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Mesh networking with Richard Myers
Richard Myers is a "decentralized applications engineer" at Global Mesh Labs, which is a very good job title in my opinion. We talk about his work on Lot49, a protocol for incentivized mobile peer-to-peer communication.
A Richard Myers primer
How Lot49 could help
Where we're at
Bigger picture: when Netflix?
A quick plug for my favorite programming language
|May 28, 2020|
What a Bitcoin future looks like
I did a pod about Bitcoin, I hope that's okay!
Bitcoin resources I recommend
A Bitcoin Future
What if everything you bought got cheaper every year, but your salary stayed the same? You'd eventually go to space, right?
Human material needs are in some sense finite, but human wants are infinite. Human time is absolutely finite, but human ingenuity -- the ability to do more with the same amount of time -- is multiplicative and exponential.
In an economy we create value as we transact voluntarily, and in an economy with money we use money as an intermediary to store that value we create. In a Federal Reserve economy, that value creation is skimmed off the top and given to banks so they can give us more credit card debt. In a Bitcoin economy, we all get to benefit from value creation.
Bitcoin wouldn't fix theft, or the desire to steal. It just makes theft no longer our national monetary policy.--- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/futurepaul/message
|May 23, 2020|
IoT with Internet of Shit
Internet of Shit: the origin story
A history of IoT
Highlights of IoT
A better way? (Probably not)
HUGE: INTERNET OF SHIT FULLY ENDORSES GOOGLE HOME
I always forget GlassWire exists and then I look like a dummy when I talk like it doesn't exist.
Less internet, less shit
IoT might be useful if you can "own" it
Internet of Shit merch
|May 20, 2020|
The next generation of consoles
Faster storage, ray tracing, higher resolutions.
But what about
Simulation? Single shard MMOs? Multiplayer physics?
To me, Dwarf Fortress still feels like the most next-gen game on the planet
Minecraft with RTX is the perfect example of what's going well and what's not improving in games.
Portable assets and avatars
As photogrammetry matures and we approach photorealism, assets might be more shareable. And easier to create.
See: Quixel Megascans
There's probably a rough DIY photogrammetry aesthetic that will differentiate non-pro games from "pro", but it will still look great IMO.
If there's unification of the art pipeline, "remixing" game assets and game modes seems more possible. That would be truly groundbreaking.
What I want is a skateboard game that's also a multiplayer shooter.
What would a game be like where everyone was running the maximum amount of cheats they can get their hands on?
If you think about it, cheating is a form of "AR" for a virtual space. Maybe it doesn't have to be a bad thing for all games, it could be a feature!
What about the holy grail of anti-cheat: peer to peer multiplayer games. It works with chess!
I think it could come down to multiplayer physics simulation. If your character is only capable of producing forces within a certain range... those could be the rules you abide by. just thinking out loud.
Beyond single shard: the "metaverse."
Whatever happend to VRML?
"The dream is, I want a 12 year old camper from thailand to help pay for his family's food by killing me in an online video game and my slow reflexes" - Matt on TFTC
How do you have digital scarcity without centralized control? Bitcoin actually only solved Bitcoin's problem in this regard.
In Minecraft you choose to have scarcity to maximize fun.
What's the point of games?
Path of Exile
Minecraft--- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/futurepaul/message
|May 16, 2020|
Redox OS with Jeremy Soller
Everybody needs an operating system. But do we need a new kind of operating system?
Right now we basically have three major options: Windows, macOS, and Linux. Windows and macOS aren't open source, but that's not the only thing that's wrong with them. Linux is open source, but oftentimes that feels like its only advantage over the other two.
For years now I've dreamed of an alternative desktop OS with a fresh new foundation. Something we can build the future on with more speed and confidence because it got the fundamental abstractions correct. An operating system shouldn't feel bloated or fragile or like a monumental hack on top of 70s-era technology. It should be the minimal layer of software that can effectively and safely abstract hardware and allow multiple user programs to run together in harmony.
For the past five years, my guest Jeremy Soller has been actually building an alternative operating system: Redox OS. I think it might be our best hope.
This conversation is extremely technical. In a sense, this is the sort of technical stuff that most users never have to think about. But I find it interesting because someone has to care about these technical details or nothing would get done. I'm interested in the low-level details because I think getting those right can enable more capabilities and excellence at the user level.
If you absolutely hate operating system talk, you can fast forward to around the hour mark where we talk about the Linux computer company Jeremy works at: System76.
Setting the stage
A Taxonomy of Kernels
The problem with phones
Making Linux computers
How to pitch in
Follow @jeremy_soller on twitter
|May 13, 2020|
Hmm are we using computers correctly?
