My Bitcoin stash is falling in value!

Yes, I have about $100 in Bitcoin and today was a bad day. It droppped from around $630 to around $580. Am I a speculator? I guess, but my excuse is that I’m very interested in the underlying technology and there’s nothing like having some to getting a feel for the space. Here’s a great article about Bitcoin Mining.

For Virtual Prospectors, Life in the Bitcoin Mines Gets Real –

Bitcoins are mined by a decentralized network of computers that guess solutions to a mathematical puzzle. As part of that process, miners keep track of and verify all transactions on the bitcoin network, so bitcoins are a kind of compensation for maintaining the ledger of transactions. The faster a person’s computer system can find solutions relative to the rest of the network, the better chance he or she has of being awarded bitcoins.


Double Agent?

I am reading a really cool book right now: GARBO: The Spy Who Saved D-Daya about a double agent and an elaborate look behind the curtain of espionage during WW2. Makes me wonder about the amazing amoung of leaked detail about a missle strike on Syria.

Could it be a total spoof, and even as we speak, special forces are infiltrating Damascus and doing their thing? And “whoops” – did I just give it all away?

Review & Outlook: Loose Lips on Syria –

It’s always possible that all of this leaking about when, how and for how long the U.S. will attack Syria is an elaborate head-fake, like Patton’s ghost army on the eve of D-Day, poised for the assault on Calais. But based on this Administration’s past behavior, such as the leaked bin Laden raid details, chances are most of this really is the war plan.


New York Times Grammar and Style

Listen, I love the New York Times. I read it cover to cover (or pixel to pixel) every day and have it delivered in dead-tree format to my doorstep each morning.

But so often I come across an awkward sentence which I have to read and re-read several times to understand.

I’ve been noticing this for a long time now and it makes me wonder whether it’s a stylistic thing or a that they have had to lay off their best editors.

At any rate, I don’t have the same impression when I read he Wall Street Journal (which I admire but don’t love.)

Here’s a recent example:

“LAGOS, Nigeria — In a quarter-century, at the rate Nigeria is growing, 300 million people — a population about as big as that of the present-day United States — will live in a country roughly the size of Arizona, New Mexico and Nevada.” (from NYT)

What do you say, am I crazy?

Wall Street Journal has some sensational data visualization

I don’t know if you need an account to see the amazingly useful, elegant and well implemented bit of data visualization in the Wall Street Journal. Typical of a nerd like me, I focus more on the design and technical elements than the data that it is trying to show. The data, by the way is polling data sliced in all kinds of ways that are useful and easy to use. Well done WSJ!

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