Tag: technology

Infiltrators: Bitcoin Paranoid – Episode 162

The Story: Have government agents infiltrated Bitcoin?

If you created a system that could potentially displace a lot of existing organisations – large, powerful organisations – rendering them obsolete and removing their sources of funding, you could reasonably expect that some people from those groups wouldn’t be too happy about it. They will most likely decide to take action – perhaps even criminal action – in order to protect their interests. That’s why when Bitcoin was created, it made sense that its inventor (or inventors) decided to remain anonymous.

The identity of Satoshi Nakamoto remains unknown, and as far as we know, no longer has anything to do with the project. So they are most likely safe from reprisal. Yet, what about the people who are involved in the project today? If powerful people wanted to slow down or even destroy Bitcoin, how would they do it? The decentralised, anti-fragile nature of the system makes it too strong for an attack using software. But the developers’ identities are public, and the discussion boards are public. Anyone with sufficient resources could begin to corrupt these groups using money, violence, threats of violence, and sowing seeds of confusions in public forums – perhaps even creating entire companies to subtly undermine the integrity of the project.

In this episode, Kurt looks at a couple of historical examples of how “law enforcement” organisations are willing to get their hands dirty for questionable purposes, and speculates how similar strategies could be used to unhinge the Bitcoin community – or other digital currency communities. He discusses how Hoover used the FBI to act out his prejudices against black Americans, how London Metropolitan policemen were involved in sexual relationships as part of their undercover operations, and the types of unusual comments that float around among prominent Bitcoiners, that raise the question of whether Bitcoin has been compromised.

Join me on a journey of infiltration, deception and mystery in the next episode of … The Paradise Paradox!

The Eps:

Dash digital cash vs Bitcoin: Which will achieve mass adoption first? – Episode 154

Bitcoin vs Dash: Ridiculous comments about Dash – Episode 157

The Links:

Anarchast – Opening Yourself Up to The World, Living Freely and Enjoying the Ride with Kurt Robinson

Just being black was enough – The Nation

Tape shows Nixon feared Hoover – NY Times

Undercover agents fathered children – The Antimedia

Undercover police had children with activists – The Guardian

Luke JR’s $5 comment on Reddit

Lesser known reasons to keep blocks small in the words of Bitcoin Core developers

In-Q-Tel on Wikipedia

In-Q-Tel’s website

The Cash:

If you enjoy our posts, please become a patron on Patreon, or have a look at The Paradise Paradox’s page on Steemit where you can join, earn money, and upvote our posts to help support the show! You can also find a lot of additional content which is not posted on this site, with Kurt’s posts on Steemit and Aaron’s posts on Steemit.

We really appreciate all of your contributions! Every cent and satoshi we receive lets us know that we’re doing something worthwhile, that you are entertained by our program, and that you’re starting to question what you know more and more. Please be generous. Donate to The Paradise Paradox. Or buy some stuff on Amazon using this link. Or buy some of our great T-shirts here.

The Episode:

To download the audio, right click and press “save as”.

Remember to subscribe on iTunes or subscribe on Pocket Casts.

If you enjoyed the episode, don’t keep it a secret! Feel free to share it on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Reddit, or your office bathroom wall.

Bitcoin vs Dash – Ridiculous comments on Dash

The Story: Fun, interesting and exciting comments about Dash

If you bring up the cryptocurrency Dash among people who know anything about it, you’ll probably get a diverse range of opinions. Some people hate it and believe it’s nothing but a fraud. Other people love it and believe it’s the currency of the future. And others still believe its rise has more to do with sex appeal than any usefulness.

In this episode, Kurt digs into the cesspool known as “the YouTube comment section” and responds to the most interesting and bizarre among them. He discusses SegWit and how it causes mental blocks among Bitcoiners, user experience, Bitcoin as a blue chip company or international clearing house, the security of Bitcoin compared to Dash, the sex appeal of Dash, the fantastic dream of cryptocurrency, what Dash’s marketing says about it, Dash as a business, centralisation, whether someone could control 50% of masternodes, the instamine or fast mine of Dash, what is a Ponzi scheme and whether Dash is one, and finally whether Dash is just a big scam in general.

Join us on a crypto adventure in the next exciting episode of … The Paradise Paradox!

The Eps:

Why Amanda B. Johnson loves Dash – Episode 155

Dash vs Bitcoin – which will reach mass adoption first? – Episode 154

The Links:

Dash Central

The Cash:

If you enjoy our posts, please have a look at The Paradise Paradox’s page on Steemit where you can join, earn money, and upvote our posts to help support the show! You can also find a lot of additional content which is not posted on this site, with Kurt’s posts on Steemit and Aaron’s posts on Steemit.

We really appreciate all of your contributions! Every cent and satoshi we receive lets us know that we’re doing something worthwhile, that you are entertained by our program, and that you’re starting to question what you know more and more. Please be generous. Donate to The Paradise Paradox. Or buy some stuff on Amazon using this link. Or buy some of our great T-shirts here.

