Larry's Newsletter - Issue #3

Revue
 
Hello happy readers! This week's issue is rather censorship & encryption heavy. Lots more blockch
 
November 16 - Issue #3

Larry Salibra

The most interesting things I've seen in blockchain, tech, and our decentralizing world as seen from the world's border with China.

Hello happy readers! This week’s issue is rather censorship & encryption heavy. Lots more blockchain stuff coming next week! But first, a marble metaphor…

Blockchain
Bitcoin block size for beginners
There’s a big debate about how to make it so Bitcoin can handle more transactions. This debate is so big that there is a conference series organized around it. If you’re not a hardcore Bitcoiner, you might be wondering what this is all about. Here’s a new analogy that I hope will shed some light on the debate:
Imagine you’re storing marbles in boxes in your house. Think of a Bitcoin transaction as a marble. Think of the current 1 megabyte Bitcoin block as a shoebox. Each shoebox can hold a bunch of marbles. When the shoebox is filled up, it’s heavy but movable. It also doesn’t take up that much space.
The problem is marbles are really cool and can do a lot of amazing things, so everyone wants marbles. A shoebox every 10 minutes isn’t enough marbles to keep everyone happy. Instead of a shoebox, we can use a refrigerator box every 10 minutes, which holds a lot more marbles. The problem is that a refrigerator box of marbles is very heavy and hard to move. It also takes up a lot of space. Not many people can afford houses big enough to store that many huge boxes of marbles nor can they afford to move them.
This is the Bitcoin block size debate in a nutshe…err…marble.
Hong Kong Bitcoin startups are more secure than banks
Tech
Court rules NSA bulk telephone spying violates 4th amendment
Tim Cook says he'll resist UK government spy law plan
My blog
How Chinese Tinder clone screws you
Censorship
Speaking of censorship. I thanked Xi Jinping & China in Wechat Moments for the birthday wishes from Chinese Immigration last month and my post was censored. Friends from Guangzhou visited yesterday and I was able to compare my Moments stream as seen on my phone side-by-side with the friend’s account. I made an image showing the censorship in action especially for you, my loyal newsletter reader. Link to full size image.
Week in review
Video from my appearance on last Sunday’s ATV World Newsline:
The fact that sharing a link to a simple video that works in all countries requires this many links so how poorly centralized video services work for people who don’t constrain their lives to one country.
Blockstack
Jude pushed the Blockstore code with the new consensus algorithm and code that makes it a lot faster to start up a Blockstore node.  Instead of taking ~40 hours, you can now start up a new node in ~1 hour. 
Next steps for me include updating my production node and Nametiles to use the current version of Blockstore.
No idea what I’m talking about? Come to the event below to learn more…
Coming week
Tuspark Lecture Series - Decentralize All The Things
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Carefully curated by Larry Salibra with Revue.
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