Whenever I hear someone mention how much electricity it takes to run the bitcoin network, I always wonder how that compares to the fiat banking system. How much electricity does it take to run their centralized servers? Their headquarters? Each bank branch? Each ATM? Etc. Add in all the pain and suffering caused by the banking system's manipulation of politics and government, their regulatory burdens, and so on.
And then understand that the amount of money to be made as a miner is a mostly fixed pool, so new miners will only dilute the profits for all miners, and we'll eventually see mining growth tail off.
I'm not sure the economics of POS and other challengers to POW are viable, but I'm glad experiments are going on. Over time we'll find out which system works best.
Any replacement will need to replicate most of the functionality, but without the drawbacks. And while many are working on it, it will be a while before anyone even comes close.
I say this as someone who was excited about Diaspora, but saw that become a total failure. I haven't logged in for at least a year, and not regularly for several.
A good replacement must be censorship proof (not just resistant) while giving the users control over what they post. There shouldn't be "algorithms" controlling what you see. It definitely needs to be decentralized, not residing on any particular server. It most likely can't be web-based, especially since domain names are controlled by evil forces.
That said, I haven't checked out a few of the newer ones like memo.cash yet. But I'm not hopeful (yet).
The video is really frustrating for me. She does seem to identify symptoms, and the donut things is interesting - although I might disagree with some of the categories she uses therein. But then she ignores the biggest underlying problem while not really proposing anything solid, just feel-good platitudes. And whenever someone blames capitalism for problems, I know their biases have fooled them.
When she mentioned how the currency system is based on loans that have to be repaid with more than was loaned I thought she was heading in the right direction. After all, the currency being used underlies virtually all transactions in an economy. And when a currency requires inflation, then everything built on that currency also must inflate. That is the primary source of unnatural growth. Sure, an economy might grow naturally, of its own accord. But when it is artificially forced to grow then things really get out of hand.
When we (my U.S.A. centricism is showing here) were on a gold standard (or a silver/gold standard) then the economy grew at a more natural pace. As we went away from that, inflation forced the economy to grow faster and the necessary corrections got worse. We had recessions and depressions under the gold standard, but they were short and small. As we moved towards an inflationary currency they got worse, eventually leading to the Great Depression. And since that bastard Nixon took us totally off the gold standard inflation has only gotten worse. That inflation underlying the monetary system is the primary driver of excess growth. And the controllers of the currency have learned better how to prevent the corrections from happening, which will make the eventual correction much worse. Gotta take your medicine!
And that is the main reason why the economic growth is unsustainable: because we have an unsustainable currency.
Christian Huble wrote:
1) Reading through Lab Girl, by Hope Jahren. AN ABSOLUTE MUST READ for lovers of plants, humans, and words alike. Her prose is sensational, and inspired so much in me.
Holy small world, Batman! I had no idea she wrote a book. Her brother Neal was one of my best friends growing up. I remember hanging out in their basement laboratory and playing on the teletype computer hookup at the college. Sadly, the year I took physics at the college was the year her dad took a sabbatical.
This sounds like a really good fit for crypto-currencies. I know you can do things with crypto like create a transaction with a time limit, where the sender locks up funds for a specified amount of time but can also finalize the transaction early. Code could be added so that, for example, if 50+% of fellow contributors finalize, all others will too.
A quick search finds some projects that sound similar. https://bounty0x.io/ is one that got listed, that sounds at first glance worth checking out. I haven't looked into it, and it isn't ready yet, but maybe there is something that is. Or maybe there's something that will be soon and folks might want to contribute to.
Benjamin Bouchard wrote:Not sure I've come across ground truly too rocky for a scythe yet.
LOL, I have yet to come across (in this area) any land flat and smooth enough that a scythe would work.
We use a battery powered string trimmer. Ours is a Dewalt brand. The rocks eat up the string quickly and you damn sure need to wear long pants, but otherwise it works pretty well. And the battery lasts long enough that your hands start getting sore, so when a full battery gets depleted it is time for a break anyway. Just get a bulk order of string.
I do wish someone would make a string trimmer that wasn't so damn hard to reload. I guess they assume everyone using them has really long and incredibly thin fingers. I'd also bet that the designers never actually try their products, or try them in ideal conditions.
Shawn Klassen-Koop wrote:I've heard good things about Stripe for accepting credit cards. I haven't looked into it myself though so I'm not sure if it meets all of your criteria.
