Posts Tagged ‘future’

5
Mar

Occupy Venus

by adminadam in videos

  • Venus has 0.9 G’s, 90% of Earth’s gravity; Mars has slightly less than 0.4 G’s.
  • Venus has a thick atmosphere which could protect us from cosmic rays and meteorites.
  • Venus has moderate to high temperatures.
  • At 50km up the atmosphere averages 70 degrees Celsius and is equal to roughly one Earth atmosphere in terms of air pressure.
  • As it’s closer to the sun; power would be cheap and 4 times more plentiful than Mars.
  • As it’s closer to Earth; transit times would be reduced by 30-50% over Martian trip times.
  • And despite that we cannot land on the surface (crazy pressure, 450 degree temperatures), we could build CLOUD CITIES!

CloudCity
CloudCity2

NASA has done research into the potential of Venus to sustain human colonies, as well, in project HAVOC:

The atmosphere of Venus is an exciting destination for both further scientific study and future human exploration. A lighter-than-air vehicle can carry either a host of instruments and probes, or a habitat and ascent vehicle for a crew of two astronauts to explore Venus for up to a month. The mission requires less time to complete than a crewed Mars mission, and the environment at 50 km is relatively benign, with similar pressure, density, gravity, and radiation protection to the surface of Earth. A recent internal NASA study of a High Altitude Venus Operational Concept (HAVOC) led to the development of an evolutionary program for the exploration of Venus, with focus on the mission architecture and vehicle concept for a 30 day crewed mission into Venus’s atmosphere. Key technical challenges for the mission include performing the aerocapture maneuvers at Venus and Earth, inserting and inflating the airship at Venus, and protecting the solar panels and structure from the sulfuric acid in the atmosphere. With advances in technology and further refinement of the concept, missions to the Venusian atmosphere can expand humanity’s future in space.

See more at http://sacd.larc.nasa.gov/branches/space-mission-analysis-branch-smab/smab-projects/havoc/

16
Oct

Bitcoin: Beyond Mere Money

by adminadam in videos

Bitcoin has many other uses besides just as a currency…

It is a transparent and efficient payment network:

  • Nearly fraud-proof; miners compete to verify transactions.
  • Consensus-based peer-to-peer network prevents the double-spending of coins.
  • All nodes/miners in the network maintain a copy of the open transaction ledger, the Blockchain.

Bitcoins, Millibits, and Satoshi’s are programmable:

  • Coins can used as tokens for any number of physical goods: one barrel of oil, one vote, a share in a company, one kilowatt-hour, the sky is the limit.
  • Coins can be used to record important information for eternity: digital copies of birth/death/marriage certificates, artistic licenses, proof of the existence of almost any document imaginable.

Payments and transactions can be automated, allowing for human-machine and machine-machine interactions:

  • Drones can do automatic identification of users/clients through the Blockchain to deliver packages.
  • Vending machines can do their own inventory tracking and ordering, and even make payments to suppliers.
  • Companies and organizations can programmatically distribute budgets to different departments according to established contracts or constitutions.
1
Oct

Human Innovation vs. State Control

by adminadam in videos

Defense Distributed‘s new promotional video:

Ghost Gunner

Defense Distributed’s stated aims are as follows:

“To defend the human and civil right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and affirmed by the United States Supreme Court; to collaboratively produce, publish, and distribute to the public without charge information and knowledge related to the digital manufacture of arms.”

They are a pending 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in the State of Texas.

DD’s founders, Ben Denio and Cody Wilson seek to create a “a political and legal vehicle for demonstrating and promoting the subversive potential of publicly-available 3D Printing technologies.” To that effect, on July 27th, 2012 they launched the Wiki Weapon Project — the effort to create and release the files for the world’s first printable handgun.

