There is so much out there that doesn't involve them...
This is my first approach to comic books and graphic novels. I am very excited to start but also I feel a little intimidated. Do you have any advice for your "non-background" students? Please do not feel intimidated. First, comics are for everybody. They are not about rites of passage or about warehouses of knowledge. They are about the imagination.
Second, the MOOC should be challenging and engaging, but it is also for everyone. It is not about being the brightest or about being perfect in any way. (Lord knows, you will discover that I am imperfect!).
In a nutshell, this course is about thinking about some great stories and taking some personal risks.
I am total newbie when it comes to comics. I haven't read many but I do want to start reading them and learn to appreciate them. Is this a good course to achieve that? Yes, niting!
This is course for you. I've taught it many times, and my students always feel that it renews them. Welcome aboard!
Hello Professer Kuskin, I was wondering what you think of the current fiasco that is DC comics? Hey, emmawestlund! I think you nailed it. It's a fiasco! I'm going to talk about this when I get to Planetary, which is a total indulgence on my part. Warren Elllis has a great phrase, "Decoherence," and I think it applies well to "The New 52."
But... art is generative, so there is always hope. Let's keep hoping!
Greetings from Greece! Would you say that this course would set a good basis to a person who likes to draw and wants to get involved in illustration but has absolutely no clue how? Hi! Glad you've signed up. Yes! This course will not teach you to draw, but it will discuss and make you think about layout. Layout is key.
The comic book is a collaborative medium by convention and due to time consumption. Very few do fill all of the positions all by themselves. What is your view regarding collaboration between students? When we make our own comic, for example, will we be able to work in groups? I suppose what I'm asking is — does the course allow for that and to what extent? In my bricks and mortar version, I allow for collaboration. In this version, I don't emphasize it--there is no way for me to track the student submissions accurately. I would say here, and I will say if it comes up in the discussion forums, that people can work together, but that each person needs to pull his or her weight.
Hi Prof. Kuskin! What sorts of insight do you hope this course will give people in the comics industry? Well, I would hope for three things: 1. I hope this brings a lot of people into reading comics on a regular basis, so in this way, I really hope that this course is good for comics, and good for the comics industry in general. 2. I hope the industry notes that people are really interested in big questions and smart comics. Sure, it's great to see beautifully drawn heroes slugging it out against nefarious evil-doers, but I hope to see more and more thoughtful and aware comics. 3. With that, wouldn't it be beyond great if someone from this course decided to make a go at comics and, actually, could pay their rent on it?
Since this is so multinational, could we do another AMA where people list a favorite comic or graphic novel from their country? The course is focusing on US work but I'd love to use this opportunity to learn about work beyond the US. Might be a fun end of course question. Nice idea. If this does not naturally come up in the discussion forums over the next seven weeks, let's make a promise, Zorgly, to force the issue.
How do you feel about Greg Land and his success in the industry? Hey, Grimrecycler.
This is a tougher question to answer than it appears, so thanks for asking it. On the one hand, let's be fair: there are no rules to comics except what will float in the market. That's an important rule, is it not? I mean, if we're going to start hedging comics, we will quickly be in the business of hedging art--back to 1954.
On the other hand, I'm not really a fan. He's made a fine career on some stereotypical artwork that some find offensive. I put him, sadly, in the same boat that Mark Millar seems to be currently rowing (from the writing side of things).
There. I said it.
What comics do you currently buy monthly?...and do you still make weekly trips to the store to pick up new comics? Hey, M0ntana! Thanks for this question. What do I buy monthly? Batman (which I've not been happy with, but can't give up), Kick-Ass (which I'm not happy with, and am about to give up), Lazarus (which I like), Massive (so-so), Scarlet, Fatale, Trilluim--probably some others, but that is what springs to mind (and my mind and fingers are getting a little tired).
Hello professor. Will there be any live lessons during this course? If so, on what medium would that be? Wow. I hadn't even thought about live lessons. I will jump into the discussion forums pretty regularly. I'll talk to my tech person.
Valiant re-boots, The Last Unicorn, what happened to Warlock? What did happen to Warlock? It's a good question!
Is there a reading list for the class? I do a podcast called Alt3red Egos and I read a ton of comics, but I need to "schedule" my reading time. If I had a list of books that would help with the class, I could do that. Welcome! So, the basic reading is on the Coursera "profile" which is at Link to www.coursera.org When the course opens, you'll be able to download the syllabus, which presents the whole course.
Hey, Prof. Enrollee here! How many classmates do I have? Yes, about 28k, but who knows how many will make it to the end?
Hi proof! I've been a non structure storyboarder for some years. I wonder if we...if we will get some (structure) and, specially, if we will also work on the course. By 'work' I mean all kind of means (keyboards electroshocks included) that push us to draw, design storyboards along the classes. Will we? Yes you will!
Hello Professor - greetings from New Jersey. I got into comics as a way to teach my dyslexic 3rd grade son how to read. He is now a honor roll 7th grader! Hoping to gain further understanding and insight into the medium as I am still much the novice. Thank you for the opportunity. Great. Bravo on the Honor Roll! You should be proud.
I think you'll see many ways of working on focus in this course.
Go NJ!
This is a brilliant, question, Salacious! I have a lot to say on this topic. And first, I'll say this: a few of my students have gone on to try to make comics their careers, so that's a direct application.
I'm enrolled in the class. At the time I enrolled, comics were just an interest of mine. Within the past couple months, I've actually been hired as an editor for comics. Looking at comics through an academic lens will only better my understanding of them, which will help me as an editor! Bravo!
I believe all the lectures will be on coursera as long as the class is. not sure if that answers your question. Well answered, almightypoodle! Yes, I believe that is true. You can enter into the course late, drop out for a bit, and come back and learn at your own pace.
I am an academic librarian looking forward to this class - a departure from my usual routine...borrowed most of the books from my daughter and ready to go! Excellent! I hope that you get a kick from the course and that it filters into your librarian ship.
I am a bit worried about the 'make your own comic book' bit. Not much creativity or art skills here. Week three gets a little heavy, sexually. I certainly wouldn't have been embarrassed when I was 15, but I would have been a bit embarrassed if I was watching with my Mom!
Just stopping by to say hello. I can't wait for class to start! :) Hello, studentloansadness!
Bought the first novels already! So excited! Wonderful!
Hello, Pr Kuskin, Please don't be afraid, totoro46!
I' m enrolled - a little afraid as a beginner, so many people knowing so many things. I live in Spain. As an ignorant, I have no question until now ! Waiting for monday ;) I wrote on this earlier, but comics are for everyone! It's not about winning or losing, it's about liberating the imagination.
Evenin' from the UK. FYI Its nearly 8pm here, not 7pm as stated in the Email ;) Sorry! Lord knows, it's hard enough for me to make it to work on time! Glad you made it.
Last updated: 2013-09-24 20:31 UTC
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