Dubious Greeneum

Electrical Grid

Recently at a startup event in Silicon Beach (Los Angeles) I came across a flyer from Greeneum. This is a blockchain startup which claims to have a new way to connect producers and consumers of electricity throughout the world. It pushes all the trendy buttons for a blockchain startup. But crucially it appears bogus. See the above closeup figure about “a single global blockchain”. This riffs off the bitcoin and ethereum global blockchains, while the “eum” in Greeneum explicitly evokes ethereum.

Greeneum Brochure Cover

What’s the problem? Power transmission losses. Wikipedia gives an example of a 160km line carrying 1GW that has losses of 1%. Specifically, there is no significant electrical transmission between North America and Asia or Europe. Suppose a producer in Wichita sends power to a buyer in Denver and this gets into a record in the Greeneum global blockchain. Someone in Paris or Shanghai who verifies the blockchain in order to trade in Europe or Asia will end up verifying that US record. Totally unnecessary.

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Smartphone Innovation Slowing ?

Smartphone Innovation Graphs

Game over for smartphones? There are ominous implications for tech. Figure 1 is the patent applications received by the US Patent and Trademark Office http://uspto.gov and the patents granted, with the phrase mobile device. From 2005 to 2015. Each year for a 12 month period, from 19 June of the previous year to 18 June of the labelled year.

Figure 2 is for smartphone. Smaller numbers than Figure 1 because a smartphone is a type of mobile device.

The figures are consistent. First, applications peak in 2013 for mobile device and in 2014 for smartphone. Now see patents. The falloff is far more dramatic, especially in 2015, where there was an utter collapse. Why?

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A Trilingual Pun

Demi Moore Vanity Fair

The cover is famous. Demi Moore in her third trimester. Alas the editors missed the chance of a lifetime for a trilingual pun. The title is More Demi Moore. It should have been Sesqui More.

Why? Three languages are used. Demi is Greek for half. Replace this by Sesqui, which is Latin for one and a half. Moore becomes the English More, for extra. The title now means one and a half extra. Looking at her condition and granting some literary licence, you can see this.

Why is this a pathetic fallacy? It is the idea that a person’s mood is reflected by and indeed causes his surroundings. A man is depressed and walking outside. The weather is gloomy. The fallacy is that this mere mortal’s mind can affect the nature around him. See again the cover and use the title Sesqui More. Or indeed use Demi More. (Half extra.) In either case, she and her name are the same thing. A rare and temporary coincidence of her gravid condition. If we conflate her name with her mood and herself with nature, then we get a nice analog of the usual pathetic fallacy.

Use Hackathons to improve your career


Hackathon ParticipantsIf you are a programmer, engineer, graphics designer, or business person, consider attending hackathons to improve your career. Most attendees just go for the prizes. Few are aware of this more important aspect. If you live in a large city you can attend 4 hackathons a year. You invest 4 weekends and often at no cost. Most are free, and they feed you. For that small investment, you add half a page to your resume by writing concise summaries of what you did. In a regular full time job, it can take years to make half a page of task descriptions. So hackathons are a highly leveraged investment.

There is much more. Often if you send your resume to a large firm, they run it thru a keyword check of their keywords. The higher the number of keywords in your resume, the greater the chance you meet their needs and thus the likelier they call you for an interview. But when you go to hackathons, you work on different projects. Just writing these up gives you more keywords and thus the chance of meeting the requirements of a new job.

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DevFest LA

Louise Falevsky - DevFestLinket was delighted to sponsor and participate in Google’s large scale community run event that offers speaker sessions, all-day hackathons or both. DevFest has become a global experience and each community brings together developers to exchange ideas and create incredible interactions. On Saturday, November 4, 2017, we joined the Los Angeles experience both as participant and speaker.

Downtown’s Cross Campus Workspace was a great central location that was freeway, metro, and bus convenient. They kept us fed and hydrated all day with treats from Dunkin Donuts for breakfast, lunch from Bucca di Beppo, and cookies in the afternoon. While we didn’t come for the food, it certainly enhanced the experience.

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