Friday 25th April

BITCOIN 

Japan

Bitcoin made the front page of one of the most popular business magazines in Japan, taking up nearly 1/3 of the mag! pic.twitter.com/kiDto4VZfeConsidering what just happened with Mtgox, the article is overwhelmingly pro Bitcoin! – Roger Ver

Bitcoin will suddenly become huge in Japan & surprise everyone, It’s going to happen soon – Jon Southurst

 

The Revolution is Happening Without the Intellectuals

24 months ago, people in the power elite structure were making fun of Bitcoin. If you raised the subject of Bitcoin at a Federal Reserve conference, people would just laugh and say that’s the stupidest thing ever.

I love the bottom up revolutionary aspects. The fact that there are hundreds of thousands of full time economists who study monetary policy and imagine themselves to be experts on how to manage the nation’s money. They’re all bypassed entirely with the release of this one protocol on a free internet forum. It’s just a revolutionary idea.

Satoshi never went to the Senate Banking Committee, never went to the Fed, never published his research in the American Economic review. It’s the most hilarious and anti-elite revolutionary strategy ever, just to throw it out, “Oh here’s my new money that I wrote. If you like it, use it.”

It took 10 months and it obtained value. It was beautiful.

Even today you can look through economics journals and not find any articles on Bitcoin at all. They’re just sort of starting to appear, but they’re appearing and they’re already out of date by the time they appear. The revolution is happening without the intellectuals. – Jeffrey Tucker

 

Bitcoin vs. The NSA

You couldn’t have the system that we have right now, without fiat currency. You couldn’t have anything close to it. Imagine what we call government services with bitcoin. What a fascinating concept.  If you wanted to start the NSA you’d have to go to people and say “Hey, will you donate some money so we can spy on you. Are you down for that?” – Stefan Molyneux

 

Bitcoin vs. Total War

Fiat currency is the greatest virus to ever strike the planet because it causes so many deaths. Hundreds of millions. You can’t make these wars (total wars), you can’t sustain them and possibly pay for these wars using existing assets.

Monetary policy gives license to the state to do these things, otherwise it’s just not possible. The evils of the 20th century have almost everything to do with monetary policy.

Trying to find out the cost of war is really tough because it’s all self reported and it doesn’t count in the long term costs of war like long term healthcare and benefits, and also CPI inflation is all lies anyway.

* The very first big program funded by central banking was World War 1. It wasn’t scientific monetary policy, it wasn’t low unemployment, it wasn’t low inflation, it wasn’t the end of business cycles. No, it was the beginning of total war. That was the beginning of central banking.

* The cost of  World War 2, for just America which was never invaded, was more than all the gold that had ever been mined in human history.  So that’s why you had to get rid of the gold standard.

* Then Vietnam broke Bretton Woods and convertibility of US debt to gold in 1971.

* America has now spent much more on the War on Terror than it did on the 2nd world war.

Stefan Molyneux & Jeffrey Tucker

 

 

ALTCOINS 

Ethereum

Very intrigued by  Ethereum @ethereumproject would love to talk to you guys – David Marcus, Paypal President

The only criticism I have so far of Ethereum is that the one chain becomes an SPOF: one app may negatively impact another app. On the flip side, there are clearly advantages to having multiple apps on a big strong chain. Benefits vs. costs. That said Ethereum is a neat experiment to watch. Ethereum hackathons will produce some interesting projects. – Jeff Garzik

 

The Contractual Business Platform of The Future

If Ethereum becomes the contractual business platform of the future, I want my share of Ether, before it goes mainstream.

Unfortunately, there isn’t much going on with Ethereum right now, their IPO fell through and their forum doesn’t have a significant number of recent posts. Those who want information regarding updates on their IPO sale should stay tuned to their website, ethereum.org.

Clearly Vitalik, the brains behind Ethereum, is an intelligent guy, but will he and the marketing team be able to win the race in the cryptocurrency/smart contract war? Here is a post of him talking about dominant assurance contracts for those who want a glimpse inside the mind of a genius. – Cryptobang

 

 

EQUITIES

Visa

Visa earnings (V). Ouch. And they haven’t even felt the impact of decentralized payment systems…yet. #bitcoin – Michael Krieger

 

Buy Hong Kong and Vietnam Shares Instead of Chinese Shares

If you want to play a recovery in China, then I think you’re better off buying Hong Kong shares because in Hong Kong you have reasonably good corporate governance and you have very well-managed companies which are owned by large families, so the families are ready to be conservative in their dealings. They have low leverage. So if you believe that China is bottoming out and going up, I would own some Hong Kong shares, as I do.