The Episode:

To download the audio, right click and press “save as”.

Remember to subscribe on iTunes or subscribe on Pocket Casts.

If you enjoyed the episode, don’t keep it a secret! Feel free to share it on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Reddit, or your office bathroom wall.

Bitcoin vs Dash – Bitcoin mental blocks: SegWit & UX

A lot of people left comments on my videos saying “If SegWit comes in…” “Just you wait and see if Segregated Witness comes in…” What they don’t get is, that’s a huge “if”. The problem isn’t just that there are unconfirmed transactions now… the problem is, we have no idea how or when the solutions will be implemented. That is the real problem, and Bitcoin maximalists have a huge blind spot for that. It seems to be because they’re only thinking about Bitcoin in terms of the technology, not in terms of the human factors – the governance, the politics. It’s as if they say “Well the technology exists so it’s all going to be fine.” And when you ask “How is that tech going to be implemented?” they say “the technology exists so it’s all going to be fine.”

You also see this flavour of thinking when it comes to user experience. They say “I don’t care about having to copy and paste a Bitcoin address” Or they bring up QR codes. It’s true, QR codes give an improved user experience compared to long confusing strings of characters that make up Bitcoin addresses. However, QR codes pose their own problems. I’ve often been on the web looking at a QR code thinking, what am I supposed to do – point my phone at my monitor? That just seems weird. If people had to scan a QR code to get to Google or Facebook, the web probably wouldn’t be as popular as it is today.

If you want a service to get popular, you have to extend your empathy, imagine yourself in the shoes of a complete noob and try to feel what they would in that situation. If you get caught up thinking “I’m comfortable with this (so I’m sure everyone else will be too),” you’re confining your tech to be used by an elite few.

 

Future-proofing your career – Episode 151

The Story: How to prepare for an uncertain work future

Futurism is a field which is fascinating to those who study it – presenting a puzzle in the form of the question: how are all the current trends going to interact in ways which are going to affect the entire world? However, most people don’t care so much to think about the future, and that’s a problem, because we are quickly entering an age in which the people who can’t see a few years into the future, will quickly be left struggling to deal with the present.

Many people believe that being an employee, as opposed to operating a business, is a secure proposition, as having a fixed income with a dependable employer enables some certainty. That can be true in the short term, but it’s not necessarily true in the long term. Large economic crises typically happen every 7 years – just long enough for many to be over-comfortable, and subsequently desperate. True survivors and hustlers have multiple sources of income, doing short-term contracts, gig-based work like on Fiverr or Freelancer, and investments.

Automation is also something that people are worried about. If you work in the manufacturing sector or transport, machines will probably come for your job sooner rather than later. Burger-making and selling machines will soon be common, displacing a lot of fast-food workers. How soon will the robots come for your job? And how quickly can you prepare?

With robots watering plants, tilling fields, running factories, delivering goods, there will be a much lower cost for mass production, which means cheaper goods and a lot more wealth for many. Perhaps they will choose to spend some of that wealth on things which they really like, which machines can’t make, or can’t make yet – things which are unique – handmade items, art, music, and fine food. In the past, a writer had to have millions of fans to make a decent living. With modern technology, Patreon and Amazon self-publishing, a writer might make a good living with just a few thousand dedicated supporters.

Join Kurt as he gazes into the future in this mini-episode of… The Paradise Paradox!

The Links:

Humans need not apply

Coursera.org

The Cash:

If you enjoy our posts, please have a look at The Paradise Paradox’s page on Steemit where you can join, earn money, and upvote our posts to help support the show! You can also find a lot of additional content which is not posted on this site, with Kurt’s posts on Steemit and Aaron’s posts on Steemit.

We really appreciate all of your contributions! Every cent and satoshi we receive lets us know that we’re doing something worthwhile, that you are entertained by our program, and that you’re starting to question what you know more and more. Please be generous. Donate to The Paradise Paradox. Or buy some stuff on Amazon using this link. Or buy some of our great T-shirts here.

The Episode:

To download the audio, right click and press “save as”.

Remember to subscribe on iTunes or subscribe on Pocket Casts.

If you enjoyed the episode, don’t keep it a secret! Feel free to share it on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Reddit, or your office bathroom wall.

Indiana Jones in real life, the game: Interview with Andrew “@andrarchy” Levine – Episode 121

The Story: A massively multiplayer offline role-playing game

You might have heard people say occasionally that “life is a game”, or even that you can choose your own game in life – some people choose to accumulate more money, to get a better credit score, some choose to bring happiness to others wherever they can, to make beautiful things, to seek enlightenment. There are many ways to play this game, but with the way certain people act, it seems that they’re not aware it’s a game. It’s a wild ride, and people seem to not be aware that it’s only a ride.

What if we could somehow make it explicit that we are playing a game, and create goals and rewards as we go along? What if making the game explicit allowed us to step outside of ourselves – maybe give ourselves permission to do things that we wouldn’t normally? What would we gain from that? How would it change our perspective – making us feel more fulfilled, content in the knowledge that we, in many respects, have nothing to lose by playing?