I used Stripe for a while after PayPal closed my account. (Paypal didn't tell me why they closed it, just that they couldn't service me anymore.) Stripe was pretty good, and they at least told me why they had to close my account: the bank they use didn't like my business. The bank made an incorrect claim about it, but there is no way to challenge that. This is one reason why crypto-currencies are needed.
paul wheaton wrote:
I like the idea of accepting bitcoin and other coin, but i would need it be quick. Anybody know what the options are?
There are a lot of options for accepting crypto-currencies, but as far as I know they are all kits that your developers would need to integrate. Which one would be best depends on several things including what software your website is developed with and what your acceptance preferences are.
BitPay has been around forever. I used them years ago and they worked almost perfectly for me until they asked for stuff like my business tax ID. They allow you to specify how much (by percentage) you want to keep in crypto, and how much you want to be converted automatically into dollars in your bank account. They also have a debit card that you can load using a few crypto-currencies. Highly recommended.
When I started with BitPay they didn't have a plugin for the software my site used. I asked them to make one and in a week it was done.
I also recommend ShapeShift. They have a plugin for websites that allows you to accept almost any crypto-currency and have it automatically converted into your choice. If you like bitcoin, you can have Dash, Ethereum, Monero, etc all converted easily. I think it's still a 1% fee for conversion. There is a competitor that charges 1/2%, but isn't as well known or big. Also, I know the owner of ShapeShift personally and he's a good guy. ShapeShift doesn't require accounts or anything to use, although it might require one for the website plugin to access their API.
I can no longer read physical books. Just the act of holding and manipulating them puts me to sleep.
I can't use Kindles because they idiotically choose to keep one of the worst features of physical books - turning pages. With a physical book you have to use pages, but they are an artificial construct unrelated to the content. Content is made up of letters, which make words, which make sentences, which make paragraphs, which make chapters, which make books, which make volumes. Each of those has natural breaks between them, which allow you to ingest the info. But a page break is unnatural and takes you out of the flow.
I can understand why they kept the page in their E-ink readers. That's because the screen technology uses so little power that they can't refresh fast enough to keep up with scrolling. But they also keep it in their phone and tablet apps. Even if they just had a button that scrolled to the next paragraph that might work - that's how I read, read a paragraph then scroll to the next one. It keeps the entire para in view so I can consume it all at once.
And I despise PDF. It is a poor hack of a data format (I had to look into it a long time ago as a programmer) designed specifically for printing - and it can't even get that right. It doesn't allow text to reflow when you resize it, so if you need to make the text larger to read it then you often end up having to move the screen left & right constantly to see the entire line. To me PDFs should ONLY be used when something MUST be printed and MUST be printed in the exact same layout each time. (And that's where it fails the worst. I've tried making PDFs where I needed exact measurements, down to the millimeter. But the same file will come out different on different printers, voiding PDF's entire reason for existing.)
These are in addition to the obvious advantages of E-books like being able to have a virtually unlimited umber of books. And a friend posited another advantage most don't consider: if your stuff is being stolen or seized, e-books can be easily deleted, preventing the thief from gaining from their crime.
Finally, most newer phones and tablets, as well as good E-ink based readers, have a resolution so good that it is virtually indistinguishable from paper. IIRC most humans can't see at any better than 300DPI. (But I can still see how paper's illumination profile can sometimes be better.)
I have no idea what is wrong with yours, but we have a duck we named Gimpy that has had a broken leg for at least two years. She's doing fine, even if she limps a lot and doesn't explore as much as the rest of the duck collective. (I miss Evan's duck tales.)
You used to need a good surface for the old kind with a ball, but with the ones that use an LED (which you should be using since the ball type ones are so old they are like dinosaurs) then all you should need is a surface with enough of a pattern.
The folding plastic table I used to use as a desk has a surface that isn't quite good enough, but even a sheet of white copy paper had enough texture for the sensor. But with my new hanging wall desk, the surface has a wood-like finish so that has enough texture.
I do dislike using a mouse pad because it takes up more space than needed.
wayne fajkus wrote:
I'd rather see a group stock market club. People pull dollars and buy stocks. Its still gambling but history proves it exceeds inflation over time. Its hard to buy one $20 stock when it costs $7 to buy it and another $7 to sell it. With a club you are spreading the $7 over $1,000 or more.
There are apps now where it doesn't cost that much.
Kendall Norman wrote:
Also as far as heating goes, any advice on a simple heating system for a tiny house and how to effectively insulate it for my harsher winters?
Definitely look into rocket mass heaters. (But be sure to also look into downsides, such as my recent post about burning perlite.) They are low money cost but somewhat high in time cost. This last winter I heated almost entirely with pallet slats (discarding the runners). I used a circular saw to cut the slats, then a hatchet to split them into better sized pieces for my 6" system. That saved a lot of time when compared to cutting and chopping regular firewood. By cutting the slats off the runners I didn't have to worry about trying to pull nails, which sped up the process significantly.