Another recovery play – a market that has a similarly poor performance over the last few years – is Vietnam, which is very cheap, which has deleveraged and improving fundamentals in terms of a growing trade surplus, rising exports and so on. So I think Vietnam is better than China itself, if you believe in the Chinese recovery. – Marc Faber

 

 

COMPANIES

AirBnB

NY attacking those who rent rooms using AirBnB. 15,000 law breakers that must be stopped. read.bi/PwMP89 – Michael Robertson

The AirBnb crackdown begins. http://time.com/63810/san-francisco-airbnb-crackdown/ “Unregulated” and “wild west” in the first sentence of course. – Jerry Brito

 

Saudi Bin Laden Group

Saudi Arabia will begin construction of Kingdom Tower, the world’s tallest tower and the 1 kilometre-high skyscraper, by 27 April.

Saudi Bin Laden Group (SBG) is tasked with building the project, which has been undergoing extensive testing work before work begins, according to reports.

Kingdom Tower will have a total construction area of 530,000 sq metres and will consist of 200 fls.  It will be at least 173 metres taller than the Burj Khalifa, and cost $1.23-B to build – Paul Ebeling

 

 

PLACES

The Internet

Freedom has a tool today that it has never had before. It links individuals by mutual interest all over the world.

Despite spying and interventions, the Internet remains the most free sector of life. This is the core reason why it is so vibrant, innovative, efficient, orderly, and expanding. It has allowed us to outrun the government’s desire to control the world. It has carved out a special zone of freedom.

The parallels with the past are clear. People are drawn to places where liberty lives. They leave places where despots rule. – Jeffrey Tucker

 

Global Financial Centers

I used the Global Financial Centers Index to compare the strength of global financial hubs since the financial crisis of 2008 (data from 20092013 

Cities are ranked on competitiveness in business, financial sector development, infrastructure, human capital, and reputational factors.  – Lee Banfield

Seoul = Fastest Growing Financial Center

2009 = 53rd

2013 = 10th

 

Top 5 in 2009

1) London

2) New York

3) Singapore

4) Hong Kong

5) Zurich

 

Top 5 in 2013

1) London

2) New York

3) Hong Kong

4) Singapore

5) Tokyo

 

 

THE SINGULARITY

Google Glass Without the Glass.

Google patents smart contact lens with a camera built in. The firm has already developed a smart lens capable of measuring the glucose level of diabetics. – Mark Prigg

 

Space Elevator

Rich DeVaul, head of Google X’s Rapid Evaluation team, has confirmed for the first time ever that Google’s super hush-hush R&D lab actually tried to design one.

“It would be a massive capital investment,” he said in this month’s issue of Fast Company. But once this hypothetical machine was built, “it could take you from ground to orbit with a net of basically zero energy. It drives down the space-access costs, operationally, to being incredibly low.”

The team knew the cable would have to be exceptionally strong– “at least a hundred times stronger than the strongest steel that we have,” by ­[Google X researcher Dan Piponi]’s calculations. He found one material that could do this: carbon nanotubes. But no one has manufactured a perfectly formed carbon nanotube strand longer than a meter. And so elevators “were put in a deep freeze,” as [Google X researcher Mitch Heinrich] says, and the team decided to keep tabs on any advances in the carbon nanotube field.

Google X’s space elevator ambitions might be frozen, but they’re not dead. Google’s just waiting for the material and manufacturing world to catch up with its sky-high ideas. – Chris Gayomali

 

The Biggest Event in Human History

Artificial intelligence (AI) research is now progressing rapidly. Recent landmarks such as self-driving cars, a computer winning at Jeopardy!, and the digital personal assistants Siri, Google Now and Cortana are merely symptoms of an IT arms race fueled by unprecedented investments and building on an increasingly mature theoretical foundation. Such achievements will probably pale against what the coming decades will bring.

The potential benefits are huge; everything that civilization has to offer is a product of human intelligence; we cannot predict what we might achieve when this intelligence is magnified by the tools AI may provide, but the eradication of war, disease, and poverty would be high on anyone’s list. Success in creating AI would be the biggest event in human history.

There are no fundamental limits to what can be achieved: there is no physical law precluding particles from being organized in ways that perform even more advanced computations than the arrangements of particles in human brains. – Stephen Hawking

 

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