The History of the DD is still in the making; the dust has not settled:

In August 2012, Indiegogo.com removed DD’s inaugural fundraising campaign from its website, citing a terms of service violation. This removal prompted stirrings in the 3DP and tech blogs, and led DD to court the Bitcoin community to help fund the Wiki Weapon. By September 2012, DD had raised enough money to set to prototyping and experimentation, when industry player Stratasys scandalously revoked its lease with the company and quickly repossessed its printer. This repossession, one of the first of its kind, made world news, and the Wiki Weapon found commensurate support.

By December 2012, DD began prototyping more durable rifle receivers for the popular AR-15, a fact not missed in American gun politics after that month’s Sandy Hook Massacre. By January 2013, DD had created the gun file repository DEFCAD and released the files for the first printable AR-15 standard capacity magazines. DD followed these achievements in March with the files for the first durable printed AR-15 rifle receiver.

On May 5, 2013, DD released the files for the Liberator pistol — the culmination of the Wiki Weapon Project. This release was met by a flurry of US governmental censures and investigations, and DD is still involved in a conflict with the US State Department over whether there is a requirement to seek government approval before releasing privately generated gun files into the public domain.

And now the Ghost Gunner has entered the scene…

Ghost Gunner is a miniature CNC machine designed to automatically manufacture publicy created designs with nearly zero user interaction. No prior CNC knowledge or experience is required to manufacture from design files. Defense Distributed’s first design is the venerable AR-15 lower receiver. Ghost Gunner automatically finds and aligns your 80% lower receiver to the machine, with simple installation instructions, point and click software and all required tools. Just follow a few simple instructions to mount your 80% lower receiver, tighten a couple screws (with simple tools we provide), and on day one, Ghost Gunner can help you legally manufacture unserialized firearms in the comfort of your own home.

GhostGunner3DPwithLowerReceiver
[Read more at Ghostgunner.net]

“One of these centuries, the brutes, private or public, who believe that they can rule their betters by force, will learn the lesson of what happens when brute force encounters mind and force.”

     — Ragnar Danneskjöld (from Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand)

9
May

Ode to Satoshi

by adminadam in home

Published on Feb 13, 2014 – http://youtu.be/zEQ2nPSL5-0

Bitcoin Tips: 1Bu6CHFzHwv522pBLQoBgDAaf2C7hvXxGo
Litecoin Tips: LLHeNqNAFeJeXmxyFLNqYRkfk6dcQH8bub

To Purchase the mp3, go to BitcoinsAndGravy.com or use this link:
satoshibox.com/5336dab64c347b9666008353

Email questions/comments to: jcbarrett2003@yahoo.com

Cover Photo by Jim McGuire, Nashville, TN

Ode To Satoshi

Well Satoshi Nakamoto that’s a name I love to say
And we don’t know much about him, but he came to save the day
When he wrote about the way things are
and the way things ought to be
He gave us all a protocol this world had never seen

Oh Bitcoin as you’re going into the old Blockchain
Oh Bitcoin I know you’re going to reign, gonna reign
Till everybody knows, everybody knows,
till everybody knows your name

Down the road it will be told about the Death of Old MtGox
About traitors trading alter coins and minors mining blocks
But them good old boys back in Illinois
and on down through Tennessee
See they don’t care to be a millionaire,
they’re just wanting to be free

Oh Bitcoin as you’re going into the old Blockchain
Oh Bitcoin I know you’re going to reign, gonna reign
Till everybody knows, everybody knows,
till everybody knows your name

From the ghettos of Calcutta to the halls of Parliament
While the bankers count Our money out for every government
Old Bitcoin flies on through the skies of Virtuality
A promise to deliver us from age old Tyranny

Oh Bitcoin as you’re going into the old Blockchain
Oh Bitcoin I know you’re going to reign, gonna reign
Till everybody knows, everybody knows,
till everybody knows your name
Till everybody knows, everybody knows,
till everybody knows your

“Give me some Exposure”

Everybody knows your name

Singing:
Oh Lord pass me some more
Oh Lord before I have to go
Oh Lord pass me some more
Oh Lord . . . before I have to . . .
go . . .