[I used the blue pallets I scrounged to make a boardwalk around my small house. A much better use than burning the nasty chemicals.]
I got almost all the pallets I needed from the same restaurant that we get daily kitchen scraps from. They get a lot of food and equipment delivered on pallets.
Mike Dinsmoor wrote:Thanks for sharing this. This could be important info for other builders. I'm wondering if some heat got past the fire bricks at one of the seems. Did you mortar your fire brick? If so, was there any signs of cracked mortar?
It think there is an important lesson here for those building over wood subfloors. You need to have a backup incase burn chamber containment is breached. Perlite is not going to be good enough.
It was mortared, but when I took it apart it came apart easily.
We were using firemuffins that we make, to get the fire started. They are mostly old candles melted and mixed with sawdust. Maybe the wax was melting and going into crevices, weakening the mortar over time and eventually making its way down.
I've been burning lots of trash all winter. Plastic bags, plastic spoons, water bottles, paper plates, packaging including plastic wrap.
I always wait until it is really hot and has a good draft before putting any plastic in. I also always have a fan ready to help with the draft to make sure there's no blowback.
I don't think it has significantly extended my firewood but it certainly has helped lower the amount of trash going to the dump. And because the RMH burns so hot it is likely turning all the bad stuff into CO2 instead of putting it into the air.
I'm also not using the ashes in areas where I'm wanting to grow food, just to err on the side of caution.
I live at a place where we have a Tiny House Makerspace in New Hampshire, and we're seeing out first client get going.
The trailer is the foundation so making sure it is solid enough is important. If I was going to build one I would buy a $3-5K trailer built for making tiny houses. I think it is that important.
I have taken apart 3 camping trailers and I have two main thoughts on them. First, YUCK! They always have mouse nests in them and usually a good amount of rot and mold. I wouldn't want to live in one unless I had no better options. Second, the trailers are made cheaply and you have to be very careful when building on them to keep your weight down. If you want standard appliances then you are very likely to be over what a camping trailer can handle.
You should be able to look at the tires and axle to see what they are rated for. This will tell you how much it can hold. And if you weld more metal onto the frame to make it more solid, you are adding weight to the frame so there will be less you can build. The companies that build camping trailers really skimp on the quality to make them light enough for the cheap trailers they use. For example, the wall studs are usually 1x1s instead of the 2x4 or 2x6 you'd expect.
[As an aside, you might think that the wood used in a camping trailer might be good for burning in your rocket mass heater. But you would be wrong. They use lots of staples instead of nails or screws, so the wood is infested with metal and it isn't worth trying to remove it.]
William Bronson wrote: Found this old thread while researching an idea.
When I dumpster dive I often find places that have post consumer waste- leftovers from fast food places, mixed with plastic and paper waste.
I was wondering if chooks could reliably sort the foid from the trash.
Yes, but it's damn messy.
We've been getting the kitchen scraps from a restaurant for 3 years now. Often the barrel has those disposable gloves the workers wear. There's often twist ties that were around bunches of herbs. But maybe once a year we accidentally get a barrel of table scraps that have napkins, plastic glasses, and other assorted stuff in them. The birds do fine, but then there's a bunch of trash in the pile that needs to be manually picked up. It's a pain to do that so I would suggest only getting restaurant refuse if they agree to separate out the good stuff.
Oh, and if the trash has styrofoam in it, avoid it. Chooks love to eat styrofoam. They must think it's popcorn or something.
Lori Whit wrote:I think this article is of interest. I read it last year shortly after it was posted, and I still think about it and wonder how the people are doing today. If they've been able to grow more of their own food. If they've found ways to create and keep alive community. If they've survived.
That was a good read. In it I saw very clearly "The Seen and the Unseen". The town was dying because the major job source, coal mining, was drying up. It looked to me like Walmart extended the life of the town by ten years, but could not prevent it from further erosion. Walmart did a lot for the town, but when they left people got mad at Walmart because they expected it to last forever. I'm sure others will read the article differently than me.
I have seen no evidence that Walmart is selling at a loss in some stores then raising prices when local competition leaves. They may, and probably are, selling "loss leaders" at a loss, but then most grocery stores have been doing that for ages. When I see these sorts of complaints without evidence I usually think its an indicator of the person's bias.
Yes, there is no truly free market, but it would be the fairest and most practical way to go if we can just get people to stop using government to foist their views on everyone else.