In this episode, Kurt interviews Andrew Levine (a.k.a. @andrarchy) and finds out some of his ideas on how we can gameify reality, and gameify our lives, giving us that vital perspective, and allowing us to discover other parts of ourselves in a safe environment. Andrew calls his idea “Indiana Jones in real life” – running around the world, trying to find different artefacts, and at the same time constructing the rules of the game, and perhaps formulating puzzles for other players to solve.

The Links:

Andrew’s Steemit page

The Cash:

If you enjoy our posts, please have a look at The Paradise Paradox’s page on Steemit where you can join, earn money, and upvote our posts to help support the show! You can also find a lot of additional content which is not posted on this site, with Kurt’s posts on Steemit and Aaron’s posts on Steemit.

We really appreciate all of your contributions! Every cent and satoshi we receive lets us know that we’re doing something worthwhile, that you are entertained by our program, and that you’re starting to question what you know more and more. Please be generous. Donate to The Paradise Paradox. Or buy some stuff on Amazon using this link. Or buy some of our great T-shirts here.

The Episode:

To download the audio, right click and press “save as”.

Remember to subscribe on iTunes or subscribe on Pocket Casts.

If you enjoyed the episode, don’t keep it a secret! Feel free to share it on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Reddit, or your office bathroom wall.

Ethereum’s New Financial Paradigm with The Last American Vagabond

The Episode:


To download the audio, right click and press “save as”.

Remember to subscribe on iTunes or subscribe on Pocket Casts.

If you enjoyed the episode, don’t keep it a secret! Feel free to share it on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Reddit, or your office bathroom wall.

The Cash:

We really appreciate all of your contributions! Every cent and satoshi we receive lets us know that we’re doing something worthwhile, that you are entertained by our program, and that you’re starting to question what you know more and more. Please be generous. Donate to The Paradise Paradox. Or buy some stuff on Amazon using this link. Or buy some of our great T-shirts here.

The Story:

Aaron had the chance to jump on The Infinite Expansion podcast with fellow Anarchapulco attendee, Tim Bryant, of The Last American Vagabond, to have a discussion about the benefits of Ethereum and how it is ushering in a new era of financial technology – even while many banks are still just getting involved with blockchain technology, and many regular people still don’t know what Bitcoin is.

Ethereum is billed as an “international computer”, a way to execute computer code using a widely distributed network all over the world, a development which not even its users and developers yet understand its full implications or possible implementations.

Aaron and Tim talk about the benefits of Ethereum to be used in smart contracts, how it might work in conjunction with other cryptocurrencies, and how cryptocurrency is sometimes rejected in the truth movement, even though it might well be perfectly aligned with their goals.

Join us as we propel ourselves into the future on this next episode of The Infinite Expansion podcast and The Paradise Paradox!

The Eps:

Episode 50 – Juan Galt: Ethereum and the Future

Episode 75 – Andreas Antonopoulos: The Disruptarian

The Links:

Tim’s website The Last American Vagabond

 

Episode 108 – Ether, Slock.It and The DAO: Decentralised Autonomous Organisation

The Episode:


To download the audio, right click and press “save as”.

Remember to subscribe on iTunes or subscribe on Pocket Casts.

If you enjoyed the episode, don’t keep it a secret! Feel free to share it on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Reddit, or your office bathroom wall.

The Cash:

We really appreciate all of your contributions! Every cent and satoshi we receive lets us know that we’re doing something worthwhile, that you are entertained by our program, and that you’re starting to question what you know more and more. Please be generous. Donate to The Paradise Paradox. Or buy some stuff on Amazon using this link. Or buy some of our great T-shirts here.

The Story:

Many people are just starting to hear about Bitcoin for the first time, and grappling with all their brain cells to understand the basics of how it might function, let alone its implications. Meanwhile, those who have been interested in cryptocurrency for years are continually looking forward to try to imagine or develop the next big thing, building on top of the base which Bitcoin has laid, and pushing into ever-more disruptive territories. The DAO, or decentralised autonomous organisation, is one project which has many people’s eyes fixated on it.

The DAO is a platform on which decentralised applications might run, allowing for decentralised arbitration services which move further towards making government courts of law redundant. Within a few short weeks, the DAO raised about $130 million through crowdfunding – the largest crowdfund in history to date. Of course, this is no guarantee of its success, but it does indicate the level of public support and faith that this project has behind it.

Will the DAO go on to transform the world? Or is it merely a stepping stone to building something even more ambitious, transformative, and disruptive? We discuss its potential in this episode of the Paradise Paradox.

Disclaimer: We are not financial advisors, we have no idea what you should do with your money, and we don’t claim that we do. Do your own research before making any financial decision, and be careful.

In the interests of disclosure, note that we do own Bitcoin, Ether and DAO.

The Eps:

Episode 50 – Ethereum and the Future: Juan Galt

The Links:

Andreas Antonopoulos on decentralised arbitration

The DAO – a radical experiment that could be the future of decentralised governance