“Thanks East Nashville! Y’all be good to each other out there ya hear!”

Read the rest of this entry »

23
Apr

Noteworthy Bitcoin News: Spring, 2014

by adminadam in home

A few weeks before tax day, the IRS gave guidance saying (that is, they declared that) Bitcoin is, was, and always has been a commodity in regards to tax burden. Capital gains tax applies each time a transaction is made with this currency commodity (shall we call it a commurrency?), even if it is just a cup of coffee being purchased. If the price of Bitcoin was higher when you bought the Bitcoin than when you made the purchase, then you are liable to pay capital gains tax on that purchase. This is great for institutional investors, not so great for people in the U.S. who are using it as a currency. Personally, I wonder about the IRS’s capacity to enforce and act on this with the growing adoption of Bitcoin. Also, since the ruling is retroactive, all purchases/transactions made with Bitcoin since the beginning of time are fair game. So what if you don’t or can’t know the input and output values of all your coins (including other virtual currencies like Litecoin, Dogecoin, etc.) since 2009, when Bitcoin was released?

There is a clause apparently that says that if you can’t provide this information for some reason, or if you don’t have the records, then you *may* be forgiven of some of your burden for some of your gains if you appeal upon being audited for a given amount. Losses do deduct from total gains, just like you would expect, but I guess I just wonder how the IRS expects to keep track of Bitcoin transactions and audit people going forward. I know a number of people who bought their first Bitcoins through coinbase using a bank transfer. Like most people in this boat, you then transfer those coins to a safer-than-coinbase storage medium, whether that’s a paper wallet or the Bitcoin-Qt Standard Software Wallet which you run on your home computer (hopefully safely encrypted and backed-up — see my guide on doing this here). Each transaction made in order to get these coins under your control in this scenario is a transaction, but note: you haven’t purchased anything, or traded anything of value for your Bitcoins. Ultimately, essentially, all Bitcoin transactions whether purchases or personal fund-movements appear identical to the Bitcoin network. Were there some greater level of willing transparency on this issue from the IRS, we could know if they plan to, say, host their own bitcoin node, download the blockchain themselves just to make sure they understand it, or merely check transfers using an online blockchain (the public ledger), like blockchain.info, for example.

The final obstacle in collecting (and reporting) revenues from cryptocurrencies stems from high-frequency trading — say you bought your Bitcoin on a U.S. exchange, then transferred it to BTC-e in Bulgaria (where it’s counted as a virtual currency, incidentally…), then engaged in a bout of high-frequency Bitcoin/Litecoin/Dogecoin/Peercoin trading. The IRS doesn’t likely have legitimate access to these trades, nor may you have even a decently-complete record of what’s transpired; all you know now is you have more fill-in-the-blank-coins than when you started.

Another complication arises with the arrival (soon: May Day) of dark wallets and (next-gen) seamless coin mixing services. Dark Wallet by Defense Distributed is one such development which will be used to strip coins of their identifying information (i.e. where they came from first/middle/last). Anonymity in cryptocurrency will be possible (more possible than it is now). Add to this the facilitation of anonymous purchases through dark markets and distributed markets, such as BitWasp and DarkMarket (this also from Defense Distributed). Where the Silk Road was shut down, Silk Road 2.0, and others now exist. Add to this these 2 more new projects and project outwards: we are seeing exponential development and evolution in this economic space. Many more black, grey, and unrestricted markets will bloom — expect to hear more about this soon!

In other news, China is still wishy-washy about Bitcoin, but hasn’t outright banned it, and since some time has passed since the last definitely-going-to-be-banned rumors spread, the price has come back up a bit to around $500, from a low of approximately $350. Ultimately, the failure of Mt. Gox brought the value down by half in the early part of 2014, simply because so many people lost their money, and also because of all the FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) spread about by the media; read: “Mt. Gox failed; Bitcoin’s dead!” Such proclamations will likely continue to be heard for a few years to come for a variety of reasons, but whatever happens in one country or region need not happen in another (I’m talking about legislation, FYI…). Finally, I will say I believe Bitcoin’s value will continue to rise as the technology is made more accessible through simple, non-smart phones, as more people learn how to send Bitcoins through SMS, and as more charities and families are able to receive donations and remittances throughout the world with near-0 friction, essentially for free at that.