And underlying all of the issues with the market is the money. The Federal Reserve system with its debt based inflationary currency is at the heart of the problem. It is unsustainable and is one of the primary causes of the wealth & income disparity we have been seeing lately. That is, the banks and politicians have conspired to ensure that they get rich at everyone else's expense. But I am hopeful that crypto-currencies will allow us to defeat debt based currencies and restore a more sensible, fair, and sustainable monetary system.
David Livingston wrote:The more I think about the logical progression of trying to go local is that the so called free trade idea should be binned . I give you four examples .
Generic drugs are available for between an quarter of the price and in some cases less than a tenth of the price in europe than in the USA . They quality is no different . So why ?
The difference is almost all because of government, not the market.
David Livingston wrote:Mobile phones are seen as an essential thing these days yet none are manufactured in the USA and very few in Europe , are people in the USA or Europe incapable of such work ? nope instead we have Apple with a platoon of accountants moving money round the world to avoid tax ( never mind the destablisation of the congo where some of the raw materials come from)
Again, the main reason is government, with the market trying to route around the damage government causes.
David Livingston wrote:The usa supports the price of rice grown in Texas ( govt speak for subsidises ) and sells the excess in West Africa undermining the lively hood of local small farmers.
Another case of government being the problem.
David Livingston wrote:I note with some amusement the recent USA govt announcement to level charges on solar panels and washing machines.
More government being the problem.
David Livingston wrote:I think govt should be encouraging local production where ever practical . What do othe folks think ?
The reason most of these problems exist is that well intentioned people who don't understand or trust other people (i.e. the free market, which is just everyone making their own choices) try to impose their will land values on everyone else by using government. Add in Regulatory Capture (i.e. producers trying to use government to protect their business) and you get a messed up situation.
As has been pointed out, shipping expenses are real but often small. In comparison to the excess cost of government shipping costs are trivial and can effectively be ignored. But if we remove government's costs from the equations, the shipping costs will become more important to minimize for businesses, which will result in more local production. That will be far more effective than trying to get random bureaucrats whose jobs don't depend on getting things right to encourage local production.
Ever since I learned about it, I've avoided any dog food that has corn. When I first switched to cornless kibble, my dog's droppings improved a lot. There are plenty of choices available now that don't have corn.
This all sounds to me like it needs some AI. The sort of stuff they're using for self-driving cars should be good enough. You'd record all the variables you think might be useful, and probably some you don't think might be but possibly could be, and it figures out how to use them to calculate what you need.
Recent AI advances are even getting to the point that the AIs will be able to tell us why.
So a combined permaculture Ai program could tell you when to plant your corn, tell you not to plant certain beans by the corn because of specific conditions where the corn was planted, when and which squash to plant by the corn, and when to harvest each of them. With proper sensors it could tell you to add water or certain types of compost.
With this sort of software you wouldn't have to remember all kinds of little details, and it could maximize production. Even idiots (or those who just don't care enough to learn) could follow the instructions. Imagine if your typical suburban family could grow a bunch of their own food using this, without having to learn all about it. Because lets be real, most people are never going to care enough about permaculture to learn all they'd need to in order to do it, but if they had a handy system that made it simple it would go a long way to getting folks on board.
Google just opened up their image AI API. My first thought was that a simple app using it to take pictures of maple leaves and/or bark could be used to figure out what kind of maple tree it is you're looking at. If it isn't a good sap producer it would make great firewood, so chop it. If it is, then record its position for tapping. You might even add a route planner to the app for collecting sap.
I use a firestarter to start the fire. We make them using small paper cups (a little larger than cupcake size, but those should work), melting old bulk candles, mixing the melted wax with sawdust we scrape from the workshop floor.
When the system is cold I might need to blow hard or use a small fan. When it is warm the draft is already there so I don't need to. Lately, it has been so cold outside that I couldn't light the firestarter inside the feed tube because the draft is so strong.
One thing to watch out for is that cleaning it out with a vacuum can cause the draft to reverse. Whenever I clean out the ash I have to blow harder to restore the proper draft direction.
But I ALWAYS have a small fan, with metal blades and metal body, that fits over the feed tube. Even when it is pulling well I will find times where for some unknown reason it starts burning too high up the feed tube or smoking back. Or if I need to step out of the room for a few minutes I'll use the fan just to be sure.
It took me a while to get used to the system, so the walls all have these small round grey spots where the soot hit the colder spots on the wall where the drywall screws are; from the thermal bridging. I could paint over it but it does mean I don't need a stud finder.
OK then, what I can tell you is that due to government tomfoolery (i.e. KYC/AML) they want to make sure your tax info is all correct. Coinbase just got hit with a search because only a tiny handful of accounts there reported their income for tax purposes.
