Derek Beres, Director of Content
Posts by Derek
To be a good debater, you must be able to argue both sides—or many sides—of an argument in an equally convincing fashion. This has long been how students are trained in discourse. Living in a time when anyone with an Internet connection can become a news source, and such news sources are given the validity of journalistic institutions, it's not only the art of debate that's being sacrificed. The very concept of truth is being put to the test.
Chris Young is a professor in the Rutgers Business School and co-founder of Proof, a blockchain solution whose stated goal is to "secure access to truthful content in text, video and photographic form." During our talk we discuss media ethics, the tokenization of truth, and why this platform is a sort of combination of Snopes, Wikipedia, and a flourishing marketplace.
As we approach what many are considering the most important election in modern American history, false information is rampant. It's one thing to have political views; it's quite another to blatantly accept lies as truth. A democracy cannot withstand the storm of purposefully misleading narratives being pronounced in the public square. Organizations like Proof are needed as we navigate this strange and dangerous terrain.
Crypto in Boom and Bust
This week's New Yorker cover story is a must-read deep-dive in the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency. RChain Board of Directors member Vlad Zamfir is the first person to speak in this long-ranging piece, discussing proof-of-stake:
Zamfir was showing the others some rough equations he’d worked out to address one of the thousands of riddles that need to be solved. This particular effort was an attempt (jargon alert) to optimize the incentive structure for proof-of-stake validation—that is, how best to get enough people and machines to participate in a computing operation essential to the functioning of the entire system. “We’re trying to do game theory here,” Zamfir said. The others pointed out what they thought might be flaws. “It doesn’t seem reasonable,” Zamfir said. “But the math works out.” This summarized much of what I’d encountered in crypto.
Music keeps everyone at RChain focused and engaged on the work in front of us—it is the ultimate social coordinating technology. Each week we feature five songs that a member of our community is listening to. This week Derek Beres, Director of Content, offers five tracks currently moving him while he works away in Los Angeles. Have your own five songs? Tag #myfivesongs @rchain_coop on Twitter.
Last week the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released its latest report. With all the discussion around human impact on climate, you'd think we'd be making significant progress at this point. Yet the message was not good:
The report finds that limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require “rapid and far-reaching” transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities. Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45 percent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050.
It's Time to Love Blockchain
Over at TechCrunch, Jon Evans argues that blockchains are "the new Linux, not the new Internet." That said, he believes it's time we all start loving blockchain. He says advertising-driven media is washed up, a continual concern by Internet critics. In fact, George Gilder opens up his new book, Life After Google: The Fall of Big Data and the Rise of the Blockchain Economy, with that very sentiment, writing,
The Internet is not only full of unwanted ads but fraught with bots and malware. Instead of putting power in the hands of individuals, it has become a porous cloud where all money and power rise to the top.
Music keeps everyone at RChain focused and engaged on the work in front of us—it is the ultimate social coordinating technology. Each week we feature five songs that a member of our community is listening to. This week RChain writer and developer Jeremy Beal chimes in. Have your own five songs? Tag #myfivesongs @rchain_coop on Twitter.