Lastly, in the news: Sidechain innovation. I’m excited about this for Bitcoin and its future. Basically, instead of creating new alt-coins in the future, it may be possible to update the Bitcoin core to more easily extend Bitcoin into semi-temporary Sidechain-coins with different, varying properties based on people’s needs. Say you need a coin that transacts (or is confirmed) quicker — you simply create a sidechain, put some Bitcoin in escrow to initiate this, and create Side-Quick-Bit-Coins or whatever you wanna call them. Then when or if the need is gone, return the Bitcoins in escrow to the normal Bitcoin network. I’m fuzzy on the details, but stoked about the implications, particularly for Bitcoin’s ability to compete with Ethereum and other Bitcoin 2.0 protocols like Mastercoin and Colored Coins. The bottom line is new functionality and greater scalability with this.

BONUS DARK WALLET PROMOTIONAL VIDEO
21
May

Curtains

by adminadam in videos

Do you close the curtains at night? Do you have deep and fascinating intimate conversations? Do you make jokes sometimes that you most certainly wouldn’t make if you knew strangers were listening? Do you pick and choose your friends carefully? Do you use caution when you write emails, knowing the connection isn’t secure? Do you whisper sweet nothings to your dearest love?

I say: whether you are an Upstanding Citizen (i.e. “nothing to hide”) or a Dissent-is-Patriotic type, the following video should give you some good food for thought.

Kind of makes me want to quit facebook and google entirely, honestly.

26
Jan

The Internet in 1981 — That’s 32 years ago!

by adminadam in articles, videos

The video below, from 1981, shows newspapers embracing the early internet to share text-only papers with tech-savvy (at the time) readers on their home computers.

I love how the dial-up modem requires that the rotary phone handset be placed on top of it before connecting — and just the fact that the computer owner is introduced with “owns home computer”!

My first experience with the internet was at least 10 years after this, around 1992, on a Mac II (with AOL 2.0), which cost $5,500 in 1987 when it first came out! Here is a picture of one:

MacII

AND HERE’S WHAT COMPUTERS AND THE INTERNET WERE LIKE IN 1981…

We sure have come a long ways in 30 years! I wonder what it will be like in another 32 years — 2045? They say the Singularity is supposed to hit us by then, so maybe we’ll store all our data in our DNA and share images telepathically and fly around with antigravity nanobots! I’ll bet few of us could have predicted back in the day that we’d all carry around these communicators which are constantly connected to the internet and act as video/audio/telegraph phones with 1 million personal secretary apps that track our every movement and remind us of what we need to do all the time! Yeah? I thought not!

2
Jan

Cory Doctorow: The War on General Purpose Computing

by adminadam in videos

Efforts to fight piracy and limit computer functionality converge on malware/spyware being pre-installed on every machine that ships. As an example, Intel has teamed up with video streaming services in the design of their new Sandy Bridge chips, which will supposedly allow for only DRM content to be streamed in HD. (Not that you have to utilize DRM-ladden content; you can find and play things in HD on your own still, but it’s the beginning of a larger trend — i.e. cars that can be remotely shut down, iPhones whose cameras turn off at the request of the authorities, etc.)

This trend is most disturbing in particular in regimes where the populace is not media-literate enough to get around these restrictions, unlike in wealthy, western countries where we can assume, as always, someone will find a way to hack into it (or out of it). [Maybe these people: ccc.de?]

Doctorow refers to all of our iThings and other increasingly restricted forms of hardware as Appliances, but what they are, he goes on to elucidate, are general purpose computers that ship with malware inside. With SOPA and all this copyright mess what we are seeing is just the first battle of the war on general purpose computing.