A skateboard for our minds
The computer is "a bicycle for our minds," as Steve Jobs once said.
Do you ever watch those velodrome events in the Olympics? They either have a rolling start, or they have to have someone holding them up for a standing start. The bikers look silly and helpless until they get moving. And then they go in a loop, round and round, very, very fast. If you turn a little too hard your wheels slide out from under you and you eat it. When bikers crash in the velodrome the road rash is horriffic and their paper-thin costumes are torn the shreds.
What if we thought of the computer as a "skateboard for the mind?" What would a "skateboard" computer be like? How do we get there?
The Cuckoo's Egg
I brought this up on the last episode, but I'm reading a book called "The Cuckoo's Egg," and it's making me very jealous of how much agency this guy has over his machines. In 1989!
The Unix Philosophy
I don't want to brag but I've been thinking about how we use computers, and how I'm disappointed by how we use computers, for a while. Here's a piece I wrote about the history of wearable computers in 2012, and how I was pretty sure Google Glass was the wrong direction.
Along the lines of affective computing, another piece I wrote even longer ago attempted to explain how much our computers are dropping on the floor when they interact with us.
My comparison was to a Dyson sphere. Here's the Wikipedia definition:
There are some really cool people in the computer industry who are challenging the assumptions of inherent complexity. Jonathan Blow, Casey Muratori, Raph Levien. Sometimes they might come across and curmudgeons on Twitter. But I think they're fighting the good fight.
There's also a really good talk about what's gone wrong in computing called called "The Mess We're In" by Joe Armstrong, RIP.
Finally, I recommend the On The Metal podcast for a dive into this from fairly technical perspective. There's a whole battle raging just to make it simpler and more secure to boot a computer. I know not everyone can dip into this particular battle usefully, but it's at least cool to know it's happening.
I love riding my bike. And I'm actually really bad at skateboarding. But I want to get better.--- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/futurepaul/message
|May 09, 2020|
Bitcoin with Matt Odell
This week I'm joined by Matt Odell, the co-host of the Tales from the Crypt podcast. Not only is Matt Bitcoin-famous, he's also hugely informed on technology in general, especially when it comes to security and privacy. I'm grateful to have him as my first guest on Cyberdeck Users Weekly, and grateful to have someone as practically paranoid as Matt in the world pushing for better ways to use and own technology.
Here's what we talked about:
Matt's dead man's switch
SCANDAL: Paul doesn't use a VPN
Practical Bitcoin privacy
Paul's Bitcoin setup
Matt's recommended resources
|May 06, 2020|
The Optimistic Case for Decentralization
WELCOME TO THE POD
In this episode of Cyberdeck Users Weekly we'll review a bunch of tech giants and what their potential weaknesses are:
AMAZON: MAKE IT MORE LIKE DEPOP
Amazon can't track counterfiets (scale fail) and it uses its vendors for market research (evil).
Solution Why can't I just order from local stores and self-run warehouses? Why can't I buy masks from the guy who stockpiled masks?
GOOGLE: MAKE IT MORE LIKE RIPGREP
Google simultaneously knows too much about me and yet can't know enough to give me truly amazing and deep results (scale fail), and it attempts to control what I see (evil).
Solution Run searches locally before hitting the network. Most search just me trying to find that one CSS Tricks guide to Flexbox.
See also: https://minbrowser.org/
SEAMLESS: MAKE IT MORE LIKE SQUARESPACE
Seamless takes a gigantic cut. What are they reallllyy actually offering? So much less than even something like Uber.
Solution A protocol you can adhere to for listing things.
FACEBOOK / YOUTUBE: MAKE IT MORE LIKE WORDPRESS
Like Seamless, Facebook starts out by letting you build an audience, and then at some point it pivots and starts to charge you for access to your own audience.
Solution Matrix? Mastadon? Jitsi?
APPLE: MAKE ME MY COMPUTER CARTRIDGES!
Alternatives to Apple: Pi / Pine / Librem / Redox OS / Oxide Computer / System76
I didn't bring this up on the pod but my dream for phones is that when you "retire" one you remove the battery and plug it into your home server setup and it becomes part of the borg that hosts all your local services.
BIG PROBLEMS WITH DECENTRALIZATION:
Decentralization of messaging (Lightning?)
Polish and ease of use
BIG systems like operating systems and UI frameworks are rare or bad and possibly unwanted in the first place?
HOW TO EVALUATE A TECHNOLOGY:
|May 02, 2020|