Day 154

One Bottle One Glass

To get sober, all you have to do is not drink. Why did it take me so long to figure this out? I’m slowly figuring out why because if nothing else, sobriety gives you lots of mental clarity to reflect on why you drink/drank, and why you aren’t anymore. I think a huge part of my identity was tied to drinking. I knew it was wrong and I knew I wasn’t drinking the way I considered appropriate, but I didn’t know how to not drink. I wasn’t doing anything to learn another way, and sobriety seemed so boring and awful. I was drinking about drinking, but I was doing very little to learn how to live without alcohol. Nowadays, I shudder to think of a hangover again. I rarely crave the awful taste in my mouth after a night of heavy drinking. Not that I particularly enjoyed it, but I 

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A Green Powered Sailboat — Hackaday

Drones fill the sky raining hellfire on unsuspecting civilians below. Self-driving cars only cause half as many accidents as carbon-based drivers. Autonomous vehicles are the future, no matter how bleak that future is. One thing we haven’t seen much of is autonomous marine vehicles, be they submarines, hovercrafts, or sailboats. That’s exactly what [silvioBi] is building for his…

via A Green Powered Sailboat — Hackaday

How to explain the value of replicated, shared ledgers from first principles

Richard Gendal Brown

“Digital currencies” aren’t needed to explain why distributed ledgers are important.

In this post, I develop an argument for replicated shared ledgers from first principles. It is intended to be an “education piece” aimed at those, particularly in the finance industry, who prefer explanations of new technologies to be rooted in a description of a real-world business problem rather than beginning with a description of a purported solution.  So, in this piece, you’ll find no mention of digital currencies, etc., because it turns out you don’t need them to derive an argument for distributed ledger technologies!

(Note to regular readers: see the end of the piece for some context)

We’ll start with banking systems

Start by thinking about today’s banking systems. In what follows, I use a bank deposit and payments example. But the same logic applies everywhere you look, as I’ll argue later.

Let’s imagine a world with three banks: Bank…

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Stephen Hawking predicts robot apocalypse coming within 100 years

If you thought the title villain in Avengers: Age of Ultron was scary: just wait, because one of the biggest brains on the planet thinks a robot takeover is likely in the next century.

Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking appeared at the Zeitgeist 2015 conference in London and confirmed the fears held by anyone who has watched a movie with a robot in it since 1927’s Metropolis when he said, “Computers will overtake humans with AI at some within the next 100 years. When that happens, we need to make sure the computers have goals aligned with ours.”

Earth Day: Environmental Sensors


Before you attempt to solve a problem, you must first study the problem. If there’s a problem with the environment, you must therefore study the environment at a scale never seen before. For this year’s Hackaday Prize, there are a lot of projects that aim to do just that. Here are a few of them:

[Pure Engineering]’s C12666 Micro Spectrometer has applications ranging from detecting if fruit is ripe, telling you to put sunscreen on, to detecting oil spills. Like the title says, it’s based on the Hamamatsu C12666MA spectrometer, a very tiny MEMS spectrometer that can sort light by wavelength from 340 to 780nm.

The project is to build a proper breakout board for this spectrometer. The best technologies are enabling technologies, and we can’t wait to see all the cool stuff that’s made with this sensor.

[radu.motisan]’s portable environmental monitor isn’t just one sensor, but an entire…

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FCC Creates Innovation Radio, The Future Of Wireless Broadband


Thirty years ago there was a lot of unused spectrum in the 900MHz,  2.8GHz, and 5.2GHz bands. They were licensed for industrial, scientific, and medical uses since their establishment in 1947. But by the 1980s, these bands were identified as being underused. Spectrum is a valuable resource, and in 1985, the FCC first allowed unlicensed, spread spectrum use of these bands. Anyone who has ever configured a router will know the importance of this slice of spectrum: they’re the backbone of WiFi and 4G. If you’re not connected to the Internet through an Ethernet cable, you have the FCC Commissioners and chairpersons in 1985 to thank for that.

Last week, the FCC unanimously voted to allow the use of spectrum in the 3.5GHz band with the Citizens Broadband Radio Service. This opens up 150 MHz of spectrum from 3550 – 3700MHz for new wireless broadband services. If history repeats…

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