Services like Coinbase make things a lot easier, but they also have downsides like snitching.
The short version is that yes you will likely have to give up the info they seek to withdraw your money.
[FYI, a customer support person for Coinbase lives about 200 feet from me, and she is building a tiny house!]
Bitcoin is going through some growing pains. It is having a difficult time scaling up, and the obvious solution has been denied. The unobvious solutions aren't ready yet. So because there is a market for processing transactions, and there's a bottleneck on transactions, the cost to send bitcoin has gotten out of control.
Look at it this way: You were given $500 and it has magically grown to much more than that. As long as the cost to convert it to dollars is far less than the amount it has grown then you are way ahead.
I did a transaction yesterday where I sent $900 and it cost me $13 to do it. But the $900 is only about a third of the original amount that cost me $50 at the time. So I've gained at least $2650 ($2700-$50) so paying a tiny portion of the profit just to cash out is no big deal.
But if you can find a way to make a deal without needing to convert to dollars then that is better. Otherwise, try to do only large transactions.
[I could go into much greater detail as well as throw in my opinions on all this, but most of y'all won't care.]
Joseph Lofthouse wrote:OpenDyslexic Font, Ubuntu Linux
It looks like the same font under a different name.
Nope. I personally know Abbie Gonzalez. His wife is dyslexic, and he couldn't stand that Dyslexie was for pay so he built OpenDyslexic on his own. He even got an e-book maker to add it to their tablet so his wife could enjoy reading again. Really good guy. He's been through some tough times so any voluntary donations headed his way would be nice. Oh, and his son is a huge Trekkie.
The TLDs (like .com, .org, .farm, etc) will have different prices. I don't think there's any underlying technical reason for that, maybe just the owners of the TLDs trying to maximize profit. Like maybe Tuvalu wants to generate significant income from their ".tv" TLD.
Don't ever have domain service and hosting from the same company. It might sound simpler and easier (and it probably is) but if anything goes wrong you can be totally screwed.
Shared webhosting is where you are sharing a web server with a bunch of other folks. It is a good compromise for small sites that don't get a lot of traffic. They are not the simplest to manage, but still relatively easy.
If you are just doing an informational site, then I'd speculate that using wordpress.com might be OK. They have free plans, but if you want to use your domain name then it looks like you'd need to pay $4/month at least. If you are wanting to do some sales, then make sure you know what you are doing, or hire a pro. Squarespace is a decent option.
Don't ever use simple & easy sites like Wix. They break Internet standards and don't allow you to use good URLs. Like you can't have a page of "myawesomepermy.farm/howtousebiochar" (which is better for search engines) but will instead make you do something stupid like "myawesomepermie.farm/#B68768". And when it's time to upgrade the site, whoever is doing that will hate you for it.
But really, better advice can be given if we know more about the site ideas.
Jim Tag wrote:3. I´m planning to elevate the horizontal flue, by 1½ feet, immediately after it leaves the exhaust. Will this create problems with airflow?
If you mean between the burn unit and the mass, that should be OK. I think using two 45 degree turns would be better than two 90 degree turns if that is possible.
My shack is up on frost piers, so there's about 3-4 feet between the ground and the joists. My mass is on the wooden floor, with insulation underneath it. That works pretty well, but the floor was designed to handle the mass.
And my system was pretty flaky with blowback problems until we extended the vertical final chimney above the roof.
I'm in a 12'x24' cabin with a loft. I have a 6" system with a 20' long mass bench - basically the burn area is at one end of the building and the mass goes the length. I burn maybe a cord and a half of wood per winter. On the coldest days & nights I use about 3 5 gallon buckets of wood, and I'm in New Hampshire. Coldest nights I burn for about three hours, and then an hour or two in the morning. It works pretty well, now that I've figured out its quirks and fixed a few things like making sure the chimney goes high enough.
When it is at the coldest outside I try to get it up to over 80 degrees F in here before going to sleep. Its a little hot, but not too bad, and when I wake up it is not too cold.
You will have to get used to the temp fluctuating but that's OK. You can also build the mass up a bit higher on the outside of the burn barrel to lessen the quick radiating heat during a burn, but you do have to be careful not to go so high that it dampens the heat riser/burn barrel temperature difference that makes it all work.
Location: New Hampshire, in the orchard where we put a good layer of wood chips to suppress grass.
We're wondering what these plants are. I tried a Google image search but that wasn't real helpful. I got a dozen different possibilities, some of which were "nice, let's keep this stuff" and some were "Dang, we need to kill this fast".
[Now let's see if the attachments display nicely.]